It is well-known by now that St. Louis Blues star Vladimir Tarasenko has requested a trade, but the extent to which he will go to make sure that request is honored may still be a surprise. Unlike other standout players with trade protection who simultaneously demand a trade while holding their team hostage with a limited list of acceptable destinations, Tarasenko is reportedly taking an “anywhere but St. Louis” approach. The Athletic’s Arthur Staple writes that Tarasenko, who has a full No-Trade Clause in his contract, has nevertheless provided the Blues with a considerable list of teams that he would be amenable to ending up with. Per multiple sources, Staple relays that the length of the list is “double-digits at least”. One team that is known to be on Tarasenko’s list of preferred destinations are the New York Islanders, though the salary cap implications would be tricky for such a deal. It is unknown if other teams who have checked in – the Boston Bruins, Edmonton Oilers, New York Rangers, and Washington Capitals – are also on the list, but the odds are in their favor. One way or another, Tarasenko will be dealt, putting an end to an injury saga that was only resolved once Tarasenko went outside the organization to repair his shoulder. He should be fully healthy moving forward, but with some doubt and a hefty contract, there is some concern about what the Blues will recoup in a trade, if anything. Some have speculated that they may need to attach their first-round pick in order to move the pricey veteran, while others believe he will be exposed in the Expansion Draft in hopes that the Seattle Kraken take him for free instead.
- While it is unclear exactly why, it has become obvious that Pavel Buchnevich’s name is being floated on the rumor mill. The Athletic’s Rick Carpiniello confirms as much, but does not know the source. This could be a case of teams simply making calls to the New York Rangers about Buchnevich following a career year, creating the illusion that he is available for trade whether the team is taking those offers seriously or not. However, there is also a good chance that the Rangers are at least actively listening or even shopping Buchnevich. The 26-year-old winger has improved significantly in each of the past two years since signing his last contract with the Rangers. Now he is a restricted free agent with arbitration rights and the ammunition to command a sizeable pay raise. With more depth on the wing than at center, including top picks Alexis Lafreniere and Kaapo Kakko, New York could choose to save the cap space for improving the center position, especially if Buchnevich can help to accomplish that goal as part of a trade. Carpiniello also notes that the Rangers have a number of young standouts who will require expensive extensions this summer and in the coming years and the team could be hesitant to let Buchnevich’s deal get in the way. Of course, this is all still speculation, but for whatever reason Buchnevich’s name is out there.
- It was reported last week that the Vancouver Canucks and defenseman Nate Schmidt could be heading for a split this summer after a less than inspiring first season. However, the team has since publicly denied any talks to trading Schmidt. Nevertheless, Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli still debuted Schmidt at No. 12 on his Trade Targets board and believes that there is something to the rumors. Schmidt was not a good fit in Vancouver this season but still has value in the eyes of teams across the league; he appears to want to maintain that value by leaving the Canucks. Vancouver likely does not want to give up leverage by admitting that their is a mutual desire for a move, but could very much use his cap space.
- The NHL Expansion Draft allows flexibility with protection schemes, offering teams the ability to protect seven forwards and three defensemen or, in the event that there is a fourth defensemen worth more than protecting three additional forwards, the eight-skater approach. However, there is not much a team can do when they want to protect five defenseman (unless they somehow feel they can afford to only protect three forwards.) The Nashville Predators appear to be facing this conundrum. Earlier in the season, the team entertained trading Mattias Ekholm because it was assumed they wanted to protect Roman Josi, Ryan Ellis, and Dante Fabbro and seven forwards in the upcoming Expansion Draft. However, once the team began to improve and Ekholm was not moved before the Trade Deadline, it then became more likely that they would go with eight skaters instead, keeping all four defensemen. The late-season breakout of Alexandre Carrier threw a wrench in those plans though. The 24-year-old Carrier outplayed and ultimately took the job of the 23-old Fabbro and now the Predators do not want to lose either for nothing to the Seattle Kraken. It has previously been reported that Nashville is trying to construct a side deal with Seattle that would see the NHL’s newest team take a player of the Predators’ choosing with an additional cost, rather than having an open selection of all exposed players. However, TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports that in the even such a deal cannot be reached, the Predators will try to trade one of their top five defenders. LeBrun believes it will be one trade route or the other; Nashville will not protect all five defensemen.
“anywhere but St. Louis” – Please, Vladdy, walk that one back, at least a little. You don’t want to end up in ARI, DET, or BUF, do you??? I’d like to see you regain the luster on a decent team, at least for the last two years of the contract.
‘Double digits at least?’ So there’s a chance it’s triple digits?
@J.H.Padres – I hope he’s not so drunk he’d consider the European Tour early!
Lots of leagues around…though the KHL is really just one team as Putin calls the shots there, the Swiss league is full of holes, SHL is all Swedish and no finish, and don’t get me started with the Finnish.
Best stay with double digits I’m thinking under 30 Vladdy.
With Kakko and Kravstov at RW, Buch would eventually wind up on the third line – and a big contract there wouldn’t be worth the squeeze. They already have big contracts with Pani and Kreider, and Laf down the road. Zibs is coming up soon as well.
And once Kakko and Kravstov outproduce him, yeah, he’d wind up on the third line. So far, their COMBINED production isn’t HALF of Buchnevich’s.
Granted, I admit I’ve a basic prejudice when it comes to hockey players: I’m a lot more impressed by guys with a proven multi-year record of production than I am by “ooooohhh, he was a high first round pick.” Lias Andersson was a top ten pick. Dylan McIlrath was a top ten pick. Al Montoya, Hugh Jessiman, they were top ten picks. Maybe your crystal ball is better than mine, but Kakko and Kravstov need to earn it, first. Buchnevich already has.
100%. Draft pedigree doesn’t win cups. Brayden Point, 3rd Round(!) for instance. Sure they ought to be good players but ought can quickly turn to naught. Best keep the guy whose legit especially when they can afford him. Or heck dump Buchnevich and sign surer for 5 mil. Please can someone do something at least as stupid as EDM. Free up cap space and blow it on grandpa Keith (for the record I like Keith, think he’ll be useful but not at that price or age!!) so he can show the boys how to play depends I mean defense.
“This is Ointment country”
So when they earn it if they earn it and with your approach by that time Buchnevich will either walk and we get nothing or we resign him and than cannot afford better younger players. You have to look forward and not be stuck in the mud. Buchnevich is not a difference maker and if he wants to get paid as if he is rather than a solid 2nd line winger than he’s gotta go. I wouldn’t give him 5 plus million! That contract will hurt us just as Kreider and Trouba contract is and will.
I don’t get it. Especially once the Rangers buy out DeAngelo, they’ll have ample cap space. They really only need to sign Buchnevich and Shesterkin out of $25 million cap space, and then grab a couple warm bodies to fill out the roster. And if they’re smart, they stand pat there. They’ve got the talent to make the playoffs, $10 million of free cap space buys them some rentals in March, and they’ll still have enough flexibility to pay Zibanejad, Fox and Strome next year. And never mind what Lafreniere or Kakko MIGHT be able to do down the road: Buchnevich is a *proven* stud. He’s young, he’s skilled, he’s a guy you want on your team.
So if they’re shopping his rights, I’d be real interested in knowing what’s wrong. So they have to throw $5 million or so at him. New York HAS that money available. Why would they possibly shop him?
He’s not worth 5 million if they feel Kaapo and Kratsov are the better future RW choices. Use Buchnevich and prospects to get a young top 6 center.
You know what? Hell, I don’t root for the Rangers. Absolutely, toss away players who can already play for guys you only HOPE will be able to play. (What the hell, Buchnevich’s only averaged 25 goals per 82 for the last three seasons, AND he kills penalties … he must be a bum, right?)
By all means, if New York wants to go with “How high we drafted him is worth more than how much he produces on the ice,” I’m not stopping them. What do I know, after all, this is the franchise that’s decided in the last 20 years that great stars like Lias Andersson, Lauri Korpikoski, Dylan McIlrath, Al Montoya, Marc Staal, Bob Sanguinetti, Alexei Cherepinov, Michael Del Zotto and Hugh Jessiman were top first rounders. You go, guys.
Who said he was a bum and being tossed side. Stop being emotional. This is unfortunately the downfall of a cap. They can’t sign everyone and will have a ton of young talent to sign over next few years. The cap is not going up either. The NHL is run poorly and should get rid of the cap altogether or just fine trans picks if they go over a certain percentage. But unfortunately the cap is the world we live in and Buchnevich if signed will hurt there chances of resigning another player down the line. It’s cap 102. Yea they have space right now but that’s not accounting for all these future contracts like Fox and to keep these young kids you need cap space.
I think Fabbro will be the Dman traded by the Preds. Should be able to acquire some scoring help with he and another asset involved in a deal. Still young with upside to his game.