Leading up to the Feb. 24 NHL trade deadline, we'll look at potential targets on the market and why they may or may not fit the Flyers' plans.
Team: Ottawa Senators
2019-20 cap hit: $3.1 million
There's a lot to like with Pageau, from his age to his upside. The righty-shot center has already scored a career-high 24 goals for the Senators, who are one of the NHL's bottom five clubs.
Pageau possesses some Sean Couturier, Kevin Hayes characteristics in that he values the 200-foot game, impacts the penalty kill, can scale a lineup and brings offensive potential, to boot.
While Pageau is four points away from surpassing his career high of 43 set in 2015-16, he is playing his largest role yet on a team in rebuild mode.
Could that be a red flag to suitors in contention with deeper lineups? The Athletic's senior NHL columnist Pierre LeBrun provided excellent insight on the matter in a recent article, writing how that question has been raised, yet Pageau's track record and makeup also hold weight.
Ottawa will want a sizable return for Pageau and the Flyers are not in an ideal position to land his services. Without recent call-up Mark Friedman on the roster, the Flyers would have just over $2 million in cap space. The Senators are likely not going to consider retaining salary to help necessitate a deal for their big chip, so a trade would require the Flyers to clear cap space, which would require some legitimate subtraction.
Not only that, but Ottawa could also very well eye a first- or second-round pick and possibly a prospect, as well. The Senators won't — and shouldn't — be shy in their demands. After all, they could instead attempt to re-sign Pageau, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent in the offseason — another caveat for the Flyers. Would they want to risk so much for a player who might walk at season's end?
Pageau should be on the Flyers' radar, but general manager Chuck Fletcher has been pleased with his team's growth, likes its chances and won't be so quick to mortgage the future during the first full year of his process.
Click here to download the MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Flyers, Sixers and Phillies games easily on your device.