I think teams will be active at the deadline this year but I think the three teams we need to keep our eyes on at the deadline are the ones I will be discussing in this article. Not because they will be big spenders, but because they may be the ones with the most intriguing moves to make at the deadline.
Marc Bergevin went on record saying he will not mortgage the future for the now. But if I were the General Manager of the Montreal Canadiens you’d have to be sitting there questioning whether you should go out and get something. Your sitting in a playoffs spot with your team playing very well. A Defencemen or a scoring winger there must be some sort of rumblings going on in Bergevin’s head. My thoughts are this for team who is looking to keep it’s hard working core intact Ilya Kovalchuk won’t be an option. But should Carolina put themselves in seller mode, Justin Williams could be intriguing or a Brayden Schenn in St.Louis. But I don’t expect Montreal to be quiet at the deal even if it’s just a small move or 2. My thoughts are if Montreal goes big, it will be someone with term.
Peter Chiarelli really left this team in the dumps. But from everything we’ve heard in management they intend to be buyers. Most people believe that management won’t be as dumb as Chiarelli, I’m not so sold on that though. Everyone blames Chiarelli but the truth for the majority of his decisions he would have to get approval from upper management. The same upper management that’s controlling the show now. They have also they will not mortgage the future for now but other than Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl what do they have other than picks and prospects? I can answer that question or you….NOTHING. No one is going to want 90% of those players. But the reason I put them in here was that Edmonton will be Edmonton in my opinion (until they get new ownership and management) and continue to trade away picks and prospects for the now. I don’t expect anything less, that’s why they will be active at the trade deadline. That’s why they are a sleeper because yes they could go out and bring in a few good players and have a temporary fix and even make the playoffs.
New York Islanders
This is where I think the real interesting part will come into play. Lou Lamiarello is a realist but also enjoys rewarding his teams for playing well. He did it Toronto with the acquisition of Brian Boyle which helped the Leafs look legitimate in the first round against Washington. So maybe Lou decides to reward the team, maybe a defencemen, Niklas Kronwall in Detroit is an option as well as maybe a Brett Pesce or Dougie Hamilton. I don’t expect them to mortgage the future, not Lou’s style. But offer a reward to the players for their hard work and dedication. I also expect it will be someone with term in under 30, meaning they will have more then 1 year left on their contract. Lou will judge based on the expectation that he has for the team whether it will be a rental or a player to be with the team long term. But I don’t expect the Islanders to be quiet.