This time of year is always for hockey fans. Which teams are going to go for broke and make a major push to make the playoffs with a splashy trade? Who’s given up this year and is cashing out? What players will be wearing strange, new uniforms? For the Flyers, this is just another thing to deal with.
Some players have been the subject of trade rumors since the season began; like James van Riemsdyk. Others have had commentators suggest that maybe the team should move/the player is demanding a trade, like Kevin Hayes, Tony DeAngelo, or Ivan Provorov. In the end, we’ll not know if anything is true until a trade is made or something is leaked.
However, one player that apparently is picking up some buzz around the league is Flyers defender Nick Seeler. This shouldn’t come as much of surprise. Here’s why.
First of all, he’s having a great year on an average team. He has set career highs this year with three goals, seven assists, and ten points. He is +5, leading all Flyers defenders that are not named Cam York. He’s registered 79 hits and made 86 blocks. At the same time, he’s only taken 30 penalty minutes all year. So, he’s being physical, but he’s not being reckless. He’s careful enough not to put the team down a man during a crucial moment.
However, there is another thing that is appealing about Seeler. The 29 year old blueliner comes cheap.
He is on the first year of a two-year deal that pays him $775,000. Most teams this time of year are cash strapped. If they take on a big contract, like Provorov or DeAngelo have, they will have to clear room in order to make room for a player like that. That means players are either sent down, traded, or released. Seeler’s contract is a lot easier to manage. And with him on just the first year, he is easier to control. He can be on the team next year, for cheap, while the team can acquire other assets in the offseason. Translation: he’s more than a rental player. He could become a valuable piece for a team looking to stay in contention for next year as well.
It’s hard to say what his price could be. While he won’t command as much as Erik Karlsson, he could bring in more than Justin Braun did last year. And if multiple teams inquire on him, he could bring in more than that.
It’d be hard to see him go. He’s been a great contributor this year. But his departure would allow someone like Egor Zamula or Ronnie Attard to be called up.