As the NHL Trade Deadline approaches, the Detroit Red Wings have been rumored in on a couple of deadline deals but nothing has been confirmed. With more bad news on the injury front today, General Manager Ken Holland has a difficult decision to make with the deadline looming. Do nothing and continue to rely on the development of younger players or trade some of those players for a bona-fide NHL veteran.
The latest rumors have the Detroit Red Wings interested in Ryan Kesler. Kesler became a hot name on the trade market after he told media in Sochi that he wanted out of Vancouver to play for an American team. Since that information leaked, several American teams have lined up to bid for the 2014 Winter Olympics points leader. Pittsburgh, Boston and Chicago have joined the Wings as team interested in acquiring Kesler.
But do the Red Wings have a realistic chance to land Kesler. The Vancouver center has waived his no-trade clause for trades to several contending teams including the Red Wings. Kesler grew up in Livonia so it would only be natural for him to have a desire to play for his hometown team. However if the Red Wings are going to make that happen they will have beat an offer by the Penguins that includes Brandon Sutter, Brain Doumoulin and a pair of draft picks.
So now it is for Ken Holland to decide if the Red Wings have the players and cap space to make a deal with Kesler work without breaking up the core of players that have kept them in the playoff hunt.
The price will certainly be high for the 29-year old Ryan Kesler but it could also be inflated after another stellar Olympic performance. Holland mentioned last week that he wasn’t willing to mortgage the future to make a big trade. Kesler’s inflated price could cause GM Ken Holland to back off of a deal if it hampers his “rebuild on the fly” strategy.
But the perennial cup contenders might make a deal to satisfy a restless fan base anxious for a return to Stanley Cup relevance.