Ottawa Senators Rumors: 2 Teams Linked In Zaitsev Trade

The Ottawa Senators are still working at it to find a trade partner that will take on Nikita Zaitsev's contract. The defenceman has long since fallen out of favour with the team and has a cap hit that will need to be moved if the Senators are going to have an easier time signing their free agents.

Zaitsev has played just 25 games this season and is only skating 17:13 per game, far below his career average. He also has a cap hit of $4.5 million AAV that is over at the end of next season. Things could get a little complicated as he also has a 10-team no-trade clause. David Pagnotta said that the Anaheim Ducks and San Jose Sharks have been discussed in a potential Zaitsev deal. This could mean they are two teams that have the space and willingness to take on a $4.5 million contract until the end of next season for a price and they may not be on Zaitsev's no-trade list that is submitted at the start of the season.

This is Zaitsev's fourth season with the Senators after just two with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Ottawa acquired him in just his second of a seven-year deal initially signed with the Maple Leafs. The Senators need an overhaul to the right side of their defence which has been a weak spot for them this season. Moving $4.5 million will help with that a lot and also help the team keep Alex DeBrincat and Cam Talbot around.

The rumours are that it will cost the Senators a second round pick to dump Zaitsev's contract. The Ducks and Sharks are expected to have moved defencemen and have spots on their blue lines by the trade deadline or the summer. The Sharks already got a start on that by trading Jaycob Megna to the Seattle Kraken. Along with Megna, players like Erik Karlsson, John Klingberg, Kevin Shattenkirk, and Dmitri Kulikov are expected to be on the move from both teams. The Ducks and Sharks are also in rebuild mode, so Zaitsev will only help their cause.

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