Keith Yandle #3 of the Phoenix Coyotes during the NHL game against the Chicago Blackhawks at Arena on February 7, 2013 in Glendale, Arizona. The Blackhawks defeated the Coyotes 6-2.
(February 6, 2013 - Source: Christian Petersen/Getty Images North America)

Trade Bait: Keith Yandle


The NHL’s trade deadline is Wednesday, April 3. Following is a player that may be moved. For more “Trade Bait,” click here.

At first glance, Keith Yandle doesn’t look like an obvious player to be dealt. Sure the Phoenix Coyotes have lost six straight games and might be sellers on April 3 if they descend any further.

“We’re right at the cliff as far as I’m concerned,” Coyotes Don Maloney recently told Fox Sports. “If we slide much further, all bets are off. We’re going to go out and find assets. This is reality.”

Even still, Yandle is a top-tier offensive defenseman signed through the 2015-16 campaign. You don’t find players like that on the market very often, but by the same token, the Coyotes could command a high price if they decide to sell him now.

The rise of 21-year-old blueliner Oliver Ekman-Larsson, who recently inked a six-year, $33 million extension arguably makes Yandle expendable, but more importantly, he might not be what they need the most right now.

The Coyotes’ offense has been a huge issue lately, as evidenced by the fact that they set a new franchise record for most consecutive games without a goal.

As Sportsnet’s Mark Spector recently speculated, the Coyotes might be open to dealing Yandle for a young forward, similar to the St. Louis-Colorado deal in 2011 that included Erik Johnson, Kevin Shattenkirk, Chris Stewart, Jay McClement, and picks.

Because Yandle wouldn’t be a rental, such a trade might work for a team like the Philadelphia Flyers, who have also been linked to San Jose Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle, or the Edmonton Oilers, but if the Coyotes decide to trade Yandle, there will likely be plenty of suitors.

Here are the 10 oldest players to play a game this season

Jaromir Jagr
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This isn’t breaking news or anything. We just thought you’d like to know that three of the NHL’s 10 oldest players (who’ve played at least one game this season) are members of the Florida Panthers.

Oh, and the Panthers’ starting goalie? He’s the oldest starter in the league. (Scroll down.)

Here’s the list of skaters, topped by 43-year-old Jaromir Jagr:


Yet another veteran Panther, 36-year-old defenseman Brian Campbell, ranks 17th on the list.

Granted, the above list does not include 39-year-old Patrik Elias (who’s hurt) or 39-year-old Eric Boulton (who just re-signed with the Isles). As soon as those two play, Thornton will get pushed out of the top 10.

Now here’s the list of goalies who’ve started at least one game this season, topped by 36-year-old Roberto Luongo:


For the record, Luongo isn’t the oldest goalie under contract. That would be Minnesota’s Niklas Backstrom, who’s 37.

Related: Can Florida’s old guys hang on while the young guys get better?

Hamburglar (groin) returns, Sens demote O’Connor

Andrew Hammond
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Matt O'Connor‘s time in the Canadian capital was brief, but still noteworthy.

O’Connor, the losing netminder in Sunday’s “Battle of the Backups” against Montreal — Habs No. 2 Mike Condon got the win — has been sent down to AHL Binghamton to pave the way for Andrew Hammond‘s return from a groin injury, per the Sun.

The Hamburglar has been out since the preseason, but his return is earlier than expected.

He was originally supposed to miss the first two weeks, yet now sounds as though he’ll play one of Ottawa’s two games on an upcoming road trip through Columbus and Pittsburgh.

It’s going to be interesting to see if Hammond can replicate the success he had last season, when he came out of nowhere to go 20-1-2 with a 1.79 GAA and .941 save percentage, and finish seventh in Vezina voting.