Sunday Trade Talk.
The Senators are in need of a true, proven reliable scoring LW’er.
At the moment the best hope rests in the young hands of either Peter Regin, Nick Foligno, or Milan Michalek.
All of these players have the skill to be top six wingers, but none are proven, or yet reliable. Worse, the best of them, Milan, is really a RW’er, but due to a lack of depth on the other side of centre, is being forced to play out of position.
How much better would he be playing in his natural position? We’ll never know unless the Sens get someone to fill his role on the left.
This issue runs in stark contrast to the depth on RW.
Alfredsson, Michalek, Kovalev, Shannon, Butler.
So who might be available at this point?
Well, it’s a good news bad news scenario. There are likely proven offensive LW’ers out there, but every-one of them have issues.
Simon Gagne – Oh Simon, what skill, speed, energy, fragility. Gags is a 225 lb power forward in a 185 lb body. Six games into the season a neck injury had Gagne watching as TBL played lights out without him. His recent return has not been overly impactful (6gp/3 pts) and rumour has it Yzerman would consider moving the remainder of his 1 yr. salary in return for some depth experience.
Possible trade – Simon Gagne for Jarkko Ruutu
Marty Havlat – We all know what Havlat brings. Energy, enthusiasm, scoring prowess and a chance to gain some LTIR cap relief. With Mach9 on the roster you can spend to the cap, knowing LTIR is surely to free up some call up room.
The biggest issue in landing Havlat would be the high expectation in return. Either they will happily divest themselves of Marty’s long-term deal, or they will expect a Kovalchuk type return.
Possible trade – Havlat for Kovalev, 2011 2nd.
Alex Frolov – Frolov is Kovalev light. He oozes skill, but plays with an edge…an edge of apathy. The big benefit is he currently rides a one-year deal, so if he doesn’t make an impact, he can be cut loose at year-end. The big question is, what would Sather accept in return (not want, every GM wants the world)? If he cost the Sens a late pick, say a 3rd, it may worth pursuing.
Possible trade – Frolov for 2011 3rd.
Jiri Hudler – Another undersized scoring winger failing to score. Unfortunately for Jiri, his team is kicking ass without him, and he has been a healthy scratch. Add to this his recent flight to the KHL and Jiri may well be obtainable.
Possible trade – Jiri Hudler for Ryan Shannon , 2011 3rd
Nikita Filatov – O.k., this one is far from proven. Another Russian, another brewing output vs. skill gap. Filatov is Erik Karlsson, on the left-wing, but with a propensity for exhibiting a selfish attitude both on and off the ice. He’s had public spats with coaches in the NHL and WJC, he’s left the NHL for the KHL, and he’s now in the minors after failing to earn a regular role on Columbus. Is Columbus ready to part ways with their problem child, and if so, do they expect the world in return?
Possible trade – Nikita Filatov for Jim O’Brien and 2011 2nd.