In each of the last 4 years, the Devils' fanbase has been trading a defenseman during the off-season. In 2010, one of Salvador or White had to go. In 2011, it was the same thing, but White got bought out. In 2012, it was one of Tallinder, Volchenkov, or Fayne. The trade never came. Will it happen this year?
Well, let's take a peek around the league. The Devils are close to the salary cap - so close that I don't think it justifies the trade of Mark Fayne. In addition, the Devils' young D who might crack the roster are all lefties, which makes me think that Tallinder, Volchenkov, or (let me have this, please) Salvador would be the guy on the way out. So who needs help at left D?
LD - Ehrhoff, Mike Weber, ??
Comments: Seems like a pretty good landing spot for Henrik Tallinder, who came from here and mentored Tyler Myers in Year 1. I could see them having an interest in Bryce Salvador as well, as they lost Robyn Regehr and have yet to fill the 'immobile pylon' part of their D.
LD - Campbell, Jovanovski, Kulikov, Strachan
Comments: While Florida has plenty of left D, Ed Jovanovski is shockingly breaking down physically, so he can't be counted on for next year. Rumors are that the Panthers have to be a floor team, which might lead to them cutting salary instead of adding it.
LD - Methot, Phillips, Weiercoch, Cowen
Comments: While they have 4 decent guys, they lost Gonchar this off-season and have yet to replace him.
LD - Alzner, Erskine, Orlov
Comments: This seems like the best fit for a trade - they had Hamrlik in this spot in 2012, but he played poorly going into 2013 and was shipped off to the Rangers. John Erskine was categorically terrible in the playoffs. There's still guys on the free agent market, but this is where the best fit seems to lie.
I don't really see any other fits around the league, and there's still some decent UFA defenders around, so I'm not sure how Lou gets this done - maybe he just lets Zidlicky walk and goes with the 7 guys he's got. Wouldn't be the worst thing he's done, but the power play will suffer for sure.