The lack of real trade movement in the days leading up to this season’s NHL Christmas “trade freeze” has more than a few pundits and bloggers looking ahead to the February 28th NHL Trade Deadline – when we know for certain there’ll be real, honest-to-goodness trade activity – and speculating over which players might be dealt by that time.
Joe Favia over at The Bleacher Report recently wrote of “Marty Turco and Ten Goalies Who Could Be Dealt at the Deadline”, listing – in addition to Turco – Colorado’s Craig Anderson, Toronto’s J.S. Giguere, Ottawa’s Pascal LeClaire, Tampa Bay’s Dan Ellis, New Jersey’s Martin Brodeur, Boston’s Tim Thomas, Edmonton’s Nikolai Khabibulin, San Jose’s Antti Niemi and the NY Islanders’ Rick DiPietro as potential trade candidates.
Favia did suggest “the likelihood of any high-profile goalie switching sweaters this season in the NHL are small. But, I did not say it is impossible”.
No, it’s not impossible…except for the aforementioned.
Turco’s performance this season proves beyond a shadow of a doubt he’s no longer capable of being an NHL starting goalie and it’s unlikely anyone’s going to pick him up as a backup at the trade deadline.
Anderson is the better of the two Avalanche goalies right now, and as long as the Avs remain in playoff contention they won’t move him or Peter Budaj.
Giguere has a “no-trade” clause and GM Brian Burke probably won’t waste time shopping him unless “Giggy” asks to be dealt.
Leclaire has a lengthy injury history which has hampered his performance throughout his career. Good luck finding takers for him.
Ellis and fellow Lightning goalie Mike Smith have the worst combined goals-against and save percentage in the league. Gotta figure that’ll seriously hurt his market value.
Trade Brodeur? Really? Only if Marty asks to be dealt, and he’s not going to do that, nor for that matter will GM Lou Lamoriello even seriously consider that option.
If the Vezina Trophy could be awarded right now, Thomas would be the runaway winner, leading the league in goals-against average, save-percentage and shutouts. Currently no other goalie with as many games played as Thomas even comes close to his numbers. No way in hell the Bruins move him.
The Oilers are starting to make some noise in the Western Conference, in part because of Khabibulin’s steady veteran presence. Besides, given his age and remaining salary there wouldn’t be any takers even if the Oilers were to shop him, which they won’t.
Niemi’s shaken off a slow start and in recent weeks has outplayed Antero Niittymaki for the starter’s role on the Sharks, playing as well as he did during the 2010 playoffs. The Sharks won’t trade him.
Finally, Dipietro. No takers, anywhere, for a guy with a contract that expires in 2021 with a lengthy history of knee and hip injuries.
Filed Under: Boston Bruins • Colorado Avalanche • Edmonton Oilers • Featured • Featured Rumors • New Jersey Devils • New York Islanders • Ottawa Senators • San Jose Sharks • Tampa Bay Lightning • Toronto Maple Leafs
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