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Capitals Trade Rumblings

Report: Capitals Would Entertain Trade Offers For Lars Eller

Per reports, the Washington Capitals could be willing to entertain offers for Lars Eller as the trade deadline approaches.



As the Washington Capitals navigate a tough January stretch and continue their playoff push with Nicklas Backstrom and Tom Wilson still getting back in the full swing of things, there's some trade talk brewing with the trade deadline approaching on March 3, and it could impact one of the team's forwards.

Per The Athletic's Pierre LeBrun and Erik Duhatschek, Lars Eller's name has come up, and he could be used to get some help on the blue line. Eller ranked on the NHL trade board for the first time this season.

"Washington, I'm told, would entertain offers for him if it could get help on defense, where the injury to John Carlson has really thinned the ranks," Dhatschek wrote.

Carlson is on the long-term injured reserve and is out indefinitely after taking a slap shot to the face back on Dec. 23 against the Winnipeg Jets. It's unclear when Carlson will return, though it appears his timeline is more month-to-month than week-to-week.

With Carlson out, Washington has seen Erik Gustafsson step up big-time to provide that missing offense and firepower on the top-pairing, while Trevor van Riemsdyk has taken Carlson's spot as the No. 1 RHD. Dmitry Orlov and Nick Jensen have helped too to round out the top 4, and Martin Fehervary continues to get back in the rhythm while operating with Matt Irwin and Alex Alexeyev. Still, the Capitals have several pending free agents, with the majority of them being defensemen, so they may want to consider acquiring some help on the blue line.

Eller is set to be a UFA this summer, though he is currently playing an important role and providing big-time that center depth on the bottom-6 with Nic Dowd on the injured reserve. The team had been dealing with a forward surplus up until Dowd went down with injury. It's unclear how long No. 26 will be out, but head coach Peter Laviolette did mention it would be "for a bit."

Duhatschek also wrote that Eller, who recently sat out a game but returned following Dowd's injury (though Laviolette insisted he would've been back in the lineup anyway), could be on the Los Angeles Kings' radar.

"One possible fit: Los Angeles, which is deep on the right side and at some point, could move on from either Sean Walker or Matt Roy."

It's unclear if Dowd's injury does change anything, but it would be interesting to see if Washington does make a move here. Beyond Eller, there's also the question fo Anthony Mantha's future as he continues to be something of an odd man out, though Alex Ovechkin's injury and T.J. Oshie's early departure from this road trip have made it possible for him to draw back into the mix after being a healthy scratch four times in six games.

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