Ryan Kesler wants out of Vancouver and according to a report in the Ottawa Sun, Kesler wants to be traded either here to Chicago or to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Who can blame him? The Blackhawks and Penguins are two talented teams who still have a large window to win a Stanley Cup. The Canucks' championship window has been slammed shut, locked and has bars over it like the houses you see in old Dr Dre videos.
Kesler would solve the Blackhawks second line center issue, but can they afford him and what will he cost? He is signed for two more seasons with a $5 million cap hit per year. That is a very reasonable price for the former Selke winner and is less than Patrick Sharp and Brent Seabrook, who will probably be mentioned most in trade rumors. I know Sharp is coming off a bad playoff run, but I wouldn't involve him in a trade for Kesler. Sharp has scored at least 25 goals in each of the last six full 82 game seasons. Kesler scored 25 goals this past season, the third team he has hit that mark in his career. Kesler is almost three years younger than Sharp and has one less year on his contract. If the Canucks were willing to do a Kesler for Seabrook swap straight up, I'd make that move in a heartbeat. The Hawks pipeline at defense is deep and eventually room will need to be made for the likes of Adam Clendening and Stephen Johns to come up to the big club. I just don't think that is a move the Canucks are going to want to make. They are looking to younger which means the first two players they are going to ask for are either Brandon Saad or Teuvo Teravainen, to which I say HELL NO! Stan Bowman is not going to risk his future core to add a veteran player. As much as I would like to see what Kesler can do on a team like the Hawks where he doesn't have to do it all, but I don't want to give up a ton to get him. These are not the types of moves Stan makes because he doesn't have too. He is not the type of general manager that will make knee jerk reactions because his team lost in overtime of Game 7 of the Western Conference Finals. But, if he can get Kesler at a reasonable price he will pull the trigger.