Even though the fate of Claude Giroux is still undetermined, it seems like a foregone conclusion that he will be traded away on deadline day. That has opened the door for fan’s imaginations to run wild with trade scenarios, but could a small scouting tidbit from Wednesday night hint at a potentially blockbuster deal in the future?
The Florida Panthers have lingered in the shadows when it comes to Claude Giroux. They get brought up in passing but rarely are direct connections made. Then on Wednesday, it was reported by insideahlhockey.com that both Chuck Fletcher and Danny Briere took in a Hershey Bears game when they hosted Charlotte, Florida’s AHL squad.
The GM and AGM to show up at a AHL game that isn’t their own is a bit unusual. It’s uncommon but rare at the NHL level, St. Louis Blues GM Doug Armstrong was in the press box for Tuesday’s Flyers/Oilers game, but for the two head honchos to take a trip to The Sweetest Place on Earth is an interesting nugget.
Could they have been watching a Washington Capitals prospect? Seattle is sharing an AHL squad with the Panthers this season, maybe there is some connection between those two teams, or they are there to get a close look at a potential return for Claude Giroux from the Panthers organization?
Florida doesn’t have an abundance of prospects to offer in a deal for Giroux, but they do have one interesting name that could be the odd man out of their current group and that’s soon-to-be 21-year-old goaltender Spencer Knight, who just so happened to post a 44-save shutout during Fletcher’s visit.
The reason this may be an interesting development? Well it plays into a theory that has been proposed on this website and on Brotherly Pod in the past.
A few weeks back, we proposed a trade for Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl that was based around Carter Hart. Many fans weren’t happy at the idea of losing Hart without a real option behind him, but what if Spencer Knight is that guy?
They trade Claude Giroux for Spencer Knight, and whatever picks necessary from either side to help you sleep at night, then trade Edmonton-native Carter Hart to the Oilers for Leon Draisaitl.
Knight is stuck behind Sergei Bobrovsky and his $10 million contract in Florida for four more seasons, and they’re clearly in win-now mode. They get Giroux, the Flyers get the Panthers best asset, he can be the unquestioned starter in Philly, and then they can trade Carter Hart in a package to Edmonton for Leon Draisaitl. The Oilers are a team desperate for goaltending help, and it won’t get much better than Hart. As long as McDavid is around, their offense will survive without Draisaitl, and the Flyers finally get their top enter they desperately need.
Seems like a win for everyone involved.
Is this some big brain stuff? Oh yeah. Is it likely? Probably not. Is it still within the realm of possibility? Absolutely.
Shoutout to Brotherly Pod co-host Mike Aceto for putting the pieces together last night and crafting a very similar scenario a few weeks ago on Frequent Flyer, before any of it had legs.
By: Dan Esche (@DanTheFlyeraFan)