As the NHL trade deadline approaches, our imaginative minds are forced to wonder what wild moves could happen.
There are big names on bad teams and plenty of teams looking to buy some talent to help make a deep playoff run.
A lot of these players will become unrestricted free agents at the end of the season, so these players might be rentals for the playoff run and that’s it.
Others may be long-term solutions that could change the path of a team’s future. Either way, the following list is of the 10 wildest trade possibilities that could actually happen.
The Carolina Hurricanes are fighting for their playoff lives and it may be time for them to consider moving veteran defender Joni Pitkanen before he leaves as an unrestricted free agent this offseason.
Pitkanen is a solid defender and Carolina would be smart to try to sign him long-term. If Carolina ships him elsewhere, he would add serious depth and experience to a defensive group.
If they decide that Pitkanen does not fit their system long-term, they should try to get what they can in return for him.
Scottie Upshall has 27 points this season through 59 games, and is a big part of the success of the Phoenix Coyotes.
The Coyotes are in a good position in the Western Conference, but a move involving Upshall may be in the works to bring a better all-around forward into the organization.
The Coyotes are content with what they have, and as long as they stay healthy, they will have a good chance to go deep into the playoffs this season.
Craig Rivet would be a good addition to a team looking for a fifth or sixth defender who has playoff experience and is a good locker-room presence.
While his production and play in general has slowed, he can still be a shutdown defender and play on the penalty kill.
The Buffalo Sabres' captain has been a disappointment for the team, and a new place to hang his hat would be the best thing for both parties.
The value for Andrei Markov is unknown but it may be time for the Montreal Canadiens to test the water and see what they can get for the soon-to-be unrestricted free agent.
The Canadiens are losing defenders right and left and letting go of the often injured defender Markov might be an easy move.
Markov has missed almost two full seasons over the last three years and the Canadiens should cut ties either way.
Veteran forward Alexei Kovalev looks to be on his way out at the end of the season, so the team would be wise to try to make a move for another defender for next season or pieces for the future.
Sending him to a team in contention with scoring deficiencies and good prospects could yield some key pieces for the future of the Senators.
A team like Pittsburgh will be hunting for scoring talent to make up for the injuries to Evgeni Malkin and captain Sidney Crosby and a trade for Kovalev might be a big possibility.
The Philadelphia Flyers have too many forwards and moving a player like Nikolay Zherdev would help the Flyers clear up salary cap room.
Zherdev has played well at times this season, but hasn’t fit into the defensive-minded scheme of head coach Peter Laviollete.
The Flyers have traded away a lot of their picks, and sending Zherdev away for a few draft picks might help replenish the farm system.
Bryan McCabe would bring a lot on the defensive end for a team, and his leadership abilities and shot from the point would look so dangerous in the playoffs.
As Florida falls further out of contention in the Eastern Conference, the unrestricted free agents in their lineup become more available.
McCabe is a great defender and on a team with a solid offensive group and good goaltending, he could be a real powerhouse in the playoffs.
This year has been just another year where Tomas Vokoun was buried on a bad team.
The Panthers' veteran netminder is an unrestricted free agent after this season, so the Panthers may want to move him now before he leaves this offseason.
Vokoun is a damn good goalie and if he lands on a solid team with a good defensive group, he could put them over the edge for the Stanley Cup.
As hard as this may be to understand, the Predators should trade Shea Weber now if they do not plan on resigning him long-term.
Weber is one of the best defenders in the league and the Predators should do whatever they can to keep him in town.
If they do decide to move him, the most interesting rumor I heard about Weber was the Leafs sending Dion Phaneuf, picks and prospects to Nashville in return for Weber’s services.
The move seems wild but it’s one of those moves that’s just crazy enough to work.
The Flames are making one last surge towards the playoffs, but if they start to tank, a move for the veteran winger Jarome Iginla may be on the horizon.
With 56 points this season, Iginla’s scoring abilities would put a team close to winning the Cup over the edge and bring veteran leadership to the team.
Iginla is a veteran who knows how to win. He has been in big games before and he won’t back down from the opportunity.