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Carolina Hurricanes

Sharks Playing a “Poker Game” with Probable Erik Karlsson Trade

Elliotte Friedman reports an Erik Karlsson trade is still down to two teams, but there’s a game of poker going on that could slow things down.

On Monday, Elliotte Friedman was a guest on the NHL Network and was asked about the status of trade talks involving Norris Trophy winner Erik Karlsson. Noting that it’s down to two teams, the pending deal is in a bit of a holding pattern as the two teams in on Karlsson are waiting for the Sharks to budge and the Sharks are waiting for those two teams to up their offers.

Friedman noted it’s down to the Carolina Hurricanes and Pittsburgh Penguins and explained:

“Look, I think it’s this, I think it’s a bit of a poker game. I think that San Jose knows what Carolina is willing to do and I think they know what Pittsburgh’s willing to do. I think both those two teams know what San Jose’s willing to do. I think right now it’s kind of a poker game to see, does anyone move or does anyone change, or does anyone’s position change?” Friedman went on to say that he believes the trade likely will get done to one of those two teams. But, because no parties are 100% happy, they’re all just waiting and the trade is not quite there.

Friedman explained that the Alex DeBrincat trade says a lot about why this deal hasn’t necessarily gotten finalized. In that case, the Red Wings knew that they were the only option for the forward. The Senators weren’t happy about the return and the player knew he was going to have to shave off his yearly salary and years on the term to go where he wanted to play. In that trade, it was Ottawa finally saying, ‘Fine, let’s do this’ and DeBrincat being comfortable with the terms the Red Wings were willing to offer.

San Jose is trying to do the same thing here with the Penguins and Hurricanes and likely in regards to salary retention. The Penguins have already drawn a line when it comes to the players they will and won’t include. The Hurricanes are probably in the same boat. For the Sharks, it’s about holding out until one team agrees to take the player and force the Sharks to retain less salary. That may never happen and the deal might get done before the start of the season, but Sharks’ GM Mike Grier wants to send as much money with the Karlsson deal to the acquiring team as possible. The acquiring teams want the Sharks to retain.

Friedman noted, “Who is going to bend a little bit to get this done?”

Next: Maple Leafs Have Options For Nylander Despite Dud DeBrincat Trade

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