The NHL Trade Deadline has become one of the most exciting times of the season as playoff bound teams attempt to add the final pieces to their roster for the cup push, and lottery bound teams attempt to get more picks and prospects.
TSN and Sportsnet have dedicated entire days to the Trade Deadline, and have hours of speculation in the weeks leading up to it, so I have decided to join in on the fun by coming up with a list of 5 players I feel will be moved at the Trade Deadline.
Now we are only a month into the season, so this list could change drastically as teams move from being buyers to sellers. Nevertheless, here are the players based on the standings as they are now.
1. Matt Moulson, Buffalo Sabres (LW): As soon as the Sabres traded Vanek for Moulson, a 1st and 2nd round pick almost every expert pegged this as a temporary move with the Sabres planning on moving Moulson at the deadline. Moulson is at the end of a very fair value deal with a $3.13 million cap hit.
Moulson will definitely be wanting a raise next season into the $4.5-$5 million range, so the team that he goes to will have to have the cap space to keep him for next year as he will have a high asking price. I am thinking Buffalo will be looking for a high level prospect and a draft pick for Moulson. Basically Buffalo will have acquired a high level prospect and 3 draft picks for Vanek which is great for a rebuilding team.
Moulson will be in high demand at the deadline, and Dracy Reiger’s phone should be busy fielding offers from pretty much every playoff team.
2. Ales Hemsky, Edmonton Oilers (RW): This was supposed to be the year the Oilers finally figured it out, and started moving from the bottom of the league to playoff contenders, but once again the Oilers are stuck in mediocrity. The Oilers can score, but their goaltending and D have left a lot to be desired.
This is where Ales Hemsky comes in. He is in the last year of a $5 million cap hit contract, and I don’t see any reason why the Oilers would spend the same amount on him next year. The Oilers need help on the backend and Hemsky can bring this help at the deadline. Hemsky has had some solid seasons in the past and could definitely bring some secondary scoring to a playoff contender.
One team that would be very interesting as a trading partner would be the Anaheim Ducks. They have Jonas Hiller, Viktor Fasth and Frederik Andersen all on the roster as capable NHL goaltenders, and also Jon Gibson playing very well in the AHL. One of the NHL level goalies would have to be moved, along with a pick or prospect for Hemsky, but this would be a win/win trade for both sides.
3. Jaromir Jagr, New Jersey Devils (RW): Now when Jagr signed with the New Jersey Devils the opportunity to play with his buddy Patrik Elias had a huge factor on his decision; however, I don’t believe he thought things would be this bad in New Jersey. Jagr is on a fair $2 million deal, and is still putting up points on a bad New Jersey team. He was a highly in demand rental last season, going from Dallas to Boston for 2 fringe level prospects, and a 1st round pick.
I would expect a similar type of deal at this seasons deadline, and once again this is a player a lot of playoff contenders would love to add. Jagr instantly brings secondary scoring and leadership, and continues the mercenary end to his career going from contender to contender for another shot at a cup.
4. Martin Brodeur, New Jersey Devils (G): Broduer is one of those players that would be impossible to see in another jersey. Brodeur made his first appearance for the Devils in 1991, half of the Edmonton Oilers weren’t even born yet! Nevertheless Brodeur has stated that if the Devils are not in playoff contention he is willing to waive his no trade clause.
Most teams that are in playoff contention are set at goalie, and Brodeur would not waive his NTC to go to a non-playoff contender. However, two teams that immediately come to mind are the New York Islanders and Pittsburgh Penguins.
The New York Islanders can score with any team in the league, but relying on Evgeni Nabokov on the back end is definitely the teams glaring weak spot. Remember Brodeur lead an underdog Devils team to the 2012 finals against the Kings, and could once again carry a much better Islanders team as his one final hoorah in the NHL. Not to mention the ease of transitioning to Long Island. It is just down the road from New Jersey so it wouldn’t require a huge transition for him or his family.
The Penguins come to mind because Marc Andre Fleury’s playoff breakdowns have prevented the Penguins from adding a few extra Stanley Cups to their total. Last season the Penguins actually gave up on Fleury and began playing back up Tomas Vokun. Vokun is out for the season with a blood clot leaving the Penguins with unproven backup Jeff Zatkoff. That is hardly a favourable situation to be in, and if Fleury has another playoff meltdown, the Penguins will have wasted another season. Enter Brodeur, who would provide that veteran backup that Pittsburgh can fall back on if the need arises.
5. Kimmo Timonen, Philadelphia Flyers (D): The Flyers are simply a mess, there is no other way to describe this team. On paper they should be a Stanley Cup contender, instead all their stars like Giroux and Hartnell are underachieving and the team finds themselves at the bottom of the Eastern Conference. Timonen is also struggling, finally picking up his first point of the season, an assist in the 14th game. However, Timonen has been an above average defensemen and a solid QB on the powerplay. Although he is struggling this season he was averaging 0.64 points per game last season which is quite productive for a defensemen.
Timonen does have a high cap hit at $6 million, and would most likely be retiring at the end of the season, so the actual value he gets back would be somewhat limited. I would put the value at a lower level prospect and 2nd/3rd round pick in exchange for Timonen.
Ah the NHL season is in full swing and hockey pool fanatics are watching the highlights nightly to see how their players are performing. For the record, this hockey fanatic is leading every hockey pool that he has entered this season. Let’s hope the injuries are few and that the production remains consistent. So how are you doing in your fantasy hockey pools? Here is a look at the best and worst performers during month one of the NHL season.
Of course Sid the Kid is at the top of the list, but how many of you took Alex Steen in your pools?
|9||Martin St Louis||TBL||R||11||7||7||14||9||2|
|29||Matt Moulson||NYI, BUF||L||12||8||3||11||4||6|
Well the early season is seeing some players struggle, here is a look at some of the players who just are not performing at the level that they should be. From a points perspective here are some players to avoid in your fantasy hockey pools:
|20||Mike Brown||EDM, SJS||R||10||0||0||0||2|
I we look at the players with the worst plus/minus stats we get these fellows (and yes there are a few Edmonton Oilers on this list). We were surprised to see the Hawks Patrick Kane within the top ten players with the worst plus/minus in the NHL.
There has been some great performances from the masked men in the nets. Antii Niemi is off to an amazing start in San Jose as is Semyon Varlamov in Colorado. Here is a look at the top goaltenders over the fist month.
We looked at Save percentage to identify the goalies that are simply not performing at a level that they should be. The Edmonton Oilers are giving up four goals per game. Where do you think their tenders are on our list? (minimum 5 games played).
Some strong performances early in the season along with some slow starts for others. That is why the NHL is so great. It is a long season and things can turn around for some of these players. Of course we should look at the players who, shall we say will not vie for the Lady Byng trophy anytime soon.
The Hockey Fanatic is adding a new feature to our blog. The top 10 NHL Stories of the month. These are the stories that this hockey fan feels were the most buzzworthy of the month. Good or bad this is our opinion which may or may not reflect the opinion of other hockey fans out there. We recommend that you share any feedback or thoughts with us via twitter @hockeyfanatics using the hashtag #hockeyfanatic.
Let’s get into the top stories for the first month of the NHL season.
1. Suspensions – as a hockey fan we are getting really sick of seeing the high amount of questionable actions from the less-than-skilled players in the NHL. Is it us or do the number of suspensions seems to be way up during this first month of the season?
|Ryan Garbutt||DAL||10/23/2013||5 games for charging|
|Michael Grabner||NYI||10/21/2013||2 games for hit to the head|
|Cody McLeod||COL||10/21/2013||5 games for boarding|
|Maxim Lapierre||STL||10/18/2013||5 games for boarding|
|Patrick Kaleta||BUF||10/15/2013||10 games for hit to the head|
|Alex Edler||VAN||10/11/2013||3 games for hit to the head|
|Brad Stuart||SJ||10/08/2013||3 games for elbowing|
|Phil Kessel||TOR||09/24/2013||3 pre-season games for slashing|
|David Clarkson||TOR||09/23/2013||10 games for leaving the bench during altercation|
|Zack Kassian||VAN||09/23/2013||5 regular season, 3 pre-season games for high stick|
|Dale Weise||VAN||09/23/2013||3 pre-season games for illegal check to head|
|Teemu Pulkkinen||DET||09/19/2013||4 pre-season games for boarding|
|Adam Erne||TB||09/19/2013||3 pre-season games for illegal check to head|
|Paul Bissonnette||PHX||09/16/2013||10 games (reduced to 3) for leaving the bench during altercation|
2. The hot start of the Colorado Avalanche – really we do not think that Pat Roy is that great of a coach, regardless the Avalanche are off to one of their best starts in franchise history. With a 4-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Friday night the team has matched the best 10-game start in team history. The Avs are currently 9-1 and lead the Western Conference in points one point of the San Jose Sharks.
3. The hot start of the San Jose Sharks – Speaking of Sharks, the San Jose Sharks, just as they did last year, have gotten off to a quick start in the newly formed Pacific Division. The play of Antti Niemi, Joe Pavelski, Jumbo Joe Thornton, rookie Tomas Hertl and others has shown that the Sharks may be an early favorite for Cup contender.
4. The great start by the Calgary Flames – the Flames were supposed to be terrible with a cast lacking an all-star, no proven starting goaltending and a lack of sniper, the Flames have shown that results will come if the effort is made. Bob Hartley has this team putting in an honest effort in each and every night thus far. Although the Flames are 4-4-2 through their first ten games, it is better than where most people had them pegged.
5. The poor start of the Edmonton Oilers – another new coach same old results. An extremely poor showing thus far from this Oilers’ fans perspective has the Oilers again in last spot in the Western Conference. This team cannot catch any breaks but honestly this team is in desperate need of a starting goalie and some size up front. What is wrong with the Edmonton Oilers? Well it startes with the fact that they give up nearly four goals per game. This team will miss the playoffs for the eighth consecutive season and may be out of it as early as November. Pathetic.
6. The play of St. Louis Blue Alex Steen – Steen started to show some strong offensive upside last season. Currently he sits sixth in league scoring a mere 3 points behind Henrik Sedin (who is second) having played five (count them 5) less games that Sedin. From the games we have seen, Alex Steen has been flying out there. A very consistent effort for the speedy forward.
7. The hot start of Dallas Stars rookie Stars rookie RW Alex Chiasson - on Thursday night, Chaisson scored another pair of goals, giving him 11 goals in 16 career games. His eleven goals on 46 shots gives him a 23.9 shooting percentage, best among all players with at least 10 goals since the start of last season. Thumbs up to Dallas in the early going this season.
8. The cool new Dallas Stars uniforms – love the green, love the logo and love the new energy in Big “D”. Their jerseys are an instant hit with the home green jersey earning rave reviews from this hockey fan.
9. The play of Flames rookie Sean Monahan – nine points in ten games is a great surprise for this 19 year old from Brampton, Ontario.
10. The dismal play of the New York Rangers – with AV at the reigns many fans expected that the New York Rangers would be one of the dominant teams in the Eastern Conference. After the first month, the Rangers currently sit 15th out of 16 teams with only the woeful Flyers behind them in the standings. Two wins in eight games is not going to cut it in any professional sports league, let alone the NHL. The blueshirts need stronger performance from Henrik Lundqvist in goal as well as more offensive production from their forwards. An Oilers/Rangers trade coming up. How about Yakupov for Justin Falk or Marc Staal? You never now, you just never now. Regardless both the Oilers and Rangers need a kickstart.
It has been an interesting first month of the season, lets see where we are next month and how many teams will be out of the race in November.
The Edmonton Oilers last won the Stanley Cup in 1990. The last time a dynasty ruled the National Hockey League. Since then the Oilers have missed the playoffs thirteen times and counting. The last time they made the playoffs in 2005-2006 they did so with 95 points in the regular season. They ended up losing the Stanley Cup in game seven to the Carolina Hurricanes… a fact that still does not sit well with this Oilers fans. The Oilers had no reason losing to the Hurricanes in the finals. I’m not going to get into the reasons but the Cup was theirs for the taking. The team has not skated on playoff ice since.
Now to set the record straight I’ve been an Oilers fan since their first NHL season when I was barely old enough to stand. I’ve seen the good times and bad times, and I am a die hard Oilers fan. However I am truly questioning my allegiance to the orange and blue. I simply cannot continue to be an advocate of the futility that is Oilers hockey. What is it five coaches in six season? Brutal. Although I liked Kevin Lowe as a player, as a hockey manager I’m not so sure just how great he is. Same with MacT. The Oilers fired him as coach and now they bring him back in a more powerful position. Now I will say this that MacTavish is a close friend of Oilers’ owner Daryl Katz and I know that MacT was recently battling some health issues so I can cut some slack there. I also know that MacT tried to land some size and goaltending in the off season… but he failed on both accounts. The Oilers have become the kicking post of the league.
So what is wrong with the Edmonton Oilers? Well I feel as qualified as anyone to discuss this topic. I, as have all Oiler fans, have endured some brutal hockey in the past twenty years. The last seven years tops it off though and enough is enough. In fact there is a ton of Edmonton Oilers jokes out there that perhaps are justified:
There are probably more than ten things, but this is a list of the more obvious areas that the Oil need to address and address soon if they are to retain their overly loyal fan base.
I’ve played hockey, officiated hockey, I write about hockey and I watch a lot of hockey. I also have a degree in business and marketing I am a true hockey fanatic. Yet I cannot believe that the Oilers have failed to address the areas above. I am really at a loss for words with their performance out of the gate this season. I think there have been a few bright lights in the play of Ryan Smyth, Ryan Nugent Hopkins, Jordan Eberle, Boyd Gordon and the fourth line. As a hockey fan of the Edmonton Oilers I simply cannot take much more of this. I do not know if I speak for many or any Oilers fans, but it has not been fun to watch. The efforts have been weak and inconsistent. A once proud franchise is now the laughing stock of the NHL. Perhaps having the great Mark Messier as an advisor is a great step in the right direction as this team needs:
And isn’t that what it is all about? If you are not winning you are losing. If you are not first, you may as well be last. That is a position that the Oilers know all to well. Let’s see if the Oilers can get out of their seven year funk. Right now it is not looking very well.
As another NHL season gets underway, The Hockey Fanatic is pleased to bring you a new feature: The NHL Power Performer of the Week. The Power Performer of the Week will be our pick of the NHL player who made the biggest splash from the past week. It will not necessarily be he player who got the most points or scored the most goals. It is more a reflection of the player who may have generated the most buzz based on on-ice play or off-ice activity or a combination of both. The Power Performer of the Week could be an unsung hero, a player who completes some great charitable work or a player who had an exceptional week of play and effort.
Rookie Tomas Hertl of the San Jose Sharks earns our very first NHL Power Performer of the week with a strong showing in week one of the NHL season. In just his third NHL game with the San Jose Sharks, rookie forward Tomas Hertl potted four goals in a lopsided 9-2 win of the Sharks over the New York Rangers. This marks six goals in just three games for the rookie from the Czech republic. Hertl was selected 17th overall in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft by the Sharks.
Of note of Hertl’s performance against the New York Rangers was his amazing fourth goal which is probably one of the best goals that you will ever see hockey fans. In case you missed it, it is already all over Youtube. This goal is sick.
Hertl has seven points, including six goals in his first three games with the Sharks. After scoring his four goals vs. the Rangers, the young rookie has a smile from ear to ear as he was named the games first star. His mother was in the crowd, proud as could be with tears in her eyes. This was the NHL feelgood story of the young NHL season. The Province had it right that if you picked Tomas Hertl in your hockey pool you will probably be #winning right now.
Rookie Tomas Hertl is The Hockey Fanatics Power Performer of the Week.