By the time Ted Nolan accepted the coaching position in Buffalo, his son had already won a Stanley Cup with the Los Angeles Kings in 2012. He solidified himself as a bottom-six checking forward who brought energy to the team as they went on their historic Cup run and continues in that role today.
With the Kings gaining additional cap space from the Slava Voynov ruling and their need for a top-four defenseman, many teams have called to inquire about the availability of Jordan Nolan. As reported by insider Bob MacKenzie, there is a lot of interest from Eastern Conference teams.
On Insider Trading tonite just after 6:30 pm ET, why there's considerable interest from teams, especially in the East, in LA's Jordan Nolan.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) November 25, 2014
So far this season, Nolan has only scored one goal in 14 games with a rating of minus three. While he has never been known for his offense, Nolan has been underwhelming this season in other areas of his game and has found himself as a frequent healthy scratch. A change of scenery could possibly jump start his career and Buffalo would be an enticing destination for both player and club.
Not only is his father the head coach of the rebuilding Sabres, but Nolan was born in nearby St. Catherines, Ontario, only 40 minutes away from downtown Buffalo.
Making a deal work
If Nolan were to be traded to Buffalo, the next question would be what the Kings would receive in return. As the main piece of a trade, Nolan would not bring in significant assets by himself. However, as a package deal, he could possibly return a top player.
A name that has been thrown around is the 12th overall pick of the 2008 draft, Tyler Myers. Myers is an imposing defenseman who stands tall at 6’8 and 220 pounds. He plays a physical game with the ability to chip in offensively. Perfect for what the Kings need and with the talent developing in the Sabres’ farm system, he can be replaced in Buffalo.
Like Nolan, Myers is not playing up to expectations this year. Through 23 games, he has one goal and four assists for five points. Far from his 48 points in 82 games he scored in his rookie season when he won the Calder Trophy as the NHL’s top rookie.
If a Myers trade were to become reality, the next order of business is to make it work with the Kings’ cap situation. They did receive relief when the NHL and NHLPA agreed to grant them the ability to go over the cap due to their unique circumstances involving Voynov, but Kings GM Dean Lombardi should use the exemption cautiously.
Myers’ caphit is $5.5m until the end of the 2018-19 season while Nolan, who is set to be a restricted free agent at the end of this season, has a cap hit of $700,000. In addition, adding Myers would only further complicate the logjam they have on the blueline especially when injured players return. Ideally, the Kings would use Nolan as part of a package deal that would include another depth defenseman and draft pick. The question is, who else could Lombardi send packing for Buffalo?