There used to be a time - not so long ago - when you could count on a good trade or two around All-Star Weekend. Way back in 1990, the Rangers acquired Bernie Nicholls for Tomas Sandstrom and Tony Granato. A deal like that appears unlikely in Atlanta.
Management types, the media and the all-stars themselves are just starting to roll into town. Soon after I arrived early this evening, I ran into a longtime friend who's an assistant GM for an Eastern Conference team. He immediately shook his head when I asked if he thought there could be at least a B-plus quality deal this weekend.
"No way," he said, "and the biggest reason isn't the salary cap. It's because there isn't a team in the league ready to say they're out of the playoff hunt. Tampa is last in the East but they're close (9 points out). With those stars there's no way they're giving up, and they shouldn't. L.A. is the furthest out (14 points), but I wouldn't be too sure they're ready to move anyone. If they are still out of it, they'll do it closer to the trade deadline."
So there you have it. Of course, some mega-deal will be announced tomorrow before the Skills.
Coming up next: a chat with TSN's Darren Dreger, who has some interesting comments on Garth Snow.