Washington Capitals Players Most Likely to Be Traded in 2013-14

Ryan DavenportContributor IOctober 1, 2013

WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 02: Jason Chimera #25 of the Washington Capitals is congratulated after scoring in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the New York Rangers during the 2013 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Verizon Center on May 2, 2013 in Washington  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Images)
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

With the 2013-14 NHL season now very much upon us, the Washington Capitals are putting the final touches on their roster as the team prepares for Tuesday night's season opener against Chicago

That being said, as we saw over the weekend when longtime fan favorite Mathieu Perreault was dealt (via the Washington Post), it's never too early for general managerGeorge McPhee to begin wheeling and dealing to revamp, re-tool and reshuffle the Caps' roster. 

Heading into what should be a very exciting first season as a member of the Metropolitan Division, here's a look at which of the Caps' players are most likely to be dealt before this spring's trade deadline.


Michal Neuvirth 

It wasn't long ago that Michal Neuvirth was considered to be Washington's goaltender of the future, especially after Semyon Varlamov was shipped to Colorado in 2011.

But since then, Neuvirth's inability to stay healthy, coupled with a healthy dose of unspectacular play, has put the 25-year-old in serious danger of becoming a potential career backup in D.C. 

WASHINGTON, DC - APRIL 23:  Michal Neuvirth #30 of the Washington Capitals in action during an NHL game between the Winnipeg Jets and Washington Capitals at Verizon Center on April 23, 2013 in Washington, DC.  (Photo by Patrick McDermott/NHLI via Getty Im
Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

Neuvirth, who has a 27-win season under his belt, has fallen far behind fellow young stopper Braden Holtby in the eyes of head coach Adam Oates and McPhee, and that certainly makes him a possible trade target. 

Given his age, track record and superb positional play in net, Neuvirth absolutely has the ability to blossom into a No. 1 goaltender, but it won't be in Washington, so if the right offer comes along, McPhee will have to consider it. 


Jason Chimera

As one of the fastest skaters in the game, Jason Chimera is the type of bottom-six forward coaches love to have, especially given how willing the veteran winger is to mix it up in the corners. 

SUNRISE, FL - APRIL 6: Jason Chimera #25 of the Washington Capitals skates with the puck against Tyson Strachan #23 of the Florida Panthers at the BB&T Center on April 6, 2013 in Sunrise, Florida. (Photo by Eliot J. Schechter/NHLI via Getty Images)
Eliot J. Schechter/Getty Images

Unfortunately, as speedy and determined as the 34-year-old Edmonton native is, his offensive production wasn't overly impressive during the lockout-shortened season, as Chimera managed just three goals for a Caps team that's become increasingly deep up front. 

For now, Chimera unquestionably has a spot in Oates' lineup, but if he's outside the top three lines, his $1.875 million cap hit will be a tad too expensive for a fourth-liner. 


Dmitry Orlov

Two seasons ago, Dmitry Orlov established himself as one of Washington's most promising young players, as the Russian rearguard surprised many by notching three goals and 19 points in 60 games as a rookie. 

However, last season Orlov struggled with injuries, and now the 22-year-old puck-moving defender finds himself on the outside looking in with regards to the Capitals' lineup. 

WINNIPEG, CANADA - MARCH 22: Dmitry Orlov #81 of the Washington Capitals carries the puck up the ice as teammate Brooks Laich #21 follows behind during third period action against the Winnipeg Jets at the MTS Centre on March 22, 2013 in Winnipeg, Manitoba
Lance Thomson/Getty Images

And, with 19-year-old Connor Carrick appearing to be Oates' top choice in terms of young offensive blueliners, it seems that Orlov's time in Washington could be coming to a close. 

While the sample size is small, Orlov has demonstrated that he's capable of producing at the NHL level, and with very impressive skating, puck-handling and mobility, another team will take a chance on him if the Caps decide to move him.