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Dreger: Discussion in Tampa on whether to deal Lecavalier

Darren Dreger
1/12/2009 10:18:27 AM
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The big talk around the NHL's water cooler right now is trade speculation surrounding Vincent Lecavalier.

There is a tug of war going on in the Lightning's front office - some want the club to trade him and some don't want him to be traded.

So general manager Brian Lawton's job right now is to go out and collect information - collect the type of value you would expect in return for Lecavalier. And the Lightning's expectations are extraordinarily high.

This is a player with an $85 million contract extension, so what does the team expect in return?

There has been steady and consistent dialogue with general manager Bob Gainey and the Montreal Canadiens and it's believed there may be a package discussed that could include as many as four NHLers including Christopher Higgins (no big surprise there, the Canadiens always seem to have Higgins in trade discussions), who was included in trade talk with Toronto last year to land Mats Sundin.

Tomas Plekanec's name has been thrown out there, along with a prospect believed to be in the mix - perhaps PK Subban of the Belleville Bulls - and draft picks.

That sounds like and extraordinary amount, and that's not saying that a deal will get done, but there is steady dialogue between the Canadiens and Lightning.

On a final note, Lecavalier's agent Kent Hughes is flying in to talk to ownership and management to settle this down a little bit. At the very least, they want to give the process some time - decisions have to be made inside that group on whether to move him or continue to kick the tires.

Darren Dreger

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