The NHL Trade Deadline is rapidly approaching — March 3, 3 p.m. — and the Carolina Hurricanes are firmly in the buyers seat.
But when it comes to acquiring new players, it’s going to take more than just cap space as not every trade can be like the Max Pacioretty situation - in which the Canes literally acquired him for free - so let’s take a look at what pieces might be on the table.
Canes Country’s Trade Deadline Big Board: Forwards | Defensemen
Currently, the Hurricanes are rocking a solid roster of 21 players and with the NHL allowing a max roster size of 23, Carolina won’t need to waive or trade any players to be compliant.
However, if there’s a blockbuster trade to be made, the Canes may need to part with an established player or two to make the deal work.
The first player I could see the Hurricanes moving would be Dylan Coghlan. The young defensemen has been a healthy scratch in 40 of the team’s 56 games and while the organization loves to have that depth available, I don’t think either party would be begrudged to move him.
He could be a potential bargaining chip to be tossed in with a package, especially if the Canes look to add a veteran defensemen at the deadline.
The other two names that have been tossed around are Teuvo Teravainen and Seth Jarvis.
Teravainen had a slow start to the season after coming back from injury and looked to be heading towards the trade block following a demotion to the fourth line, but as of late, he has been very good for Carolina with 15 points over his last 20 games.
In fact, since Pacioretty went out with injury and Teravainen was promoted back up to the top-six, he has nine points in those 11 games.
It would have to be for a true difference maker to move Teravainen as the Finnish forward has been one of Carolina’s top playoff performers the last couple of seasons and his impact in all three zones and on both special teams can’t be overstated, not to mention his chemistry with teammate Sebastian Aho.
At 28, he’s not a young player anymore so he wouldn’t be a piece rebuilding teams would necessarily target and the only reasons to move him really would be if the front office is concerned over re-signing him in the 2024 offseason.
I could see Teravainen being packaged in a hockey-trade where both teams are looking to get a player to help them today, but moving Tervainen doesn’t really help the Canes unless it’s for a legitimate difference maker. Overall, I don’t see him being moved at the deadline.
Now Jarvis is a more interesting case.
The 21 year old still has another year on his ELC contract and proved last year that he can produce not just in the regular season (17-23-40), but in the playoffs as well (3-5-8).
He plays hard, has a good shot and just a relentless motor which is something that you can’t teach.
A trade package could easily be centered around Jarvis and very well might be what a lot of teams are asking for from Carolina.
But the Canes have to gauge whether or not it’s worth it to move out their 2020 first round pick.
Because in a hard cap world, the more good players you can get on affordable contracts, the better off you’ll be. Now yes, everybody including Jarvis will admit that this hasn’t been the season that was imagined for the young forward, but there are signs of him starting to turn a corner.
He has four goals and seven points in his last three games, but even beyond that, he’s been more consistently noticeable. Development isn’t linear and Jarvis could very well breakout like Necas with a bit of patience.
If you want a difference maker like Timo Meier, Jarvis more than likely has to be included in a trade. Maybe Jarvis becomes a player like Timo Meier in the near future, but that’s a gamble. Meier is proven, Jarvis has yet to be. It’s up to the front office to gauge that risk.
Now Carolina lacks that true blue chip prospect, but what they lack in quality, they make up for in quantity.
At forward, there’s Ryan Suzuki, who’s had a really tough development timeline with injuries, but is looking to be a good two-way, middle-six centerman, Jack Drury who could probably play on a good number of team’s bottom-sixes today, Jamieson Rees and Vasili Ponomaryov have both been doing well with the Chicago Wolves this year and could be interesting add-ons. Other potential candidates could be Jackson Blake, Cruz Lucius, Patrik Puistola, Tuukka Tieksola, Nikita Guslistov.
However the biggest trade chips may be on the blueline.
Alexander Nikishin has been turning heads all over the hockey world as the 22-year old Russian just recently set the KHL single-season scoring record for a Russian-born defenseman. He’s under contract with SKA St. Petersburg until through 2025, but Carolina views him very highly. There’s also Scott Morrow, the NCAA phenom who’s the leading scorer at UMass this season and last year was a First Team All-American as a freshman.
Other names include Ronan Seeley, who played top pairing for Team Canada at the U20 World Championships, and Anttoni Honka both of whom are playing currently with the Chicago Wolves, and Aleksi Heimosalmi, Domenick Fensore, and Vladimir Grudinin.
Over the next three drafts, the Hurricanes hold 24 picks including all three of their firsts and four seconds. They have plenty of picks to package in deals and can certainly put together an attractive set of futures along with their deep prospect pool.
- Firsts - CAR 2023, CAR 2024, CAR 2025
- Seconds - CAR 2023, CAR 2024, PHI 2024, CAR 2025
- Thirds - PHI 2023, CAR 2024, CAR 2025
- Fourths - CAR 2023, CAR 2024, CAR 2025
- Fifths - CAR 2023, VAN 2023, CAR 2024, CAR 2025
- Sixths - CAR 2023, CHI 2023, CAR 2024, CAR 2025
- Sevenths - CAR 2023, CAR 2024, CAR 2025
The trade deadline is an exciting time for hockey fans as the possibilities seem endless for what your team may be able to look like come playoff time, but it’s important to keep a level head in all of it.
Remember these tips: this team currently sits second overall in the entire league, prospects and draft picks might not pan out how they’re projected to, just because a certain player goes to a different team doesn’t mean that the Hurricanes weren’t in on it or offered a fair package, and a lot of luck is involved to win the Stanley Cup.
Sure there are dozens of names out there flying around, but at most a team will add maybe three players if not just one or less.
The Hurricanes are a team that would be as happy to stand pact as they would be to add a solid player. Don Waddell has proven to be a GM who doesn’t like to go for rentals but also doesn’t want to sell off the farm for any one guy.
The team looks for potentially undervalued assets that will complement the group and not disturb too much. So while things are fun to speculate, try not to get too invested.