Most would agree that Johansen is the headliner of this list, as his contract has held the team back almost from the moment that it has been signed. Considering that he has broken the 60-point mark just twice since the two sides inked the deal, to call it an overpayment would be stating the bare obvious.
This season Johansen has just 12 goals and 16 assists in 54 games, barely averaging a point every two games, and he oftentimes looks lost like so many others on the Predators. Pretty much the only reason he has consistently remained in the top six is because of his lavish contract but keeping him there is not benefiting the team considering where they are right now.
In a perfect world, Johansen would be the first one out of town, but nobody will or should take a chance on him with how bad his contract is. Now, him only having two more years after this one makes it a little more reasonable, but it still does not make him worth $8M per season.
When Johansen is at his best, he is still a top six player, and considering the Predators’ inability to get the most out of their forwards, there is a good chance that he could go to another team and be very useful.
It would not look so bad for that team if they traded for Johansen with the Predators retaining $2M-$3M of his salary for the final few years. Considering that they are looking to go in more of a rebuilding direction, I would take that if I were Poile.
Still, that is betting on a lot, and especially when we are talking about the chances of him being dealt at the coming deadline, I would say that they are doubtful at best.