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Mike Knuble’s days in Washington may be numbered

Nashville Predators v Washington Capitals

WASHINGTON, DC - DECEMBER 20: Mike Knuble #22 of the Washington Capitals reacts after a play against the Nashville Predators during the first period at Verizon Center on December 20, 2011 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick McDermott/Getty Images)

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Capitals forward Mike Knuble has had a less-than stellar season. With just three goals and a -14 plus/minus rating (for whatever that’s worth to you), Knuble has seen his minutes dwindle and he’s gone from the top line to the fourth line and was a healthy scratch last night against Winnipeg.

At 39-years-old Knuble’s days in the NHL aren’t long, but his time in Washington may soon be at an end. Chuck Gormley of says that with the trade deadline approaching, Knuble could be headed out of town soon.

By making Knuble a healthy scratch on Thursday night, coach Dale Hunter ran the risk of not only alienating his veteran winger, but dividing his locker room. And that could mean a quick deal is in the works for Knuble, who is on a one-year, $2 million deal.

As for who might want a piece of Knuble, Gormley says that San Jose or Chicago could be interested in him alone. Failing that, if he was part of a package deal with struggling defenseman Jeff Schultz they could be moved to get what the Caps need elsewhere on the ice (a capable second line center perhaps). Good luck selling any teams on a deal featuring two guys having bad seasons.