We are less than six hours away from the 3pm NHL trade deadline. The always busy day will be the final opportunity for the league's General Managers to solidify their rosters for a big playoff push or move key pieces in hopes of rebuilding for the future.
The Rick Nash saga continues to be the most intriguing story of this year's deadline, but there are plenty of other interesting scenarios being tossed around this morning. The Los Angeles Kings are expected to continue to be active today as Dean Lombardi looks to do whatever he can to get his club in to the playoffs and keep his job. There has also been a great deal of speculation about Brian Burke and the Leafs making moves on Monday. The Rangers and Bruins could be among the league's top end teams looking for that one small tweak in their line up that they believe can take them from very good to elite clubs with an eye on the Stanley Cup Finals in June.
Meanwhile, the Sabres and Stars could be among the "Sellers" this afternoon, both currently out of the playoff race and both loaded with the types of role players that post season clubs need to compete.
The casual fan and media always look forward to seeing that one big name on the move on deadline day. In 2008, Marian Hossa was that big name when the Atlanta Thrashers dealt one of the game's best two way forwards to the Pittsburgh Penguins as they geared up for their run to the Stanley Cup Finals. Hossa was nearly a point per game guy for the remainder of the regular season with the Pens before posting 26 points in 20 playoff games in helping lead the club to the Stanley Cup Finals. Unfortunately, his efforts were not quite enough as the club fell just short and the Red Wings hoisted the Cup that Spring.
For as exciting as those blockbusters are, it is often the "smaller," less notable deals that can put a team over the top. When the Boston Bruins won the Cup last season, fans could look back at a pair of less celebrated moves in the weeks leading up to the deadline that solidified their championship roster. With their top two lines pretty well secured, the Bruins acquired veterans Chris Kelly and Rich Peverley to anchor their third line for the post season run. The two combined for 9 goals and 25 points and were the types of unsung heroes every title contender needs.
Who would you like to see your team pick up this afternoon? You can follow all of the days action on TSN's Tradecentre and be sure to check back with the Rink Round Up after the days events are complete for a breakdown of all of the day's action.