Rumors are flying online about longtime Ottawa Senators center Jason Spezza. One destination that has been mentioned is Nashville. While these are just rumors, it is highly possible that Spezza could be on the move, and it could be sooner than you’d think.
The biggest factor in this whole saga is Spezza’s “No Trade Clause.” Would he waive it to come to a place like Nashville? In the past, Nashville was not a destination many players would waive an NTC for. But, with a new coach, a solid defensive unit, and a crop of youngsters, Nashville could look very attractive. Plus, Spezza would have a chance to reunite with his good friend Mike Fisher. That is a major factor.
The Senators will probably be looking for a high draft pick in this year’s NHL Draft. The Predators have such a pick, at No. 11. With all their young talent at Forward already, do the Predators trade that pick for the veteran on draft day? There may not be a franchise forward there at No. 11, so the Predators may be better off with this trade.
So, who would the Predators give Ottawa for Spezza? This is where I believe the problems occur. The Senators are probably going to want young gun Filip Forsberg or defenseman Ryan Ellis. Poile is probably very reluctant to give up these players, especially Forsberg. Ellis is somewhat expendable, as the Predators are already so well-off at defense. A better idea for Nashville is to trade a player like Mattias Ekholm instead of Ellis. This may require sending another draft pick, which would be fine by me. Another player that may factor in is Colin Wilson. With some young centers coming into Nashville, is it finally time to wave goodbye to Wilson?
So, this is a move that has potential, but has some serious complications. Poile and the Predators should not grab Spezza if the asking price is too high. A young player like Forsberg is too valuable to give up for a 30-year-old center with a year left on his deal. But, if the price is right, and the Predators can make a move, they absolutely should. For the first time in Predators history, they would have that elusive top center. Plus, it would make Nashville that much more attractive to free agents (namely Matt Moulson, Thomas Vanek, and Paul Stastny).
In the words of a popular game show announcer, “All this could be yours, but only if the Price is Right.”