Friedman: Senators prefer Western Conference Karlsson trade locale

Erik Karlsson is still a member of the Ottawa Senators, but there may be movement gaining momentum on the trade front. 

Elliotte Friedman tweeted his latest intel Wednesday.

Later in the day, Friedman followed up on the Vancouver angle of the tweet during an appearance on Sportsnet’s Tim & Sid, where the Insider was asked if “Karlsson to the Canucks could actually be a thing.”

“I think Vancouver looked,” replied Friedman. “I think the one thing is, I saw Iain MacIntyre’s tweet where he thinks they were just checking in because they weren’t interested in dealing a Hughes or a Petterrson or Boeser, and I wouldn’t expect them to.

“The one thing I would say about Vancouver is this: They were in on P.K. Subban and they couldn’t get that deal done because Montreal figured there was no chance of Pierre-Luc Dubois getting to them. They had an internal meeting where they talked about pitching John Tavares - they didn’t get a seat at the table there. So I don’t see why it’s so unbelievable that they would be in on this.

“Also I think internally, this is a team that just made a change at the top of its organization because Trevor Linden wanted a slower process and the rest of the organization didn’t want that. So I don’t see why it’s so far-fetched that they would make an inquiry about it.

“I don’t think they’re the favorite, but I think it’s another team that’s kind of looked in here and said, ‘Is there something we can do.’ I think the biggest reason (the Canucks) might not be a favorite is I’m not convinced Karlsson would want to sign there long term. But I don’t think it’s ridiculous to suggest that Vancouver would be in on this.

“I still do think - and I have been led to believe - that the Western Conference teams are where Ottawa prefers to do this,” indicated Friedman. “I think Dallas is up on that list. I think Las Vegas would be up on that list. I think San Jose has quietly been circling in and out on that list. And there could be other teams we’re not aware of.

“But I don’t think the idea Vancouver would consider this would be so far-fetched.”

Karlsson is in the final season of his contract, and carries a modified no-trade clause.