Rumor: Brad Treliving may have a trade in place for Zadorov already
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Rumor: Brad Treliving may have a trade in place for Zadorov already

Pull the trigger!



In case you missed the news this past weekend, Calgary Flames defenseman Nikita Zadorov informed team general manager Craig Conroy that he would like to be traded away from the team. 

The hulking 6'6", 235lb defenseman is apparently tired of losing with the directionless Flames and is looking for a fresh start elsewhere in the NHL. TSN insider Darren Dreger has linked Zadorov to the Toronto Maple Leafs, Vancouver Canucks and New Jersey Devils as the team's most likely to pursue him via trade.

From Dreger:

"Well look, again, he's an attractive piece for Toronto, Vancouver, I know the New Jersey have expressed some interest, because of what we can see. He's enormous, he's a very physical defenseman. The problem you might have, though - and this is my understanding - is that he thinks he's a top-3, top-2 defenseman and I don't think he is. I think he's comfortable in your second [pairing], well even as your third [pairing], as a #5D, then you're in pretty good shape.

Brad Treliving, the general manager, has been around this man a long time. He knows him well and probably knows how to get him going. I don't think it helped the process, though, to amplify it the way that it amplified on Friday, because now it turns into a spectacle."

- Darren Dreger

Today though, Canucks insider Rick Dhaliwal of the 'Donnie and Dhali Show' with Rick Dhaliwal reports that the Flames aren't interested in dealing Zadorov to Vancouver, a divisional rival.

From today's episode of 'Donnie and Dhali':

"I do get the feeling that the Calgary Flames do not want to send him to Vancouver. I get the feeling that they'd rather send him elsewhere. They want to send him somewhere else."

Rick Dhaliwal

Dhaliwal would go on to report that the Canucks would 'push hard' to get the Flames to take either Conor Garland or Anthony Beauvillier in a potential deal for Zadorov.

Now,interestingly enough, the Leafs and Flames played each other in a fairly entertaining game this past Friday so both Zadorov and his potential new teammates in Toronto had a chance to feel each other out.

What's most interesting to me though is that Sportsnet insider Elliotte Friedman is reporting that during the course of that game, one of the Leafs' players explicitly tried to recruit Zadorov on the ice!

From Friedman's latest 32 Thoughts podcast for Sportsnet:

"Zadorov plays under 16 minutes on Friday night and they lose to Toronto. He delivers a HUGE hit on Bertuzzi. The word going around on Sunday night is that a Maple Leafs player said to Zadorov on the ice, 'You're EXACTLY what we need.'

- Elliotte Friedman

Friedman's 32 Thoughts co-host Jeff Marek pushed Friedman if it was Zadorov's former OHL London Knights teammate Max Domi who tried to recruit Zadorov, but Friedman couldn't say for sure. 

But... c'mon... doesn't this have 'Max Domi' written all over it?

Whoever it was, I'm inclined to agree that Zadorov is EXACTLY what this Leafs team needs.

Steve Dangle recently pieced together the rumors coming from Marek and Friedman and added a bit of his own spice, reporting that Leafs GM Brad Treliving may already have a deal for Zadorov lined up. The problem is that the Leafs will likely have to move defender T.J. Brodie before they can jump on Zadorov.

From Dangle on the latest 'Steve Dangle Podcast':

What we're hearing this morning is that the Leafs have made their offer or whatever, and they're just waiting on the Flames to commit to making the trade.

I think they've got an agreement in place where either Zadorov or Zadorov and Chris Tanev would come to Toronto. People were like, "How would the salary work?"

For some reason, ever since that Frank Seravalli report, everybody's been convinced TJ Brodie's out of town. I don't know why, because I thought he's played fine. Well, they keep saying the Leafs want to get Zadorov and Tanev. Who the hell comes off the roster to make that work? It would have to be TJ Brodie's contract. I mean, he's the only one who really makes sense.

I've heard several rumors for what the trade could be, and none of them add up at all. Unless we're talking salary retention. So, Tanev makes 4.5, what does Zadorov make? 2, 3.75? Dude, that's a lot of money. Hold up, can they retain on both of those? They're going to have to, because Brodie wouldn't be enough to get it done. I think that's what they would do. That's a lot.

Also, there are a couple of other teams that are in the mix, apparently. Arizona has made a pretty good offer to Calgary. Vancouver is also in on it, and I think Ottawa was the other team. There are a lot of teams fighting for this. It's not guaranteed the Leafs will get Zadorov, and I don't even know if that's the solution to their problems.

He's an improvement. He's more of what the Leafs want to be, or what Brad Treliving wants the Leafs to be. Does he make them, at the expense of TJ Brodie, though? I like TJ Brodie a lot. I don't love the idea of losing Brodie to address your defensive problems. No, I don't think that makes a lot of sense.

Maybe they're working on something else. I don't know. They're going to be in Sweden for a week. If you go back to Saturday, over a week, every day of the season affects the salary cap. I wonder if this was the sort of deal they tried to get done before flying across the Atlantic Ocean, and they're not able to get it done. So, it's something they will do as soon as they get back, if they still feel like they need it. If they go and they start rolling in Sweden, it's like, "Okay, do we need to make a move right now?"

But they've got time, or they can just wait until the trade deadline."

- Steve Dangle

There certainly is a lot of smoke between the Leafs and Flames, we'll have to wait until closer to the deadline to see if there's any real fire there.

Source: Steve Dangle