After general manager Doug Armstrong let David Backes and Troy Brouwer walk in free agency last year, all signs are pointing to the pending UFA blue-liner being traded.
“Everybody believes he’s going to be the top UFA available. The foregone conclusion is that he will get traded,” Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos said during Saturday’s edition of Headlines on Hockey Night in Canada.
Shattenkirk does not have a no-move clause, but he does have control over his long-term future come July 1—something potential trade partners are keeping in mind as we near the March 1 deadline.
Up until this point, it has been widely believed that the native of New Rochelle, N.Y., would prefer to end up with an Eastern team in the long term—say, the New York Rangers or Boston Bruins—and to stay in the United States.
Turns out Shattenkirk might be open to landing in Canada—and not just as a rental.
According to Kypreos, the defenceman has a list of a dozen teams he’s interested in, and “Toronto and Montreal are on it.”
“Short-term, [Armstrong] could trade him anywhere, including to any Canadian city,” explained Kypreos. “But there’s a belief out there that he would not be traded to a Canadian team because there was really no chance on a long-term deal moving forward. I don’t hear that’s the case. I think on his wish list of long-term deals, he’s got about 12 teams. I’m told two of them are Canadian teams. I think it’s safe to say that he doesn’t envision himself being an Edmonton Oiler or a Calgary Flame, but the feeling is Toronto and Montreal.”
According to Elliotte Friedman, the Oilers were one of two Western Conference teams granted permission to speak with Shattenkirk last summer—Arizona was the other—but “neither one of those teams could strike a long-term deal.”
The offensive-minded rearguard, known for his strong puck-moving ability, is on pace for his best season yet when it comes to offensive production, and currently ranks sixth among defencemen in points with 38.