NHL Trade Scenarios: 7 Teams Who Should Be Interested in Alexander Semin
People have been speculating about Alexander Semin being traded for years now.
After all, the team is tight on salary due to all the stars on the team, especially now that both Alex Ovechkin and Nicklas Backstrom are locked down long-term.
However, when healthy and at his prime, Semin has one of the best shots in the league and can put up good numbers; he scored 40 goals two seasons ago.
So, if the Capitals are really looking to move him, there won't be a shortage of teams wanting to talk to them.
Here's seven teams that should be interested.
Detroit Red Wings
It's no secret that the Detroit Red Wings are in need of a top-six forward. Only one player (Henrik Zetterberg) scored more than 65 points last season. Zetterberg scored 80, but the next highest scorer scored 62.
Their top goal scorer (Johan Franzen) notched 28 goals.
Semin scored 28 goals last season, 40 the previous year and 34 the year before that. The Red Wings could really use that kind of production.
Plus, Semin could benefit playing alongside fellow Russian Pavel Datsyuk. He immensely benefited from the veteran Russian presence of Sergei Fedorov on the Capitals several seasons ago and could benefit from Datsyuk in the same way.
After all, the Red Wings really know how to get the best out of their Russian players.
Los Angeles Kings
The Los Angeles Kings have been searching for a top winger to fill that void on their roster. They signed veteran Ethan Moreau recently, but he's obviously not in their long-term plan.
Yes, Semin might be kind of expensive for them, but if they could move some salary in a trade for him, they could make it work.
Their top three wingers last season were Justin Williams, Dustin Brown and Ryan Smyth, who scored 57, 57 and 47 points, respectively last season.
Semin scored 54 points last season in only 65 games. He scored 84 points the preceding season and 79 the season before that.
It would take a lot of maneuvering, but the Kings could pull a trade like this off. After all, they managed to trade for Mike Richards this offseason, which was a surprise to everyone.
The Dallas Stars had to let Brad Richards walk this summer due to financial troubles. Now, they're trying to find a buyer to purchase the team.
If that occurs and the team isn't under the same financial constraints, it can set about acquiring a star forward to replace Richards.
Semin could be one option.
Yes, Richards is a center whereas Semin is a winger; the Stars could find a quality center, but rely on Semin for production and star power.
Richards scored 28 goals last season; the same as Semin. Richards scored more points, but in a good year, Semin can put up even better totals.
It's unlikely, but it could be an option.
St. Louis Blues
The St. Louis Blues could really use some star power on their team. They have a few players who can score a good number of points, but they could really benefit from a top scorer like Alexander Semin can be in his prime.
Plus, the team signed Jason Arnott in the offseason.
Arnott had a very positive effect on Semin during his short tenure with the Washington Capitals and he seemed to be one of the few players to really try to get to know the introverted Semin.
Imagine what the two could do if reunited in St. Louis.
That could benefit both the team and those players.
Plus, the two teams have already made a trade this offseason (Eric Fehr to Winnipeg, with Danick Paquette and draft pick to Washington) and we've seen teams make multiple trades in the same summer (Minnesota Wild and San Jose Sharks).
The Winnipeg Jets are another team that could really use high offensive producers.
The Atlanta Thrashers' highest scorer last season was Andrew Ladd, who scored 59 points. That was only five more than Semin scored last season—and in 16 more games.
Semin, particularly at his best, would be a great addition to the Jets.
The Colorado Avalanche are another team somewhat lacking in the scoring department. Yes, they have Matt Duchene and Paul Stastny, but they could use another offensive star.
Plus, the team recently acquired Semyon Varlamov from Washington. They hope that Varlamov will be a consistent starter and their franchise goaltender for years to come.
However, Varlamov has only ever played for the Washington Capitals, where he has had multiple Russian teammates to help him as he doesn't fully speak English yet.
It might be difficult for him on a team without any Russian comrades. Trading for Semin would give him a fellow Russian teammate, while also giving them an offensive boost.
The Nashville Predators are facing the possibility of losing some of their biggest stars, including Shea Weber and Ryan Suter, both set to become free agents next summer (although Weber will still only be an RFA).
If they lose Weber, which would be very bad for the team, it would free up cap space for them to find another top player with some money left over to put toward another.
Semin could be one of those players.
In fact, in his worst season points-wise in a few years, Semin still scored more points than the Predators' leading scorer, who scored only 50. Additionally, he scored five more goals than the Predators' leading goal scorer.
That probably makes Semin a prime target as a backup plan if the team can't keep who they want to.