The 2014 NHL trade deadline is just a few hours away, and fans across the league are in a frenzy about possible deals that could come to fruition at the 11th hour.
With huge names on the trade block, such as Tampa Bay’s Martin St. Louis, Columbus’ Marian Gaborik and Edmonton’s Ales Hemsky, the excitement for this deadline day is through the roof.
Here are the latest reports concerning some of the biggest stars in hockey.
New York Rangers Fighting for Martin St. Louis?
The New York Rangers have been kicking the tires on Tampa Bay Lightning forward Martin St. Louis for weeks, but with the trade deadline looming, the franchise has begun its final push to make the deal happen.
According to John Shannon of Sportsnet, New York has made its final offer:
Rangers have put an offer in on Martin St.Louis. Really up to Yzerman and St.Louis if there is any traction. #TradeTracker— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) March 5, 2014
The Rangers have continued to work on a contract extension with captain Ryan Callahan over the last several months, via Pat Leonard of the New York Daily News, but the two sides have not been able to come to an agreement yet.
Since he hasn’t worked out an extension with the team, Callahan could be the centerpiece in a trade for St. Louis.
New York would likely have to add more talent and picks to a possible deal to make it worth Tampa Bay’s time, but if the desire to add a bona fide offensive machine such as St. Louis is serious enough, this trade could come to fruition before the deadline.
Los Angeles Kings Trying to Acquire Marian Gaborik?
The Los Angeles Kings have a strong core of defenders and great goaltending, but they have lacked consistency in the offensive zone. That’s where a possible deal for offensive-minded forward Marian Gaborik could make sense.
According to Billy Jaffe of Sportsnet, the Kings have contacted the Columbus Blue Jackets about a possible trade:
Hearing LAK have made an offer for a CBJs player (Gaborik??). Now just waiting for a decision tomorrow ( or today, here in east).— Billy Jaffe (@BJaffe) March 5, 2014
Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet is also hearing Gaborik’s name in trade talks:
While there is no discounting the offensive prowess of Gaborik and what he could add to Los Angeles offensively, there are serious questions about his ability to stay healthy when it matters most.
Gaborik has dealt with injuries throughout his career—including the 2013-14 season—and has been a shell of the offensive juggernaut he was while racking up 86 points in his first season with the New York Rangers.
Trading for Gaborik would be an educated risk, but if the Kings have real aspirations to make a deep postseason run, adding a forward who could be the spark the franchise needs is a risk worth taking.
Feeding Frenzy Surrounding Ales Hemsky?
Every year around this time, rumors begin to surface surrounding Edmonton Oilers forward Ales Hemsky. As one of the better two-way forwards in the NHL who can also add a scoring touch, Hemsky is once again a major target.
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, the feeding frenzy over Hemsky has begun:
No fewer than 6 teams expressing interest in Ales Hemsky.— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) March 5, 2014
After Hemsky's great performance in the 2014 Winter Olympics and his strong start to the second half of the season, many teams looking for grit and offensive prowess could find both in Edmonton’s strong forward.
Hemsky added two goals on Tuesday night against Ottawa, and there is no doubt that with his strong forechecking ability, this is a player who will be getting a lot of attention as the deadline approaches.