The NHL trade deadline is only eight days away and NHL insiders Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek say that they are hearing that a lot of the talk around the big names on the board has cooled.
Senators general manager Pierre Dorion even went as far as saying that this year’s trade deadline is “the quietest he’s ever seen.” Dorion has been a high-level executive with the Ottawa Senators since 2009.
During the 32 Thoughts segment of Hockey Night in Canada, the two insiders started by discussing rumored potential Capitals target Claude Giroux. We learned last week that the Caps have been “quietly keeping an eye on” the availability of the Flyers superstar.
“We can report it is a little bit quiet around Claude Giroux,” Marek said. “There have been teams that have called, certainly. I don’t believe there have been big offers that have been made for Claude Giroux. He has a big week coming up. On Thursday, he’ll play game No. 1,000 as a member of the Philadelphia Flyers against the Nashville Predators and after that, it is eyes to the trade deadline.”
So, the news around Giroux may be light until the veteran forward plays his 1,000th game with the Flyers. But what about Tomas Hertl, the upcoming unrestricted free agent on the San Jose Sharks? The Athletic’s Tarik El-Bashir brought up Hertl when he wrote about Caps general manager Brian MacLellan potentially trying to “reel in a bigger fish”.
“Tomas Hertl, at this time, his name is not out there,” Friedman said. “The Sharks continue to work to sign him. I don’t want to handicap it, but I am told he is not available at this point in time.”
Another player that many assumed was on the move come March 21 is John Klingberg. Klingberg requested a trade out of Dallas in early January after contract extension negotiations came to an impasse. Marek reported soon after that the Stars had stepped up their efforts to trade Klingberg and that an eventual move was expected. The Capitals, notably, had been heavily scouting Stars games.
“John Klingberg of the Dallas Stars, there’s been a lot of talk all season long, could he be available?” Marek said during the segment. “At times he certainly was. We know the Carolina Hurricanes were interested, the Toronto Maple Leafs have looked at John Klingberg as well, but with Miro Heiskanen out now with mononucleosis, John Klingberg is more valuable to the Stars than ever before. Pretty safe to say we can take him off the trade board.”
The only big name that seemingly is still heating up the hot stove is goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury. Friedman reported only four days ago that the Caps are still very much interested in the veteran netminder.
“Fleury has a 10-team no-trade list, but that is irrelevant,” Friedman said Saturday. “I don’t think who is on his list and who is not on his list is going to matter here. I think it’s going to come down to this, whether it’s Colorado, whether it’s Toronto, whether it’s anyone like that. If Marc-Andre Fleury feels he has a chance to win and the team can make a deal with the Blackhawks, I think it’s purely going to be that decision. Does he feel he has a chance to win, wherever he goes?”
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