The Rick Nash rumor train has taken a few weeks off as the attention of the NHL has been purely focused on the playoffs. However, as the summer heat arrives it brings Rick Nash trade rumors as reports are indicating that the Blue Jackets are prepared to resume talks over their prized forward.
The NHL GM meetings, set to start Wednesday in New Jersey, will likely be the start of some serious trade talk between the Columbus Blue Jackets and any interested team that wants to acquire Nash. It’s believed the process could be completed prior to or near the NHL Draft or the start of the free agency period so the parties involved can focus on other needs without having to contemplate Nash’s future.
Puck Daddy correctly mentions that the ultimate fates of Zach Parise and Ryan Suter could play a major role in determining where Nash lands, or vice versa. A team that lands Parise will no longer be interested in Nash. By the same token, if a team that wants Parise misses out on him, their interest in Nash might suddenly multiply.
Regardless of where Nash ends up, the way he is leaving the Blue Jackets is certainly a bit abnormal. Nash gave his list of teams he’d be willing to be dealt to and Columbus elected to instead sit on their hands in the hopes that more enticing trade avenues would open up over the summer. Still, Columbus might need Nash to expand his list of cities if they hope to truly capitalize on waiting to make a deal. It remains to be seen if Nash will do this considering the events that have gone down leading up to Nash wanting a trade out of Columbus.
For the Blue Jackets, on paper, their decision to wait to deal Nash is an intelligent one. Teams that fell short in the playoffs may be looking to make a big change and a trade for Nash meets that criteria.
With all that being said, which teams might be interested in Nash? Puck Daddy speculates that San Jose might be a logical fit assuming they are able to restructure their payroll in order to fit under the cap. This argument makes a lot of sense given the fact the Sharks again stumbled in the playoffs and are contemplating some major changes prior to 2012-13. The Sharks would have to part ways with at least a couple of their current big names in order to fit Nash in – a move that would certainly be worthy of the term “overhaul”.
The New York Rangers were the closest to finalizing a deal for Nash prior to the trade deadline in 2011-12. The deal ultimately never materialized due to the steep price the Blue Jackets were asking for. It’s safe to assume that the Rangers will again be interested in Nash after falling to the New Jersey Devils in the Conference Finals. It seems unlikely that the Rangers will raise their offer a significant amount but it wouldn’t be surprising to see them again in the mix for Nash.
As always, we can assume that there are likely numerous teams looking to acquire Nash that won’t speak of their intentions in order to keep the price on the forward relatively low. We can speculate about who these teams might be but ultimately our guess is as good as yours.
At this time, we have no idea where Rick Nash will play in 2012-13. However, we now know that talks involving Nash’s future will be picking up in the coming weeks.