April 3 is the NHL trade deadline, and as that date approaches fast the league has exploded with rumors about big names being moved and serious Stanley Cup contenders looking to make deals.
As we have seen from the Pittsburgh Penguins—traded for forward Brenden Morrow and defenseman Douglas Murray (h/t USA Today)—the first shots have been fired.
With the trade action already starting to heat up, expect all of the players named below to be at the center of the trade talk as the deadline approaches.
Jarome Iginla, RW, Calgary Flames
The Calgary Flames continue to fall further and further out of contention in the Western Conference (currently 14th overall, but still only five points out of eighth place). If the team can’t climb into the playoff chase, the Flames will likely become sellers at the deadline.
That reportedly includes team captain Jarome Iginla.
The list of teams is no surprise, as Iginla is not looking for anything long term and will be trying to contend for a Stanley Cup immediately.
With nine goals and 13 assists on a Flames team lacking any offensive continuity, it’s clear that Iginla still has enough in the tank to warrant the picks and prospects it would likely take to acquire the 16-year NHL veteran.
Now that each of the teams rumored to be on the list knows Iginla would consider them, each will go hard after the talented two-way forward in hopes of adding the final piece to help get a franchise over the Stanley Cup hump.
Iginla has played in the Stanley Cup Finals before, but the desire to hoist the cup will make him a valuable addition to any lineup and any locker room.
Dan Boyle, D, San Jose Sharks
The San Jose Sharks sit in ninth place in the Western Conference, just one point out of a playoff spot, but the talk of moving some of the team’s high-priced players in case it misses the postseason has already begun.
According to ESPN's Pierre LeBrun, San Jose is reportedly drawing interest from the New York Rangers over veteran blueliner Dan Boyle:
The New York Rangers have been on the lookout for a top-four, right-handed defenseman and a source told me Tuesday that the Blueshirts have interest in veteran Dan Boyle from the Sharks. There’s an obvious connection there, with Rangers head coach John Tortorella having coached Boyle in Tampa Bay when the Lightning won the Stanley Cup in 2004.
Boyle is one of the best offensive defensemen in the NHL (four goals and nine assists and 10 power-play points), and his power-play prowess makes him one of the most coveted trade pieces on the market.
If the Rangers were to acquire arguably the Sharks' top defender, the already impressive New Yorkers would receive a boost into the upper echelon of Eastern Conference teams.
Adding Boyle would be a major coup for New York.
Jaromir Jagr, RW, Dallas Stars
The Dallas Stars have already traded captain Brenden Morrow to the Pittsburgh Penguins (h/t ESPN), and the next impending unrestricted free agent likely to be moved would be right wing Jaromir Jagr.
As the deadline approaches, there will be plenty of teams looking for scoring depth that will kick the tires on an NHL great like Jagr.
Per the report from LeBrun (before Morrow was dealt), the Stars’ position in eighth place in the Western Conference and as the last postseason team won't be enough to stop the year-end fire sale:
Jaromir Jagr and Brenden Morrow are possibilities as well, depending on what the Dallas Stars decide to do with both UFAs-to-be. At this point, I would suggest there’s a stronger chance Morrow moves than Jagr; the Stars, I hear, are undecided yet on what to do with No. 68 and lot will depend on the offers they get and where they are in the standings come April 3.
Jagr has racked up 13 goals and 11 assists in 30 games so far this season, and at 41 years old, he has proven that he still has plenty of game left in his legs.
Dallas understands that Jagr is the ultimate rental player, so the cost in a trade for a player this talented will be very affordable for a team looking to add scoring depth.