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Deadline Diner: Nash exiting Columbus still possible

Wednesday, 02.08.2012 / 11:38 AM / 2012 Trade Deadline

By Dave Lozo - NHL.com Staff Writer

February is one week old, and in the course of this NHL season that means it is trading season. There were a couple of interesting trades in January, but hockey's swapping season likely will pick up in the coming days. Here at NHL.com, we will bring you a daily roundup of reported rumors about who might be available and which teams might be looking to make a move for your lunchtime consumption in Deadline Diner.

COLUMBUS: Does Rick Nash want out? The Jackets captain hasn't said that publicly, but John Shannon of Sportsnet is hearing otherwise.

Rick Nash
Right Wing - CBJ
GOALS: 17 | ASST: 18 | PTS: 35
SOG: 206 | +/-: -21
From his column on Feb. 6, Shannon writes: "I have received a couple of calls from friends of Nash, who claim that Rick is very unhappy with the way the franchise is going and realizes it will take five more years to rebuild, again. Nash is now telling people close to him that he would entertain being moved, but still will not be the one who asks for a trade."

Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun said two days earlier that the Rangers and Kings have interest in Nash, but his $7.8 million cap hit would make it difficult for either team to acquire his services. Both teams would have to shed significant salary in order to attain Nash.

Following Wednesday's signing of Vinny Prospal to a one-year contract extension, Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch asked GM Scott Howson if the "nuclear" option of blowing up the team, i.e. dealing the likes of Nash and Jeff Carter, was still possible.

"It doesn't change that at all," Howson told Portzline. "(Prospal) is going to be here either way."

DETROIT: According to capgeek.com, GM Ken Holland will have the ability to add about $24 million in cap hits at the trade deadline. The West-leading Wings have been linked to just about every star pending free agent at some point this season, whether it's Predators defenseman Ryan Suter or Devils forward Zach Parise.

But TSN's Darren Dreger said Wednesday morning on Team 1260 that the Wings could be interested in Canadiens forward Travis Moen, a defensively responsible forward who won a cup with the Anaheim Ducks in 2007. He had missed five games with an upper-body injury but returned Tuesday. Dreger also said the Wings had shown interest in Edmonton's Ales Hemsky, but that's not the case as of now.

CHICAGO: Dreger also said on the same show that the Blackhawks are interested in adding goaltender Evgeni Nabokov of the Islanders, but GM Garth Snow isn't ready to deal the Russian netminder. Chicago's Corey Crawford (2.94, .900) has struggled in his second season as the starter, and backup Ray Emery (2.80, .901) hasn't fared much better.

Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DaveLozo

It means a lot to us, we're very excited. We're looking to continue to build on [our] top core talent of young players. It's just a great opportunity for us to really build high.

— Panthers vice president of hockey operations Travis Viola after Florida won the No. 1 pick in the NHL Draft Lottery