One of the most talked about players in trade rumors this season has been Washington Capitals Russian winger Alexander Semin. Semin, who is coming off a bad season, has been rumored to be on the way out of the nation's capital for a while, but nothing has ever materialized in terms of a trade.
Now, more than ever, Semin appears to halfway through the exit door. There is a fine line between not helping your team and hurting your team; Semin has been flirting dangerously closely with the latter this season.
The 28-year-old is second on the Caps in penalty minutes (first among players who have played more than 13 games) with 34 PIMs, all minors. He is sixth worst in the team in plus-minus with minus-4. All the while, he has managed just five goals and five assists through 23 games, nowhere near the kind of production you'd expect from a player on a $6.7 million contract.
Bruce Boudreau made Semin a healthy scratch early on in the season to try to get him going, but it didn't work. Now, with Dale Hunter in charge, Semin's future in Washington looks even more bleak. It would be an understatement to say that the Russian isn't exactly a Hunter-esque player.
It is no secret the Capitals have struggled this season, and talk of a major trade in Washington is heating up. The Caps need to shake up their core, and a deal to send Semin away would certainly serve to do that.
With some good physical wingers like Jarome Iginla and Bobby Ryan—players Hunter would love to have on his roster—rumored to be on the trade block, it wouldn't be surprising to see a trade happen sooner rather than later. Fans called out for Boudreau to be fired, and General Manager George McPhee obliged. Now fans are calling out for Semin to be traded. We'll see.
Follow Jake Ware on Twitter at @JacobWare95