Blue Jackets Make Gavrikov Healthy Scratch For Trade Related Reasons

We have our second major healthy scratch around the NHL as the Columbus Blue Jackets are scratching Vladislav Gavrikov for trade-related reasons, per Chris Johnston. Gavrikov is not known to be an injury-prone player, but the Blue Jackets are taking no chances after Gustav Nyquist found himself on the LTIR not too long ago.

Not only are the Blue Jackets being careful, they don't want anything to happen mid-game and have to pull Gavrikov, shortening their bench. This must mean Columbus is close to a trade to move their top defenceman this season. There are many potential suitors, but they may have narrowed the teams down and found a potential partner where they're really close to completing something.

The Blue Jackets play the New Jersey Devils tonight (Feb. 14) and don't play again for two days. That gives us a likely trade window unless we see something similar to what the Arizona Coyotes are doing with Jakob Chychrun who has been a healthy scratch for two consecutive games now and won't play until he is traded.

Gavrikov has led all Blue Jackets' defencemen in ice time by a fair margin this season, excluding Zach Werenski, and has had a solid season considering the team he's played on. He is going to at least garner a first round pick+ at the deadline and the return should be close to what the Blue Jackets got for David Savard which was a first round pick and a third round pick. Gavrikov may not be an offensively-gifted defenceman, but can produce points. Whatever team he is headed to needs his services to keep pucks out of their net and play hard.

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