Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman went on Donnie and Dhali – The Team on Monday and had an interesting note on the Washington Capitals being a potential trade partner with the Vancouver Canucks.
The other team I’m wondering with Vancouver is Washington. I watched them yesterday against Ottawa, they’re really struggling upfront. Oshie’s hurt, Mantha’s been hurt, they’re having trouble scoring all of the sudden. I can’t help but look at that situation and wonder if there’s potentially a fit.
The Capitals are 6-9-2 since January 1, 2022, and have lost five straight home games. Their once acclaimed power play is fifth-worst in the league. Alex Ovechkin is scoreless in his last six games. The team is nineteenth in goals per game (2.71) since the start of 2022 after being fifth in the league (3.45) during the 2021 portion of the schedule.
Compounding matters, TJ Oshie has been out since January 15 with an upper-body injury and has yet to hit the ice for practice since. Anthony Mantha had shoulder surgery in November and only recently got on the ice again in what Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette described as a “tough” road back.
Vancouver has a number of scoring pieces at forward that they may be willing to move as they look to shake up their roster under new general manager Patrik Allvin and new president of hockey operations Jim Rutherford. One of Rutherford’s main goals, when he took the job, was to free up some cap space and the Canucks have a number of forwards on not exactly cheap contracts.
Friedman was on Donnie and Dhali – The Team two weeks ago and said Vancouver is “talking about pretty much everybody” other than really Elias Pettersson, Thatcher Demko, Quinn Hughes, and Bo Horvat. Specifically noting that they are fielding calls on forwards JT Miller, Brock Boeser, Conor Garland, and Tanner Pearson.
Miller would be considered the “prize of that lot” and has been involved in trade rumors almost the entire season as the Canucks struggled out of the gate and still sit towards the bottom of the Pacific Division. Daily Faceoff’s Frank Seravalli reported that the Bruins, Wild, Flames, and Rangers have all recently checked in on Miller. The 28-year-old versatile forward is a point-per-game player who is signed for $5.25 million this season and the season after that.
In terms of a potential goaltending fix for the Caps coming from Vancouver, Friedman nixed that. He believes that Demko is untouchable and that backup goaltender Jaroslav Halak “has made it very clear that he doesn’t want to be traded at this point in time.”
Editor’s note, 5:08 PM: Friedman could have been extrapolating from a previous discussion on the show about New Jersey Devils forward Pavel Zacha and the Capitals’ interest in him along with the Canucks — and not about the Canucks and Capitals being potential trade partners outside of Zacha. It was our interpretation of the conversation that it was the latter.
Elliotte Friedman on Van interest in Pavel Zacha – I think the Canucks have interest in him but also keep and eye on Van and Washington, they are really struggling up front, could be something there.
Donnie and Dhali
— Rick Dhaliwal (@DhaliwalSports) February 14, 2022
Headline photo: Elizabeth Kong/RMNB
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