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Detroit Red Wings Trade Bait: Brendan Smith

Detroit Red Wings v New Jersey Devils Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Details

Age: 27

Cap Hit: $2,750,000

Expires: July 2017

Clauses: None

Brendan Smith, with injuries and being a healthy scratch he appeared in just 63 games last season. This season just in 24 games. For various reasons, he never turned into that top four defenseman we all wanted him to be. Last season, Smith fell behind former Red Wing Kyle Quincey on Jeff Blashill’s depth chart and was scratched often and rotating in and out of the lineup with Alexey Marchenko.

Many Wings fans would have rather seen Smith get more of an opportunity the past few seasons ahead of Quincey and Jonathan Ericsson. Instead of Smith the seventh defenseman, when he has been healthy. This season he has injured and re-aggravated his knee which has limited his time. He is now returning to the lineup, and if he stays healthy since he will be an unrestricted free agent in July and the expansion draft coming up, he is expected to be traded.

The last few years of Smith’s career in Detroit is not what people expected when he was drafted in 2007 27th overall ahead of P.K. Subban.

Smith has to be traded as this is a marriage that won’t be extended.

He is an interesting case for GM’s looking for upgrades or depth on the blueline. The main risk is giving up assests and then Smith re-injures his knee yet again this season. The reward is if paired with a good defenseman, which Smith has lacked for most of his career in Detroit, could be the team gets a much unexpected boost on its blueline.

For a team looking to compete for the Stanley Cup, the Smith is an attractive option on the trade market, as defensemen are hard to come by and if it doesn’t work out you’re not tied down by a long term contract.

Now let’s go to Jeff Hancock for what a Smith trade could look like.

What could a trade for Brendan Smith bring Detroit?

What do *I* expect the Red Wings to get in return for trading Brendan Smith? I don’t want to be greedy, so I’ll say only one first round pick.

Now, of course, I’m the biggest Smith homer on the planet, so I’m a lunatic.

What are realistic expectations for Smith? A mid-round pick is probably what we’re looking at. He doesn’t produce enough offensively to net much higher. He turns 28-years-old on Wednesday, so he’s not really a kid anymore. He’s reached the point of his career where he is what he is. Maybe a little more offense can happen on a different team, but he won’t turn into a Norris trophy candidate anytime soon.

Last season, Justin Schultz went from Edmonton to Pittsburgh for a 3rd rounder. Of course, the market could be different this year, but for arguments sake I’d say Schultz is better than Smith. So if he went for a 3rd. I wouldn’t expect a whole heck of a lot more than that in return.

Smith is a UFA this offseason, so I would imagine whatever pick the Wings might get back would have a condition on it in regards to the Smith re-signing with his new team.

What teams could be interested?

I can see teams out west like Chicago, Dallas, Edmonton or Los Angeles having interest in adding Smith to their blue line.

If Traded The Ideal Projected Deal Could be:

I’m really intrigued by the idea of Brendan Smith going to the Oilers. Peter Chiarelli gave up Taylor Hall for Adam Larsson, so a mid-round pick for Smith might not be the craziest ask (don’t forget Smith was a first rounder too!).

Send Smith to the Oilers for a 4th round pick with the condition it turns into a 3rd rounder if he re-signs with Edmonton in the offseason. For the hell of it, let’s say the pick turns into a 5th rounder if Vegas selects him in the expansion draft.