December 4, 2017 | 1:06am ET
TheFourthPeriod.com

GUNNARSSON COULD BECOME TRADE BAIT FOR BLUES

 
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Carl Gunnarsson, defenceman

 

The St. Louis Blues are limited in the salary cap department, and while various reports suggest they’re interested in adding a second- or third-line winger to the roster, they’ll likely need to move a roster player in any deal for depth up front.

While players like Buffalo Sabres left wing Evander Kane and Edmonton Oilers winger Patrick Maroon have recently been linked to the Blues, GM Doug Armstrong is not believed to be closing in on a move, just yet.

However, should an opportunity arise, Armstrong may be forced to move out one of his current players in order to offset dollars against the salary cap.

One player the Blues could dangle as trade bait is defenceman Carl Gunnarsson, who has one-year left on his contract after this season and owns a $2.9 million cap hit.

In response to fan questions this weekend, columnist Jeff Gordon of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch acknowledged Gunnarsson could be made available if the right trade presented itself.

“The Blues have three guys in the AHL capable of filling in here -- Jordan Schmaltz, Chris Butler and Petteri Lindbohm -- plus Jake Walman in development,” Gordon wrote. “So there is still depth there, plus motivation to clear Gunnarsson’s $2.9 million cap hit for next season.”

In 22 games with the Blues so far this season, Gunnarsson has three goals and one assist. He does not have any no-trade protection.