NHL Trade Rumors: Mikko Koivu and The Top 10 Injuries Affecting the Deadline
The NHL trade deadline is only a little over a week away. Many teams have suffered significant losses due to injury. Many of these injuries have fallen on high-profile players, a worst-case scenario for their teams.
These teams will need to make some moves if they hope to regain momentum going into the playoff stretch.
Here are the top 10 injuries that will have the most significant impact on this year's trade deadline.
10. Jonas Hiller, Anaheim Ducks
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The Anaheim Ducks are currently sitting in the number 10 spot in the Western Conference. They look to move into playoff contention.
However, this will be difficult without a healthy Jonas Hiller in net. Hiller is suffering from a recurrence of lightheadedness and it is unknown when he will return.
He missed two weeks earlier this month for the same symptoms. If this looks like it will be a recurring problem, the Ducks may need to boost their goaltending for the playoff stretch.
9. Kevin Bieksa and The Vancouver Canucks Blue Line
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Many Vancouver Canucks defensemen are injured right now. This could really affect what the Canucks do at the deadline.
They look to retain their success throughout the playoff stretch and into the playoffs. That will be difficult without a healthy blue line.
Kevin Bieksa is the latest to head to IR with a foot injury. Not good for Vancouver considering the kind of year Bieksa has had with the Canucks.
8. Ed Jovanovski, Phoenix Coyotes
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Ed Jovanovski has been a big part of the Coyotes success this year. However, he is now recovering from a facial injury.
Another Phoenix blueliner Adrian Aucoin is also on IR. The Coyotes may need to find replacements for them on the blue line.
7. Marian Gaborik, New York Rangers
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The New York Rangers forward Marian Gaborik is out with a concussion. We have seen the results and the time that concussions cause players to miss.
The same can be expected of the Gaborik injury. Since he's such a talented young star for the Rangers, they won't want to hurry his recovery and risk his future with the organization.
The Rangers were supposedly seeking help on the blue line, but now they may need to assess their needs on offense as well.
6. Chris Osgood, Detroit Red Wings
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The Detroit Red Wings are not expected to make any moves before the deadline. However, there is speculation that if Chris Osgood is assessed and allowed to return to the lineup, that the Red Wings will try to move the veteran goaltender.
Jimmy Howard has gotten the chance to really shine for the Red Wings. He has proven that he's capable of being the starting goaltender for the Wings.
If that is the case, Osgood may be rendered unnecessary. If he is cleared to return, he may be moved to a team that really needs goaltending.
5. Brad Richards, Dallas Stars
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This one is a little different. There was a lot of speculation that Brad Richards would be moved by the trade deadline.
Since Richards will enter free agency after the season ends, sources have speculated that the Stars will not be able to bring him back next year so they would trade him now.
However, now that he is out with a concussion, it is unlikely he will be taken off the IR in time to be dealt.
4. Mike Green, Washington Capitals
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The Washington Capitals defenseman Mike Green is out after getting struck in the ear by a puck during their last game versus the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Mike Green has been a huge presence on the Caps blue line for a couple years now. The Caps will need to make a move to help their blue line, especially since they have struggled on defense in the playoffs in years past.
3. Mikko Koivu, Minnesota Wild
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Mikko Koivu, the Minnesota Wild captain and top-line center, will miss at least three weeks with a broken finger. His hand was hit by a shot evidently.
Koivu will also visit a specialist to see if surgery is necessary to repair anything beyond the initial break. If so, his recovery could take even longer.
In the meantime, the Wild will need a top center to take his place.
2. Matt Duchene, Colorado Avalanche
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The Colorado Avalanche have had a tough season so far. They have battled injuries and it shows in the standings.
Their latest loss is young star Matt Duchene. Duchene is out indefinitely with a hand injury.
Duchene is the team’s leading scorer so the Avalanche will need to recoup that offense somehow.
1. The Pittsburgh Penguins: Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and The List Goes On
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The Pittsburgh Penguins suffered a huge loss when their captain and biggest offensive talent this year Sidney Crosby went out of the lineup with a concussion.
Then, their next biggest offensive talent Evgeni Malkin suffered a torn MCL and ACL injury. Now, Jordan Staal is headed back to the IR with a facial injury as well.
These instances on their own are horrible news for the Penguins, but collectively, they're devastating. Pens GM Ray Shero will need to make some of his trademark savvy deals to try to regain some offense going into the playoff stretch.