from Pat Caputo of The Oakland Press,
The NHL trade deadline points directly at the Red Wings’ problems.
They are near the bottom of the standings, rebuilding and have plenty of veteran players.
Theoretically, it should be time to sell by Monday.
But aging veterans on indisputably overvalued contracts are impossible to move.
Justin Abdelkader, for example, has four seasons remaining on his contact after this season. The Red Wings will reportedly take a $4.25 million cap hit annually because of it. He will be 35 when the term expires. Abdelkader has five goals, 10 assists and is minus 11 in 60 games. His Corsi puck possession stat at even strength is 46.7 (50 is the breakeven point).
Frans Nielsen has nine goals in 55 games. His cap hit reportedly is $5.25 million the next three years. He is 34.
Oh, then there’s Jonathan Ericsson and Darren Helm. They only have one year left after this one. So a bargain, right? Ah, no.