Carolina Hurricanes may consider parting ways with Jake Gardiner too
A lot of people have complained that he’s had a bad season, but I think this was extremely harsh on Jake Gardiner. While he hasn’t hit the heights that were expected when he took the trip down from Toronto to join the Carolina Hurricanes back end, he’s not by any means been a liability. So why is he in the potential compliance buyout candidates?
This is just a maths problem. One of 5 defenders under contract for next season and one of five left-handed shot defenders in competition for a spot on the back-end, Gardiner again has some stiff competition for his spot on the roster. Primarily an offensive defender, Gardiner also has competition in that regard with three other OFD under contract next year.
Gardiner did manage to tally four goals and twenty assists for 24 points in 68 games before the season was cut abruptly short. Throughout his career, this is what the Minnesota native averages. Shame on everyone that just yelled at their screen “if that’s what he brings to the team, why isn’t he the first candidate?”
Gardiner has had a very adventurous time during his brief career in Raleigh. Often criticized for not being the most natural skater, Gardiner has been polarising. A lot of people believe he’s a good asset to have, and the others seem to believe he’s a liability. It’s no secret that Gardiner has had his struggles this year, but there’s also been a lot of promising performances.
Gardiner also has a 7-team no-trade clause in his contract. This means that should Carolina need to off-load him, he’s going to reject all the bottom feeder teams. This could mean the difference between being forced to hold onto him, and being able to free up cap space, or a roster spot. It’s another factor to consider when contemplating who should stay and who should go.
Overall, I just don’t see the point in using a compliance buyout on Gardiner. Some better candidates make more and produce less who would be better suited to use a compliance buyout on. Feel free to yell at me about why I’m wrong.