Darren Dreger of TSN Hockey has reported that the St. Louis Blues have paid considerable attention to Detroit Red Wings goalie Jimmy Howard recently.
During yesterday’s Insider Trading segment on TSN, Dreger stated that the Blues were at the Red Wings game on Monday against the Columbus Blue Jackets and appeared to be paying significant attention to Howard.
You can watch the full clip here or by clicking the link in the tweet below. If you’re just interested in the Blues/Howard portion jump to the 3:10 mark in the video.
ICYMI, INSIDER TRADING: #TSNHockey Insiders discuss…
🏒 Why Fletcher, Hunter, Drury & Futa are prime names for Flyers GM job
🏒 Latest on Leafs/Nylander
🏒 Why Blues are paying close attention to Jimmy Howard
🏒 Where Habs/Alzner go from here
— TSN Hockey (@TSNHockey) November 28, 2018
As reported in the clip, the Blues are struggling. They are currently sitting 30th overall in the NHL, and their two goalies Jake Allen and Chad Johnson are 38th and 39th in save percentage. While the need is certainly there for the Blues, do they have the resources required to trade for Howard?
The Red Wings asking price for Jimmy Howard would be very high and the Blues are without a first round pick as they traded it in the Ryan O’Reilly trade. In the clip, Dreger questioned whether St. Louis would give up a prized prospect such as center Robert Thomas or forward Jordan Kyrou in a Howard trade.
Even if the Blues aren’t willing to deal either Thoms or Kyrou, the team has a few prospects that could still potentially get a deal done including 2018 first-round pick forward Dominik Bokk, 2018 second-round pick defenseman Scott Perunovich, 2017 first-round pick forward Klim Kostin, and 2015 third-round pick forward Erik Foley.
If a trade were to go through, the Blues would likely have to include their backup goalie and pending unrestricted free agent Chad Johnson due to cap concerns. Despite having a low save percentage this season, Johnson has been a reliable backup goalie throughout his career.
The Blues certainly have assets that would help the Red Wings’ rebuilding efforts, but they’d have to decide if Jimmy Howard is worth the high asking price.
From the Red Wings’ perspective, they don’t need to trade Howard. Howard currently has a .912 save percentage and a 3.06 goals against average according to FOX Sports. At 10-11-3 with 23 points the Red Wings are currently ranked 12th in the Eastern Conference. While they are by no means a lock for the playoffs, the Wings are surprisingly in position to compete for a wild card spot. Why rock the boat when you don’t have to?
Jimmy Howard has played for the Red Wings his entire career and the Wings have proven to be a very loyal organization over the years. With all that being said, if the Red Wings received an offer they couldn’t refuse they’d be foolish to pass it up, that’s why they’re reportedly asking for such a high price for Howard.