Exactly four weeks remain until the NHL’s trade deadline on March 21 at 3:00 p.m. ET.
Ranked by a blend of impact and likeliness of a deal with the insight and intel from team and league sources, here are four new names in play with four weeks to go:
Trade Targets 🎯
1. Claude Giroux
Center / Wing, Philadelphia Flyers
Contract: Pending UFA, $8.275 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 1st
Scoop: Giroux holds the cards with a full no-move clause, but all involved seem resigned to the fact that his impressive tenure in Philadelphia is nearing a conclusion. The Flyers are working with Giroux’s representation, Pat Brisson of CAA Sports, to help find a spot to chase Lord Stanley this season. Given his versatility at either the center or wing position, clockwork-like production and intangibles and there is a reason why Giroux is the new No. 1 on the Trade Target board: He is the best player available at the deadline who is almost assuredly going to be on the move. Giroux is scheduled to play his 1,000th game as a Flyer on March 17 against Nashville.
2. Ben Chiarot
Left Defense, Montreal Canadiens
Contract: Pending UFA, $3.5 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 2nd
Scoop: Canadiens GM Kent Hughes has been making the calls over the last couple days, following up after he sent a not-so-subtle message on Wednesday. If you want Chiarot, step up and get him. Because Hughes said the Canadiens “won’t wait for the market” in order to move the in-demand defenseman, who was injured last weekend. He’s not expected to be out long, but that doesn’t mean the Habs have any interest in plugging him back into the lineup right away. There’s a chance he’s played his last game as a Canadien. There is hardly a Cup contending team Chiarot would not improve; Chiarot is a minute-chewing, dependable defenseman who is also really well-liked in locker rooms.
3. Tomas Hertl
Center, San Jose Sharks
Contract: Pending UFA, $5.625 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 3rd
Scoop: Acting Sharks GM Joe Will did not mince words last week when he said that San Jose would like to keep Hertl. It’s just that Hertl didn’t sound as convincing that he actually wanted to remain in the Bay Area when it was his turn to answer the same questions. There is real doubt as to whether the Sharks, who know Hertl better than anyone, are willing to pony both the term and the dollars to keep him. He’s having a fantastic season, still on pace for a career-high 39 goals and leads the Sharks with 22 strikes. He would provide a significant return for the Sharks’ future, a necessary component for a team en route to a third straight season in lottery territory.
4. Brandon Hagel
Left Wing, Chicago Blackhawks
Contract: 2 more seasons, $1.5 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 4th
Scoop: If you’re looking for this year’s version of a Blake Coleman or Barclay Goodrow addition, look no further than Hagel, who has generated significant interest in Chicago. At least four teams are known to have engaged in conversation on Hagel: Florida, Toronto, New Jersey and Calgary. The Flames likely moved on to Toffoli. Since the Maple Leafs got their defenseman in Ilya Lyubushkin, could they circle back now on Hagel? It’s his contract and cost certainty that’s making teams drool. He is in first-round pick plus top prospect territory, which is understandable given the contract, his production and style of play. Provided that the Blackhawks’ high price is met, he’s a good bet to move (subject, of course, to the opinion of Chicago’s next GM).
5. Brock Boeser
Right Wing, Vancouver Canucks
Contract: Pending RFA, $5.875 million AAV ($7.5 mil. minimum qualifying offer)
📈 Last Rank: 6th
Scoop: Trade chatter surrounding Boeser has grown louder in the last number of days as the Canucks’ newly assembled regime settles in ahead of the deadline. With 10 goals in 21 games, no Canuck has benefitted more than Boeser from Bruce Boudreau being behind the bench in Vancouver. Keep in mind: Jim Rutherford has repeatedly stressed that creating salary cap flexibility is key. There are other roster players that can achieve space and freedom, but there is a sense the Canucks are not sold Boeser’s play will be commensurate with the large qualifying offer due to him this summer, which makes him a prime candidate to move. It’s entirely possible that J.T. Miller, who is much more of a driver than Boeser, remains in Vancouver and Boeser is on his way to a new team. Could New Jersey be a fit for Boeser?
6. Jakob Chychrun
Left Defense, Arizona Coyotes
Contract: 3 more seasons, $4.6 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 5th
Scoop: It’s been rather quiet on the Chychrun front in the last week or so. His name has been out there for a while since first percolating in December. There was no shortage of interest in Chychrun, with so many teams reaching out that two assumptions could be made: either no one was ready and willing to pay the Coyotes’ price, or Arizona isn’t really that keen on trading Chychrun. The latter would make more sense. He was GM Bill Armstrong’s only ‘untouchable’ last season, coming off an 18-goal campaign as a defenseman in a shortened season. If Chychrun is gone, especially for more futures, it becomes difficult to imagine what Arizona would have to build around in future years. That’s also why the reported ask from Arizona has also been high.
7. John Klingberg
Right Defense, Dallas Stars
Contract: Pending UFA, $4.25 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 7th
Scoop: The only reason Klingberg is not higher up on the board is the Dallas Stars have made zero determinations about their status as potential sellers ahead of March 21. Why would they? They’re holding down the second wild card spot and they’ve invested a ton in this group to make the playoffs. There is real pressure in Big D to get in. That said, the Stars – who rolled the dice and kept pending UFA Jamie Oleksiak last season, only to miss the playoffs and see him walk to Seattle for nothing – likely can’t afford to keep all of their pending free agents if there is significant doubt as to their ability to not just get in, but actually make noise in the playoffs. For now, they’ve gotta hold ’em until they fold ’em.
8. Marc-Andre Fleury
Goaltender, Chicago Blackhawks
Contract: Pending UFA, $7 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 8th
Scoop: Vegas GM Kelly McCrimmon flatly refuted our report last week, in which we relayed that the Golden Knights expressed interest in a potential reunion with Fleury. We stand by our reporting. The Lehner injury (which was not refuted) puts Vegas in a spot where they’d have to be considering every option on the market. It feels admittedly like a long shot that Fleury ends up back as the marquee headliner on the Vegas Strip, but stranger things have happened. The Washington Capitals have also reportedly expressed interest and the sense is the Blackhawks will attempt to do right by the pending free agent should he decide he wants to chase a fourth Stanley Cup ring elsewhere.
9. Mark Giordano
Left Defense, Seattle Kraken
Contract: Pending UFA, $6.75 million AAV
📈 Last Rank: 10th
Scoop: Interest is picking up in Giordano, who probably isn’t in first-round pick territory, but could net the Kraken a decent second-round return. You can bet that GM Ron Francis will want to help Giordano land in a preferred destination, somewhere he is comfortable and could help in a Stanley Cup chase. Officially, Giordano has input by submitting 19 teams to which he’d accept a trade. The Kraken also ideally may want to wait until a bit closer to the deadline because they don’t have many bodies playing in the AHL as a first-year franchise, especially if they are trading for futures.
10. Alexandar Georgiev
Goaltender, New York Rangers
Contract: Pending RFA, $2.425 million AAV
📈 Last Rank: 14th
Scoop: We reported earlier last week that in addition to checking in on Fleury, the Golden Knights also inquired about Georgiev. The Rangers are believed to be open to moving him if they can find another veteran that they’d be comfortable with as an insurance policy on Vezina candidate Igor Shesterkin. There is almost no path to Georgiev being a Ranger next season. Georgiev was a staple on the Trade Target board last summer after placing what we’d call a ‘soft’ trade request with the Rangers. He let the team be known he was open to a change of scenery, ready for a starter’s workload elsewhere. He’s not wrong: Over five NHL seasons, Georgiev has a career save percentage of .910. The league average is .904 this season.
11. Nick Paul
Center / Left Wing, Ottawa Senators
Contract: Pending UFA, $1.35 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 11th
Scoop: The preference of the Ottawa Senators is to keep Paul. Full stop. That much is clear; they value his contribution, his work ethic, his compete level. They’ve made what they believe are fair offers to extend him, including a three-year, $6 million ($2 million per) proposal that did not gain traction. This much is also clear: Given where the Senators are, they can’t afford to watch Paul walk for nothing. So if push comes to shove over the next month, keep an eye on Paul as a player with real value for Ottawa to cash in on on the trade market.
12. Victor Olofsson
Right Wing, Buffalo Sabres
Contract: Pending RFA, $3.05 million AAV ($3.25 mil. minimum qualifying offer)
🆕 Last Rank: NR
Scoop: Olofsson burst onto the scene two seasons ago with a surprising 20-goal season in just 54 games. A big chunk of those goals were on the power play with Jack Eichel and Sam Reinhart feeding him the puck. They’ve both moved on and Olofsson could be next. Olofsson’s production has dwindled; he’s on pace to finish with 12 goals this season, one fewer than he had in a shortened campaign last year. Despite that, Olofsson is likely due a raise by virtue of being arbitration eligible this summer. Will the Sabres want to pay him? Arbitration was already filed once. With his career numbers (42 goals in 158 games), he’s likely looking at an award in the $4.25 million range.
13. Joe Pavelski
Center, Dallas Stars
Contract: Pending UFA, $7 million AAV
↔️ Last Rank: 13th
Scoop: Can someone check Pavelski’s passport? He is defying Father Time, turning back the clock with an incredible season. The 37-year-old is on pace to shatter his career high in points in his 16th season in the league. The ’21 in 22′ sniper winner at All-Star weekend is on track for 91 points, his first season north of a point-per-game. As mentioned above with Klingberg (see No. 7), the Stars are in no rush to make a determination. Time is on their side. Heck, it’s easy to envision a scenario in which they sell Klingberg and keep Pavelski for their push. If they do fall out of the race, though, there is no doubt Pavelski will rocket up the Trade Target board. He’d be a heck of a fit in Minnesota.
14. Jeff Petry
Right Defense, Montreal Canadiens
Contract: 3 more seasons, $6.25 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 9th
Scoop: Habs GM Kent Hughes also confirmed on Wednesday that Montreal is trying to help Petry find a new home. He said: “If we can find a trade that works for us and another team, we’re going to do it. But it has to work.” Translation: We’re not giving him away. Yes, it’s been a disastrous season for Petry (and the Canadiens) for a whole host of reasons. Some of them probably are personal; Petry’s family is living back in the U.S. in part because of the coronavirus restrictions in Quebec. The other part is the total erosion of support on the ice. Petry scored 170 points over the last four seasons. His salary cap hit may require some massaging by Montreal, but teams aren’t under the disillusion that he forgot how to play hockey this season.
15. Braden Holtby
Goaltender, Dallas Stars
Contract: Pending UFA, $2 million AAV
🆕 Last Rank: NR
Scoop: Fresh off a week in which Jake Oettinger stopped 104 of 107 shots faced (.972 save percentage) and earned Third Star of the Week honors, there is no question as to who the present and future is in the Dallas crease. The Stars could trade Holtby, call up Anton Khudobin from AHL Texas and barely impact their playoff chances – even for a team that wants to give itself every opportunity to get in. With a number of teams searching for goaltending support (Vegas, Washington, Edmonton and Pittsburgh), Holtby has won a Stanley Cup and found his form again this season in Dallas.
16. Joonas Korpisalo
Goaltender, Columbus Blue Jackets
Contract: Pending UFA, $2.8 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 15th
Scoop: Korpisalo is another netminder available. It’s difficult to envision the Blue Jackets allowing Korpisalo’s contract to expire without at least getting something for him in a season in which they’re not going to make the playoffs. Because it’s the Elvis Merzlikins Show in Columbus, now and for the foreseeable future. Merzlikins has carried the Blue Jackets – and next year begins a fresh five-year, $27 million deal. Plus, the Blue Jackets have Daniil Tarasov eventually waiting in the wings. Korpisalo has not put in a formal trade request, but GM Jarmo Kekalainen is aware that Korpisalo would be open to an opportunity to play elsewhere.
17. Anton Forsberg
Goaltender, Ottawa Senators
Contract: Pending UFA, $900,000 AAV
🆕 Last Rank: NR
Scoop: IF, and it’s a big if, the Senators feel comfortable with Matt Murray in net – then Forsberg should provide the perfect trade fodder for Ottawa. Forsberg has quietly put together an excellent season. He has a winning record (10-8-2) on the 26th place team with a .916 save percentage, well above league average. Murray’s re-emergence since returning from AHL Belleville, sporting a .942 mark since Jan. 13, should provide enough confidence that the two-time Cup winner and 23-year-old Filip Gustavsson can get the job done in tandem next season.
18. Pavel Zacha
Left Wing / Center, New Jersey Devils
Contract: Pending RFA, Arbitration Eligible
📉 Last Rank: 16th
Scoop: Devils GM Tom Fitzgerald is exploring a whole host of options to shake up the roster over the next number of months and Zacha is one of those intriguing options. He has value. He’s also going to be due a somewhat significant raise this summer and is arbitration eligible, so the question is: Are the Devils comfortable paying Zacha the bump? Zacha is on track for his first career 20 goal season. He has reportedly been connected to the Vancouver Canucks. He could be part of a package that includes Boeser (No. 6 above) as the Devils were believed to have gone deep on Boeser in the last couple years on deals that never quite got done.
19. Andrew Copp
Left Wing / Center, Winnipeg Jets
Contract: Pending UFA, $3.64 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 17th
Scoop: There are difficult conversations to be had in Winnipeg, a team which has massively underperformed this season. GM Kevin Cheveldayoff said last week that it’s too early yet to have those conversations, but they aren’t far off for a team with Stanley Cup aspirations that is on pace for just 87 points. They have a lot of work to do to give Cheveldayoff something to think about other than selling off pieces like Copp, which is a conscientious player who was off to by far the best start of his career with 20 points in his first 24 games. The Jets and Copp settled on a one-year deal after an arbitration filing last summer, which walks him to free agency this year.
20. Ryan Carpenter
Center, Chicago Blackhawks
Contract: Pending UFA, $1 million AAV
🆕 Last Rank: NR
Scoop: Carpenter has begun to percolate on the list of potential fits for playoff teams. His salary cap hit is the right price, he’s been on a deep playoff run before in Vegas, and he’s reliable. Would a reunion with Gerard Gallant in Manhattan be in order? Carpenter is a hard-working, defensive-minded center who blocks shots, wins draws, kills penalties and is always in the right position in the defensive zone. Sounds like a prototypical deadline acquisition.
21. J.T. Miller
Center / Wing, Vancouver Canucks
Contract: 1 more season, $5.25 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 12th
Scoop: It’s difficult to say with any confidence what Miller’s status is in terms of the Canucks’ big-picture plan under Jim Rutherford. Perhaps the best way to describe it, in real time, is to share that the teams that have been most interested in Miller (the New York Rangers among them) have begun to explore other options on their lists because they are getting mixed messages as to whether Miller is actually going to be on the move. That makes sense. Rutherford stressed patience on the trade front to our Scott Burnside this week. On a team with cap concerns, a more complete Miller at $5.25 million is way more valuable than Boeser at $7.5 million next season, which is why Boeser may go now and leave a decision on Miller to wait until this summer or next year’s deadline.
22. Max Domi
Left Wing, Columbus Blue Jackets
Contract: Pending UFA, $5.3 million
📉 Last Rank: 18th
Scoop: There’s no doubt the Blue Jackets are interested in moving Domi to a suitor before the deadline as an expiring contract. Properly slotted, Domi could be a fantastic addition for a playoff team in a middle six role. Domi is three years removed from a 28-goal and 72-point campaign in Montreal. He’s undoubtedly been underwhelming in Columbus. If there is a silver lining, it’s that Domi has remained relatively productive this season and he’s done it all at even strength with relatively limited ice time (13:23).
23. Jake DeBrusk
Left Wing, Boston Bruins
Contract: Pending RFA, $3.675 million AAV ($4.41 mil. minimum qualifying offer)
📉 Last Rank: 19th
Scoop: DeBrusk’s December trade request was been well publicized, grabbing headlines and generating interest. Two months ago, as many 12 teams were reportedly interested – and though he’s been needed in the lineup, Bruins GM Don Sweeney was been active in attempting to facilitate a deal and diffuse the situation. Sweeney went around team to team offering DeBrusk for another (mostly) maligned or imperfect player on that team’s roster, but to this point, hasn’t found a deal that’s worked for the Bruins. It isn’t working for DeBrusk, either, who has seven goals in 42 games.
24. Reilly Smith
Right Wing, Vegas Golden Knights
Contract: Pending UFA, $5 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 20th
Scoop: Now that Mark Stone has been moved to LTIR, which created enough salary cap space for the Golden Knights to active both Jack Eichel on Wednesday and Alec Martinez (when ready), there is no real need or pressure to move Smith or anyone else on the Vegas roster. That could change if Stone heals up and presents himself fit for duty, which one would suppose is a possibility since he has returned four separate times from the same injury this season. The sharp money, though, would be on Stone not returning until the playoffs, allowing the Golden Knights to load up for a run at Lord Stanley’s chalice.
25. Rickard Rakell
Right Wing, Anaheim Ducks
Contract: Pending UFA, $3.789 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 21st
Scoop: So many teams are curious about what the Anaheim Ducks will do at the deadline. They’ve hung tough in the playoff race. New GM Pat Verbeek is just getting himself set at the controls, ahead of making important deadline decisions on Rakell and pending free agent defensemen Josh Manson and Hampus Lindholm. Of those three potentially on the move, Rakell is the most likely, but teams are beginning to wonder about Lindholm’s availability as well.
26. Jack Roslovic
Center, Columbus Blue Jackets
Contract: Pending RFA, $1.838 million AAV ($2.21 mil. minimum qualifying offer)
📉 Last Rank: 22nd
Scoop: Roslovic is a name that may surprise some. The Blue Jackets brought the Columbus kid home as part of the Patrik Laine for Pierre-Luc Dubois swap. Dubois has flourished in Winnipeg this season. Roslovic started hot last season, with 29 points in his first 35 games as a Jacket. But he’s cooled off since then. This year, Roslovic has 20 points in 46 games. We’re told Roslovic is available in Columbus. Perhaps the biggest tell tale sign is his ice time. It’s down nearly five full minutes per game this season – a huge drop – from 16:54 to 12:00. Teams are concerned with Roslovic’s work ethic, and maybe Columbus is, too.
27. Nick Leddy
Left Defense, Detroit Red Wings
Contract: Pending UFA, $5.5 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 23rd
Scoop: At the right price, there will be considerable interest in Leddy, who has won a Stanley Cup and skated in four Conference Finals. He’s still only 30 and has already logged 821 career games. It’d be interesting to ask Barry Trotz if the Islanders miss him? He was a salary cap casualty on the Island, but he’s been just about exactly as advertised in Detroit. Leddy is dependable, steady and can chip in the odd point from the point as a capable second unit power play guy. Leddy has missed only a small handful of games in his career and he’d be a solid option on the rental defense market.
28. Phil Kessel
Right Wing, Arizona Coyotes
Contract: Pending UFA, $6.8 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 24th
Scoop: Kessel has received praise from GM Bill Armstrong for his work ethic, but it’s been a grind in the desert. He’s on pace for the lowest goal output of his career (10) including his rookie season. Could a trade potentially rekindle some of the Kessel playoff magic that nearly netted him a Conn Smythe Trophy? He’ll cost mere pennies in actual dollars, since his salary this season due by the Coyotes is just $850,000 ($150,000 paid by Leafs) – it could cost somewhere around $250,000 in cash plus acquisition cost to roll the dice on Phil the Thrill, depending on when the trigger is pulled.
29. Calvin de Haan
Left Defense, Chicago Blackhawks
Contract: Pending UFA, $4.55 million AAV
📉 Last Rank: 25th
Scoop: You can add de Haan to the list of rental defensemen that will be in play at the deadline. He’s struggled at times this season, like most of Chicago’s blue line, but would be an ideal third pair option on a contending team. de Haan is 20th in the NHL in blocked shots since the start of the 2013-14 season
30. Vitali Kravtsov
Right Wing, New York Rangers
Contract: Pending RFA, $925,000 AAV
🆕 Last Rank: Next Up
Scoop: The No. 9 overall pick from the 2018 NHL Draft has been on loan with KHL Chelyabinsk after refusing an assignment to the AHL in October. Kravtsov has six goals and seven assists for 13 points in 19 games since returning to Russia. New agent Dan Milstein has permission to find a new home for Kravtsov, but it hasn’t been easy. His last game played was Jan. 5.
Off the board: None.
Next Update: Monday Feb. 28
Previous Editions: Feb. 17, Jan. 6, Dec. 2.