Today's big Ottawa-Carolina transaction may have just opened up the trade deadline season.
Along with the NHL Entry Draft, the deadline day wheelings and dealings may be our 2nd favorite non-gameplay hockey event. Here at TST we've compiled a deep analysis of how trade deadline deals (namely rentals) have effected teams over the past couple years, both the buyers and sellers. We also have a part 2 that shows any moves past Stanley Cup Champions have made. Expect those to be out next week.
For now, here's a list of players that could be changing locations by month's end that we wouldn't mind seeing in the black and vegas gold. Keep in mind there's a myriad of complications (no trade clauses, other team demanding too much in return, etc) that could make a lot of these guys pipe dreams. But if we were running a hockey team---and the last time we checked, no such luck, here's a list of guys that would definitely be on the radar to improve a contender, especially one with the needs of the Penguins.
We're not going to include guys like Hossa, Sundin or Jokinen....While they'd no doubt be terrific acquisitions they don't seem likely to wind up in Pittsburgh. Also Buffalo may well trade Brian Campbell but the Penguins don't need a puck moving defenseman, they need muscle so it doesn't make sense. Think of this as a realistic wishlist. Also, we're going to only point out teams that are likely to be sellers at the deadline, or if they have an impending UFA they might move.
**Also, remember that, to this point contracts are about 2/3 of the way paid, since the season is about 2/3 of the way completed. So if the Penguins pick up someone with a salary of $5 million, they only have to pay the balance of the contract which would add about $1.66 million to the payroll (minus of course any salaries they end up trading). It's been reported the Penguins do have a couple million within their team budget to rise, so seemingly it'll be on Shero, and not the accountants to make this work.**
Mike Peca: 43 games, 4 goals 21 assists, -1....Winning 55.4% of his faceoffs. Salary is $1.3 million, UFA at season's end.
Adam Foote: $4.6 million salary, UFA at end of the year
Steve Staios: 57 gp, 6g, 5a, -12, 56 hits, 126 blocked shots. Signed for two more seasons after this one (cap hit of $2.7 million). Is 33 years old and would make a good defensive defenseman on a contender.
Jaroslav Modry: 57gp, 1g 2a, -2, 34 hits, 91 blocked shots...36 years old, $1.2 million dollar contract and a UFA at season's end
Dan Cloutier: (just seeing if you're paying attention!)
New York Islanders
Mike Sillinger: 52 gp, 14g, 10a, -10, winning 56.3% of faceoffs...Is 36 years old and signed next year for $2.3 million
Miroslav Satan: 54gp, 11g 19a, -4....UFA at season's end ($4.5 million salary this season).
If the Penguins want another skilled winger for Crosby and Malkin, this could be a guy to watch for. The Islanders and Penguins might make weary trade partners, being as they're division rivals but if Pittsburgh offers them a chance to improve themselves, the Islanders have little choice but to make the deal. These teams might not like each other, but it's not Pittsburgh/Philly or NYR/NYI type hate.
St. Louis Blues
Barrett Jackman: 50 gp, 1g, 4a, -16, 21:51 TOI, 95 hits, 81 blocked shots...$2.2 million salary, UFA at season's end.
It's been reported in the media that extention talks have broken down between the Blues and Jackman's camp, a major stickng point on money. It looks like Jackman might test the open market, and that's a good idea because NHL teams love physical defensemen entering the prime of their careers. If the Blues (2-6-2 in last ten games) continue to slip down the standings the very savvy John Davidson might be inclined to at least get something in return for the former Calder trophy winner.
Tampa Bay Lightning
Vincent Prospal: 56gp, 23g, 28a, -6. $1.9 salary, set to be a UFA in July
Perhaps the most skilled forward that might be a realistic option for the Pens. But even though Tampa is 15th place in the East, they're only 7 points (and a game in hand) back on the Caps. And they're 6-3-1 in the past 10, so it's not as if they've rolled over for dead just yet. So it's still feasible that the Lightning might not be the sellers they were thought to have been even a week ago.
Toronto Maple Leafs
That's it, that's the list, have at it.