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Posted at 4:48 PM ET, 02/25/2011

Which Caps are on the trading block?

By Nicole Weissman

Earlier this week, I talked about some of my favorite picks for Caps trades. I decided it would be an exercise in personal growth to make myself talk through who the Caps might have to give up in the process of getting those guys. The truth is, I’m so attached to our team that I have a hard time thinking about giving guys up, even if I know it’s the right move. That being said, here are the players I’m mentally preparing myself not to have in town anymore as of early next week.

A goalie: Braden Holtby is listed as week-to-week with a lower body injury, so there is some likelihood the Caps will look to bring in a goalie at the trade deadline, in case Varlamov or Neuvirth suffers an injury. I don’t see this happening, but since I listed Vokoun as a prospective trade candidate, it bears mentioning that we’re not just going to carry four NHL-ready goalies – we’d probably look to move one.

Brooks Laich: It pains me to even say it. Everyone knows I love Brooks Laich, but when I take off my love-goggles, it hasn’t been the best season. He’s on pace to fall well short of his marks from last season, except penalty minutes, where he’ll exceed, but not necessarily with all the penalties it’s okay to have, in my book. A rebuilding team might covet his leadership skills. Remember when Laich said, “If I asked you about your family, you would talk about them forever because it's something you love. That's the way I feel about this team.”? Can you hear my heart breaking?

Mathieu Perreault, Jay Beagle, Andrew Gordon: Perreault’s name is getting thrown around a lot, but I don’t know why he’s any more likely to be moved than, say, Jay Beagle or Andrew Gordon, other than that he’s been quite a bit more visible this season. The Caps have a lot of strong prospects, but these are the ones I’m guessing teams looking to rebuild covet the most. They’re young but talented and in my opinion all are NHL-ready. Knowing GMGM, he won’t part with them easily.

Alex Semin: I don’t really know. He’d be traded for another top-six forward, and it would definitely be a trade that would capture significant attention. Given the fact that he recently signed an extension, I’m pretty surprised at how often I’m hearing his name in trade rumors. Are there many teams that would pay the several million dollar price for Semin? If there are, I’m pretty sure McPhee would be interested.

Draft picks: The fact is, we may not have to pay a hefty price in the trade market this year. A lot of teams are looking to sell a lot of players, and with an older guy, playing for a struggling team, coming to the end of his contract, a third- or fourth-round pick will almost always do the trick. I expect the Caps to lose a couple draft picks, for sure, but I can live with that.

Future considerations: No, I’m kidding. Future considerations are just draft picks. Funny story, though, when I was a kid I thought it meant something sort of like most favored nation status.

By Nicole Weissman  | February 25, 2011; 4:48 PM ET
Categories:  Capitals, Nicole Weissman  | Tags:  Capitals, Nicole Weissman  
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Comments

Don't agree about Brooks. He is the fourth highest points getter on the team behind Semin and has had some very clutch goals lately. You can't judge a guy against last years point totals because by that measure the whole team should be traded.

My picks: Knuble (just might be a team looking for a veteren leader), Either B. Gordon or Steckel but obviously not both, and of coarse Semin.

I'm tempted to say Chimera with his poor +/- and poor finishes, but am a little torn because he is such a hustler and decent character guy ( if a team really wanted him in order to make a deal for a center I wouldn't hesitate though).

Also tempted to say Fehr but I still hold out hope that he will blossom one day ( besides were probably stuck with his contract)

Posted by: congero | February 26, 2011 1:28 PM | Report abuse

Good stuff.

Most Capitals fans love Brooks Laich because he's been one of the few players on the roster willing to take a beating around the net to get goals. I don't see the Capitals as particularly willing to pay Laich $4M/yr starting next season, and that's probably the price range he'll be in.

Posted by: pga6 | February 27, 2011 2:51 PM | Report abuse

NO to Brooks or MP85. And if we're gonna get rid of a goalie make it Varly.

Posted by: C-A-P-Scapscapscaps | February 28, 2011 4:34 AM | Report abuse

If the Caps want to compete for the Cup this year, a goalie who can carry them to it is greatest need. 1 or more of the young goalies may develop into the caliber required to win it all but none are there yet. GMGM biggest flaw in building this team is not having that quality veteran goalie in the fold. W/o that need filled all other trades may be nice but not going to be the deal that puts them into real contention.

Posted by: jluksch | February 28, 2011 9:36 AM | Report abuse

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