With the NHL trade deadline just days away, the Red Wings are sellers. After trading forward Tomas Jurco to the Chicago Blackhawks for a 3rd round pick on Friday, there is no question about that.
After even more recent events, more specifically Martin Hanzal's trade to the Minnesota Wild for a heap of draft picks, Thomas Vanek’s trade stock is anything but bottoming out:
It's a 2017 first-round pick going from Minny to AZ for Hanzal, 2018 2nd and the conditional pick is 2019.— Craig Custance (@CraigCustance) February 27, 2017
Arizona sent Ryan White along with Hanzal to Minnesota. Bob McKenzie added more specifics on the trade:
MIN sends 2017 1st rder, 2018 2nd rder, 2019 conditional 4th rder (conditions to follow) and minor leaguer Grayson Downing to ARI.— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) February 27, 2017
Shuffling aside all of the specifics, the Red Wings have multiple assets available for trade. More specifically, Thomas Vanek. What the Wild gave up for a player like Martin Hanzal should hopefully set the stage in a decent return for the Red Wings when they trade Vanek.
Do we know a trade will happen for sure? No. But it is all but certain at this point. Cross your fingers.
Thomas Vanek, a highly-criticized point-getter has flourished in his short time here in Detroit. There have been reports speculating that the team would try to bring the 33-year-old winger back in the offseason after trading him away, but the question is what is the term? Pushing that aside, the Wings are poised to trade Vanek off before Wednesday. So what would be a reasonable return for him at this point?
Vanek is nothing more than an offensive specialist to a team like the Capitals, Canadiens, Sharks, Blackhawks, or perhaps even the Panthers. His cap hit is light, and the Red Wings should be ready to retain some of his salary to make the right deal work.
With that being said, the Red Wings, after the Minnesota Wild overpaid for a somewhat-decent forward, will look to cash in on an already smart offseason signing. Who Vanek ends up with is a big question mark, but the bar has been set. Vanek should net at the very least a 1st round pick. The Red Wings should be willing to compromise for a later draft pick if the return brings a promising prospect to their farm.
Ken Holland has work to do, but he has a lot to work with. There is a need, as always. GMKH will need to be bold to benefit his team going forward.