Round and round the rumours go. Where they stop, no one knows!
Late last night, former TSN Analyst and Detroit Red Wing Stanley Cup Champion Aaron Ward fueled the Red Wings trade deadline rumour mill when he tweeted that the Wings “are now getting significant interest from a good number of teams around the league in Tomas Tatar”.
Hearing that the Detroit Red Wings are now getting significant interest from a good number of teams around the league in Tomas Tatar. #TFP
— Aaron Ward (@NHL_AaronWard) February 25, 2018
It’s no secret that the Wings are in “sell” mode and Holland has openly said that he is listening to offers on almost all of his players. Gustav Nyquist and Tatar have both been the subject of rumours and trade musings as they can provide top-6 scoring that some Stanley Cup contenders require.
One team that Tatar has been connected to numerous times over the past couple of weeks has been the Nashville Predators. Coming off of a Cup run last year, the Preds are having one of the best seasons in franchise history. They should be all-in and have the pieces to make a deal like this work.
The Carolina Hurricanes are another team that could use the top-6 scoring depth that Tatar would add. On the cusp of being a serious playoff team, the Canes could be considered buyers if they want to go on a decent run over the next few years.
Which brings us to what kind of return Tatar could yield. With three years left on his contract and a $5.3-million cap hit, Tatar has a full no trade clause that kicks in on July 1st of this year and a modified no trade clause for 2019-20 and 2020-21. Both the Preds and the Canes could make it work and both teams are rich with prospects. Considering that Rick Nash was traded this morning for Matt Beleskey, Ryan Spooner, Ryan Lindgren, a 2018 1st round pick, and a 2019 7th round pick, this bodes well for Detroit if they want to move someone like Tatar. He should be able to yield at least a 1st round pick in 2018 and a solid prospect. Maybe a Dante Fabbro from Nashville or a Jake Bean from Carolina? Bean might be a pipe dream in a deal like this, but I can dream can’t I?
Tatar has yet to hit 30 goals in his career, but he is easily a 20-25 goal scorer per season. In fact, if we’re comparing him to Rick Nash, the two players have very similar production over the last three seasons, but Tatar is six years younger.
Other teams that might be interested in a deal like this could be the San Jose Sharks, the Calgary Flames, or the Dallas Stars. All three could use the scoring depth on their playoff runs this year and Calgary is young enough that Tatar could be a key piece of their roster over the next three years.
With Monday’s deadline approaching, Holland is going to have to make some decisions very soon. Tomas Tatar is one of his most valuable assets and trading him for picks and prospects could seriously help to speed up the rebuild.