VANCOUVER CANADA - FEBRUARY 12: Manny Malhotra #27 of the Vancouver Canucks tries to check Mark Giordano #5 of the Calgary Flames during the third period in NHL action on February 12 2011 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver British Columbia Canada. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)

The NHL's Northwest Division At The 2011 Trade Deadline: Rumors And Expectations

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Calgary Flames At The 2011 NHL Trade Deadline: Rumors, Needs And Expectations

While not quite the miracle comeback story of the New Jersey Devils, the Calgary Flames have proven nearly just as many naysayers wrong with their recent surge. Of course, the problem facing every team outside of the Vancouver Canucks is the immense logjam, which puts GM Jay Feaster in a curious situation: does he sell despite being in the playoff hunt to try and put his stamp on the squad or does roll the dice on this season?

Earlier comments by Feaster have him publicly leaning on "stay the course," but we all know that NHL GMs talk out of both sides of their mouths, especially come February. Like 2/3 of the teams in the Western Conference, the week before the trade deadline could significantly impact decisions.

Status: On The Bubble

Need: Blueline help to jump-start middle-of-the-road special teams, a faceoff specialist

Players In Trade Rumors: Jay Bouwmeester ($6.68 million), Curtis Glencross ($1.2 million), Ales Kotalik ($1.9 million), Niklas Hagman ($3 million)

Prediction: Feaster keeps his promise in regards to not moving any big names but does some depth shuffling to get a defensive forward.

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This story was written by Mike Chen.


Edmonton Oilers At The 2011 NHL Trade Deadline: Rumors, Needs And Expectations

The Oilers are battling with the Ottawa Senators for Worst Team In The NHL, but unlike the Sens, the Oilers firesale hasn't quite started yet. That doesn't mean much, though; by the time this post publishes, significant moves could have already been made to revamp the Oilers roster as they continue their rebuilding cycle.

Sometimes things have to get worse before they get better, and the Edmonton Oilers are in the middle of that right now. They've got some high-priced veterans that could help teams, but they're not all impending UFAs and those contracts might complicate things.

Status: Sellers -- just about anyone can be had at the right price barring the team's cornerstone young players

Need: Highly touted prospects in all positions and high draft picks.

Players In Trade Rumors: Dustin Penner ($4.25 million), Ales Hemsky ($4.1 million), Shawn Horcoff ($5.5 million), Ladislav Smid ($1.4 million), among others.

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This story was written by Mike Chen.


Colorado Avalanche At The 2011 NHL Trade Deadline: Rumors, Needs And Expectations

Just one month ago, the Avalanche were in the thick of the playoff race. Funny what a record-setting losing streak can do. The Avs have already started to retool, and the Chris Stewart/Kevin Shattenkirk-for-Erik Johnson move could be seen as a somewhat lateral deal as Colorado rebuilds its blueline.

There's plenty of young talent on this team, and the devastating toll injuries took has made this a lost season. It's also given Colorado a chance to examine who performs under adversity and who can step up when needed as the once-proud Avs try to find their way back. The Avs have stated that they won't trade Milan Hejduk; there's plenty else up for grabs -- the rumor mill has even claimed Paul Stastny might go.

Status: Sellers

Need: In the long haul, Colorado needs to find some stability in net along with stay-at-home defensemen to steady their group.

Players In Trade Rumors: John-Michael Liles ($4.2 million), Peter Budaj ($1.25 million), Paul Stastny ($6.6 million)

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This story was written by Mike Chen.


Minnesota Wild At The 2011 NHL Trade Deadline: Rumors, Needs And Expectations

In the first third of the season, just about everyone was calling for the head of Wild coach Todd Richards. Now the Wild are playing like a machine, and their stats have all the signs of a well-coached team: strong power play and penalty kill, low goals-against, and good face-off percentages. They're good, they're just not great, and a quick look at the team's would-be goal scorers shows that.

Mikko Koivu's injury (out several weeks) certainly doesn't help. Minnesota is in the same position as much of the Western Conference, where a bad few days leading to the trade deadline could mean the difference in decision making. Still, the Wild have plenty of holes to fill.

Should they decide to sell, they also have desirable veteran UFAs to offer. Which will it be? Even if the Wild continue to win, they're not in a position to make a huge gamble. However, something's got to give to help the team's scoring-by-committee issue.

Status: On The Bubble

Need: Scoring forwards

Players In Trade Rumors: John Madden, Chuck Kobasew, Andrew Brunett

Prediction: The Wild shed one of their veteran UFA contracts but don't see enough offered in return for major shake-ups

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This story was written by Mike Chen.


Vancouver Canucks At The 2011 NHL Trade Deadline: Rumors, Needs And Expectations

Was there really a time this season when the Vancouver Canucks weren't steamrolling the competition? Yes, but that was early on, and even after a rash of injuries decimated Vancouver's blueline, the Canucks weathered the storm.

Now, with the trade deadline aroung the corner and players returning from injuries, is there anything the Canucks need to do? Thanks to long-term injured reserve, the team should be able to play with its full compliment of defensemen, though some creative cap management may be required.

Outside of that, the Canucks boast possibly the strongest top-to-bottom roster in the NHL. Some minor tweaking may be involved for depth purposes but no major trades are becessary in Vancouver.

Status: Buyer

Need: Vancouver's only question is the rotating fourth line, which makes it a need and a source of expendablele assets.

Players In Trade Rumors: Cody Hodgson ($0.55 million)

Prediction: The Canucks make a a minor deal to try and solidify their fourth line.

Get more Canucks news and analysis at Nucks Misconduct.

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