It's been quiet on the Vladimir Tarasenko trade front since late July. While most of the previous speculation tied the 29-year-old St. Louis Blues winger to the New York Islanders, he's also been linked to the Carolina Hurricanes.
In a recent mailbag segment, The Athletic's Sara Civian was asked about the possibility of the Hurricanes acquiring a top-six winger. She believes they're looking and mentioned the Tarasenko rumors. They could have enough cap space after signing restricted free agent Andrei Svechnikov to work out a trade even if it didn't involve the Blues' sniper.
Tarasenko carries an annual average value of $7.5 million through 2022-23. Cap Friendly shows the Hurricanes with over $12.3 million in cap space but Svechnikov's new contract could take up $7 million. Team owner Tom Dundon could also be reluctant to spend to the ceiling for the coming season.
Blues general manager Doug Armstrong was reportedly unwilling to absorb part of Tarasenko's cap hit to facilitate a trade. Civian's colleague Jeremy Rutherford recently wondered if Armstrong might change his mind with his signing of winger Brandon Saad being more affordable than expected.
It could come to that if Armstrong hopes to move the unhappy Tarasenko before training camp opens next month. What's he'd want in return could also be a factor. There was talk he sought a first-round pick as part of the deal. That's unlikely to happen given Tarasenko's contract and recent shoulder surgeries.
Tarasenko's age, cap hit and injury history could work against him landing with the Hurricanes. They'll likely seek younger, affordable and healthier options.