Kubina Heading Out of Tampa?

The Tampa Bay Lightning held defenseman Pavel Kubina out of Thursday’s morning skate.  General Manager, Steve Yzerman, announced it was to protect the team’s interests as he was being shopped around.  Kubina will not play in tonight’s game versus the San Jose Sharks.

Yzerman spoke after the Lightning’s team skate this morning.  He said, “We’re making our decisions on a player-by-player basis.  We see a potential opportunity to improve our club. In regards to Pavel, and as far as any other players or any other opportunity, there’s the broader strategy of wanting to be a better team in the future, so we’ll look at any opportunity to become that.”

Pavel Kubina signed a 2 year, $3.85M/year contract a few summers ago with the Lightning.  Chances are he won’t be back so the Lightning are going to trade him so they can acquire something in return.  Kubina has a partial no-trade contract where he can submit a list of five teams he’d be willing to accept a trade to.  Kubina will submit his list by noon on February 18th.

Kubina would be a solid pick up for any team in playoff contention.  Kubina is very responsible in the defensive end and can provide some offense as well.  Kubina has been very well liked in the Lightning locker room and is considered one of their leaders.  He has won the Stanley Cup once already so he brings the experience necessary to help a playoff team.

Where could Kubina end up?  With San Jose in town, Yzerman and Sharks GM, Doug Wilson, sat down and talked this morning.  No one knows what or who they discussed but I’m sure Kubina was brought up.  Other potential canidates to make a trade include the New York Rangers, St. Louis Blues, and Chicago Blackhawks.  Tampa wants to rebuild their organizational depth so expect draft picks and/or prospects to be going the other way.

More to Come..

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