The New York Rangers have a group of 12 teams that they could send Rick Nash without his approval, after they asked him recently to submit his 18-team no-trade list. It isn’t clear who most of those 12 teams are, but Frank Seravalli of TSN confirms that the Toronto Maple Leafs are one of them. Nash recently said he had included Canadian contenders in his approved group, of which really there are only three: the Maple Leafs, Calgary Flames and Winnipeg Jets. It’s unclear if the latter two are among the dozen teams, though Seravalli writes the Nashville Predators and Dallas Stars are both “believed to be” among the approved destinations.
It doesn’t seem like the Maple Leafs have much use for the winger as they continue to deal with a roster crunch of their own, but there is a connection to head coach Mike Babcock from international competition. Nash was on two gold-medal winning clubs with Babcock, exquisitely playing a checking role alongside Jonathan Toews at times.
Nash will almost certainly be dealt by the February 26th trade deadline, and could even set the market for rental forwards by landing the Rangers a hefty package. There have been reports that New York is looking for as many as three assets for the 33-year old forward, a big ask for someone who can only give you a few months of production. While Toronto is now confirmed to be on the list, they don’t seem like a match to enter the bidding, even if the price does drop to a reasonable amount.