Close-up image of Juuse Saros in Nashville Predators goalie gear making a save.
Juuse Saros trade rumors are swirling again. Here's why the Predators might finally move their star goalie this offseason.

Juuse Saros’ name has become a regular fixture in NHL trade rumors, and it seems like every season we speculate about his potential departure from the Nashville Predators. This past trade deadline, the New Jersey Devils reportedly expressed major interest, but the Predators held firm.

However, this offseason could be different. Here are three compelling reasons why Nashville might finally pull the trigger on a Juuse Saros trade:

3 Reasons Juuse Saros’ Time in Nashville May Be Ending

1. The Rise of Yaroslav Askarov

The Predators hold one of the most highly-touted goalie prospects in the NHL in Yaroslav Askarov. The young Russian is tearing up the AHL, and many believe his NHL debut is imminent. With Askarov waiting in the wings, Saros’ status as the undisputed number one becomes less secure, and his trade value is likely at its peak.

2. Rebuilding vs. Contending

The Predators find themselves in an awkward middle ground. They’re not bad enough for a top draft pick, yet not good enough to be serious Stanley Cup contenders. A more decisive shift towards rebuilding could be in order, and trading Saros would bring a massive haul of assets to jumpstart that process.

3. Saros’ Contract Situation

Saros has one year left on his current contract, which carries a $5 million cap hit – a relative bargain for a goalie of his caliber. After next season, he’s due for a hefty raise. Moving Saros now allows the Predators to avoid committing huge money to a goalie when they may not be ready to truly contend again – especially if Askarov proves NHL-ready.

Of course, there’s always the chance Nashville opts to keep Saros. However, the logic behind a potential trade is compelling. This summer should be fascinating for Predators fans, as the Juuse Saros saga could finally reach its conclusion.

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