Now that Zach Parise and Ryan Suter are off the market, and the best options for teams that missed out apparently include Tim Stapleton, it seems that it is about time for the trade market to open up. The prizes of the market were already known, but we can pretty much figure out who the teams in the market will be now as well.
After free agency, there are 12 teams with more than 10 millions dollars of cap space left, while having 20+ roster positions filled. My thinking here is that teams with only a couple spots to fill and a lot of money to spend have the resources to go after the big names. Let’s run through those teams.
Phoenix Coyotes: With the Coyotes still being administered by the league, it’s hard to believe they will do anything but get to the salary floor. Maybe Shane Doan will return and help the ‘Yotes meet that mark.
St. Louis Blues: The Blues are a solid young team that may be saving their money in order to give the in house talent extensions. David Perron already has one in hand. Otherwise, adding a young, skilled playmaker like Bobby Ryan wouldn’t be a bad deal for the Blues.
Carolina Hurricanes: There is some thought out there that Alexander Semin may, in fact, end up with Carolina.
Colorado Avalanche: An investment in PA Parenteau represents either a commitment to winning soon, or an overall lack of a plan. Either way, with the resources available, it wouldn’t be a surprise to hear the Avs make a move at one of the big names, maybe even Rick Nash, as unlikely as that move seems to be.
Washington Capitals: The Capitals have been very quiet this offseason. It seems unusual to think that a team with two fantastic players in Alexander Ovechkin and Mike Green would be as quiet as they have been. After last year’s disappointment, one would think changes would be coming soon. Semin is out, but I would hope there is something coming back into the organization, other than Joey Crabb.
Detroit Red Wings: The Red Wings were players for Parise and Suter. They will be players for Ryan and Nash. They have the desire to maintain their mystique and the desirability to keep Bobby Ryan and Rick Nash happy over the long term.
New Jersey Devils: After losing Parise, the Devils are going to be looking hard for a scorer to anchor the top lines. Bobby Ryan is really the perfect fit to replace Parise as a scoring forward from New Jersey. Apparently playing near home is a big deal for players lately, isn’t that right, Zach Parise?
New York Rangers: I may be the only one, but it has seemed to me that Rick Nash going to New York has been basically inevitable for years now. With the Rangers also missing on Parise, it seems more and more likely.
Edmonton Oilers: The Oilers likely would prefer some financial flexibility to keep their young core together for many more years.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Ironic, isn’t it?
Buffalo Sabres: The Sabres have already matched up once this offseason, moving Derek Roy to the Stars for Steve Ott and Adam Pardy. They may also prefer to keep some financial flexibility, in the event that Cody Hogdson can be signed long term.
The next few weeks won’t be interesting, per se, but at least this speculation is something to talk about.