George here. I've been on a "scouting trip" to Grand Rapids, Michigan to cover the Red Wings' AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, over the past two days, and Griffins coach Todd Nelson had a simple take on the trade deadline when asked how he was preparing his players:
Nelson, whose team is about to embark on a two-week trip to Texas and California, said that he told all his players to bring their passports with them to Austin and San Antonio, because the Red Wings will spend the trade deadline in Western Canada, and there's no telling when a team that's "selling" for the first time in a quarter-century might have to call up a player or two.
According to the Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch, the final 48-to-72 hours before Wednesday's trade deadline will finally separate "buyers" and "sellers," and despite forecasts of a "weak draft" and "flat cap," the normal amount of trades will occur:
The talk has certainly increased over the last 48 hours with teams such as the Carolina Hurricanes, Dallas Stars and Detroit Red Wings accepting the reality of not making the post-season by unloading players for picks.
It won’t stop there with Arizona, Buffalo, Colorado, New Jersey, Tampa Bay, Vancouver and Winnipeg, with assets they can deal to try to get something in return. League executives predict GMs will be busy at the last minute, because they usually are.
“It’ll be the same — somewhere between 20 to 25 trades,” a league executive said last Thursday. “Everyone knows who’s out there. Some teams have games to play before Wednesday and most teams will wait until the wire.
“But if they have a deal that makes sense, they’ll do the deal.”
Garrioch continues, and he offers a representative example: