After an exciting Stanley Cup Final, an entertaining NHL draft and the start of free agency, the 2014 offseason has officially kicked into high gear as trade rumors continue to circle.
With top names like Mike Green and Vincent Lecavalier reportedly being discussed in blockbuster trades, the chatter about where the biggest stars will land has hockey fans captivated.
Here are the latest trade rumors from the NHL.
Washington Not Shopping Mike Green?
The Washington Capitals must be disappointed at the lack of recent success from defenseman Mike Green, and that has led to plenty of rumors and speculation about the franchise’s willingness to move his contract.
TSN insider Aaron Ward shared on Twitter the latest scoop from Washington regarding Green:
Amid the speculation, indications are the Washington Capitals are not looking to move Mike Green at this time. #TSN— Aaron Ward (@aaronward_nhl) July 3, 2014
While Green was still a shell of his former offensive self this season—he only racked up 38 points in 70 games—he stayed relatively healthy and was a steadying force in the defensive zone for a team struggling to find an identity.
Green may not be the same player he was when he racked up 31 goals in 2008-09 or 76 points in 2009-10, but he also doesn’t have the supporting cast around him that the franchise once provided.
Instead of trying to trade him away, the Capitals should look to better utilize Green, who is still just 28 years old. With Green as the captain of the power play and a key playmaker for Alexander Ovechkin, Washington should be focused on getting Green more opportunities to shine.
Philadelphia Still Trying to Deal Vincent Lecavalier?
The Philadelphia Flyers are in a salary-cap crunch, and one of the best ways to alleviate some of that pressure would be to trade away center Vincent Lecavalier as soon as possible.
The 34-year-old veteran has four years left on his deal worth $4.5 million per season against the cap, but he also has a no-movement clause. Despite the roadblocks, Philadelphia is still trying to get a deal done.
As stated in a report from Sam Carchidi of The Philadelphia Inquirer, there are at least two teams interested in the veteran, but the asking price could be too high:
Speaking of bad contracts, the Flyers still are trying to trade Vinny Lecavalier, who signed a five-year, $22.5 million deal last season. Nashville and Ottawa are among the teams that have shown interest. Teams want the Flyers to pay a big part of his salary…There also are reports that teams want the Flyers to include a prospect or a draft pick in any deal including Lecavalier.
There is no doubt that with 20 goals and 17 assists, Lecavalier was a big part of the team’s success last year. The problem is that he was playing on the fourth line and still making second- or first-line money.
The Flyers would be wise to make a deal now to help free up money that would allow them to sign the players needed to bolster the depth and talent of the roster. Lecavalier is a great leader, but he is a shell of the top star he once was and not worth what the team is paying him.
Detroit Looking to Bolster the Defense?
The Detroit Red Wings will likely never go through a rebuilding phase. With so much talent in their developmental system, the franchise is simply going through the awkward period where the older stars are fading before the next breed of players is ready to blossom.
There is still plenty of talent on the roster with Henrik Zetterberg, Pavel Datsyuk and others, and with a full offseason to get healthy, Detroit may be ready to once again make a run at the Stanley Cup.
There may be a piece missing, though.
According to David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period, the Red Wings may be looking to make a trade now that the free-agent well has run dry:
Red Wings appear to be working the trade phones now to bolster their blueline. Lost out on Boyle, and apparently out on Niskanen.— David Pagnotta (@TheFourthPeriod) July 1, 2014
Since the retirement of Nicklas Lidstrom, Detroit has been unable to find the right mixture of defenders to replace all of the things that the former captain did well. One way to help the issue is to add a veteran defender via trade.
The Red Wings understand how to work around the salary cap. If the right player is placed on the trade block, the franchise would consider pulling the trigger on a deal.
There is no doubt that a top free agent like Michael Del Zotto should also be a serious consideration, but Detroit is smart enough to leave all of its options open as the heart of the summer approaches.
*Stats via NHL.com.