The NHL Trade Deadline is one week away, and Steve Mears and E.J. Hradek of NHL Live counted down toward March 2 at 3 p.m. with a look at the latest buyers and sellers.
The Philadelphia Flyers were 13 points out of the Stanley Cup Playoff race on Jan. 16 but sit four points out of the second Eastern Conference wild-card spot with 20 points in their past 13 games. In addition, the Flyers could be getting defenseman Kimmo Timonen (blood clots) back as soon as Saturday against the New York Rangers, which Hradek said puts them in a unique situation. Including Timonen, the Flyers will have nine healthy veteran defensemen under contract, which likely makes them sellers at the deadline.
"They are shopping [defenseman] Braydon Coburn, from what I understand," Hradek said. "The Flyers are going to have cap issues moving forward so they wouldn't mind moving Coburn out and getting that off the books for next year so that they're able to do other things. If they can find a taker for Coburn, they will move him. And don't be surprised either when Kimmo Timonen comes back and if he plays well and there's interest … they may be willing to move him out as well to give him, maybe, a shot with a team that's more firmly in a playoff chase. Because of that situation I think they're more sellers than buyers right now."
The Pittsburgh Penguins, in third place in a tight Metropolitan Division, will be buyers. The Penguins acquired forward David Perron from the Edmonton Oilers on Jan. 2 and general manager Jim Rutherford is looking to add to his defensive corps. One name on the market is Arizona Coyotes defenseman Zbynek Michalek. The former Penguin is nursing an upper-body injury and did not travel for the game Monday against the New Jersey Devils.
"He's dealing with some kind of injury, which isn't good news for the Coyotes because they do want to move him, so the teams that want him are going to have to inquire about that," Hradek said. "I can see him going back to Pittsburgh if the price is right."
The Anaheim Ducks entered Monday winners of two straight after losing five of six. They hold a commanding lead in the Pacific Division and are on a long list of teams looking for help on defense. Sami Vatanen, the Ducks' top-scoring defenseman, is out with a lower-body injury.
"They're young and I think they want some more depth," Hradek said. "I think they were trying to get in on Tyler Myers and it did not work out. Andrej Sekera [Carolina Hurricanes] would be a good fit in so many different places. He's a guy who can be a top-four defender for a team and I think the Anaheim Ducks would have interest."