Trade freezes happen every year and normally they come and go without much more than an Eklund rumor and a player or two on waivers. This year, however, could be different. The Olympic trade freeze lasts from February 7th to February 23rd, and leaves team with just 10 days before the March 5th Trade Deadline. Have a trade you'd like to make for your playoff push? Why not make it before the Olympic break? A pre-Sochi trade gives your new players time to move, acclimate to the city and meet their teammates, and it gives the Avalanche four more games with any new players they acquire. Thats four more games (plus several practices) to gel with their teammates, and four more games to pick up points in the playoff race.
Need more motivation for a pre-Olympic trade? As Elliotte Friedman notes in this week's 30 Thoughts, pre-Sochi trades could carry some major financial benefits for teams looking to offload bad contracts or star rentals.
NHL players, whether in Sochi or at a poolside bar, get paid on Feb. 15, right in the middle of a stretch with no games played.
The season is 195 days (Oct. 1 to April 13), with 16 of them during the freeze. Sixteen into 195 is a little above eight per cent. So let's say you have a $5-million skater available for trade. He's going to collect $410,000 during the freeze. How much does your owner care about that? Some won't, not at all. But some will, affecting both buyers and sellers.
Let's say your owner does care. If he's got a tradable commodity, does he push the general manager to get something done? "Hey, if we're going to deal him anyway, why don't we do it now? Let the new team handle this."
The Avalanche have been the subject of a number of trade rumors in the last month, as it's no secret that they are looking for an upgrade on their blueline. Now, rumors are rumors, and they rarely mean much... But today's Friday, there's no game tonight and some baseless speculation is always fun! So lets get the rumor mill a churnin'
New York Rangers
Poulin went on to explain that the Avalanche asked originally for Kreider, but the Rangers (rightfully) laughed at that. He sais that J.T. Miller is the likely forward from New York.
Why it makes sense: MHH has coveted Girardi for quite a while, and with good reason. He's a stud blueliner who would certainly help to save the Avalanche from some ugly third period meltdowns like last night.
Why it doesn't: McGinn and Barrie have both steadily, steadily improved their play over the last month. Both players are young and cost effective, and Barrie's potential ceiling is very high.
This Trade "XBox Edition": Parenteau, Barrie and a 2nd for Callahan and Girardi. Callahan plays with O'Reilly and Duchene and the Avs win the cup.
- The Rangers have scouted the Avalanche pretty heavily this season and earlier in the season they were supposedly after Jamie McGinn or Tyson Barrie in exchange for Michael Del Zotto, who was later traded to the Nasvhille Predators for Calvin Klein (or something).
Blah, blah, blah, something in French. There's no way this is real. The only bright side of this potential trade? We get a new #WorstTradeinFranchiseHistory #BringBackDownie #TallButt
Why it makes sense: ...
Why it doesn't: Bourque has absolutely fallen off the rails since joining the Canadiens and P.A. Parenteau is, and always was, better than Bourque at hockey anyway.
This Trade "XBox Edition": Parenteau for Gorges and a 2nd.
Then there was this:
Chambers' bizarre use of the English language aside, this one got some pretty good reactions out of Habs fans, including a Subban for MacKinnon movement (lol No).
Why it makes sense: PK is a stud and the Avs need defense. Subban should be UNTRADEABLE but he is constantly and bizarrely out of favor in Montreal.
Why it doesn't: The Avs already robbed Montreal once, and it's still paying dividends (Thanks Coach!). You just don't trade a guy like PK Subban, and if you do, you certainly dont do it for PA Parenteau + spare parts, unless those spare parts are big, big, big.
This Trade "XBox Edition": The computer doesn't "inexplicably" dislike Subban like the Montreal media. So this one isn't going through folks.
- Montreal is another team that has heavily scouted the Avalanche this year. Montreal fans and media will try to shove Raphael Diaz down our throats, but don't be fooled. The guy has some talent, but he's also an occasional healthy scratch on a middling NHL team. If the Avs want a d-man out of Montreal, Gorges and Markov are the more intriguing options.
Supposedly on the Block: Pretty much everyone not named Barkov or Huberdeau. Fleischmann, Boyes, or Gilbert could all be rentals to the right team, while Brian Campbell and Dmitri Kulikov are the Panthers biggest trade-able assets.
Why it makes sense: Kulikov, though still developing would raise the skill level on the Avs blueline and he's a friend of Semyon Varlamov's, playing with the Avs' goalie in Yaroslavl.
Why it doesn't: Kulikov isn't exactly the model, shutdown d-man the Avalanche are looking for. Would he help the team? Sure. But the assets used to acquire him would be better spent working towards a steady, stay at home guy.
This Trade "XBox Edition": Mitchell, Elliott, LEM player, and LEM player for Kulikov. The simple rule of XBox GM, throw garbage at the wall until it sticks.
Top MHH Trade Targets:
So where's all that leave us? Just about where we started. 3rd in the Central with a shaky defense and a long, daily defensive wish-list in the comments section. Below are a few of the most popular targets around MHH this season. Feel free to drool over them while we wait for next weeks soft deadline and comment with your own rosturbatory trade fantasies.
|2013 - Dan Girardi||55||3||12||15||1||10||0||0||0||64|
|2013 - Dmitry Kulikov||52||5||6||11||-9||47||1||0||0||75|
|2013 - Nikita Nikitin||46||2||11||13||10||16||0||0||1||67|
|2013 - Josh Gorges||52||1||10||11||6||12||0||0||0||31|
Whether it's one of these defenseman or another player on your own coveted d-man list, the Avalanche face some hard decisions in the coming weeks. How badly do Patrick Roy and Joe Sakic believe we need a high end defenseman? How much are they willing to give to get? And who do the Avalanche believe is essential to this team's chemistry and success. Patrick Roy has already proved this year that he is willing to shake up a winning formula, trading Steve Downie for Max Talbot, so don't be surprised if the Avalanche a proactive at the season's first, artificial trade deadline.