With July 1 being the big free agency day in the NHL, the news of signings has come to a crawl, as teams have made their moves or are choosing to stand pat.
The latter is what the Detroit Red Wings should do at this point.
They already re-signed Kyle Quincey, which could very well be their big splash in free agency this year.
There are rumors swirling around — as they tend to do during free agency — that the Red Wings are considering trading for Washington Capitals defenseman Mike Green or Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Cody Franson.
Green has one year and a very hefty $6.08 million cap hit left on his contract. Franson is a restricted free agent and is taking the Maple Leafs to salary arbitration.
With the Capitals signing Niskanen and Brooks Orpik, it appears Green could be the odd man out. Green fits the criteria of being a right-handed shooter and can quarterback a power play, but his defensive skills leave something left to be desired.
Franson also fits the right-handed shooting criteria and is a solid No. 3 or 4 defenseman. He’s got size at 6-foot-5, 213 pounds and was featured on the top power-play unit for the Maple Leafs.
Either of these two players would help the Red Wings, but the cost to get them outweigh the necessity to have them.
I don’t pretend to know what either the Capitals or the Maple Leafs would want for their respective defenseman, but if I had to guess, it would probably be something like Tomas Tatar or Gustav Nyquist and possibly a pick or a prospect.
If it came down to Tomas Jurco and a third- or fourth-round pick, that might be something I would pull the trigger on. I like Jurco, but he falls behind Tatar and Nyquist on my depth chart. And that’s provided Green or Franson stick around for a few years. There’s no sense in trading a talent like Jurco only to get a year out of Green or Franson. The Red Wings are far from getting one piece to put them over the top and contending for a Stanley Cup.
The asking price is probably going to be even higher for Franson just because the Maple Leafs play in the same division as the Red Wings and will want to make sure they are getting a considerable amount in return seeing as how they have to play each other five to six times per year.
It’s disappointing to miss on all the free agents the Red Wings were pursuing, but trading for a defenseman because he shoots with his right hand isn’t a big enough reason to make a trade.
If the price is right, then do it. However, with guys like Green and Franson, the price has to be cheap or it’s better to do nothing at all.