NHL Trade Scenarios: 1 Trade That Each NHL Team Really Needs to Make
The NHL free-agent feeding frenzy (say that five times fast) is almost over, and we are starting to get a clearer view of what each team's roster will look like.
Many teams are still looking to tweak their rosters with the intent of finding the right mix of star-power and chemistry to take the next step.
Some teams have aspirations of winning the Stanley Cup in 2011, while other teams have a goal of reaching the playoffs. Either way, here is one trade that each NHL team really needs to make.
Vancouver Canucks (117 Points)
Acquire: Zach Bogosian from Winnipeg Jets
Trade: Two first-round picks and Mikael Samuelsson
The Vancouver Canucks seemed like a wrecking ball last season as they bashed teams en route to the President's Trophy. They continued to look solid all the way to the Stanley Cup before being beaten by the Boston Bruins.
The Canucks have lost a lot of the depth from last year's team in Jeff Tambellini, Raffi Torres, Tanner Glass, Rick Rypien, Lee Sweatt and most importantly Christian Ehrhoff.
The Canucks need to add another winger with size (Marco Sturm doesn't cut it) and a top-four defenseman if they wish to stay atop the Western Conference standings.
Washington Capitals (106 Points)
Trade: Alexander Semin to Toronto Maple Leafs
Acquire: Cody Franson
The Washington Capitals changed their team philosophy behind coach Bruce Boudreau, and they finally looked ready to be contenders in the playoffs. That was not to be as they were knocked out early by the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Semin is a 30-goal scorer that would be welcomed in Toronto and the Capitals would be acquiring a player in Franson that would take some of the pressure off of John Carlson. Boosting their defense in front of Thomas Vokoun would make the Capital's legitimate Stanley Cup contenders.
Not knowing what they have in Tom Poti at this point makes it even more necessary to add a top-four defenseman.
Philadelphia Flyers (106 Points)
Trade: Scott Hartnell to St. Louis Blues
Acquire: Jason Arnott
Trade: Sergei Bobrovsky to Columbus Blue Jackets
Acquire: Ryan Johansen
The Philadelphia Flyers have already made three blockbuster moves this offseason. Acquiring and signing Ilya Bryzgalov to a nine-year deal worth $51 million and trading the corner-stones of the team in Jeff Carter and captain Mike Richards.
The Flyers would love for a team to take Scott Hartnell's over $4 million cap hit and acquire another penalty killer to play alongside Max Talbot. Claude Giroux can't be on the ice all the time Philadelphia.
Arnott would be the big body in the middle that the Flyers need and St. Louis would be adding a player with 25-goal potential.
At least that's what Paul Holmgren can tell them.
The Flyers have already made a huge deal with the Blue Jackets and trading "Bob" for another top prospect like Johnasen would certainly fit with what the Flyers are trying to do.
Pittsburgh Penguins (106 Points)
The Penguins play down the stretch last season was phenomenal, and they will be a better team for learning how to play without their superstars.
The Penguins will miss veteran leader Max Talbot, but player's like Jordan Staal and Pascal Dupuis can carry the load on the PK.
The Penguins would be smart to add another tough veteran to their penalty kill, but they are up against the cap and have enough to win it all again in 2011.
The Penguins may be the most complete team in hockey this season.
San Jose Sharks (105 Points)
Trade: Jim Vandermeer
Acquire: Cap space or draft picks
The San Jose Sharks have proven that they have what it takes to win in the playoffs, and now they're hoping that their new additions can lead them to the Stanley Cup.
Adding Brent Burns and Martin Havlat came with a steep price (Heatley and Setoguchi), but the Sharks realized the need to add another top defenseman and more speed.
Burns will be a difference-maker for the Sharks this season but they could use another top-nine forward after losing Setoguchi's scoring.
The Sharks have seven defenseman that could all log at least 15 minutes. They should move Vandermeer to acquire draft picks or just to have some cap space.
Detroit Red Wings (104 Points)
Acquire: Top-six forward at trade deadline
Trade: Mike Commodore and draft picks
Nicklas Lidstrom returning and Brian Rafalski retiring were shockers for different reasons, but the Detroit Red Wings were smart (as usual) to acquire puck-moving defenseman Ian White.
With the retirement of Rafalski and Kris Draper, the Red Wings have cap space that they will save until the trade deadline rolls around. Their lineup is loaded with skilled forwards and they have at least eight defensemen to be excited about in Lidstrom, Kronwall, Stuart, White, Ericsson, Kindl, Commodore and top prospect Brendan Smith.
The Red Wings could use the depth they have on D to add another top-six forward. Adding Alexander Semin would just be scary.
Boston Bruins (103 Points)
Acquire: Zach Bogosian from Winnipeg Jets
Trade: Two first-round picks and Benoit Pouliout
The Boston Bruins were smart to let Michael Ryder and Thomas Kaberle walk, but that doesn't mean they are better teams at the moment.
They have a lot of cap space to spend on another defenseman, as they should let Tyler Seguin and Jordan Caron blossom blossom under featured roles in 2011.
Adding Joe Corvo (and his shot) was a nice idea, but he is not as effective a player that Kaberle can be on the power play. The Bruins need to be big players at the deadline and acquire a top-flight defenseman once again.
Tampa Bay Lightning (103 Points)
Acquire: First-round pick, Scott Hartnell and Sergei Bobrovsky from Philadelphia
Trade: Victor Hedman, third-round pick
The Tampa Bay Lightning showed the hockey world that they are one of the most talented teams in the NHL. They took care of their most important business at hand by re-signing Steven Stamkos to a five-year deal.
The Lightning will miss Simon Gagne and Sean Bergenheim and they need at least one more player to play a top-six forward role as Ryan Shannon is not that guy.
They could use a backup goalie with No. 1 potential as well, and the Flyers could fill both of those needs.
Anaheim Ducks (99 Points)
Acquire: Top-six forward at the trade deadline
Trade: Draft picks
The Anaheim Ducks are one of the deepest teams in the NHL and they will show it once again with a healthy Jonas Hiller. Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry and Bobby Ryan are three of the best young forwards in hockey but they could use some help.
The Ducks will be in playoff contention all season long, and they will add another scorer at the trade deadline.
Nashville Predators (99 Points)
Acquire: Kris Versteeg from Florida Panthers
Trade: First-round draft pick
The Nashville Predators looked like a team in 2010 that was one more scorer away from a dominating team. Shea Weber may be the best defenseman in hockey, and the salary arbitrator certainly agreed when he awarded Weber $7.5 million.
The Predators lost a lot of players this offseason in Marcel Goc, Steve Sullivan, Joel Ward, Aaron Johnson, Shane O'Brien, Matthew Lombardi and Cody Franson, but they kept their core in tact with Pekka Rinne and Weber.
Adding another 20-goal scorer like Versteeg could make a huge difference for the Predators.
Phoenix Coyotes (99 Points)
Acquire: Sergei Bobrovsky and third-round pick from Philadelphia
Trade: Kyle Turris
This trade seemingly makes a lot of sense considering the Phoenix Coyotes need a goalie, and the Philadelphia Flyers have a promising young one in Sergei Bobrovsky who is likely to see little playing time with Ilya Bryzgalov in town.
The Flyers would love to add another prospect like Turris who would fit in nicely with young prospects like Schenn and Voracek.
Los Angeles Kings (98 Points)
Acquire: Top-nine forward at the trade deadline
Trade: Draft pick
The Los Angeles Kings may have been the winners of the offseason after trading for Mike Richards and acquiring Simon Gagne and Colin Fraser.
The Philadelphia Flyers may be the team smiling in two or three years when Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds are stars, but the Kings are clearly a better team now than they were three months ago.
It is amazing that Drew Doughty still doesn't have a contract, so that needs to be L.A's top priority, but they may need to add another gritty winger to fill Simmond's void at the trade deadline.
The L.A. King's roster is absolutely loaded with talent.
Chicago Blackhawks (97 Points)
Acquire: Matt Carle from Philadelphia
Trade: Michael Frolik
I still don't know how GM Stan Bowman was able to trade one of the worst contract's in the NHL in Brian Campbell, but the Chicago Blackhawks are a much better team because of that.
Chicago has added a plethora of players that will make an immediate impact offensively in Andrew Brunette, Sami Lepisto and Rastislav Olesz.
They also made sure that they will not be pushed around anymore by adding tough guys Jamal Mayers, Sean O'Donnell and Dan Carcillo. The Blackhawks finally have some salary cap flexibility, and they will be able to improve their defensive corps at a much more reasonable price.
Montreal Canadians (96 Points)
Acquire: Top-six defenseman at trade deadline
Trade: Draft picks
The Montreal Canadians have a nice group of defensemen, but they are counting once again on Andrei Markov to stay healthy.
Josh Gorges, P.K. Subban, Hal Gill, Jaroslav Spacek, Alexei Yemelin and Yannick Weber give the Hab's seven good defensemen.
The Canadians could use another top-four D-man with Gill and Spacek getting up there in age and the huge question mark that is Markov's health. They would love to add another scorer like Kris Versteeg at the deadline, but they will be tight to the cap.
Buffalo Sabres (96 Points)
Acquire: Michael Leighton of Philadelphia
Trade: Third-round draft pick
The Buffalo Sabres have significantly improved their team this offseason, albeit at a huge price. They overpaid for Ville Leino, but he will provide a scoring touch and playmaking ability from the wing.
Christian Ehrhoff and Robyn Regehr will join Tyler Myers as one of the best defensive corps in the NHL. The Sabres still need to add a backup goaltender at this point.
Dallas Stars (95 Points)
Acquire: Andy McDonald from St. Louis
Trade: Adam Pardy
Dallas clearly needs to add some more scoring even with the signing's of Radek Dvorak, Vernon Fiddler and Michael Ryder.
They need a center that can make plays and set up a sniper like Ryder.
Calgary Flames (94 Points)
Acquire: Andrej Meszaros, Jakub Voracek
Trade: Jarome Iginla
How the Calgary Flames have managed to go from one of the most talented rosters in the NHL to what they have now is beyond me.
They traded one of their leaders (and best player's) in Robyn Regehr, and don't be surprised if Calgary has a firesale at the trade deadline.
This is the first blockbuster deal that is on the list, but we all know that the Flyers and Flames are not afraid of huge deals. The Flames at the deadline could sound a little something like this: Iginla, Kiprusoff, they all must go!
New York Rangers (93 Points)
Acquire: Veteran defenseman
Trade: Draft picks
The New York Rangers took care of business this offseason by signing top free agent Brad Richards to a huge deal, while also re-signing Ryan Callahan and Brandon Dubinsky.
The Rangers now have one of the top playmakers in the NHL to set up Marian Gaborik and a plethora of tough grinders to battle in the corners.
The Rangers still have some cap room that they can use to add another scorer or veteran defenseman at the trade deadline.
Carolina Hurricanes (91 Points)
Acquire: Jason Arnott from St. Louis at the trade deadline
Trade: Draft picks
The Carolina Hurricanes will miss both Joe Corvo and Eric Cole in 2011 even with the additions of Alexei Ponikarovsky, Anthony Stewart and Tomas Kaberle. The Hurricanes have money to spend, and they'd be wise to try and add another scorer before the season starts to help out Eric Staal and Jeff Skinner.
Another goal-scorer would help to close the gap between the Carolina Hurricanes and the top contenders in the Eastern Conference.
St. Louis Blues (87 Points)
Acquire: Alexander Semin
Trade: T.J. Oshie, David Perron and a first-round draft pick
The St. Louis Blues have a solid goaltender and player's that can score goals. They added toughness and the ability to win faceoff's this season as they acquired Jonathan Cheechoo, Jason Arnott, Jamie Langenbrunner, Scott Nichol, Kent Huskins, Brett Sterling, Brian Elliott and Evgeny Grachev.
The Blues still seem one star player away from making any serious noise in the playoffs. Alexander Semin would certainly fill that void.
Minnesota Wild (86 Points)
Acquire: Andres Lilja from the Philadelphia Flyers
Trade: Third-round draft pick
The Minnesota Wild finished 2010 with the least shots fired on net in the entire NHL. They set out to make sure that didn't happen again this season and I think it is fair to say question answered.
The Wild traded for two of the best snipers in the game in Dany Heatley and Devin Setoguchi. They had to trade All-Star defenseman Brent Burns and winger Martin Havlat, but the trade seemingly makes sense for both teams.
If the Wild can add another defenseman, they have a chance to be contenders in the playoffs.
Toronto Maple Leafs (85 Points)
Acquire; Michael Leighton from Philadelphia
Trade: Fourth-round draft pick
When GM Brian Burke says his team is going to be active in the offseason you'd better believe him. He has added John Michael Liles, Tim Connolly, Matthew Lombardi and Cody Franson to the league's most valuable franchise.
The Leafs are putting a lot of their hopes this season on players with a lot of question marks. Connolly needs to prove that he can stay healthy, and Lombardi needs to show that he can use his blazing speed to become a game-changer.
The Leafs have already made a lot of moves and now need to add a backup goalie to be ready for the season.
New Jersey Devils (81 Points)
Acquire: Backup goalie
Trade: Late-round draft pick
The New Jersey Devils played like the worst team in hockey for much of the first-half of the season. After the All-Star break, however, they played like one of the best.
Adding one of the best players in the world in Zach Parise and tough guy's Cam Janseen and Eric Boulton and the Devil's might be Stanley Cup contenders once again.
Adam Larsson is this Flyers fan's pick as the NHL Rookie of the Year.
Columbus Blue Jackets (81 Points)
Acquire: Scott Hartnell from Philadelphia
Trade: First- and third-round draft picks
The Columbus Blue Jackets have finally found the No. 1 center in Jeff Carter that they have been looking for to pair with all-world winger Rick Nash.
They traded for the rights to negotiate with James Wisniewski, and his acquisition will clearly bolster their power-play.
They had some serious issues along the blue-line last season, and they could use another top-six forward. Also, they lost a lot of size along the wings and could use a tough veteran to fill out their lineup.
Winnipeg Jets (80 Points)
Acquire: Kris Versteeg
Trade: Second- and third-round draft picks
The Winnipeg Jets have a lot of talent on their roster and they have salary-cap space to add more. Eric Fehr, Jason Jaffray, Rick Rypien, Tanner Glass, Derek Meech and Randy Jones have already been added to what could be one of the more intriguing teams in the league.
Don't be surprised to see Kris Versteeg team up again with fellow Stanley Cup champions Dustin Byfuglien and Andrew Ladd in Winnipeg.
Ottawa Senators (74 Points)
Acquire: First- and third-round draft picks
Trade: Sergei Gonchar
The Ottawa Senators have a lot of cap room but they clearly are in a re-building phase and they need to continue on that path by trading Sergei Gonchar.
Gonchar has been a coveted player for team's making playoff pushes for the past five years, and the Senators would be able to receive nice compensation in return.
This team would be much better if Jason Spezza and Daniel Alfredsson could play a full season again.
New York Islanders (73 Points)
Acquire: Braydon Coburn from Philadelphia
Trade: Matt Moulson
The New York Islanders are loaded with a bevy of young talent like Matt Moulson, John Tavares, Josh Bailey, Michael Grabner and Blake Comeau, but it's hard to beat teams like the Penguins and Flyers when your best players are barely allowed into a bar.
The Islanders need some clarity in net between DiPietro and Nabokov, and they also need a top-four defenseman.
Florida Panthers (72 Points)
Acquire: Multiple draft picks
Trade: Versteeg, Upshall, Jovanovski
The Florida Panthers had to spend like crazy just to give themselves a chance to reach the cap-floor. They have added Tomas Kopecky, Jose Theodore, Scottie Upshall, Ed Jovanovski, Marcel Goc, Tomas Fleischmann, Sean Berganheim, Kris Versteeg and Brian Campbell to this point and they may not be done yet.
The Panthers would be smart to acquire draft picks at the trade deadline to build alongside Eric Gudbranson and Jonathan Huberdeau.
Colorado Avalanche (68 points)
Acquire: High draft picks
Trade: Chuck Kobasew, J.S. Giguere
The Colorado Avalance are clearly in re-building mode, but they have some excellent pieces in place with guys like Paul Stastny and Matt Duchene.
The Avalanche were smart to pluck Semyon Varlamov from the Washington Capital's dumpster as he could pay immediate dividends.
The Avalanche were last in total goals against, goals allowed per game, and penalty kill percentage. They clearly need more help defensively, but they need to continue to acquire draft picks and improve over time.
This will not be a quick fix in Colorado.
Edmonton Oilers (62 Points)
Acquire: Multiple draft picks at trade deadline
Trade: Cam Barker, Ryan Smyth, Andy Sutton
The Edmonton Oilers certainly have the foundation to be a very good team with players like Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Magnus Paajarvi and Sam Gagner but that transformation will not happen overnight.
The Oilers need to continue building through the draft and adding young, talented players to an already promising group.