NHL

Hodgemail: Give us the Rick Nash trade that works best

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TSN.ca Staff
2/17/2012 9:21:57 PM
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When word leaked out this week that the Columbus Blue Jackets were willing to listen to offers for franchise player Rick Nash, it wasn't far-fetched to believe that the NHL's 29 other teams would picked up the phone just to kick the tires.

But with six more years on his conract at almost $8 million per season, the 27-year-old Nash would have to fit well into a team's payroll. On top of that, Nash reportedly has a short list of teams he would accept a trade to - courtesy of his no-movement clause.

But let's put into perspective what Nash might bring to the Blue Jackets in return.

Washington Capitals superstar Alex Ovechkin is the only player in the NHL with more goals in fewer seasons played than Nash (Nash scoring 277 through eight seasons, while Ovechkin has 324 goals through six seasons).

The closest player to match Nash's scoring totals with fewer seasons played is Carolina Hurricanes captain Eric Staal - with 242 goals in seven seasons.

And the closest player to scoring the same amount of goals to Nash in the same number of seasons is Detroit Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg. Through eight seasons, the 31-year-old has 242 goals.

Dave's question (or should we say challenge) to you was: "Disregarding the salary cap, suggest a Rick Nash trade that would work for both teams."

And here are the answers that Dave liked best, ranking the Top 5:

From Ken: "Washington offers Alexander Ovechkin - straight up."
  - We include this just to include it, but it's not happening. Ovechkin would veto it, and neither team would be interested. Well, maybe Washington.

Number four comes from Greg: "The New York Rangers offer F Derek Stepan, D Michael Del Zotto, and first and second-round picks."
  - Perhaps, but maybe not quite enough for Columbus and the Rangers wouldn't be offering more.

Number three is among the many Toronto deals submitted, this one by Irek: "Toronto offers D Dion Phaneuf, D Luke Schenn, D Jesse Blacker, F Nazem Kadri and F Joe Colborne."
  - Every Toronto deal I read includes Kadri and Schenn, and they're all easy to dismiss. Leafs have to be bold.... this bold?

Number two gets more believable on the LA Kings' front, this from Rodney: "Los Angeles offers G Jonathan Bernier, D Jack Johnson, F Simon Gagne and a first-round pick."
 - Really depends how much Columbus likes Bernier as the answer to their goaltending woes.

And number one from Matt mentions the other goalie in all of these discussions: "Vancouver offers G Cory Schneider, F Cody Hodgson, D Chris Tanev and a first-round pick."

And Dave's Reply to All:

I think a Columbus-Vancouver deal makes the most sense; potentially four young pieces for the Blue Jackets, including the goalie they need and the goalie they should want.

And for the Canucks, they'd have to take the risk that Schneider's services wouldn't be required in their Stanley Cup run, but otherwise it's basically a swap of Hodgson for Nash and they'd say "yes" to that in their sleep.

So come to think of it, maybe Columbus has to get more and that's unlikely because Vancouver can afford to draw a line.

That's tougher for L.A. to do if they're staring at Nash, because the Kings are in danger of missing the playoffs the way they're going and Nash is what they need.

So bottom line here; the Vancouver deal might be best but a deal with the Kings is the most likely if Nash is to move in the next week.

Hodgemail - Rick Nash (Photo: Getty Images)

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(Photo: Getty Images)
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