Avalanche fans have been talking since last season about the probability of trading a defenseman. The backlog of blueliners, especially in that 5 to 7 spot range, begs for some weeding. Who goes, though?
The dilemma is that you want to see one of the underperforming players go. However, the fact that they are underperforming means little trade value. In June, the Avs could have gotten a nice return on Ryan O'Byrne. Today? Notsomuch. Same could be said about Shane O'Brien although his biggest problem is inconsistency: you never know if you're getting the Shane who can play hockey or the Shane who can't. Greg Zanon's two biggest assets are blocking shots and an epic beard. Are either of those really worth keeping? Matt Hunwick might actually bring fair compensation as, errant passes aside, he's played a decent game this season. You'd like to think that Jan Hejda and Ryan Wilson wouldn't be on the table, but you never know. They both would certainly give the Avs a chance to cash in a bit. The only non-touchable is Erik Johnson. To think for a minute that the Avs give him up would be insanity. (Of course, most people felt that same way when it was suggested Barrie would be playing in the AHL again this season, so who knows with this organization.)
Really, the question is more about which trade would benefit the Avalanche the most, which player would net the right kind of return, than who we'd like to see go. What's your take?