Are the Oilers shopping Nick Schultz? Will the Avalanche trade Ryan O’Reilly? Are the Coyotes in “sell” mode? Read on for the latest.
EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jonathan Willis suggests if the Oilers intend to showcase defenseman Nick Schultz for a trade, they should put him on the third defense pairing where he belongs. Schultz is an unrestricted free agent this summer.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Though only 31, Schultz’s stock is in decline. Part of the reason could be playing for the woeful Oilers in recent years. If the Oilers shop him (and I expect they will) they shouldn’t expect much of a return.
NHL.COM: Dave Vest reports Phoenix Coyotes GM Don Maloney said he’s not in “sell” mode and prefers to add to his roster when the Olympic trade freeze is lifted on February 23. He acknowledged the difficulty of doing so with only five teams around the league prepared to move players for younger assets.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Teams like the Coyotes looking to add will only have a narrow window of opportunity leading up to the March 5 trade deadline. Maloney’s status as a buyer could change during that period if his club struggles post-Olympics and they slide down the standings.
DENVER POST’s Adrian Dater recently reported the following via Twitter: “Ryan O’Reilly will not be traded this season, per sources.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: O’Reilly’s name popped up last month in the rumor mill because the one-year restriction on trading him lifts on February 28. The Avalanche matched an offer sheet for O’Reilly from the Calgary Flames last February 28, so under NHL rules they couldn’t trade him for one calendar year. Given O’Reilly’s importance to the Avs improvement this season and the front office changes last year, he wasn’t going anywhere this season. For that matter, I don’t believe he’ll be dealt this summer, expecting the Avs to re-sign him to a lucrative long-term extension.