Will the Avs Trade John-Michael Liles and Wojtek Wolski?
By March 3, 2010 10:05 AM
The NHL's trading deadline is today at 1 p.m. local time, and it's thought that the Colorado Avalanche might move fan-favorite defenseman John-Michael Liles. The Denver Post
reports that although Liles' name usually comes up at the trading deadline, he's always stayed in Denver. But eventually, that has to start weighing on a player.
"You just try to put it in the back of your mind," Liles says. "All you can control is how you play.”
Earlier this month, I pointed out the friction
between Liles and first-year Avs coach Joe Sacco, who has preferred to start other players in Liles' stead this year. Liles was a healthy scratch for five games in a seven-game stretch heading into the Olympic break, playing only when Adam Foote and Kyle Cumiskey forced Sacco's hand.
Liles is in the second year of a four-year, $16.8 million contract, a factor that will complicate any trade scenario. But he's still seen across the league as a quality, offensive-minded defenseman, and a deal is likely out there for the Avs to make.
Liles' teammate Wojtek Wolski is also at the center of trade rumors. According to Mile High Hockey
, even though Wolski is on pace to set a career-high in points, goals, and assists this year, he's "not quite as good on the ice as his production indicates." That seems like a contradiction, but the Web site posits that Wolksi has never fully realized his potential and the team is getting tired of waiting for it to happen.
"Avalanche [general manager] Greg Sherman would be crazy not to kick the tires on potential deals," Mile High Hockey writes, especially if the Avs can land a solid winger. That would really help, considering the Avs have learned that budding star Brandon Yip will miss four to six weeks with a shoulder injury he suffered during Sunday's loss to the Detroit Red Wings (via The Denver Post