Certain ‘sources’ have reported that the Hurricanes are shopping Eric Staal and Jeff Skinner around the trade market. In defense of these writers, the majority of trade rumor talk is a twisted version of the telephone game coupled with a healthy dose of sorcery. Nobody really knows what’s what and it’s rare for a GM to show their cards. Rumors are exactly what they are — rumors.
However, for the Hurricanes to trade Staal and Skinner would be an idiotic move, and it begs the question why anyone would even consider this as a viable option. Both players are anchors of the organization and are locked into massive contracts with no-trade clauses. To put these names out in the offseason market is either some weird highball negotiation or complete fabrication.
If the Hurricanes were going to work their way around an NTC, it would have been to deal Cam Ward. The once-great goaltender has been running hot and cold over the last two seasons and isn’t earning a fourth of his salary. Shopping Ward around, even as bait, makes sense. Staal and Skinner do not.
If the Hurricanes are going to enter 2015 as a rebuilding season, these two players are on a shortlist of who they’d rebuild a team around. Keeping Staal, Skinner, Alex Semin and Nathan Gerbe is the smart move. These are solid players, and despite Staal’s issues with consistency, trading the captain sends a dangerous message to team and fans.
Carolina needs to shake it up in the offseason, but to ship two franchise players out with the hopes of landing a hotshot with potential is stupid and dangerous.