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Predators defenceman garnering trade interest from contenders


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Liam
January 7, 2023  (5:04 PM)
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In the midst of another year, the Predators are finding themselves in a usual spot, battling for the last spot in the playoffs. After repeated seasons in the same situation, at some point the Predators need to move on, committing to a rebuild or towards being a contender.

At the moment, insiders are speculating that the Predators will be sellers at the deadline, and could be moving one of their premier defensemen. Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff has revealed that Mattias Ekholm is available for trade, and that a number of contenders are interested in acquiring him.
Ekholm is a veteran 32 year old defenceman, who's played his entire twelve year, 700 game career with the Predators. With only 14 points in 38 games, Ekholm doesn't bring much offence, but is a smart player in his own end and a true shutdown defender, which brings incredible value to a contending team on a playoff run.
In the first year of a four year $6.25M contract, it may be difficult for a contender to acquire Ekholm without retention, or money moving the other way.
Seravalli noted the Edmonton Oilers, New York Rangers, Toronto Maple Leafs, and Florida Panthers as potential suitors to acquire Ekholm. All of those teams listed would need to send money the other way to acquire Ekholm, potentially making the deal more difficult. An exception may be Florida, who may fall out of buyer status before the trade deadline rolls around.
Seravalli expects that because the team trading for Ekholm would take on the entire contract, the price to acquire him may be as low as a few middling prospects or a mid-round draft pick. With retention, the deal could look comparable to the trade that sent Giordano to Toronto, being multiple draft picks in the first three rounds.
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Predators defenceman garnering trade interest from contenders

Where do you want to see Ekholm go?

New York Rangers25.6 %
Toronto Maple Leafs1747.2 %
Florida Panthers38.3 %
Other1438.9 %
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