Should Rick Nash seek a trade? Are more deals coming for the Blue Jackets? Are the Islanders close to moving Evgeni Nabokov? What’s going on with Niklas Hagman? Read on for the latest.
THE HOCKEY NEWS: Adam Proteau suggests it’s unfair to expect Rick Nash to be part of another lengthy rebuild with the Blue Jackets, and it might be better for him and the franchise if he were dealt for a package of prospects and/or draft picks the Jackets could use to rebuild.
COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Aaron Portzline reports via Twitter indications are there are no further trade imminent with the Jackets, but are in talks which could lead to other moves. Portzline also “tweets” the fact GM Scott Howson is making these deals is an indication “management” is firmly behind him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s up to Nash if he wants out, and so there’s no indication that’s what he wants to do. As Portzline suggests, it certainly doesn’t appear as though Howson will be going anywhere anytime soon, but it remains to be seen what moves he’s got in the works.
TSN.CA: Darren Dreger reports on Thursday night speculation suggested the Blue Jackets were closing in on a deal with the NY Islanders for goalie Evgeni Nabokov, which was subsequently denied by both teams. Dreger noted there is a market for Nabokov, but he holds a no-trade clause and the reality is goaltending and defense have been the two most consistent elements of the Islanders game. He suggested it may be a tad early for GM Garth Snow to part with an asset which could fetch him a better return later in the season.
ESPN’s Katie Strang yesterday “tweeted” Nabokov had not been asked to waive his “no-trade” clause.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: And yet the Nabokov trade rumors persist, in part because the Isles seem to be playing “musical goalies” with he, Rick DiPietro and Al Montoya. Snow might prefer to wait until later in the season to deal Nabokov, but if the Isles keep struggling, he might be forced to make a move to bolster his lineup elsewhere.
CALGARY HERALD: Vicki Hall yesterday reported Flames forward Niklas Hagman had cleared waivers and been demoted to their minor league affiliate.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s possible Hagman could be placed on recall waivers later in the season in hopes a rival club might claim him for half his $3 million salary, but I doubt a rival club would have interest in him.