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February 24, 2016 | 7:57pm ET
Yzerman prefers to trade Drouin "sooner than later"

Earlier this week, TFP Editor-in-Chief David Pagnotta, citing a league source, reported the Tampa Bay Lightning will trade left wing Jonathan Drouin by the trade deadline.

Two days later and Lightning GM Steve Yzerman revealed to the Tampa Bay Times on Wednesday that he would "definitely prefer to deal him sooner than later, it would be better for everyone."

Drouin, 20, originally requested to be traded in November, but left the organization last month after the team failed to complete a move to accommodate his request.

"A lot of things factor into it when making the trade, a lot of things to consider here," Yzerman said. "But number one is, 'Can I do something involving Jonathan that benefits the team that makes us better right now that helps us for the playoffs?' I'd certainly like to do that."

According to the Times, Yzerman is looking to help his team's powerplay. Whether that means adding a top-four defenseman or another sniper remains to be seen.

But the Bolts only have around $1.5 million in available salary cap space and would likely need to move out a body if they wanted to bring in a player with a significant salary.

The Times brought to light speculation surrounding Lightning defenseman Matt Carle, who has a $5.5 million cap hit, but Carle told the paper he has not yet been asked to waive his limited no-trade clause.

"It's not just our salary cap, it's the team that you're trying to make a deal with salary cap too," Yzerman noted. "That's what everybody doesn't really understand. When trying to make a deal involving players and contracts, it's got to work for both teams. It's not just mine. It proves challenging for everyone."

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