UPDATE – Two sources threw me two possible Sens trades late tonight. One with the Habs wanting Kovalev and Phillips for center Lars Eller and a 2nd round pick. Eller was acquired for Jaroslav Halak this past summer and the Habs aren’t thrilled about him. Ottawa could use someone young up the middle. The other source suggested Chris Kelly and Phillips to the Bruins for Blake Wheeler and a 2nd round pick. The Bruins deal is something Boston is really pushing for.
Just to a quick note to everyone, I am glad to be back blogging at PSB after a 4 month hiatus due to my full-time job. I will be back blogging on all NHL related topics and rumours as the NHL trade deadline approaches.
First off is who will be dealt next in Ottawa? Many names are on the block to nobody’s surprise. The likes of Jarko Ruutu and Alexei Kovalev are two players that Sens GM Bryan Murray desperately wants to move. At this point, HC Cory Clouston has hurt Ruutu’s value with his constant stupidity by making him a healthy scratch. Then again, many of the decision’s that Clouston makes are so bizarre! I say you move either player at all costs, regardless of the return you get to allow some youth to be called up and get the much needed NHL experience over the last 6 weeks of the season.
Now, comes the almighty topic. Do you trade both Daniel Alfredsson and Chris Phillips by February 28th? Phillips holds the cards with his NMC but two solid sources confirmed to me over a week ago that Phillips is willing to waive his NMC for either Boston or Montreal. Chris is by and away the most active player in the community being a part of over six major charities in town. From the Snowsuit Fund to Candlelighter’s, Chris and his wife Erin are dominant figures in the community and volunteer countless hours each month to numerous causes. For people to say that Mike Fisher gained the opportunity to pick his destination for possibly the rest of the career by all he had done in Ottawa, then Phillips trumps him by a thousand miles with all he has done for this team both on and off the ice. Chris has taken a hometown discount on his last two contracts so management could sign other pieces to a team that was close to winning a Stanley Cup. You can’t say the same thing for Fisher on that front. I truly hope the Sens bring back Phillips this summer when he is a UFA to help solidify some veteran presence on the blueline because they are going to need it with the youth on defense coming up the pipeline. You aren’t going to get any leadership from the likes of Filip Kuba or Sergei Gonchar as they are just flat out terrible in all capacities on the ice.
Lastly, the topic of of moving Alfredsson is one that I am told has already been visited by management. Add up the clues on Alfie being moved. Just this past Tuesday Alfredsson is quoted in the Ottawa Sun as saying that Jason Spezza is ready to be a captain. Really? What changed from October when nobody in their right mind would put Spezza and captain in the same phrase. Which leads me to think that the quote by Alfie was specifically planted in the print media for fans to think about. Then the same day Alfie says he will be shutting it down for at least 2 weeks. Which brings us close to the trade deadline for a possible return to action. Coincidence, I think not. I believe that Sens management has told Alfie to rest up so he is healthy to possibly be dealt at the deadline. Put the quote from Alfredsson and the coincidence of the two week layoff for him together and it all adds up to him being moved at the deadline. If this occurred it would send shockwaves through the Ottawa fanbase. Not once has Alfie ever said he wants to finish his career here, he has never ruled out being traded to a contender for a chance at winning the Stanley Cup. Am I way off or does the extreme possibility exist that Alfredsson is wearing a jersey come March other than the the red, black and white of the Sens?
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Written by Mark Jasper