Ivan Barbashev was probably the best trade deadline acquisition and was an under-the-radar move.
Barbashev was not a big name many teams were in, but with the Vegas Golden Knights, he played a key role in Vegas winning the Stanley Cup. Yet, with the Golden Knights' cap situation, it seems likely Barbashev will be leaving in free agency.
If Barbashev does indeed leave in free agency, here are three potential destinations for the winger.
#1 Washington Capitals
The Washington Capitals only have a few years left of being competitive as Alexander Ovechkin is still on the team.
With the Capitals wanting to be competitive, I expect them to be active in free agency and Barbashev makes a lot of sense. The Russian is 27 years old, so he could sign just a two or three-year deal to play alongside Ovechkin and try and bring another cap back to Washington with his fellow countryman.
The Capitals have enough cap space for them to bring in Barbashev and add another scoring option to try and make a playoff run next season.
#2 Edmonton Oilers
The Edmonton Oilers don't have a ton of cap space to work with, but they are in a win-now window and Ivan Barbashev just proved he can help a team win the Stanley Cup.
The Oilers have the best one-two punch in the NHL with Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl but the secondary scoring has let them down, especially in the playoffs.
If Edmonton can make the cap work, Barbashev would be a great fit on the second line with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and can add much-needed scoring come playoff time. His size and physical play will also be much needed on this Oilers team which is built around skill and speed.
#3 Seattle Kraken
If Ivan Barbashev is after a seven-year deal and a lot of money, the Seattle Kraken makes a lot of sense for the Russian.
The Kraken enter the off-season with over $20 million in cap space so they can go out and add to the team that made the second round of the playoffs. Barbashev is a proven winner - a two-time Cup champ - and plays well in the playoffs.
Although Seattle made the playoffs last season, they are still a young team with not much playoff experience so Barbashev could become a leader in the room. As well, this past season showed the Kraken are closer to winning the Cup as many think so I expect them to be active this summer, and signing Barbashev makes a lot of sense.
Poll : Would you like your team to sign Ivan Barbashev?