Predicting where John Gibson, Elias Lindholm and Alexander Barabanov might get traded by February

It’s mid-December, and the true contenders are emerging as the NHL is jetting toward midseason, meaning trade talk will start dominating headlines.

Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks
Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks / Chris Gardner/GettyImages
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With the 2023-24 season jetting toward its midpoint, the playoff race is heating up. Quite a few teams who figured to contend may need to wait another season given injuries, mishaps, and overall underperformances while others who didn’t initially look like contenders may be buyers as some blockbuster trades start to occur.. 

Below, you will find a trio of trade predictions involving one team that looked like a contender, but recent misfortunes at goaltender may force them to trade for one by February. Two other teams listed were among those who initially figured to be sellers, but thanks to their consistency early in the year, look for them to explore the trade market and turn some weaknesses into strengths. 

Here are our predictions for where John Gibson, Elias Lindholm, and Alexander Barabanov might get traded.

3. John Gibson

John Gibson has been the subject of trade rumors for a while, and since he’s once again forced to be part of a struggling Anaheim Ducks team, it’s only a matter of when they will trade him. The Toronto Maple Leafs would be a sound destination for the longtime goaltender, as they recently placed Joseph Woll on injured reserve thanks to a high-ankle sprain.

Such injuries can nag a player long-term, and unfortunately for the Maple Leafs, neither Ilya Samsonov nor Martin Jones look like they are sound answers to keep things afloat. While Samsonov boasts a 5-1-5 record, he also has a GAA of 3.51 and a save percentage of 0.878, and Jones is currently sitting at a 3.46 GAA and 0.902 save percentage. 

Trading for Gibson would require freeing some cap space thanks to his contract, but the Ducks can help out here by retaining up to 50 percent of it. Further, as a rebuilding hockey team, the Ducks would also be willing to take some prospects, which will also help free space to acquire Gibson.

Gibson trade prediction