It’s understood Columbus GM Scott Howson expects big returns for Rick Nash.
But are those expectations getting too big?
That appears the case for at least one team as TSN’s Darren Dreger reports Carolina has pulled out of Nash bidding — after Howson asked for Jeff Skinner in return.
“Hurricanes are no longer persuing [sic] Rick Nash,” Dreger wrote. “Cost way too high. CBJ believed to be after Jeff Skinner. Non-starter.”
Skinner, 20, won the 2011 Calder Trophy after scoring 31G-23A-63 points as an 18-year-old rookie — that same year, he became the youngest player to ever participate in an NHL All-Star game. The former Kitchener Ranger had 44 points in 64 games last year after his season was interrupted by a concussion.
In short, he’s one of the best young talents in hockey.
He’s also a player that Carolina was never going to part with, according to Chip Alexander of the Raleigh News and Observer.
“If Skinner had to be included in any Nash deal, it was never going to happen,” Alexander tweeted. “That point was made clear weeks ago.
“[‘Canes GM Jim] Rutherford won’t comment on Nash situation. Said ‘Canes could could have interest in Doan, Semin. Reading between the lines: Canes are moving on.”
If true, Howson’s demands follow what Larry Brooks of the New York Post reported earlier this week — the asking price for Nash is sky high:
Nevertheless, Howson continues to demand that one — and perhaps two — of the three be part of the package in return for Nash, who has a no-move clause and has provided the Blue Jackets with a short list of teams to which he will accept a trade.
While Howson seems firm in his “I’ll be patient/I want what I want” stance, one wonders if he’s got an accurate gauge on the market. Nash’s no-trade clause and select list of approved teams means Howson’s only dealing with a handful of teams as opposed to all 30 NHL clubs.
That said, Nash could end up increasing the number of approved teams if/once he realizes Howson’s playing hardball.