Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 8/2/2015 (2118 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

If you think Kevin Cheveldayoff is going to trade Evander Kane for less than what the GM thinks his asset is worth you haven’t been paying attention.

Cheveldayoff doesn’t trade for the sake of trading. It’s not a sport for him or the source of an adrenaline rush or ego boost. He’s deliberate and unflinching. Sure, it makes for fewer swaps, but it also limits the potential for getting fleeced.

It’s not so much Cheveldayoff isn’t willing to make trades, according to GMs from around the league, it’s that he’s unwilling to come off his asking price. The Jets GM simply refuses to buy into desperation and emotion and that won’t be any different when it comes to dealing Kane.

Certainly, Cheveldayoff would like to get a deal done prior to the March 2nd trade deadline, but if it’s not there he won’t panic. The organization will have parameters an offer for Kane will have to meet. If suitors aren’t willing to meet the determined value of the player, the Jets will simply wait this out until the summer.

Back in 2012, after Cheveldayoff’s first trade deadline as an NHL GM, he told a story on the circumstances surrounding his dealing defenceman Johnny Oduya to the Chicago Blackhawks.

A veteran GM had called Cheveldayoff early in the day to inquire about the price of the player. When told of Cheveldayoff’s asking price, the GM chuckled and said something to the effect of, ‘good luck with that.’

Late in the day, after Cheveldayoff had indeed got his price, the GM called back to tip his cap.

We should have all taken note at the time because this wasn’t a one-off. This is Cheveldayoff’s modus operandi. Set a price and don’t come off it. And be prepared to walk away. Let the others bluff and blink.

Talking to teams around the NHL over the weekend, Cheveldayoff is listening to offers for Kane and the market seems split into two categories: Teams in the playoffs and those out of the picture.

Those still in the hunt don’t want to give away roster players and are pushing futures packages.

Teams on the outside are pushing contracts and current players in Winnipeg’s direction.

Kane is viewed around the league as a very good young player with a friendly contract that has three years remaining and a cap hit of $5.25 million per season.

The standard asking price for a player with these elements is as follows: A young NHL player, a grade A prospect and a first round draft pick.

There is also potential for a deal involving a player considered to be of equal value to Kane in a straight up one-for-one swap.

A deal involving Kane is complex because the player is hurt and can’t help a team this season.

The timing of a deal is also a factor. If Cheveldayoff wants to do something right now in order to help his team secure a playoff berth, he will be pushing a diminished asset regardless of whether he agrees with the evaluation. Kane had surgery on Saturday, and, to a degree, he’ll be a question mark until he’s fully recovered in four to six months.

Sunday’s 5-3 win over the Colorado Avalanche left the Jets in the top Western Conference wild card berth with an eight-point cushion over a pack of teams below the line.

Cheveldayoff was previously looking for a right-winger for his third line. Now he needs a right- and left-winger for his third line.

So he is motivated to deal, and there may be a fit for the Jets and teams not in the playoffs wanting to move roster assets.

If the deal gets put on hold until the summer — the market expands to 29 teams and gives the Jets more time to try and get exactly what they want.

Kane can be proven to have a clean bill of health and his value rises to its actual level.

Evander Kane will get traded. Maybe now or maybe in the summer. But it won’t be a yard sale.

The clock is now on. But it resets once again after the season. Cheveldayoff doesn’t have to rush. No, the only thing he needs to do is what he’s best at and that’s being true to himself.

If the market meets him now, he should act. But if he has to wait for the summer, he should be comfortable in that scenario, as well.

This will be Chevy’s deal and will centre around him getting the full sticker price. This isn’t about what is best for Kane and his desire to move on.

Cheveldayoff has his view of what’s best for the Jets and that will determine his course. Like it or not, that’s his way. Yesterday, today and tomorrow.

gary.lawless@freepress.mb.ca

Twitter: @garylawless