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Frank Seravalli

TSN Senior Hockey Reporter

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Erik Karlsson is in play.

That fact alone makes Karlsson the new No. 1 on TSN’s Trade Bait board, based on sheer prominence. A two-time Norris Trophy winner in his prime almost never hits the market, let alone one under a bargain contract for another full season.

In fact, if Karlsson were to be traded between now and Monday’s 3 p.m. trade deadline, it would become the NHL’s most seismic swap since P.K. Subban for Shea Weber in 2016.

Except this would be bigger.

As a four-time Norris Trophy finalist who has averaged 74 points over each of his last five full seasons, the argument could be made that Karlsson would be hockey’s most important player traded since Jaromir Jagr in 2001.

For now, though, those bold proclamations require a big “if” as a qualifier.

Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion continues to receive a significant level of interest in Karlsson. According to TSN Hockey Insider Bob McKenzie, Dorion has engaged in some level of dialogue with teams about Karlsson over the past few days, which is why the 27-year-old defenceman has rocketed to No. 1 on the board.

Karlsson has one more year remaining on his contract at $6.5 million. His trade value may never be higher than it is now, with the potential of two extended playoff runs in a new city for a Cup contender, plus the fact that the Senators may lose some semblance of control once Karlsson can sign a new contract extension on July 1.

The Senators are believed to be seeking a package of five-to-seven assets in return for Karlsson, a combination of impact roster players, draft picks and prospects.

The inclusion of forward Bobby Ryan – who has four seasons left at $7.25 million – would reportedly lessen the package required to obtain Karlsson.

A franchise defenceman is potentially on the move, but only for a package that Dorion feels adequately reflects that.

 

The Top 45

 
Trend Player Pos Age Cap Hit GP G PTS Years Clause
Embedded Image 1. Erik Karlsson, OTT RD 27 $6.5M 53 5 41 1 M-NTC
  2. Rick Nash, NYR  LW 33 $7.8M 60 18 28 UFA M-NTC
  3. Mike Green, DET RD 32 $6M 57 6 29 UFA NTC
  4. Derick Brassard, OTT C 30 $5M 56 17 35 1 M-NTC
  5. Patrick Maroon, EDM LW 29 $1.5M 57 14 30 UFA  
  6. Evander Kane, BUF LW 26 $5.25M 60 19 39 UFA  
  7. Michael Grabner, NYR LW 30 $1.65M 59 25 31 UFA  
  8. Mark Letestu, EDM C 32 $1.8M 57 8 18 UFA  
  9. Mike Hoffman, OTT LW 28 $5.19M 58 16 39 2 M-NTC
  10. Jack Johnson, CBJ LD 31 $4.35M 59 3 8 UFA  
  11. Max Domi, ARI C/LW 22 $1.36M 59 4 26 RFA  
  12. Thomas Vanek, VAN LW 33 $2M 60 16 40 UFA  
  13. Zack Smith, OTT C/LW 29 $3.25M 44 4 16 3 M-NTC
  14. Ryan McDonagh, NYR LD 28 $4.7M 49 2 26 1 M-NTC
  15. Tomas Plekanec, MTL C 35 $6M 59 5 22 UFA  
  16. Derek Ryan, CAR C 31 $1.45M 58 11 26 UFA  
  17. Max Pacioretty, MTL LW 29 $4.5M 59 16 35 1  
  18. Jeff Skinner, CAR LW 25 $5.73M 60 20 37 1 NMC
  19. Alex Galchenyuk, MTL LW 23 $4.9M 59 12 34 2  
  20. J-G Pageau, OTT C 25 $3.1M 54 8 20 4  
  21. Luke Glendening, DET C 28 $1.8M 47 8 14 3  
  22. Boone Jenner, CBJ C 24 $2.9M 52 5 17 RFA  
  23. Andrew Shaw, MTL C/RW 26 $3.9M 43 10 19 4  
  24. Jordan Kyrou, STL C/RW 19 $894K 0 0 0 3 Slide
  25. Robby Fabbri, STL LW 22 $1.1M 0 0 0 RFA  
  26. Johnny Oduya, OTT LD 36 $2M 49 4 8 UFA M-NTC
  27. Gustav Nyquist, DET RW 28 $4.75M 59 16 28 1 NTC
  28. Aaron Dell, SJS G 28 $625K 24 2.51 .917 UFA  
  29. Jon Gillies, CGY G 24 $725K 2 4.35 .815 RFA  
  30. Bobby Ryan, OTT LW 30 $7.25M 39 7 20 4 M-NTC
  31. Matt Hunwick, PIT LD 32 $2.25M 35 3 7 2  
  32. Benoit Pouliot, BUF LW 31 $1.15M 55 11 15 UFA  
  33. Josh Leivo, TOR LW 24 $613K 12 1 3 1  
  34. Tommy Wingels, CHI RW 29 $750K 53 7 12 UFA  
  35. Tomas Tatar, DET LW 27 $5.3M 58 16 27 3  
  36. Blake Comeau, COL RW 31 $2.4M 55 10 22 UFA  
  37. Ben Hutton, VAN LD 24 $2.8M 50 0 6 1  
  38. Matt Cullen, MIN C 41 $1.7M 57 6 15 UFA  
  39. Nic Petan, WPG C 22 $863K 12 1 1 RFA  
  40. Robin Lehner, BUF G 26 $4M 44 2.95 .910 RFA  
  41. Antoine Vermette, ANA C 35 $1.75M 59 8 16 UFA M-NTC
  42. Frank Vatrano, BOS LW 23 $925K 25 2 2 RFA  
  43. Xavier Ouellet, DET LD 24 $1.25M 35 0 4 1  
  44. Danny DeKeyser, DET LD 27 $5M 42 4 7 4 NTC
  45. Tyson Barrie, COL RD 26 $5.5M 45 6 36 2