Better buy: Rick Nash or Jeff Carter?

Updated: February 20, 2012, 10:36 AM ET
By Craig Custance

Rick Nash played at Madison Square Garden on Sunday night, one of the arenas he could end up competing in more often this season if the New York Rangers pull off the biggest deal before the upcoming trade deadline, now just one week away. Nash also showed exactly why he's such a hot commodity, tying the game with 1:33 left in regulation, as ESPN New York's Katie Strang pointed out in her story on Nash's MSG appearance.

He also faced some pointed questions from Strang and the New York media about his future, brushing a few off with no comments but reiterating what he's said since news emerged that he was on the market. He's still with Columbus. Right now.

"It's going to take care of itself," Nash told reporters in New York. "I'm a Blue Jacket right now; we're playing great hockey. It's fun to be around. It's been a tough year for us, right now when you're winning games, it becomes a different game."

There's a lot to like in Nash's game, but the asking price will be incredibly high. Columbus GM Scott Howson can't have it any other way when dealing his franchise player. That's why teams in the hunt for Nash have to at least consider whether Jeff Carter is the better alternative.

Everything considered, they may be closer than we realize.