Bishop has been playing some outstanding hockey lately.
This Bishop should be the new Pope given his propensity for saving.
That being said. We have a well documented wealth of talent in net at the moment and I think Bishop's numbers might be painting a picture that he's performing better than he is- I worry that they've been a touch inflated by some luck. Montreal, for example hit 3 posts the other night. Despite Bishop being in net for 3 consecutive shootout wins, a lot of opposing shooters have mishandled the puck. Even more have missed the net completely (did anyone from Jersey hit the net?) Certainly, you have to be good to be lucky, and Bishop has shown great resilience, patience and poise, but I feel that things could easily have gone very differently for the young giant, and we'd be in a very different position right now.
I'm not saying he hasn't been great. I'm overwhelmingly grateful and pleased with his play recently. I just don't know if his perceived value is going to be any higher in terms of what we can get for him in the foreseeable future. I fully expect a regression in his numbers in the coming weeks. I also feel that if Anderson's play wavers, or Lehner has a few bad starts, we run the risk of losing a great deal of leverage in the eyes of other GM's as we phone around between now and April 3rd.
Watching this season has given me so much hope for the future of this organization. Our coaching, our depth, our chemistry and heart are ... the envy of the league? For me, watching this team excel in the face of adversity has been some of my favorite hockey to watch since 2007. I would love if it continued and we had a decent run in the playoffs.
I'm regretfully pessimistic that this will be the case. And, if there's a year I'd be willing for us to make some high risk/reward moves, it's this one, a short season, with most of our stars out, where expectations have been generally exceeded as it stands.
I think trading Bishop now, at what may be the height of his perceived value can put us in an even more advantageous position 2- 5 years down the road. I think this is the period when this team will be in a place to really contend.
I think there are a number of teams, like the Islanders, Flyers, Caps, and Lightning in the East, all of whom are likely not happy with how they are doing in net and are still very much in the playoff race. Even Washington in 14th is still only 4 points out. That being said, I'd hate to trade Bishop to another team in the east, only to have them subsequently overtake us in the standings or knock us out of the playoffs.
The Oilers and Flames in the west could also be looking for someone performing as well as Bishop at the moment, but I'm less familiar with the situation in the west and what teams could be looking for
I'm curious about how others feel about this:
Is now the best time to trade Bishop?
(I obviously think so)
What could we reasonably expect in return?
A roster player? A high end prospect? A first round pick?
What would we be looking to get back?
I think in a perfect world, we'd trade him to a bubble team in the east, say Philly, for their first. Philly then tanks, misses the playoffs and we get their high pick.