NHL Trade Rumors: Tomas Vokoun, Sami Salo and the Latest NHL Trade Buzz
NHL Trade Rumors are heating up as the trade deadline gets closer and some of the lower teams in the league start to sell off their assets.
Already some writers are projecting this trade deadline won't be as active as usual because of a bunch of different reasons, including the fact that so many teams are still "in it" or are still close enough to be considered in the postseason race.
There are a couple of teams that will definitely be sellers at the deadline, but there are also many teams who are in that gray area between rebuilding and playoff race. That's especially true in the West, where there's not much separation between the meat of the conference.
Here's the latest on some names who could be moving.
Tomas Vokoun, G, Florida
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Vokoun is a very good goalie who is stuck on a mediocre team in Florida.
He's also an unrestricted free agent after this season, so the Panthers will have to make a decision on him. There have been reports that Vokoun is interested in staying and signing a new contract, although nothing is imminent. The only news came from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, which reported both sides are in talks on an extension.
What could be a deciding factor on Vokoun is the lack of interest in goaltenders leading up to the deadline.
Sami Salo, D, Vancouver
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The question isn't whether or not Salo will be traded, because Salo has yet to play a game this season, but who on the league-leading Canucks will have to go to make room for Salo if and when he comes back.
According to reports, the Canucks will have to move about $1.8 million in cap room to make room for Salo. Not an easy task considering how well the Canucks have been playing recently. Of course, GM Mike Gillis has not publicly given a timetable for Salo's return, but it's something to keep an eye on.
Mikael Samuelsson, RW, Vancouver
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All the Salo talks led to two articles—one by Iain McIntyre of the Vancouver Sun and Ben Kuzma of The Province (Vancouver), both inferring that Samuelsson and Raffi Torres could be candidates to move on to make room for Salo.
Keith Ballard and Aaron Rome could also be candidates, but it doesn't seem likely Samuelsson will move on because of his playoff experience, and Torres wouldn't clear the cap space by himself.
Brad Richards, C, Dallas
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It was Nicholas Cotsonika of Yahoo! Sports that brought up the idea of a less-active trade deadline, and he also reported what we've all known for a while.
Richards probably won't be traded at the deadline. Dallas is the real day, and unless it all goes downhill in the next month, Cotsonika said Richards probably isn't going anywhere, even though the Stars could lose him in the summer.
Jarome Iginla, RW, Calgary
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Iginla is the Flames' best player and could bring the Flames valuable prospects and cap space back.
Yet, new GM Jay Feaster has said that Iginla won't be traded, according to Cotsonika. It may not make a ton of sense to rebuild around a 30-something player who might be starting to decline, but he's also the face of the franchise.
Jason Arnott, C, New Jersey
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Arnott has been perhaps the best offensive player for the Devils this season, but it's looking like he's the next Devil out the door in the New Jersey firesale, according to Cotsonika.
Nothing's imminent yet, but he might be the most movable piece remaining and there are a few teams (Montreal especially) that could benefit from a power forward that can put the puck in the net.
Sheldon Souray, D, Edmonton
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The Oilers didn't want to deal with Souray and his cap hit (and there were no takers on a trade), so they stashed him in the AHL, and he's been playing with the Hershey Bears.
He's been out with a wrist injury, but according to Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal, the Oilers have not been able to find any takers for Souray, which is not a huge surprise.
Brayden Schenn, C, Los Angeles
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Schenn is the Kings' top prospect and just put on a show at the World Juniors in Buffalo, tying a Team Canada record for most points in the tournament and doing so with a bad shoulder.
He's been rumored in any type of deal involving the Kings and a big-name forward, and while the Kings might listen down the line, David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period tweeted that Dean Lombardi has said Schenn is not available.
Andrei Kostitsyn, RW, Montreal
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Just like his brother in Nashville, Andrei Kostitsyn has been maddeningly inconsistent during his time in Montreal, and according to a recent report, could finally be on his way out.
Lyle Richardson of Fox Sports linked to an RDS.ca report on his web site that coach Jacques Martin doesn't know how to motivate the winger anymore while Pierre Gauthier has been actively trying to move him.
Both the report and Richardson state he probably won't be going anywhere, although there was a rumored deal sending him to Columbus for Jacob Voracek, although that was refuted by James Murphy of ESPNBoston.com.
Mike Fisher, C, Ottawa
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We mentioned yesterday that Fisher might be tough to move because of his contract and his cap hit, but that doesn't mean there still isn't interest in the center.
James Murphy of ESPNBoston.com tweeted the Blue Jackets have shown interest in Fisher, and he'd be an upgrade at center. But he's really more of a second-line center than a first-line pivot. Of course, as the situation in Ottawa changes by the hour, anything could happen.