February 13, 2019 | 9:25pm ET
SENS TRADE TALKS TO PICK UP BY WEEKEND
Mark Stone and Matt Duchene
Ottawa Senators GM Pierre Dorion has indicated he wants to give himself about 10 days before the trade deadline to properly evaluate trade scenarios involving pending unrestricted free agents Matt Duchene and Mark Stone if he cannot get them locked into contract extensions.
With the deadline 12 days away, Dorion is expected to continue his efforts to sign both players this week before weighing his options on the trade front.
Dorion and Duchene’s agent Pat Brisson have had an ongoing dialogue for the last week, and the Sens and Stone’s agent Craig Oster have gone back-and-forth in talks for about the same amount of time.
With both players concerned about the team’s self-imposed timeline – two more seasons of rebuilding before entering contender status – it’s clear the Senators need to convince Stone and Duchene of their plan moving forward if they have any hope of re-signing either or both.
Once Saturday hits, Dorion is expected to re-engage in trade talks with teams interested in Stone and Duchene. As TFP has previously reported, teams have inquired about both players going back to last month; Dorion collected information and has done his due diligence, but talks aren’t believed to seriously pick up until the weekend hits for whichever player remains in contract-limbo.
The Winnipeg Jets, Nashville Predators, Boston Bruins and New York Islanders are among the teams interested in both players, while the Calgary Flames and Vegas Golden Knights are believed to be two teams eyeing Stone, and the Minnesota Wild are one of the clubs interested in Duchene.
Stone and Duchene remain in the top-10 of TFP’s Top 30 Trade Watch List.
If the Senators go the trade route, it’s believed the team wants a first-round pick, a top prospect or NHL-ready/proven young player and another asset for either Stone or Duchene.
In addition to Stone and Duchene, Dorion has also been taking calls and making his own on such players as Bobby Ryan, Cody Ceci, Ryan Dzingel, Magnus Paajarvi and Zack Smith.
Ryan and Smith each have a 10-team no-trade clause as part of their respective contract. It’s believed Ryan would consider moving to a team on his no-trade list if a deal were presented.
Dzingel, whose contract talks with the Sens haven’t been overly promising, to date, and Paajarvi are set to become unrestricted free agents July 1, while Ceci can become a restricted free agent.
Dzingel has generated significant interest from numerous teams, including the Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, San Jose Sharks and Islanders, among others.