Live updates, analysis of deals, rumors

The NHL trade deadline is 3 p.m. ET on Monday. Follow USA TODAY Sports’ live blog for the latest trades, news, rumors and analysis courtesy of NHL columnist Kevin Allen and editor Jimmy Hascup.

Which teams need to make a move the most? Which players will change your team’s playoff fortunes?

Be sure to catch yourself up on everything that has gone on this trade season with our trade tracker. Even though there has been a lot of movement up to this point, there remains a strong crop of trade candidates who could be changing jerseys. Plus, there’s always a surprise or two in store. Here are 10 questions to pay attention to today.

Early shoppers have reduced the number of available players for this year’s NHL trade deadline. But as the day began, here are the five most important available players.

11:29 a.m. Minor deal

The Canadiens acquired role player Jordan Weal (four goals in 47 games) from the Coyotes for Michael Chaput, who is an NHL tweener. The Coyotes are only three points out of a playoff spot. But they are not expected to be a major player on deadline day. The Canadiens wanted a right-hand center and Weal has more offensive upside. 

10:58 a.m. Pressure on David Poile

 With the Jets landing center Kevin Hayes, Predators general manager David Poile is under pressure to make a deal. It’s not unthinkable that the Predators and Jets will meet at some point in the playoffs.

Hayes will add life to Winnipeg’s second line. Poile needs to improve his second line as well. He’s looking at Wayne Simmonds and Mark Stone, although he may not like the price for either one.

Keep an eye on Poile making a move with the Wild. GM Paul Fenton was Poile’s assistant. Could the Predators talk Eric Staal into agreeing to a trade to Nashville? Would the Wild move Mikael Granlund or Jason Zucker? The Predators have two quality prospects in Eeli Tolvanen and Dante Fabbro. They would also move Kevin Fiala.

10:36 a.m. Kevin Hayes is on the move

Kevin Hayes is headed West, where he will provide the Jets witih a No. 2 center to pair with Mark Scheifele. He’s a big pass-first center with a modest amount of belligerence. 

Brendan Lemieux is a feisty role player, and the son of Claude Lemieux. He could be a 15-20 goal scorer at his peak.

Last season, the Jets acquired Paul Stastny before the deadline. He was a significant contributor. Although Hayes is not similar to Stastny, the Jets need him to have a comparable impact. They need him to spark the No. 2 line. 

The Rangers continue to accumulate draft picks, though it’s worth noting this pick will likely be late in the first round as Winnipeg is a major Stanley Cup contender.

10:14 a.m. Will Eric Staal be moved?

Eric Staal has 18 goals and 41 points this year. It’s clear the Bruins will be trying to fortify their top-six forward group.

9:18 a.m. We have a trade

Not exactly the one we were looking for, but it’s another indication that the Blue Jackets are all in on a postseason run. Keith Kinkaid, a pending UFA, will back up Sergei Bobrovsky.

9:04 a.m. Red Wings a target?

Jimmy Howard and Thomas Vanek are the only two players set to be free agents this offseason. The rest have term on their deals, so the Red Wings will want a subtantial return.

8:28 a.m. Could you imagine?

This could rock the trade deadline. But we’ll believe it when we see it. There doesn’t seem to be a reason for the Jets to trade Patrik Laine and that goal-scoring ability (even if he’s streaky).

8:18 a.m. The best available                     

Early shoppers have reduced the number of available players for this year’s NHL trade deadline. But as the day began, here are the five most important available players.

1. Mark Stone, Senators: The Senators want a return for Stone similar to the one [prospects Vitaly Abramov and Jonathan Davidsson, 2019 first-round pick (top-three protected), conditional 2020 first-round pick] they received from the Blue Jackets for Matt Duchene. Stone has 28 goals this season.

2. Wayne Simmonds, Flyers: The Lightning are among the teams pursuing a trade for Simmonds because he can add goals and grit. Don’t rule out the Predators making a play for him. 

3. Kevin Hayes, Rangers:  A few teams are looking for centers and he is now the only top-six center available. The Jets and Flames are thought to be leading contenders. 

4. Marcus Johansson, Devils: He won’t command the return the first three will fetch. But Johansson can provide depth, secondary scoring and experience. 

5. Micheal Ferland, Hurricanes: Several teams want Ferland, but the ‘Canes won’t deal him unless they are blown away by an offer. They don’t like the idea that he will walk this summer as a free agent. But the ‘Canes are 17-6-1 since Jan. 1 and Ferland has played a part in that. They don’t want to undermine their chemistry. They will likely just view Ferland as a rental piece.

7:50 a.m. The NHL never sleeps on deadline day

Last night, the Sharks acquired Gustav Nyquist from the Red Wings for two picks (a second and third-rounder). The Red Wings really wanted to re-sign Nyquist, but they didn’t get it done. They also wanted a first-round pick, but settled for San Jose’s package. The third-round pick is a conditional pick that becomes a second if Nyquist, an unrestricted free agent this summer, re-signs with the Sharks.

The addition of Nyquist gives the Sharks another creative offensive player. He’s a wing who can create offense with slick moves and passing. 


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