We have heard it all week that many NHL teams are interested in the services of Hurricanes forward Tuomo Ruutu. A month away and speculation is that he could land in Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Nashville, New York Rangers, Ottawa, Pittsburgh, and San Jose. To be fair, I have also heard rumors that Ruutu could land in Toronto as Brian Burke has placed a phone call seeking information on Ruutu as well. It is all rumors at this point. The only thing that is true is that Ruutu is going to be the biggest name moved at the 2012 NHL Trade Deadline.
Darren Dreger of TSN reported that Tuomo Ruutu could be moved as early as the end of the week. Hurricanes General Manager Jim Rutherford already set the bar high stating that he wants a first round pick and a prospect for Ruutu, and apparently teams are still biting at the offer. The lack of power forwards available at the deadline ultimately sets the bar extremely high for a player of Ruutu’s caliber. He currently leads all Hurricanes players in Goals, Hits, and he has finished in the top 25 in Hits three times since the year 2008, including finishing at a career best 2nd last season, only trailing Cal Clutterbuck with 309 hits.
Ruutu also finished with a career high in points last season for the Hurricanes, totaling 57 points while playing in all 82 games. Ruutu’s cap hit is only 3.8 million dollars currently but he is an unrestricted free agent. Ruutu leaving is likely the best interest for the Hurricanes currently as he is the most valuable unrestricted free agent on their roster. If Ruutu is to be traded within the month expect the Hurricanes target Ruutu in the summer to bring him back for a second run for the Hurricanes much like they did with Joe Corvo in 2010 after trading him to Washington for his short stint with the Capitals at the trade deadline.