Possibly Destinations For Cory Schneider If He Becomes Available
If and when Cory Schneider becomes available this off season, there will be a list of teams waiting to take him off the Vancouver Canucks hands. It is expected that Vancouver will try to move the young, talented netminder before or at the NHL Entry Draft. Keeping Schneider makes little sense with Roberto Luongo locked in until 2022.
Who would be most interested in trading for Schneider, and what would Canucks General Manager Mike Gillis want in return? ESPN Insiders breakdown the teams interested and what they think it would take to get Schneider.
Toronto Maple Leafs: This deal would make sense on several fronts. General Manager Brian Burke has expressed, on record and justifiably, a lack of satisfaction with this season’s starting goalies Jonas Gustavsson and James Reimer. A pending unrestricted free agent, Gustavsson is as good as gone in Toronto, and the faith in Reimer has become tenuous. Ideally, Burke could acquire a proven talent like Schneider and let Reimer fight Ben Scrivens for the backup job.
In return, Schneider could cost the Leafs a first-round pick and prospect like forward Nazem Kadri or defenseman Korbinian Holzer. Defensemen Luke Schenn and Cody Franson could also be a part of the conversation.
Tampa Bay Lightning: The Lightning may be even more desperate for reliable goaltending than the Leafs. With only Mathieu Garon and prospect Dustin Tokarski signed through next season as far as NHL-ready goalies are concerned General Manager Steve Yzerman’s top off-season priority is to acquire a reliable No. 1 Schneider or Jonathan Bernier of the Los Angeles Kings could fit the bill nicely. Yzerman should have early-round draft picks to spare (two first-round, four second-round) after making several pre-deadline deals this winter. Young Lightning forward Brett Connolly could also be part of a package deal.
Columbus Blue Jackets: Scott Howson has little choice but to add a decent netminder this summer after this season’s debacle between the pipes. However, there’s some question as to whether the Blue Jackets General Manager would be willing to move his No. 1 or 2 2012 draft pick (guaranteed) in addition to elite winger Rick Nash who most believe is out the door. If the Jackets deal Nash, they may want to keep a grip on that top pick and pursue a goalie through free agency instead. Josh Harding of the Minnesota Wild, perhaps.
New Jersey Devils: Sure, the Devils would love to have a goaltender like Schneider in place to take over, once Martin Brodeur decides to call it a career. Problem is, the Canucks may covet defenseman Adam Larsson in return. And General Manager Lou Lamoriello probably wouldn’t be too keen on relinquishing the future star defenseman.
Canucks: It’s not out of the question that the Canucks could choose to re-sign Schneider long-term and deal Luongo instead. Finding a trade partner willing to take on the 33-year-old’s monster contract would be the challenge, obviously.
The New York Islanders and Detroit Red Wings could also be in the mix for the 26-year-old Cancuks’ netminder. Perennial gluttons for top-tier talent, the Red Wings may not be entirely satisfied moving forward through the next two/three seasons with Jimmy Howard alone. Plus, the Wings are still expected to move eastward once the league and NHLPA hash out their differences over realignment. That would reduce the Canucks’ discomfort in regards to making a deal with a top-notch rival in the West.
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