January 24, 2013; Raleigh, NC, USA; Carolina Hurricanes center Jeff Skinner (53) reacts against the Buffalo Sabres at the PNC center. The Hurricanes defeated the Sabres 6-3. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina Hurricanes Report: "Untouchable Players Now Touchable"

Two days after saying the Carolina Hurricanes are willing to move the fifth overall pick, Elliote Friedman wrote in his 30 Thoughts that some Hurricanes players “who were previously untouchable may no longer be untouchable,” according to a source.

Link: Friedman’s 30 Thoughts. Monday, June 17

Speculation will now run rampant around who these players could be and what the team is looking for.

It’s likely that the Canes want a top-four, possibly top-pairing defenseman, for their former “untouchable players.”

Ryan Murphy could be a trade chip this summer. Mandatory Credit: Evan Habeeb-USA TODAY Sports

I would guess that Jeff Skinner and possibly Ryan Murphy could be those players.

Friedman also said that is no one with the last name ‘Staal,’ so throw out Eric and Jordan. Justin Faulk and Cam Ward mean too much to the team and Alexander Semin and Jiri Tlusty make up the top line in Carolina.

But Skinner’s best year came in his rookie season three years ago, and last season was his worst in the NHL. He has also dealt with injuries including concussions. It’s also likely that the Hurricanes will draft a forward that can play in the top nine next season and replace Skinner on the depth chart.

However, Skinner could still bring in a good return including a top defenseman, which the Hurricanes may bite at.

Ryan Murphy could also be traded to improve the defense. Right now he is a prospect with a good amount of potential, but GM Jim Rutherford may not want to wait for that potential and instead include him in a package deal for a better defenseman.

Either way, this is shaping up to be an exciting summer for Canes’ fans.



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