The biggest name circulating amidst all those in trade rumours is even more eligible for a trade than previously believed.
Jeff Carter’s agent, Rick Curran, told the Sun Saturday that contrary to endless reports suggesting the Columbus Blue jackets centre has a no-trade clause, the fact is he doesn’t.
As cited by capgeek.com — the best source for player contract information — Carter’s original 11-year, $58-million contract with Philadelphia had a no trade clause from 2012 to 2015 (and a limited one thereafter). However, the no-trade clause was to have kicked in on his 27th birthday, which was Jan. 1. Because he was traded by the Flyers before his birthday, the no-trade clause doesn’t “travel,” and he’s free to be traded by the Blue Jackets at any time if they so desire.
Carter is not a happy camper in Columbus, and there’s huge interest in his cap-friendly deal despite the term.
And possible suitors don’t have to worry about any trade restrictions going forward.
STEVIE Y’s JUNIOR DEBATE
Steve Yzerman opened a big can of worms by saying he’d like to see junior-eligible players with three years CHL experience eligible to be sent to the minors.
Several executives around the NHL agree, albeit quietly, as they know much it would upset the NHL’s most important development leagues – the OHL, WHL and QMJHL.
As it stands, NHL clubs must choose between keeping junior-aged players in junior or in the NHL. The rationale behind adding a third option is that some players seem caught in the middle between not being able to continue developing in junior yet aren’t ready for NHL action — a perfect example is Tampa’s Brett Connolly.
The Canadian Hockey League vehemently disagrees with Yzerman’s idea and will fight hard to ensure it doesn’t lose top players to the minors.
Interestingly, the agreement between the NHL and CHL (which the NHLPA is part of) expires in July, and the issue will likely become part of CBA discussions.
“This has never been raised with us — we think it’s working well and don’t see any reason to change it,” said WHL president Ron Robison, whose loop depends on high-profile, star players to drive gates, up the talent level and help develop younger players.
“The NHL and Colin Campbell understand the importance of getting a good product and developing players, so I don’t think they want to jeopardize that.
“We have the highest respect for Steve Yzerman, but any time you come into the league, there’s a learning curve in terms of understanding the system.
“We need a good, competitive environment with good players.”
Perhaps a compromise would be that only first- or second-round players have the option of going to the minors and only after logging three years of CHL service.
Sam Gagner’s eight-point night bolstered his stock on the trade market but also ensured he may finally get a chance to prove he belongs among the Oilers’ top six forwards now and in the future.
He’s been incredibly frustrated this year at his lack of playing time with the young studs as he’s been used largely as a third-liner. He’ll now get that chance to prove he should stay on the top two lines now.
Fact is, while the Oilers would consider trading the 22-year-old restricted free agent if it could land the club a top-four defenceman, few teams around the league are willing to pay big for a small centre who isn’t considered a strong skater.
Gagner and the Oilers have not talked contract at all.
Those who are the most likely candidates to be traded by the Oilers: Andy Sutton, Eric Belanger and Ales Hemsky.