The NHL season is a marathon, but that does not mean a team can ignore the first few legs of the race.
Though teams have only played about an eight of their schedules, front offices are already starting to examine the trade market.
A few teams have already seen their seasons take a turn for the worse and could use a trade sooner rather than later. Let's take a look.
The Calgary Flames have struggled out of the gate again this season and management is not thrilled about it.
General manager Jay Feaster has already started overhauling this roster and won't be afraid to continue doing so to save the season.
Feaster is committed to the rebuilding project and realizes that the culture of that locker room needs to change.
The defending Stanley Cup champions have opened up the season an abysmal 3-7.
Outside of Tyler Seguin, and occasionally Brad Marchand, the team is struggling as a whole. There is a lack of fire and focus in all zones of the ice from the Bruins, and they don't have the talent to make up for it.
Boston needs a spark of some sort to lift them out of this funk. GM Peter Chiarelli is working the phones, attempting to find a trade of some sorts to turn things around.
The Vancouver Canucks are in no way desperate at this point in the season.
Once they get fully healthy, things will turn around; not to mention, the team is not off to an atrocious start thus far to begin with.
However, there is reason to be concerned when the team has given up three goals a game.
Is Luongo going to be able to find his groove? Will the defense hold up for the entire season? These questions need answers if the Canucks are going to repeat in the Western Conference.
The St. Louis Blues appeared to be heading towards another season mired with mediocrity.
They haven't been shy about making trades over the past few seasons, so I wouldn't be shocked to see them shake up their roster a bit before things turn south for good.
The real key for this team will be netminder Jaroslav Halak. He has made a few timely saves in the last few games that could really jump-start a turnaround for the struggling goalie.
The Anaheim Ducks were not hoping to be in the cellar of the Pacific Division at this point in the season.
There is still plenty of hockey to be played, but the Ducks need to stop relying so heavily on their top scoring line, and the defense must continue to develop as a unit.
Until those things happen, a deep postseason run is out of the question for Anaheim.
The Montreal Canadiens ran into some cap trouble this offseason and have predictably struggled in the early going.
However, the Habs have reeled off a few wins in the past week or so.
The Canadiens will be looking to make a move if their offense can't starting producing consistently.
Winger Eric Cole has not been the impact player the team hoped for when signing him to a big four-year, $18 million deal this offseason.
The Columbus Blue Jackets are a mess; they went out and acquired Jeff Carter and James Wisniewski this offseason, masking serious deficiencies of the team.
Carter is already injured and the Jackets have won just two of their 12 games so far this season.
Changes are coming; players will be dealt; coaches could be shuffled around; and a new GM all could be in place by season's end.