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Would the Jackets trade Jeff Carter?

Jan 20, 2012, 1:29 PM EDT

Jeff Carter

TSN’s Darren Dreger dropped a discussion-worthy bit of speculation in his mailbag column today. When asked by a reader which teams could be on the verge of a rebuild, he wrote the following:

The Columbus Blue Jackets may come close as this organization’s annual quest for an identity and winning combination has yet again fallen short. Jeff Carter, Antoine Vermette and Derick Brassard will likely be among those dangled and despite the constant denials from the player, agent and management, I’m sure Rick Nash‘s name will surface in discussions leading up to the deadline.

Vermette and Brassard are obvious trade candidates, and Nash’s name has been bandied about plenty already – but Carter? Would general manager Scott Howson really deal away the guy he landed in a blockbuster trade less than a year ago?

The Carter deal cost the Jackets Jakub Voracek, a 2011 first-round pick (Sean Couturier, taken eighth overall) and a 2011 third-round pick. Would he garner such a high return today? And if he didn’t, how would that make Howson look?

Carter, 27, is signed until 2022 with a cap hit of $5.3 million. He’s been one of the top goal-scorers in the NHL the past few seasons, so there’d be no shortage of interested teams.

If I had to guess, if Carter’s going to be traded, it’s likeliest to go down over the summer. Possibly when a new GM is in place and the mistakes of the previous regime won’t reflect poorly on the current one.

Of course, there’s always the chance the Jackets get an offer they can’t refuse. We hear the Leafs have been looking for a first-line center. And the Rangers could use some goal-scoring.  Ditto for the Kings. Carter and Mike Richards, together again?

Feel free to rampantly speculate in the comments section.

  1. somekat - Jan 20, 2012 at 3:18 PM

    If he’s traded to LA, can they get a throw in of an AA sponsor? Him and Richards together again, it’s only a matter of time before an intervention is needed

  2. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 20, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    Leafs landed him in a trade for Kaberle but Kaberle invoked his no-trade clause and killed the deal. I wouldn’t be surprised if Burke goes after him.

    • psujay - Jan 20, 2012 at 9:11 PM

      Man, if only that had happened….frickin Kaberle. He ruins every team…the ones he goes to, the ones he leaves, even the ones he doesn’t leave. Somehow he got a Cup ring by joining Boston…a team so deep even he couldn’t ruin it.

  3. east96st - Jan 20, 2012 at 3:36 PM

    “Would he garner such a high return today?”

    Oh, HELL no!!!

    “And if he didn’t, how would that make Howson look?”

    The same way CBJ management always looks. Like complete and total jackasses.

  4. ikillchicken - Jan 20, 2012 at 5:44 PM

    Trading him would be a fantastically dumb, knee jerk reaction. This guys is a good hockey player. He’s proven that in the past. He’s that rare and elusive genuine number one centre that so many teams can only wish they had. Now, because of one relatively bad season (he’s still actually scoring on a 27 goal pace) where in he’s been plagued by injuries and stuck playing on an awful, awful team with absolutely no confidence, no goal-tending and absolutely nothing going their way…because of that you’re gonna trade him away? How dumb can you get?

  5. hulkhogan69 - Jan 20, 2012 at 11:56 PM

    Silly to toss the Rangers in the mix for Carter considering the Rangers lack of cap room and the fact that they don’t need a center and won’t take on a long term contract like Carter’s.

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