Insider Reveals "Team To Watch" On Alex DeBrincat Trade Front

The Alex DeBrincat Saga continues to heat up, as hockey insiders everywhere speculate on where the Ottawa Senators will trade the impending restricted free agent. 

As any contract talks between the two sides seem to have stalled, DeBrincat's agent has submitted a list of preferred trade destinations to the Sens. 

But according to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman, he's got one particular team to watch in all this:

I was going over some of these teams, wondering where is there a deal to be made, (and) I'm watching Detroit... That's the team I'm watching. I think that DeBrincat, who's from there, would love to play there. I see a need. You know, DeBrincat & Larkin. I may be an idiot but that seems pretty sensible to me.

The question then becomes, of course, could the Red Wings possibly justify signing DeBrincat for more than their resident star Dylan Larkin? 

"(Detroit) can say, 'Look, if you're coming here you're not making more than Larkin.' Then DeBrincat has a choice to make," says Friedman. "Maybe he's not getting $9M a year, maybe he gets $8.5 or $8.75M which is what Larkin's getting. 

"Detroit can make this deal... (and) it still allows Ottawa to do other things. So I'm watching Detroit until I'm convinced otherwise."

As far as that "list" of teams that DeBrincat gave the Senators as to where he'd accept a trade, Friedman says that's all well and good, but one of those teams better come to them with a big offer first. 

"I believe that Ottawa's position is, 'You cannot talk to DeBrincat unless you give us a deal that we like.'

DeBrincat had 27 goals and 66 points in 82 games in his first season with the Senators, while playing out the final year of his contract that carried a $6.4M cap hit. His qualifying offer is set at $9 million.

 Photo: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports