Is Marc Staal a fit for the depleted Jets defense
Winnipeg has basically lost 2 of their best defenseman from last season. Jacob Trouba wanted to play for the Rangers and refused to sign with the Jets facilitating a trade. Now they are in a legal battle with Dustin Byfuglien who has contemplated retirement. The Jets need help.
Staal to Winnipeg?
The issues in Winnipeg have been examined, and Jared Clinton of THN recently wrote this.
Winnipeg could scour the trade market for a mid-range defender earning upwards of $4-million per season and almost assuredly add him to the lineup without a corresponding move or ensuring that it’s a dollar-for-dollar swap. That’s the good news. The bad news is that finding that player is going to be remarkably difficult. While veteran options such as Jack Johnson and Brent Seabrook and Marc Staal are certainly among those for whom a trade could be worked out…THN
Marc Staal is now facing his 3rd straight healthy scratch and makes $4M in base salary. The 32 year old defenseman has 1 year left on his deal and comes with a $5.7M cap hit. The Rangers could easily retain some salary to enable a deal, but will Staal put Winnipeg on his list? Staal has a modified no trade clause but if it’s a choice between playing or sitting, I assume he would.
The Jets are considered a contender this season which could be of interest for Staal. His old defense partner, Neal Pionk is there and that’s another plus. And he’s only a short flight to his hometown of Thunder Bay from Winnipeg. It just seems like a solid fit for all parties.
As far as a return for Staal, that could be something along the lines of a prospect or mid round pick. If the concern is to shed some salary, Matthieu Perrault could be a decent pick up for the Rangers. The center/winger is 31 years old and makes 4.125M with another year remaining on his deal before becoming a UFA.
His addition could fortify the middle for the Blueshirts and give them more flexibility in a trade for Jesse Puljujarvi. The calendar has just flipped to November and the deadline is months away. However, it looks like trade talks are heating up.