Hiller is an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season. The Ducks are currently the best team in the NHL. Would they trade their starting goaltender in the middle of a playoff run?
Maybe. With Viktor Fasth, Frederik Andersen and John Gibson all in their goaltending depth chart, so Hiller could be expendable. However, if the Ducks are to move Hiller it will probably not be at the Trade Deadline.
Eklund of HockeyBuzz.com notes that he doesn’t think that Hiller will be moved at the Deadline, but rather the NHL Draft to the Edmonton Oilers. He also believes that would only happen if the Ducks were to be going after Ryan Miller, which I don’t get at all. Eklund also notes that the Oilers are making preparations to make a big deal like this.
With the all the goalies that Anaheim has in their system, they don’t need to go after Miller. He will be seeking a long-term deal and that will ruin any depth that the Ducks have. All three goalies in the system are under contract for at least the next season. The acquisition of Miller would especially cause trouble with Gibson, who is clearly the Ducks’ goalie of the future.
Hiller could be moved to Edmonton rather as I’m pretty sure that the Oilers brass would do anything to acquire a goalie of Hiller’s status. He would immediately give them credibility in net and that would make them a better team. He’s also the type of goaltender that would allow the Oilers offensive defensemen to play their game, knowing that their goaltender will bail them out most of the time if any mistakes happen.
This is definitely a situation to look into as the season winds down and we get closer to the draft.