The 2022 NHL trade deadline is Monday at 3 p.m. ET. You can watch all the excitement on ESPN2 and ESPN+ this year, but before we get to Deadline Day, it's time for some bold predictions from the ESPN hockey family!
Where will the big rumored candidates such as Marc-Andre Fleury, Claude Giroux and Tomas Hertl land? Which teams will be more aggressive than usual? Which team will not address what many perceive to be a glaring need?
More: Deadline guides for all 32 teams
Best players at each position
Trade tracker | Teams at a crossroads
Keep an eye on the Panthers
I think the Florida Panthers are going to make a big splash at the trade deadline. For the past few months, general manager Bill Zito has been trying to trade for a defenseman. The market had been quiet -- and Zito had been patient waiting for the right deal, which he found on Wednesday by trading for perhaps the best available blueliner, Ben Chiarot. It was an expensive trade (including a first-round pick and a top prospect) but one Florida thought was worth it. Earlier in the day, Florida traded frank Vatrano to the Rangers to clear cap space.
But beyond Wednesday's moves, the Panthers now view themselves as a destination. Because of the perks of living in South Florida (weather, taxes, golf) plus the winning culture they're building, they want to be a place players seek out -- like their in-state rivals, the Tampa Bay Lightning. So I don't think they're done. I believe Florida will be at the very least a finalist for Claude Giroux. -- Emily Kaplan, NHL reporter