The playoff dream is over for the Ottawa Senators, who are now gearing up to become sellers at the trade deadline. According to Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch, Sens general manager Pierre Dorion spent the team's bye week in Florida with the scouting staff to assess which players could be moved before Feb. 26 and their expected returns.
And now, Garrioch has revealed what the Senators are really after when becoming sellers at the deadline. And rival teams will now be aware of what to offer and get what they want in Ottawa. Garrioch reveals that, while he does not expect the Senators to embark on a full rebuild, he believes the team will attempt to recover draft picks. And yes, especially since Ottawa is without first and second-round picks this June!
Not so fast...
This may sound like Ottawa is ready to part with just anyone on the roster, but Dorion remains adamant about one thing: while the team is willing to listen on anyone other than Erik Karlsson on defense and Mark Stone at forward, there might be a few other players the Sens do not want to part with.
The Pittsburgh Penguins and Columbus Blue Jackets might have been aggressive to land centre Derick Brassard, but Garrioch does not believe Dorion is interested in moving him either.
Garrioch put together a list of his top five trade candidates for the Senators, and they are as follows: Mike Hoffman, Zack Smith, Johnny Oduya, Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Alex Burrows.
Trade chatter has it that no less than 10 teams are looking for a boost up front, an area in which the Senators have some depth they could move. The San Jose Sharks, Florida Panthers, Winnipeg Jets, Penguins, New Jersey Devils, Vancouver Canucks, Edmonton Oilers and Anaheim Ducks are among the teams that are said to be looking for forwards.
Patience is a virtue... even in Ottawa
The Senators, who sit 11 points out of the final Wild Card spot in the East with three games in hand, aren't expected to rush into a sale and will likely re-assess closer to the deadline.
"There is no need for the Senators to rush into any decisions. They may sit 29th overall in the 31-team league, but Dorion is in a position of remarkable strength because, as one league executive noted Saturday, buyers far outweigh sellers and the Senators have lots of players coveted by other teams.
It would be foolish not to listen to what other teams have to say, their level of interest in Senators players and, naturally, what they’d offer in return."
So let's wait and see, just like the Sens...