NHL Trade Rumors: Breaking Down the Hottest Chatter Around the League

Tim DanielsFeatured ColumnistMarch 26, 2013

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 11:  la12 watches his shot against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center on March 11, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

The NHL trade deadline is just over a week away. It's time for general managers around the league to start narrowing down their targets and pursue players they believe can provide the boost their team needs down the stretch.

In most cases, those type of acquisitions come in the form of role players. Depth additions that are going to play around 12 minutes per game and help solidify the roster. While many of the moves will be of that variety, there are still some big names being discussed.

Let's analyze some of the most prominent players that could be on the move before next week's deadline. All three players would represent a major offensive upgrade to their new team if they were moved.

Jason Pominville

Jason Pominville is having another solid season for the Buffalo Sabres. He's scored 23 points in 32 games, further establishing himself as one of the league's most durable players (nine missed games in seven years). That type of reliability is exactly what general managers want from a trade target.

It's been a down season in Buffalo, however. That lack of success could make Pominville expendable. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun reports there's a strong market for the winger, who the Sabres are interested in dealing.

With the Sabres, Pominville is serving as the captain basically due to seniority. He would be better off going to a team that's already got a leadership structure in place so he can come in and just focus on his own game. He would thrive in that type of situation.

Jarome Iginla

Iginla will probably be the most popular name bantered about between now and the deadline, or until he gets moved. The longtime Calgary Flames star, who's scored 22 points in 30 games, would be the perfect pickup for a Stanley Cup contender.

One that remains interested is the Pittsburgh Penguins, according to Pierre LeBrun of ESPN.com. He states the team is still looking into the possibility of adding Iginla despite making some other moves, including a trade for Brenden Morrow.

The Penguins are clearly going all-in with hopes of winning a title this season. Adding Iginla would give them two dynamic scoring lines, headlined by Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin and make them the clear Cup favorites as the playoffs approach.

Loui Eriksson

The Dallas Stars currently sit in 10th place in the Western Conference and are still within striking distance of a playoff spot. But the trade of Morrow suggests the team doesn't believe it has the pieces to become a serious contender this season.

That might bring Eriksson into the trade market. Larry Brooks of the New York Post reports the New York Rangers are very interested in the 27-year-old winger and are just waiting for the Stars to decide if they are going to go into full-sell mode.

The Rangers are desperately seeking a player who can ensure they secure a playoff spot after a rocky season thus far. Eriksson definitely has the talent to do exactly that and would fill the team's need for scoring depth. New York will eagerly await Dallas' decision.