You asked for it, and we’re here to deliver. As requested from AC user “TheBennyFromAus,” your Anaheim Calling contributors are here to give you a “hot stove” take on what they think Anaheim can do leading up to and on Trade Deadline Day. We’d also love to hear your ideas and thoughts on what we put out there so make sure to blow up the comments section with your thoughts on what Anaheim can do at the deadline.
Now, I know that I get crucified by everyone whenever I mention this on Twitter, but I’m not gonna stop sticking to my guns over some subtweeting. I think Anaheim should move Cam Fowler. Do I realistically think they go through with moving their All-Star defenseman? No. But, considering the wealth of prospects that Anaheim has on the blueline and their dire need to bring in some fresh blood on the wings, I would like to see Anaheim move Cam for either James Van Riemsdyk or Matt Duchene. Both Toronto and Colorado want a top defenseman, and I think Cam fills that mold for them, especially while his stock is really high this season. Most likely, I think Anaheim would have to pair Cam with Clayton Stoner to make the money work. I think Anaheim would most likely retain some of Stoner’s cap hit and possibly add on a 2nd or 3rd round pick to complete the deal. In theory, you could also swap Sami Vatanen for Cam Fowler in this equation and it could work. However, Sami hasn’t been the offensive force this season that we’ve seen from him in the past, so he may not be enough to get the deal done.
The trickiest part of the Ducks situation is making the salaries work. A team would more than likely have to take on part of another contract in addition to the main defenseman. Bieksa has the NMC, so the most likely contract to try and move would be Stoner. Because of this cap situation, the Ducks negotiating power is hindered.
To me, Vatanen is still the most expendable given his salary and his play offensive-oriented style being easily replaceable by Theodore/Montour. Given all of this, my ideal (realistic) scenario would be this:
Ducks trade Sami Vatanen, Clayton Stoner, and a 2017 3rd round pick to the Maple Leafs for James Van Riemsdyk. Ducks retain 50% of Stoner's $3.25 million salary.
Optimistically, the Ducks would be wise to pick up another left-handed shot for a top-six forward role. No other player fits the Anaheim blueprint like Toronto’s Nazem Kadri. The best part about the 26 year old forward is that he is a volume shooter. He already has 134 shots on the year (Perry and Silfverberg are tied for the team lead with 132). Kadri has 18 goals and 29 total points after 43 games this season. Half of his goals have come on the power play. The only issue is Kadri’s 6 year, 4.5 million per contract. It would take significant future salary going the other way to make it work.
Realistically, the Ducks do not have the cap space or roster space to take on a significant contract. The best Murray might be able to accomplish is trading for a depth player. In this case it would be best to recall Ryan Garbutt from San Diego and call it a day. He’s a proven commodity for the Ducks and it would not cost them a player or draft picks.
Everyone and their mother knows the Ducks have a surplus of defensive talent and are somewhat lacking offensively. Two potential UFA rentals that the Ducks could target at the deadline would be Martin Hanzel and a long shot in Brad Marchand. Which one the Ducks should target depends on what they want to do with Rakell. If Rakell is to be used on the top line with Getzlaf and Perry, then Hanzel becomes a perfect big 3C to slot into Rakell’s slot. This frees up Rakell’s offensive ability while defensively locking down our 3rd line. The Ducks long list of young talent should be able to offer up some combination of prospects to suit the rebuilding Coyotes. Now for Brad Marchand. Marchand would immediately be slotted into that top line LW that the Ducks have been searching for forever since the departure of Bobby Ryan. Boston could look to deal him if they see themselves slip further out of the playoff picture come deadline time, but would most likely keep him if they’re close. Now for the catch with Marchand. It seems the only way the Ducks would be able to swing that deal is with some form of a salary dump *cough* Bieksa *cough* to offset Marchand’s 4.5 million cap hit. Now, what could the Ducks possibly offer for these two? Out of Larrson, Montour, and Theodore, I’d have to sadly say that I’d be willing to deal Theo first. For Hanzel I’d offer Theodore plus a 2nd round pick, for Marchand, Theodore, Bieksa, and a 1st round pick.
The Ducks have gotten by so far this season with one or two lines having a dominating game while the other two were quiet. But, come playoff time, they are going to need consistent scoring across as many as they can. Last year’s acquisitions of McGinn and Peron did a brilliant job of revitalising the top three lines, but this year, things are a tad different. There is no breaking up the Kesler line. The first and third lines have had Ritchie and Rakell interchanged so there is the option there of bringing in another Perron type of player for Getzlaf and Perry at the expense of dropping Ritchie or Kase down to the forth. If the Ducks do their usual “find a new short term play date for Getzlaf and Perry” trade deadline acquisition, the best players that fit that role and are likely available are:
- Shane Doan: Maybe for a 2nd rounder? Otherwise not keen
- Jaromir Jagr: If he was available, wow. Not sure what it would take to get him but his cycle game with the twins would be magnificent.
- Alexandre Burrows: Would probably cost too much and is a penalty liability, don’t think it would be a good idea.
- Jarome Iginla: Too expensive, won’t happen
- Thomas Vanek: Intriguing but likely too expensive
- PA Parenteau: If he can be had cheaply, hell yes.
That said – it is more than likely the Ducks stand pat given the current cap headache and impending return of Nate Thompson (hey can we trade him please?)