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Ekholm Ask Remains High, Talk Predators Considering Ellis Deal Instead

The Nashville Predators continue to ask for a lot in return when it comes to Mattias Ekholm. Might Ryan Ellis be another name to consider?

As per Pierre LeBrun during Tuesday’s Insider Trading segment, the Nashville Predators ask for defenseman Mattias Ekholm remains high. As LeBrun put it, he “doesn’t come cheap” and there’s some thought now that another defenseman from the Predators could be drawing interest.

Related: Maple Leafs Trade Rumors Tie Team to Kings G Jonathan Quick

LeBrun said sources he talked to said the Preds want three assets for Ekholm in any trade that might happen before the deadline. Those assets are a first-round pick, an elite prospect and a third asset which could take on different forms. The reason the Predators are asking for so much is because they know they are not in a rush to trade the player.

There’s some growing internal debate about whether or not moving the defenseman now and potentially letting him go to a team for two playoff runs is a better move or waiting until the NHL Expansion Draft comes and goes. There may be more of an appetite and more bidders of Ekholm once teams know who they will and won’t be protecting for the draft.

Could the Predators Go Another Direction?

Meanwhile, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet suggested during his latest 31 Thoughts column, that the biggest question Predators’ GM Daid Poile must answer is whether or not to move Ekholm or Ryan Ellis? Friedman writes:

“Initially, the latter was off limits, but something’s made the Predators think. Both are highly regarded defenders. There are a lot of players with Ellis’s term (six years remaining at a $6.25-million AAV) who couldn’t get moved now, but I could see him being an exception.”

David Poile Nashville Predators
David Poile Nashville Predators

In other words, Friedman argues that the Predators should always be able to move Ekhlom, but there may be a window on being able to move Ellis and despite his longer-term contract, the Predators might be able to find a trade partner. if they are looking to move salary and you can find another team that wants a player with a locked-in deal for known money, the play might be to move Ellis.

Friedman suggested the “Ellis screams Philadelphia”, but admits that Ellis just had surgery so he’s not a good short-term fit. Ellis could replace a valuable loss — Matt Niskanen — for the long term. “An Ellis/Ivan Provorov partnership? Does anyone else think Philadelphia might leap at that?”, asked Friedman.

Next: Big Decision Looming For Blue Jackets on David Savard



  1. Ryan L Giroux

    March 25, 2021 at 2:53 am

    I don’t know who wrote this article but the sentence structure and puncuation are so bad at times I couldn’t stay focused on the actual story enough to know what it even said. Hell, I had to read the title over about 9 times before I understood what it was saying…… kind of. It looks like a 5th grader threw it together. And I’m not even trying to tear anybody down. I just believe that if you could be writing something that’s me put out in front of hundred thousands of people, they should do it right instead of lowering the status quo and have our kids growing up thinking that this is okay and good enough.

  2. Pingback: Mattias Ekholm Interested in Extension with Predators – Hockey 1 on 1

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