NHL Trade Speculation: 10 Teams Who Might Sell Players at the Deadline

Matthew FairburnCorrespondent IDecember 14, 2011

NHL Trade Speculation: 10 Teams Who Might Sell Players at the Deadline

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    Two months ago, every NHL team was a playoff contender. But in the NHL, things change fast.

    In the span of just 30 games, hopes of making the playoffs have been dashed for some teams, and these teams are ready to do whatever it takes to line things up for next year.

    A handful of teams look doomed already, and with the trade deadline just a few months away, those teams could be selling off their spare parts in hopes for a better future.

    Here are 10 of those teams.

Calgary Flames

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    The Calgary Flames are off to another slow start this season. While the team was able to turn things around and contend for the playoffs last year, that task may be a bit tougher this time around given the hole they have dug themselves into and the competitiveness of the Northwest Division.

    Jarome Iginla will be the subject of plenty of trade talks leading up to the deadline. He has spent his entire career in search for a Stanley Cup, and it is becoming clear that he won't find it in Calgary.

Columbus Blue Jackets

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    The biggest floppers of the NHL season have been the Columbus Blue Jackets. After breaking the bank to sign James Wisniewski and trading the farm to bring in Jeff Carter, their results have been less than inspiring.

    The Jackets have accumulated a league-worst 20 points thus far. There are pieces in place that could bring back a return for Columbus, and it's just a matter of which players they are willing to part ways with.

Carolina Hurricanes

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    Nothing has gone right for the Carolina Hurricanes this season. The team's captain and best player, Eric Staal, has gotten off to a terrible start, and the rest of the Hurricanes have followed suit.

    The Hurricanes are inept on defense, putting Cam Ward in tough situations far too often. Carolina already dealt Tomas Kaberle (who they signed to a big contract this offseason), so they are definitely already in selling mode.

Winnipeg Jets

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    The return to Winnipeg has not gone as planned for the Jets so far. The team is hovering around .500 and have struggled on the road this season. In all likeliness, they probably will not contend for a playoff spot.

    The Jets are a young team, but the roster is not devoid of experienced players that could help a team in the hunt for the playoffs.

Ottawa Senators

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    The Ottawa Senators are in rebuilding mode and have shown signs of getting things turned around this season. Still, the Sens realize that next season is their year to contend and will likely be willing to sell at the trade deadline to continue to build their future.

Anaheim Ducks

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    The Anaheim Ducks are in trouble. While the roster has some big-time talent, the Ducks have glaring holes in their lineup, particularly on defense. It's going to be difficult for this team to pull themselves out of the hole they have dug to start the season.

    Bobby Ryan has already been the subject of trade talks. While those seem to have died off, the rumors show a willingness in Anaheim's front office to move some pieces around in order to get this team back on track.

New York Islanders

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    Preseason predictions of a New York Islanders playoff run in 2011-2012 were at least one season too early. The Isles are off to another abysmal start.

    Evgeni Nabokov is the biggest selling piece that New York has to offer.

New Jersey Devils

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    The New Jersey Devils are by no means out of contention at this point in the season. As a matter of fact, they have gotten off to a half-way decent start based on expectations. However, with Martin Brodeur's rapid decline and lack of fire power on offense, the Devils should be on the outside looking in come playoff time.

    Zach Parise is the most dynamic player who could be on the block this spring. His contract is up after the season, and the Devils would be able to net a huge return for the talented winger.

Dallas Stars

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    The Dallas Stars have jumped up to a quick start yet again this season. And yet again, the Stars will not make the playoffs.

    Dallas has new ownership and a bright future. It would be wise for them to dump some of their older talent on the roster to bring in more young blood and draft picks.

Colorado Avalanche

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    The Colorado Avalanche are one of the youngest teams in the NHL with only three players on the roster over the age of 30.

    The focus is on the future in Colorado, making the team a prime candidate to sell players at the deadline.