The trade deadline is inching closer and closer every day, with little more than two weeks left until the most exciting day in Canadian sports television. As we get nearer to the trade deadline the playoff picture is becoming increasingly clear. That’s not to say it’s an exact science in labeling the likely buyers and sellers (if it were, just try explaining the Calgary Flames to me), but it’s one hell of a fun educated guess. Oh so much educated guessing...
Today’s preview centers around the perennial bubble stars. They just happen to also be the NHL’s stars. Dallas this year, much like year’s past, are on the outside looking in as far as the playoffs go. They are good, just not playoff good. The Stars are only 3 points out of the playoffs, and could prove me wrong, but I have my doubts. There place in the standings in combination with the fact that they’ve a girth of UFAs in the upcoming offseason are very likely going to make them sellers. Again. Below are a list of players I see potentially being on the trading block.
Derek Roy: If your team is looking for help at center, look no further than Derek Roy. He is in the final year of his current contract that carries a reasonable $4M cap hit, which will make him very appealing to teams right up against the cap. Only one year ago he was a fixture on the Sabres first line, but this season is playing in a role he’s more suited to on the second. Whether you need help at first or second line center, he’s your guy. His being a UFA at the end of this season could bring down his value unfortunately, but I doubt it.
Possible returns: A first rounder, maybe a prospect or a mid round pick will be part of the package.
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Jaromir Jagr: Jagr, much like Roy, is in the final year of his contract and also has a reasonable cap hit of just $4.5M. Teams in need of an offensive boost will surely be kicking the tires on Jagr. His work ethic and veteran poise will make him very attractive to any potential suitor, but will likely come at a kings ransom. Don’t be surprised if the Flyers make a push for Jagr, in hopes of getting Claude Giroux back on track.
Possible returns: Definitely a first rounder, or a mid rounder with a blue chip prospect
Eric Nystrom: Remember when the Stars wouldn’t take Nystrom on waivers, because it wouldn’t get them any closer to the cap floor? Well, their trading for him sure worked out well. He’s been a great addition to their penalty kill, and in the faceoff circle and is about as reliable as a bottom six forward gets. Can play center or wing to boot. In the final year of a deal that pays $1.4M.
Possible returns: a fourth round pick.
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You can follow J.D. Burke for more hockey commentary, stats, tweets, etc. @WeveGotTwins and find his blog at We've Got Twins