Washington Capitals winger Alexander Semin is one of several goal scorers who will be pursued at the trading deadline by contending NHL teams.
Proven goal scorers are so valuable as the season enters its final stretch, and acquiring players who can be depended on to create offense every night is crucial in making a team's playoff chances increase.
Let's look at three goal scorers who will be on the trading block this season.
1. Rick Nash
The Columbus Blue Jackets are struggling right now and have the worst record in the NHL. Given the team's current situation, it would be wise to trade captain Rick Nash.
Columbus desperately needs an elite goalie, and Nash is their best trade chip to acquire one with. The Vancouver Canucks may be willing to trade goaltender Roberto Luongo, and with the Canucks needing a power forward like Nash, this is a scenario that could work out.
Nash has nine goals with 12 assists this season, and could change a team's fortunes dramatically with his goal-scoring ability and underrated passing skills.
He is a superstar player that is well worth giving up young prospects for.
2. Ales Hemsky
The Edmonton Oilers have not been getting enough offense from Ales Hemsky this season, and their best decision for his future could be dealing him before the deadline.
Hemsky has just three goals with eight assists this year and would likely perform better with a change of scenery.
Hemsky has a $4.1 million cap hit and is an unrestricted free agent at year's end. Edmonton would be foolish not to trade him and get some sort of return.
He has the talent to be productive offensively, but his time with the Oilers has run its course. A new team and a fresh start would really help Hemsky.
3. Alexander Semin
In the last week, Alexander Semin has been scratched multiple times and has not been a factor offensively for the Washington Capitals.
His $6.7 million salary cap hit could be hard to move in a trade, but a veteran team poised for a run at the Cup Final such as the Detroit Red Wings may be willing to go after Semin for his goal scoring.
He is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year, so any team acquiring Semin would be able to let him go if he did not fit with them.
Semin has just five goals with six assists this year. On a new team with a realistic chance at the Cup Final, Semin would be worth the risk to trade for.