While he might not be considered an untouchable for the Detroit Red Wings, don’t expect the organization to trade forward Tyler Bertuzzi, despite being just a year away from UFA status. A talented but somewhat controversial player for his stance on vaccinations, the Red Wings are a team that could be sellers at this year’s NHL trade deadline and there’s some debate about how much a player like Bertuzzi could garner interest around the NHL.
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When you consider the playoffs are a bit of a different animal than the regular season and there are three Canadian teams in the Atlantic Division alone, it’s hard to know how much game action Bertuzzi might see in the postseason should the Red Wings make the playoffs or another team who acquires him at the deadline does. He could play all the time if he’s never asked to cross the border and he could miss a number of games if his team is moving back and forth.
According to Max Bultman of The Athletic, he believes the latter is a huge focus point for teams that might otherwise have an interest in a player like Bertuzzi. He doesn’t believe the Red Wings are considering trading the forward and instead might shop pending UFAs like Nick Leddy, Vladislav Namestnikov or Thomas Greiss if the Red Wings fall out of playoff contention.
“…moving Bertuzzi mid-season would mean asking a trade partner to part with serious draft and/or prospect capital for a player who could potentially have to miss any playoff games in Canada. I just can’t see a playoff team doing that.”
Bertuzzi Is a Gamble
This is a tale of two beliefs. First, Bertuzzi is quite productive when he plays. He’s got 21 points in 23 games, 12 of which are goals. There’s an argument that can be made he would play well enough to warrant going after him, even if he only plays in half of the team’s playoff contests. At the same time, what team is willing to give up serious assets to acquire a player that may not play much? And, if Bertuzzi gets cold, it’s the kind of move that could cost a GM his job, depending on what is given up to land the player.
Next: Maple Leafs’ Player Moves Getting Ready for Senators on Saturday
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