Deadlines bring out the best in us.
Or at least we think they do.
While it makes more sense and it’s frankly smarter to get work done ahead of time, waiting until the last minute provides a bit of a rush -- or maybe that’s the coffee mixed with adrenaline.
It’s why many college papers are started at midnight the night before they’re due. It’s the same reason many people wait until early April to do their taxes. It’s the same driving factor behind waiting for that second notice to pay a bill that somehow slipped through the cracks.
And you see, NHL general managers are just like the rest of us.
It’s the reason that so many deals happen right before the trade deadline during the regular season. And as we get closer to an NHL roster freeze for the expansion draft, deals are being worked out in the final 48 hours by general managers. That includes one of the biggest blockbusters of the season, with blossoming superstar Jonathan Drouin being traded to the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday.
The next seven days are already going to be one of the most hectic in NHL history. On Sunday the expansion draft protected lists will be revealed, while the Vegas Golden Knights’ selections will be officially announced on June 21.
And on Thursday, Tampa Bay Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman may have been the kid that turns his homework in early and wakes up the rest of the class. It could start a string of action and I highly suggest you keep your phone well charged over the next 48 hours.
For the Stars, it could mean they land an elite left-handed defender before expansion. Minnesota Wild defender Jonas Brodin is on the market, and he would fit nicely on the left side for the Stars. Sami Vatanen from the Anaheim Ducks could also be on the move. Vancouver Canucks righty Christopher Tanev could also be in play, if the Stars wanted to go for a more extreme shuffle and potentially move the right-handed Stephen Johns in a trade.
The Stars could be in on all three of them, and GM Jim Nill has certainly already made the proper calls to gauge interest and cost on each of the potential defenders.
And at this time of year, Nill actually holds more cards than most. He’s got the third-overall pick in his back pocket and he’s made others well aware he’s willing to deal. Do you have expansion problems? The Stars could solve them for the right price.
Adding to the mad rush of the weekend, there are trades that have been made that have yet to be announced. Teams have been able to cut deals with Vegas to protect extra players in the expansion draft, and unfortunately we won’t know what those deals are until the roster is announced on the 21st.
So while it may seem like a slow time, it really isn’t. NHL general managers are cramming to get their work in before the deadline and the next week should yield some exciting results.
Follow Sean Shapiro on Twitter @SeanShapiro