20 December 2007
Nice blog. I saw your comments over at The Dark Ranger. Curious what you think about the John-Michael Liles rumors. Any merit?
The answer: Liles is probably headed somewhere by the trade deadline, but I really don't know where, and wouldn't be able to even fashion a guess. Adrian Dater of the Denver Post thinks Liles won't be back for next season
According to NHLnumbers.com Liles makes $1.4M this season and is an UFA after the season, at face value it certainly makes sense that the Avs could trade him this season. The emergence of Kyle Cumiskey has made Liles somewhat expendable and the Avs could really use a bigger shot on the point.
The problem is, what would the Avs want in return, and the answer is a defenseman with a big shot. But the only way we'll get someone who has better offense than Liles is if they are completely terrible on Defense. And since we have enough problems with defense at times why would we want to bring in a McCabe or a Souray (not that either are available anyways). The other answer is a draft pick or prospect, but that would leave the Avs incredibly thin on the blueline for this season.
I would bet the Avs are feeling the market out a little, and seeing what they could get for Liles. The best trade for them would have been Liles for Schneider (Ducks) because they would have gotten a guy who can shoot and play on the backline and the Ducks would have gotten below the cap next season with a reasonable replacement for Schneider. Now that the McDonald-Weight trade went through there's really no reason for that trade to be made.
So to answer the question, I think the avs talked to other teams about Liles but I don't see him being traded this season, but being allowed to leave via UFA for next season
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