February 13, 2008

TRADE DEADLINE: Enough is Enough and It’s Time for a Change

With only 13 days before the NHL trade deadline, the debate on who will stay and who will go is increasing with every passing hour. Yet, I’ll try to look into my imaginary crystal ball to see what’s going to happen. Today we’ll take a look at who is most likely to move by position. Mind you, I have no true way of knowing, so actual results may vary.

W: Michael Ryder, Montreal Canadiens: It has been a down season for Ryder, which could be due to supposed clashes with coach Guy Carbonneau. The former 30-goal scorer only has eight markers this season, but the change of pace could be the medicine that Ryder needs to regain his glory.

C: Jarret Stoll, Edmonton Oilers: Stoll’s face off abilities and blistering shot would be an asset for any team that isn’t deep in the center slot. While he has plenty of offensive attributes, the two-way play Stoll possess would help any team that is highly offensive minded and lack a defensive forward in their top-six.

W: Glen Murray, Boston Bruins: Though it could be a risk since he has another year left on his contract, Murray could be a veteran option for any team weak on the left side. Though his health is a major concern, lately Murray has been playing well, though the point total may not show it. In addition, depending on who picks him up—the buy-out option could be a reality in the summer if all else fails.

D: Dan Boyle, Tampa Bay Lightning: Boyle is one of the 13 possible unrestricted free agents for the Bolts. Though he has some injury problems this year, he can still provide great puck movement and secondary scoring from the back line. Teams who need better movement on their blue line, like say San Jose or Minnesota, could use the veteran presence of Boyle to help their playoff chances.

D: John-Michael Liles, Colorado Avalanche: With Liles becoming an unrestricted free agent this summer, he could be trade bait for the Avs to boost their grit and maybe a stronger goaltending option. Liles, much like Boyle, has the ability to be a strong starter from his own end and is a great option for a quarterback in the power play.

G: Dan Cloutier, Los Angeles Kings: Laugh all you want, but why else would the Kings bring Cloutier up?? His AHL tenure ended with him going 4-9-0 with a 3.50 GAA. Granted, those numbers won’t have people flocking to give up picks for him, but Cloutier is another guy who could benefit from a change of scenery and in a lesser role. For lack of goaltenders out on the market—he could be better than nothing.

Obviously, the options are purely based on assumption and what’s out there on the dirt sheets. We’ll see come the 26th who’s going to be gone from this next. In my next edition, we’ll take a look at who’s been rumored to be moving and may not actually go anywhere.

Check out Scotty Wazz on the FaceOff Hockey Show LIVE every Wednesday night from 9-11pm EST or download their podcast wherever you get your podcasts.

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