Dreger on potential suitors for Burakovsky

Not all trades made in the next month will be purely rentals, and Andre Burakovsky could be included in one of those ‘hockey deals’ consummated.

Darren Dreger had a Tuesday afternoon radio hit on Vancouver’s TSN 1040, and was asked about the possibility of the Canucks and Washington Capitals in this regard.

“I think it’s still there,” indicated Dreger. “I mean, obviously Burakovsky is still in play and he’s still with the Washington Capitals. He hasn’t been traded.

“I don’t know what the specific ask was from Vancouver, but I know that some of the other teams that were involved, the ask was too high. Brian MacLellan was looking for a similar type player in return. They’re looking for a third-line forward. But maybe - maybe - they can get a bit more creative and maybe it’s a draft pick and another asset that MacLellan can peddle into something else to fill the void in moving Burakovsky out.

“I had a conversation with somebody who’s pretty tight and knows the situation well and didn’t say that Vancouver was still very much in it, but thought that Vancouver - along with maybe Boston, Montreal was kicking tires awhile back - the same teams that explored interest early on might circle back before the deadline.”

Dreger was asked why the Capitals wanted to move on from Burakovsky.

“It’s as much about the player wanting a better opportunity,” noted the Insider. “I don’t know that he’s come out and officially asked for a trade. I think that there was just an acknowledgement at the start of the season that Burakovsky felt like he could do more, he wanted to do more, and he wanted a more significant role.

“Maybe the belief was that Barry Trotz didn’t see him in that way and Todd Reirden might, but obviously Todd Reirden doesn’t. So I think that there’s a bit of a disconnect there between player and coach. And that happens. It happens all the time with a lot of teams around the National Hockey League.

“So I think this is more about the player wanting a better fit and opportunity.”

Burakovsky is in the second season of a two-year, $6 million contract with a $3 million cap hit.

The winger’s actual 2018-19 salary is $3.25 million, and he’ll have arbitration rights headed into the summer when he can become a restricted free agent.


Contract-related info via CapFriendly