Alexander Radulov is making news once again and the story is pretty familiar:
Alex Radulov Scandal No. 173. Tensions in national team’s camp, Radu’s agent cries foul to media, says “he is being pushed back to NHL”
— Slava Malamud (@SlavaMalamud) February 4, 2013
My immediate thought is that Radulov could come back to Nashville and play again. Then I think of how last year’s experiment with him ended. There is a lot of enmity for him among the fan base. That makes it hard to imagine Radulov being invited back to Nashville. However, just like last year he is a high-value asset that’s sitting dormant on the Nashville balance sheet.
Another team could theoretically come in and sign Radulov, much like Philadelphia tried to do with Shea Weber. The Predators hold Radulov’s restricted free-agent rights, which means they would have the choice of matching any offer or taking draft picks in return for Rads’ rights. Since Nashville matched Philadelphia’s offer sheet, it seems that nobody is willing to make those kind of moves. Otherwise why are Jamie Benn and P.K. Subban still with the Stars and Canadiens?
The alternative is for David Poile to find someone who’s willing to gamble that the on-ice Alexander Radulov outweighs the off-ice Alexander Radulov. Surely there’s a team out there that needs offensive help whose general manager would see a player like Radulov as an acceptable risk in a shortened NHL season. There might even be one in the Eastern Conference, where Radulov couldn’t immediately come back to haunt Nashville.
Picking up a forward who can add a little bit of scoring to the top six, another depth defenseman, and a draft pick seems like it would be a good return for a player who has clashed with the Nashville Predators organization almost since the beginning. Such a move would be far lower-risk than shipping off a valuable young prospect. Or, a prospect could be packaged as part of a blockbuster trade if Poile wanted to swing for the fences. What do you think?
Should David Poile trade Alexander Radulov's rights to strengthen the Nashville Predators' roster?
- Yes, go for a blockbuster deal (34%, 55 Votes)
- Yes, but just get fair value for him (29%, 47 Votes)
- No, bring him back to Nashville (20%, 33 Votes)
- No, let him stay in Russia (12%, 19 Votes)
- No, let someone give us draft picks for his rights (5%, 10 Votes)
Total Voters: 164