No, this isn’t a trade rumor. Happy Howie seems to think that the Leafs and Fletcher owe Carlo the right to ply his trade elsewhere. Here is the theory. Colaiacovo, you will certainly recall has been a walking injury ever since he turned pro. Every season has been lost due to serious amounts of time on the IR. This off-season, while he was getting healthy, Cliff was acquiring 3 new defencemen. As a result, Carlo is now in the pressbox not because he is injured, rather because he is at the bottom of the depth chart(behind only Ian White). Unlike other sulking athletes, however Carlo has been a good sport and a better teammate. Allegedly he has really taken Luke Schenn under his wing, helping Luke adjust to life in the “bigs” Alas, Howie says, if he isn’t going to make it here, Cliff ought to ship him where he can.
Two thought on this. First, Cliff’s job is to maximize assets. So, unless he can get what he thinks is value for Carlo, he shouldn’t make the deal. Second, Just as the former captain who used to wear #13 doesn’t “owe” the leafs anything, neither do the leafs owe Carlo anything. They stuck with him through every injury and we all know that an injury to a defenceman (irrespective of length or severity) is unavoidable. So if Carlo is a good insurance policy so be it. If Wilson thinks Carlo needs seasoning, so be it, learn at practice and in the pressbox.
Having said all of that. Like every player on the roster, Cliff should trade Carlo if he can improve the hockey club. If it can be done to help Carlo too, that’s the proverbial cherry on the sundae.