The Ottawa Senators have 10 players with no-trade clauses in their contracts and plan to ask each to provide a list of teams they would not be dealt to, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
Among those players is Senators captain Erik Karlsson, but don’t read into that just yet.
“I was told that does not mean 100 per cent that Erik Karlsson is getting traded. It just opens the option,” Friedman said during the Headlines segment of Hockey Night in Canada on Saturday.
The tactic is similar to what the Senators did in 2011, said Friedman, when they asked for players’ no-trade lists before dealing away Mike Fisher, Chris Kelly and Alex Kovalev.
Karlsson, 27, is set to become a free agent following the 2018-19 season. He made headlines last week after telling the Ottawa Sun: “When I go to market, I’m going to get what I’m worth, and it’s going to be no less, no matter where I’m going.”
While Friedman said the Senators are “trying to move past that,” fellow insider Nick Kypreos said team owner Eugene Melnyk did not like that Karlsson publicly stated his intention.
When asked if the Senators, who sit second last in the Atlantic Division, should trade the defenceman, Kypreos said it’s a no-brainer.
“Absolutely I would,” Kypreos stated. “It just doesn’t make sense to pay a guy $12 to $13 million if you can’t afford to surround him with players that can compete.”
Karlsson carries a $6.5-million cap hit this season and next. He has one goal and 18 points in 22 games this season.