Last weekend, we got the big trade we had been waiting weeks for as the Columbus Blue Jackets and Winnipeg Jets swapped a pair of disgruntled stars. Pierre-Luc Dubois and Patrik Laine both got their wishes and got fresh starts. The deal was not overly surprising since there had been a lot of speculation over the last few weeks that the two sides were interested in making a trade but still, big trades are always exciting.
In the days following the trade, we have found out a lot about how much other teams were willing to give up for Dubois.
Elliotte Friedman said that the Montreal Canadiens may have considered moving Nick Suzuki at one point but pulled him from offers after his hot start to the season. He also added that the Philadelphia Flyers were interested but the Blue Jackets wanted Ivan Provorov and that wasn’t going to happen. We’ve also heard that the Anaheim Ducks had eyes on Dubois but Friedman says neither Trevor Zegras nor Jamie Drysdale was a part of their offers.
The Blue Jackets had plenty of suitors but I think they made the right call taking the deal from Winnipeg. Getting back a star player is huge in a market like Columbus and Jack Roslovic is a quality young player too. To me, this is one of those scenarios where both sides came out looking good.
Here are some other storylines that have popped up recently.
BLUES DONE WITH DUNN?
I was really surprised when I heard that the Blues were talking to teams around the league about defenseman Vince Dunn but it appears as though the team is seriously considering moving the 24-year-old after he was healthy scratched earlier this week.
On Insider Trading this week, Frank Seravalli said that while it’s not inevitable that Dunn gets moved, it’s certainly possible. There have been some rumours going around that the Blues are going to be looking for a first-round pick in return for Dunn. At first, I thought a first-round pick was a high asking price but when you consider he has had success in the NHL, makes just $1.8 million this season, and is an RFA at the end of the year, I could see a team considering moving a first-round pick for him.
Dunn is a left-shot defenseman so I can understand why some Oilers fans are wondering if Edmonton will be interested, but I don’t think this is necessarily a fit. I wouldn’t move Ethan Bear for Dunn and if the Oilers are going to give up significant assets for a defenseman, I would like to see them bring in a more established player.
NHL DRAFT DRAMA
In his recent 31 Thoughts blog, Elliotte Friedman talked about the 2021 NHL Draft and what the league’s options are. Basically, the issue is that if a lot of junior leagues don’t have full seasons and scouts can’t travel to watch players, is it fair to have a draft?
One idea, which Friedman likes, is the move the 2021 NHL Draft to July 2022 and holding two drafts back-to-back. That idea seems a little far-fetched and Friedman noted that it would prevent some really talented players from playing in the NHL next season since they wouldn’t be drafted.
A middle ground might be to hold the first round of the 2021 NHL Draft this July and the other rounds a year later.
It’s a confusing, complicated matter but it’s certainly one to keep an eye on going forward.
- There is talk that the Habs could be looking to move Victor Mete in a trade, rather than risk losing him on waivers. Mete is only 22 and already has 171 games of NHL experience.
- The Anaheim Ducks are apparently in the market for some scoring help. GM Bob Murray has been linked to some big names on the trade market, like Dubois and Laine, but hasn’t been able to get a deal done. I wonder how aggressive he’ll get if he is serious about upgrading the Ducks’ forward core.
- We’re seeing first hand how the quarantine rules are frustrating teams acquiring players. Pierre Luc-Dubois is going to miss around seven games before he can get in the lineup for the Jets following their trade with Columbus. It might not be a huge deal in this particular case, but unless the Canadian teams think they can get exemptions around trade deadline time, I don’t think we’ll see very many cross-border trades. It might even make some Canadian teams think long and hard about being sellers when the deadline eventually rolls around.
- The Colorado Avalanche healthy scratched defenseman Ryan Graves over the weekend. That’s a guy I’m sure plenty of teams around the NHL would be interested in.
- If the Canucks keep slipping, I wonder if GM Jim Benning will make a big move. Elliotte Friedman said on Sportsnet that he would advise against it, but Benning has never been shy of making a splash.