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Apparently Rick Nash doesn’t want to go to Canada

Jul 10, 2012, 9:19 AM EDT

Rick Nash, Stephen Walkom AP

Remember how great Rick Nash was in the 2010 Olympics for Team Canada? He was one of their key players that year and being a proud Canadian is something that makes Don Cherry’s heart swell.

Funny thing though when you take a look at the list of teams Nash has apparently given the OK to go to in a trade. Boston, the Rangers, Philadelphia, Detroit, Pittsburgh, San Jose. None of those are in Canada.

Aaron Portzline of The Columbus Dispatch hears from NBC’s own Brian Engblom to find out what that’s all about.

“It says he wants to get away,” said former NHL defenseman Brian Engblom, now an NBC analyst. “Every guy is different. Look at the kid (Justin Schultz) that just signed with Edmonton as a free agent. From what I could tell, he only wanted to play in Canada. I played in Canadian and U.S. markets, and I can tell you, it is different. To each his own. Some guys thrive on being under that microscope, of having that daily pressure of everybody watching you. And some guys really don’t like that.”

You’d think playing in Columbus would take you out of the spotlight enough as it is. Being moved to any of those teams won’t do much to reduce Nash’s spotlight as he’ll be expected to be a key component in helping those teams reach the Stanley Cup finals. If Nash really wants to get away, he’ll need to tweak that list just a bit. Too bad they chased off Carolina.

  1. polegojim - Jul 10, 2012 at 9:34 AM

    Officially count me in as tiring of the entire Nash ‘drama’.

    Estrogen runs rich in Columbus on both sides – somebody man up, make a decision and move on.

    • freneticgarfieldfan - Jul 10, 2012 at 9:56 AM

      Trade him already.

      Nash is a good player, but probably over the top. Never worth the current asking price. So we might suffer from this topic for a while.

    • elemeno89 - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:32 AM

      “i want this, no i want that.” it’s like a bickering set of siblings as toddlers.

    • ironpeddler255 - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:38 PM

      I was just thinking the same thing when I read the headline of the article. I guess we can all not click on the article, but I had to post how tired I am of the whole Nash thing….and you beat me to it! I am glad to see people with the same view…enough already.
      Howson is smoking something with what is reportedly being asked for Nash…and at the end of the day, while a good player…he’s no dream catch or difference maker for any team to put them over the top to land the Cup.

  2. eaglesfootballfan - Jul 10, 2012 at 9:46 AM

    Howson still wants too much for Rick Nash. If he really wants to trade Nash, he has to lower the price tag. Your not going to get 3 or 4 prospects along with 2 or 3 players that will play right away. It’s just too much to give up for 1 player in Nash.

    • habsman - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:17 AM

      The point is, Columbus never wanted to trade Nash. It was Nash that asked to be traded. But he seems to want it both ways. He wants out of Columbus, but wants to limit the number of teams Howson can deal with. Not fair IMO. If he is that anxious to leave the Blue Jackets, he should allow Howson to make the best deal he can for the future of the franchise. And that means giving all teams with an interest in Nash the opportunity to deal with Howson.

      • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:22 AM

        I don’t necessarily agree that its that black and white on Nash’s part though. You can debate whether or not its fair for him to put the Jackets in this position, however if he’s asking for stuff he might as well ask for what he wants – he wants to be dealt to a team that has a chance to win. If you’re going to be losing you might as well stay put and lose in Columbus than uprooting and moving to lose somewhere else.

      • habsman - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:41 AM

        We all make mistakes, and I”m sure if Nash had it to do over again, he wouldn’t have signed that seven year deal. But he did. Now, one year into the seven year contract (key word “contract”), he wants out. But what leverage does he have? Why should Howson weaken the franchise to satisfy Nash? Especially when Nash has “handcuffed” Howson by limiting the number of teams he can deal with.

        If I were Howson, I would tell Nash to either expand the number of teams (15) he would be willing to move to, or be prepared to suit up for the Jackets at the start of the season.

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jul 10, 2012 at 11:24 AM

        All Howson had to do was not announce to the world that Nash had asked for a trade and he could take whatever course makes the most sense for his team without all this scrutiny. But since he instead chose to throw his captain under the bus it would be unfair to keep Nash in such an awkward situation that was created by Howson and Howson alone. Nash has a no-trade clause that management agreed to so he is well within his rights to choose where he goes.

      • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:38 PM

        My only concern is that “contract” goes both ways and if the guy isn’t interested in playing there he won’t play hard and then the $7mil seems even more of an albatross.

        By no means am I advocating his behavior but its not unheard of.

      • habsman - Jul 10, 2012 at 1:43 PM

        I understand what both of you are saying. But who holds the cards here? Nash signed a seven year contract to play for the Columbus Blue Jackets. He is the one who is requesting the change/trade, not Howson. He is the one who has decided not to honor his commitment to Columbus. His limited NTC is a moot point. If Howson cannot complete a trade to his satisfaction with the teams on Nash’s list, then Nash stays in Columbus. Period. You seem to think it’s incumbent on Howson to lower his demands and trade Nash. Wrong. Howson can keep Nash in Columbus for another 6 years if he feels like it. So it would be wise of Nash to expand his list of teams if he wants out of Columbus.

        And Howson certainly did not throw Nash under the bus. This “Captain” went to the GM asking for a trade before the trade deadline. By doing so, it was Nash who threw the organization and his teamates under the bus.

      • east96st - Jul 10, 2012 at 2:48 PM

        habsman – You really don’t understand the situation in Columbus at all. In fairness, I’m certainly no expert on Montreal, so, like most fans, we know our teams the best. I’m not going to bore you with all the details of how mismanaged CBJ is, how incompetent the FO is, the stupidity of ownership, etc. It’s all been said before. Nash is outstanding player and an outstanding citizen of Columbus. You won’t meet a nicer guy. There’s only so much any one person can endure. When McConnell refused to acknowledge fan protests, refused to see the damage Howson and Priest have done to franchise, and put all the blame on the players, it had to be the straw that broke Rick’s back. When your owner denies what is obvious for all to see, things cannot get better. When Rick signed, there was some hope that things might turn around. But they kept the guys who needed to go and traded the ones that showed promise. If all the problems CBJ has is because of “the guys on the ice” (the owner’s words, not mine), how come so many of those “guys” played so well for the teams they got traded to? I don’t blame Rick one bit for wanting out. I gave up my season tickets myself. This is an organization that refuses to look into the mirror and see the decade plus of self inflicted wounds. Think of the organization as a junkie. If it refuses to even acknowledge it has a problem, it’s never going to get better. Rick wants a life where he can go onto the ice and not have three opposing players draped all over him because he’s the only guy the other team has to stop. To make even worse, if Rick does get through those three guys, he knows that some player on the opposing team can just dump the puck into the BJ zone and chances are 50-50 Mason will mishandle it and let in a soft goal. At some point, you have remove yourself for a toxic environment. Right now, I don’t believe there is a franchise in any professional sport as dysfunctional and damaged as Columbus. Rick believed them when they said it was only going to get better.With 20-20 hindsight, I’m sure he regrets that. But also remember he signed because he genuinely cares for the city and he understood it would have destroyed the team’s chances to stay in Columbus had he just left.

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jul 10, 2012 at 3:52 PM

        “it was Nash who threw the organization and his teamates under the bus.”

        How so? He has every right to request a trade. He went about it in the best way possible, in private rather than through the media. Nash has been a consumate professional throughout this whoel thing and Howson has been anything but. Had Howson kept his mouth shut Nash’s teammates may never have known what the nature of the situation is.

        Yes, because of the contract Howson has every right to keep Nash in Columbus. But if he does so after the way he has handled this situation he will look like an even bigger clown than he already is and will be guaranteeing himself that GM of any NHL club will not be his future occupation (if he hasn’t already done that).

      • habsman - Jul 10, 2012 at 5:03 PM

        Thanks for the perspective from a Jackets fan. It’s easy to see that the fan base deserves better ownership and better management. Howson has been a disaster since taking over, and I can see why players like Nash and Carter are eager to leave.

        My opinion, admittedly from afar, is that if Nash really wants to move on, he needs to expand the number of teams he’d be willing to play for. He’s already turned down a trade to Ottawa. So what is Howson supposed to do? Trade his best player for assets that are worth less in return? Especially when Nash made a seven year commitment to the organization?

        Hopefully this works out for the fans and the organization, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Nash is suited up in Columbus when the year starts.

      • habsman - Jul 10, 2012 at 5:09 PM


        “Had Howson kept his mouth shut Nash’s teammates may never have known what the nature of the situation is.”

        So we agree that Nash went behind his team mates back to request a trade? During the season? Is that your idea of a captain and consummate professional?

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jul 10, 2012 at 8:26 PM

        Absolutely. He didn’t make his frustrations public and didn’t give any less than 100% effort during the time he was so frustrated with this franchise. What better, more professional way is there to go about this?

  3. bigdong28 - Jul 10, 2012 at 9:56 AM

    Who said “Don Cherry will not be happy”?…who cares about Don Cherry, He’s the only one who refuses to change and innovate as the game does. He played all of one game professionally and did nothing as a coach…Don Cherry is not worthy of acting like the know-all be-all of the sport. I absolutely hate him.

    • theawesomersfranchise - Jul 10, 2012 at 1:01 PM

      Wait what?
      refuses to change and innovate?

      Cherry has helped with innovations or promotion that has protected many young kids with that “Stop” program on their backs. He has been saying for years that with the new rules and sizes of players that the gear, especially shoulder pads should change to protect each other in todays NHL.

      You may have some sorta hate for the guy who has forgotten more about the sport than you, and has a much deeper understanding of it that you will never in your lifetime come close to achieving. But to blurt out complete non facts upon reading his name is what we call “Being a hater”

    • ray2013 - Jul 10, 2012 at 2:47 PM

      Don Cherry only played one game in the NHL, but he had a 26-year pro career playing hockey.

      As someone who played hockey growing up, I’d say that’s pretty good, especially when you consider most of his career was played during a six-team era. How many current NHLers would never have made the NHL in a six-team era?

      As a commentator, I know he’s not everyone’s cup of tea. But I do like the fact he says what he thinks, completely free of any politically-correct filters. My biggest problem with Cherry is the suits he wears. Dress a little less like a clown, Don.

  4. respectsoupcansthickstick - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:03 AM

    come to the franchise where all your hopes of scoring 50 goals will happen on a line with hockeys greatest talent soup can sid. STAY BEEFY

  5. napoleonblownapart6887 - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:19 AM

    I’m not a GM but it would seem to me that Howson has gone about this in a terrible fashion. Instead of setting a baseline deal and then letting teams bid up (so to speak) the price for Nash, he set a humongous price that has every NHL team scoffing at them.

    The Jackets need a full rebuild, and to do a full rebuild they need to start from scratch – which means moving Nash and his $7mil a year contract. They need a lot of quality prospects to rebuild around – not an unhappy veteran with a big contract.

    Take an NHL ready forward, a prospect, a pick and be done with it.

    • stakex - Jul 10, 2012 at 11:15 AM

      His cap hit is actually $7.8 million, and your right… Columbus is going about this all wrong.

      They view trading Nash as a horrible thing, and they expect other teams to pay big to pry him out of their hands. Instead, they should view it as an opprotunity to pick up a couple pieces to help rebuild, dump a laughably large contracts thats attached to an unhappy player, and start over. They should see what all the teams are offering, and take the offer that would help their rebuild the most andb e done with it.

      The longer this drags on with Howson trying to scam teams with his joke demands, the less Columbus will get in the end.

  6. cliffneill55 - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:36 AM

    I’m fine with Rick Nash going anywhere BUT the New York Rangers. It is a shame he doesn’t want to go to a Canadian based team. 29 of 30 ain’t bad.

  7. dolanster - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:38 AM

    Krejci and Marchard and two or three picks. There’s not going to be a better offer than that. B’s will throw in Thomas to help Jackets reach the Cap floor.

    • thesableo - Jul 10, 2012 at 1:51 PM

      Marchand’s not going anywhere. You see too many Marchand jerseys around Boston these days for that. Especially on kids, which will always surprise me. Who the hell buys their kid a Marchand jersey? He’s a good player, but I wouldn’t want my son idolizing him. Or worse, acting like him.

      We may be stuck with Timmy. Krejci I can part with.

  8. mclovinhockey - Jul 10, 2012 at 10:51 AM

    Jackets don’t need help reaching the cap floor… And there will be a lot of offers better than that… I’m sure the jackets could easily pull lucic and Marchand from you with those 3 picks… It may still not be enough for him. At least that would make Boston a lot cleaner of a team… I like lucics style but he has gotten a bit out of hand over the past 2 years… Marchand is kind of an enigma…. The guy is tough, he can hit… Why did he duck 3 times last year?? Well one was called clipping, another was not called at all. 2 were in 1 game. Boston’s respectability goes up by 10 if they trade off those guys for Nash.

  9. mclovinhockey - Jul 10, 2012 at 11:07 AM


    The contract goes both ways, part of the deal was that if Nash is going to get traded he gets to pick where he goes. Nash has all the leverage. He could narrow it down to 3 if he wants.

    Oh and it wasn’t nash who said he wanted out, the gm asked him to be traded.

    Everything is 100% the jackets fault.

    • kitshky - Jul 10, 2012 at 11:37 AM

      You’re right about the contract, but you have to agree asking out in year 1 of a 7 year deal is pretty sh*tty. Why sign a career / franchise type player contract when you’re clearly not absolutly happy with the situation?

      Of course Nash has the leverage, but limiting the teams to the point of making a deal almost impossible, all the while claiming “he wants whats best for the team” rings pretty weak.

      Nothing in life is 100% percent everything.

      (except habsmans blinding hatred of Boston … that’s pretty 100%)

    • davebabychreturns - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:04 PM

      Do you have a source for that? Both sides have more or less publicly acknowledged that Nash wants out as I recall, and you have other reports like Elliotte Friedman saying that other Blue Jackets haven’t even heard from Nash since the season ended (which they say is out of the ordinary)..

    • habsman - Jul 10, 2012 at 1:59 PM

      At the trade deadline last year, after rumors surfaced, Howson called a news conference and told the world that Nash asked for a trade. Howson was then vilified for “throwing Nash under a bus.” So lets be clear, Nash initiated this.

      Now how can anyone say that Nash has all the leverage? He has six years remaining on a seven year contract to play for the Columbus Blue Jackets. If Howson does not trade him, Nash has two options: Play for the Jackets, or quit for six years. So who has the all the leverage?

      Rick Nash had better expand the number of teams he’s willing to play for, or he’ll be wearing a Blue Jacket uniform at the start of the season. (minus the “C”).

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jul 10, 2012 at 8:29 PM

        It would be better to move on with the rebuild than to go into the season with a potentially toxic locker room situation. Nash is getting moved this summer.

  10. stakex - Jul 10, 2012 at 11:38 AM

    Brian Engblom is an idiot. Hes pretty much saying that Nash wants to be traded so he can go somewhere and hide for the rest of his career just because he doesn’t want to go to a Canadian team. Thats laughable. First of all, it seems like Nash really wants to go to the Rangers… so I think moving out of the spotlight is certainly not his goal. After all, in NY you are under a microscope just as much as he would be in a Canadian market, probably more so in most cases.

    Second, its clear from the list of teams Nash has given that he just wants to go to a contender. I know this is hard to understand for Candians… but all your teams suck right now. Montreal, Winnipeg, Edmonton, and Calgary all missed the playoffs last season and Ottawa bearly crawled into the playoffs, and lost in the first round. There is no reason to expect any of those teams to be a contender next year. The only Canadian team thats good is Vancouver, but there are good reasons for Nash not to go there. Not only do they not have a need for a top line winger, but Vancouver is like a soap opera. Who wants to go to the city of drama?

    This is just another case of a Canadian thinking its better to play for a Canadian team, then it is to play for a contender. Nash has been stuck with a losing team his whole career, and he wants the hell out… so the last thing he wants to do is go to another loser team, which means he sure as hell doesn’t want to go to Canada. Its about winning for Nash now, not about the spotlight.

    • kitshky - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM

      I’m only assuming that you live in America so please correct me if I’m wrong … but it seems like you don’t quite understand how obsessive the Canadian hockey market is.

      For you to say that playing in NYC is exactly like playing in a Canadian market is ridiculous. Yes NYC’s a giant market with huge pressure to win, but when it comes to hockey thats about all there is that makes is similiar to a Canadian market. The spotlight goes so far beyond the rink, the sports fans, and the sports writers in every single Canadian market as to be beyond overwhelming.

      A 3rd line winger can barely walk around the average Canadian NHL city without being recognized / grilled as to why he coughed the puck up on his 3rd shift 3 nights ago that allowed 3 shots that didn’t go in but bumped up the teams GAA.

      A player like Nash doesnt make a hockey decision when he chooses to playor not play in Canada …he makes a total quality of life / legacy decision.

      I’m not downplaying the commitment of a US hockey fan just because they live south of the border … I’m just saying the overall Canadian hockey culture is so obsessive that unless you’ve experienced it you probably don’t fully comprehend it.

      • andyreidisfat - Jul 10, 2012 at 3:54 PM

        Umm i guess i have to agree playing hockey in Toronto is probably a little bit more of a spotlight than it would be in NY. But Nash also wants to go to Philly, and i promise you there is no hockey city like Philly. Heck no sports city. These lunatics here are way worse than any canadian I promise you.

      • atwatercrushesokoye - Jul 10, 2012 at 4:56 PM

        There’s no hockey city like Montreal, it’s absolutely the worst for spotlight no question. The reporters there will follow players around like paparazzi and then report on everything, Player X went out till 3 in the morning to one of Montreal’s strip clubs and people will know about it.

  11. respectsoupcansthickstick - Jul 10, 2012 at 11:50 AM

    NY under a microscope? you do not have 1 big talent on your team. its a bunch of average joe hockey players who exceeded anyones expectations last year. nash doesnt want to join an average team. he wants to join soup can nation where all of his hopes and dreams would come true. SCA

  12. jnealsmanmeat - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:28 PM

    He wuld never wana play in jew york with the rest if the non-talented heebs. Get ur head on straight and come to The Franchise & SCA and dominate.

    • lostpuppysyndrome - Jul 10, 2012 at 1:53 PM

      Seriously, they make sexually explicit and racist comments. Do your jobs and boot these guys already. Whoever moderates this site needs to do something about this.

      • napoleonblownapart6887 - Jul 10, 2012 at 2:02 PM

        Don’t fight it – at some point the fury gives way to pity, and then you can just laugh at its absurdity.

  13. sergeikremlin - Jul 10, 2012 at 12:41 PM

    I’m sure Nash didn’t take too kindly to Howson outing their private discussions and making Nash look bad or greedy, especially after all he’s done for the CBJ in nine seasons. Maybe Nash doesn’t exactly want CBJ to get a lot in return, and figures he will get traded regardless at this point, so why not make it hard on Howson, who has made playing in CBJ hard for Nash.

    Pure speculation, but a workable theory nonetheless.

  14. jnealsmanmeat - Jul 10, 2012 at 2:20 PM

    Hey lostpuppyjewdrome, just accept the fact that SoupCan Army runs this blog, sounds like u should go have a cup of warm milk and cry yourself to sleep. SCA!

    • kitshky - Jul 10, 2012 at 7:56 PM

      You’re crossing the line here kid…

  15. watchfullhose - Jul 10, 2012 at 6:45 PM

    Let’s not be so naive as to think that news of Nash wanting to be traded would have never seen the light of day if only Howson didn’t announce it publicly. Every single one of the teams Howson negotiates with goes public in that scenario and Howson looks 10x less competent.

    A press conference was the ONLY option.

    Now to those people that say that Howson is asking too much – You’re right! The thing is, Howson would be (even more of) a dolt if he caved to the Hurricanes (or anyones) complaints that the asking price is too high. He can drag this out for as long as he wants. Nash’s stock isnt going drastically down, especially to gms that already don’t view him as a top 5-10 talent.

  16. mediatedviscera - Jul 11, 2012 at 10:16 AM

    this organization has nothing going on…neither does it’s “player.” so much so that something like this constitutes as news…a note to Nash: You’re crazy. A note to Howson: You’re an idiot.

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