Trade rumors are not normally my thing. They are often just that – rumors, and can get a fan base worked up over what ends up being nothing. The textbook definition of rumor is, “a currently circulating story of uncertain or doubtful truth.” In the past few days, the Carolina Hurricanes have been the subject of trade rumors around the NHL, so I thought I’d venture into the conversation.
Most of the juicy trade rumors center around Eric Staal. This is not surprising as he is the team’s captain and is considered by many to be a superstar player in the NHL. At 29, he still potentially has a lot of quality hockey left. There are a few teams, namely the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Arizona Coyotes who have expressed a possible interest in Staal.
Having battled injuries in the past couple of seasons, and spending time on injured reserve already this season, one has to wonder if potential suitors are raising an eyebrow at the question, “How long can he stay healthy?” Still the trade rumors are there and will continue to be there until he is traded, or the trade deadline comes and goes and he is still in a ‘Canes sweater. By the way, he has a no-movement clause in his contract.
Exactly what trade rumors are we hearing?
The Toronto Maple Leafs were mentioned a while back as the top suitor for Eric Staal’s services. In fact, On October 14th, TSN’s Insiders said that the “Leafs would be all-in on Eric Staal.” They sparked what has continued to be talk about the possibility of Staal leaving Carolina for Toronto. That talk died down a bit, but has flared up again in the past couple of days.
However, Steve Simmons of the Toronto Sun said that gauging Ron Francis is difficult, as he is new in his role as general manager. “There is nothing to research how he will react to the diminishing mess that are the Carolina Hurricanes.” So we as pundits, fans, and observers are in the dark as to how Francis will proceed regarding the building and/or rebuilding of this team. In true NHL tradition, Ron is keeping his cards very close to the vest, not giving any indication if or who he has talked about any potential trades.
Some trade rumor posts regarding Eric Staal mention the Arizona Coyotes. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottowa Sun writes, “After buying out Mike Ribiero last summer and dealing Kyle Turris to Ottawa a few years ago, the Arizona (don’t call me Phoenix) Coyotes have genuine interest in bolstering the middle with Staal.” The Coyotes come to Raleigh on Saturday, November 1st for the “Canes first game home in quite some time.
Elliotte Friedman with the last word?
Earlier today, Elliotte Friedman said on mynhltraderumors.com that he had a chance to talk to Eric Staal, and that
“Eric Staal said to me that he met with Ron Francis in the summer and talked about his future and they basically asked him, ‘Do you want to go?’ And he said, ‘No, I don’t. I want to stay. I want to be a member of the Hurricanes.’”
Alright then, cased closed. Well, not really. As long as Carolina is struggling, the trade rumors surrounding Eric Staal will continue to swirl. And Justin Bourne at The Score pointed out astutely that in his chat with Friedman, Staal did use those lovely words, “It’s a business and things can change.”
— theScore (@theScore) October 28, 2014
What? Maybe the last word has not been spoken regarding these trade rumors about Eric Staal.
PS: As I am writing this article
on the trade rumors surrounding Eric Staal, I just heard him say during the pregame to tonight’s game against the Vancouver Canucks that he wants to stay where he is. For Hurricanes fans this may have caused a sigh of relief. Or maybe a tinge of regret. Which is it? Comment below if you think Eric Staal will stay in a Hurricanes sweater for the foreseeable future, or if you think he is on the cusp of being traded.
While you’re at it, let me know if you want him to stay or if you’d like to bid him a fond adieu.
[Get all your Carolina Hurricanes news delivered directly to your email box. Sign up here I did, and it’s great!]
Mark lives in the Raleigh, NC area and covers the Carolina Hurricanes.