The American Thanksgiving long weekend didn’t stop the Internet rumor mill from churning out NHL trade possibilities. Here’s a look at the latest.
Having won just three of their past 10 games, the Avalanche are in serious trouble.
Their blueline certainly could use help and GM Greg Sherman would jump at the opportunity to acquire a top defenseman such as Suter.
Alas, for the Avalanche and the other 28 teams in the league, the Nashville Predators intend to re-sign Suter. Contract talks between his agent and Predators management are reportedly going well, meaning he could be inked to a long-term extension in the New Year.
Even if the Avalanche could land Suter, they’d have to re-sign him quickly or risk losing him for nothing to a team with deeper pockets via next summer’s unrestricted free agent market.
Semin’s poor performance, reduction in ice time and designation as a healthy scratch for the first time since his rookie season in a recent game against Phoenix has stoked anticipation the Washington Capitals will put him on the trade block.
This report claims the Capitals are “actively shopping” Semin and getting plenty of interest, though that seems questionable, given his listless performance, penchant for selfish penalties, $6.75 million salary and 2012 UFA status.
One suggested destination is Los Angeles, with the belief they would benefit from his offensive skills. There’s no way, however, the Kings would part with hard-hitting captain Dustin Brown and shot-blocking defenseman Willie Mitchell for a marshmallow-soft right winger like Semin, as proposed by this report.
Another proposal is the New York Islanders via swapping Semin straight up for right winger Kyle Okposo. But Isles management won’t part with any players for an expensive under-achiever who would bolt next summer via free agency.
Another report, meanwhile, is the Detroit Red Wings as the team “most likely able to pull off the right package” for Semin.
Unfortunately, there are no specifics as to what “the right package” would be, though one suspects if the Capitals were trying to move Semin, they’d be happy to land picks/prospects plus a young player just to be rid of his salary.
The Wings have around $5.6 million in available cap space and that wouldn’t be enough to comfortably absorb Semin’s salary, so there would have to be at least $2.5 million in salary going to Washington.
GM Ken Holland recently denied the Wings inconsistent start would push him into the trade market, saying that wasn’t his “M.O.” and expressing confidence his roster, especially top forwards Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg.
It’s doubtful Holland would be interested in parting with assets for a player such as Semin. Even if he were tempted to acquire him, it would make more sense to wait and attempt to sign him the off-season, when Detroit will have more than $22 million in available cap space.
This one is part of a listing of 10 teams that could give the long-time Senators captain a shot at winning the Stanley Cup.
Its author acknowledged Alfredsson’s “no-trade” clause and $4.9 million cap hit for this season and next would make him difficult to move, especially to the Maple Leafs, who have no space to absorb that cap hit.
Beyond that, there are a couple of significant flaws in this suggestion.
For one, if the Senators were to shop him, and that’s highly unlikely, it certainly wouldn’t be to their hated rival in Toronto.
And while the Leafs have shown improvement, no one considers them a Cup contender.
Trade Talk addresses the biggest rumors being discussed online and appears weekly only on thehockeynews.com. Lyle Richardson has been an NHL commentator since 1998 on his website, spectorshockey.net, and is a contributing writer for Eishockey News and Kukla’s Korner.