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Capitals Trade Rumblings

Would Capitals, Canucks Ever Consider A Mantha-Boeser Trade?



Washington Capitals

The Washington Capitals and Vancouver Canucks are having their share of struggles as the 2022-23 season rolls on, and are both seeing ups and downs with regard to a couple of star right wingers in Anthony Mantha and Brock Boeser.

Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman was thinking out loud in his 32 Thoughts and mentioned that Boeser, who has been a trade candidate, could potentially fit into the Capitals plans, and that Mantha could be a fair return.

“Teams I wonder about Brock Boeser: Washington. This is a personal opinion, but I wonder if a Boeser-Anthony mantha move makes any sense for both,” Freidman wrote. “The Capitals need a jolt, and as general manager Brian MacLellan said last weekend, can’t do anything financially lopsided until there’s clarity on Nicklas Backstrom’s availability. Mantha’s cap hit is slightly lower than Boeser’s, and he’s got one fewer year — which would appeal to Vancouver. Anyway, just an idea.”

It’s not an official report, but taking that all into account, could that kind of deal make sense?

Washington hasn’t seen Mantha hit his full potential with the team yet, but at the same time, they’re just seeing him fully healthy. This campaign marks his first full season with D.C. at 100 percent, and so far, it’s been inconsistent at best. He has six goals and seven assists for 13 points in 28 games so far, and despite several chances, he hasn’t been able to finish a lot of high-danger opportunities or maintain the same level of play over long stretches.

“He should be a big part of our offense,” MacLellan said last week. “He’s a big, strong forward. You can see it. When his game’s on, he dominates the game with size and skill,” MacLellan explained. “There are periods where it hasn’t been there. Our team is different when he’s on.”

After this season, Mantha has one more year on his deal at $5.7 million.

READ MORE ON WHN: Washington Capitals Want More From Anthony Mantha Amid Injuries, Struggles

Boeser, meanwhile, has seen his fair share of struggles. The 25-year-old has been a healthy scratch for Vancouver this season and has just four goals and 12 assists through 21 games with the struggling Canucks. It’s a far cry from his past seasons, which have seen him dish 20 goals and put up 40-50 points. As for his contract, he has two years after this season and carries a cap hit of $6.65 million. His agent has also reportedly already talked to over half a dozen teams regarding a trade for Boeser.

While Boeser is a bit more expensive, it would be a deal that could make financial sense for both sides. Plus, considering the inconsistency between both players, a change of scenery could provide a spark.

The Capitals need more secondary scoring on a consistent basis, and having a player of Boeser’s caliber in the mix could help. However, Washington still believes there’s a lot more to see from Mantha and the 28-year-old also arguably has the same skillset as Boeser. Plus, given the unrelenting injury questions and the team sitting three points out of Wild Card territory and starting to find its footing after a slow start, a trade doesn’t appear to really be on D.C.’s radar right now. However, if Washington continues to struggle, it’s possible that the Capitals may want to look for other forward options.