According to a number of sources, including Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff, the St. Louis Blues and Florida Panthers have shown early interest in trading for defenseman Ben Chiarot of the Montreal Canadiens ahead of this year’s NHL trade deadline. Seravalli has Chiarot ranked at the No. 2 position on his trade target board.
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The NHL insider notes, “There is no shortage of interest in Chiarot, one of the prime pieces who will almost definitely be plucked from the floundering Habs’ roster. St. Louis and Florida have already been linked to Chiarot.” Both Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek of Sportsnet are reporting similar things and Friedman said he’s heard the Panthers are certainly interested, while St. Louis might be as well. In his latest 32 Thoughts column, Friedman also wrote, “After watching St. Louis dismantle Minnesota at the Winter Classic, I wonder if the Blues consider someone like Chiarot. It looks like a go-for-it year for them.”
As for what Chiarot wants to do, that information isn’t readily available. The expectation is that he has to realize he’s likely going to be asked about being moved as he has a 10-team “no-trade list” and the ability to influence a deal. Whether he only wants to be traded to a team where he might be interested in an extension or is happy enough to go through the process of free agency this summer is unclear.
Should be Lots of Interest in Chiarot
Seravalli notes the interest in the defenseman won’t be limited to these two teams. He writes, “There will be others. That’s because there is hardly a Cup contending team Chiarot would not improve: Vegas, Colorado, Washington or the Rangers.” Calling him a minute-chewing blueliner, Chiarot is dependable and well-liked in locker rooms.
Think about how hard the Winnipeg Jets fought to keep him – and how long it took the Jets to adequately replace him.
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