Now that the Blue Jackets have dealt Jeff Carter to the LA Kings for Jack Johnson, what will they do with Rick Nash? And could the Kings have more deals in mind?
LOS ANGELES TIMES: Helene Elliott reports the Kings, prior to last night’s acquisition of Jeff Carter from the Blue Jackets, had interest in Jackets captain Rick Nash, but according to those familiar with the situation, Nash wasn’t interested in coming to Los Angeles.
LA KINGS INSIDER: Rich Hammond reports Kings GM Dean Lombardi said he didn’t know if his club was on Rick Nash’s list of preferred destinations. Lombardi said he has absolutely nothing in the works right now in terms of trades before the deadline, but was open to talks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: TSN’s Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger last night reported Kings captain Dustin Brown was in play. Lombardi’s comments suggest he’s not actively shopping anyone, but is willing to entertain offers. If Brown is in play, expect a lot of interest in the Kings’ captain.
COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Shawn Mitchell reports Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson declined to address a potential trade of Rick Nash, but sources claim the Carter trade won’t impact any possible deal regarding Nash. Howson, meanwhile, doesn’t appear in a hurry to bring in a goaltender, perhaps his club’s biggest need, saying he’ll monitor the play of Steve Mason and Curtis Sanford over the rest of the season and see how they do.
TORONTO SUN: Mike Zeisberger suggested the Kings might try to move goalie Jonathan Bernier for another scorer, and could clear salary to accommodate such a move by perhaps trading Dustin Brown in a separate deal. Teams which were looking at Carter could now shift their focus to Edmonton’s Ales Hemsky or Montreal’s Andrei Kostitsyn, while those who lost out in the bidding for Carter might turn toward Nash.
THE GLOBE AND MAIL: David Shoalts suggests the wait for a Rick Nash trade could stretch into the summer because of the Blue Jackets expensive asking price.
YAHOO! SPORTS: Nicholas J. Cotsonika suggests the Blues Jackets would be better off waiting until this summer to move Nash.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’m just gonna come right out and say it: if the Leafs or Flyers trade for Nash, they’re being foolish. Seriously, Nash won’t address their respective goaltending issues. As for the Rangers, it’s a gamble which could put them over the top in terms of Cup contention, but could also blow up in their faces if they give up too much.
It would be better for the Blue Jackets to wait until this summer to move Nash, but we’ll have to wait until 3PM Monday, if not sooner, to find out if GM Scott Howson feels the same way. I also wouldn’t read too much into Howson’s comments about his goaltending. I’m sure he knows he has to upgrade, but there’s currently not much available to help in that regard. It’s telling he didn’t want Bernier in the Carter deal, which could mean he’s looking at a much bigger target (Cory Schneider? Brian Elliott? Anders Lindback? Josh Harding?) in the off-season.