The 7 deadly sins of roster construction

Updated: April 10, 2013, 1:51 PM ET
By Craig Custance

Lost in the flurry of activity that surrounded this year's trade deadline is the notion that there are lessons to be learned from the most successful general managers in the game. There's a reason GMs such as Pittsburgh's Ray Shero, Nashville's David Poile, St. Louis' Doug Armstrong and San Jose's Doug Wilson seem to always make the savvy move and, in turn, usually have a team in playoff contention.

When you deconstruct a few of the deals made at the deadline and throughout the past year, themes emerge -- as do mistakes teams should try to avoid. Here's a look at seven of the deadliest sins of NHL roster construction:

1. Handing out too many, over-restrictive no-movement clauses
It's just not realistic anymore to say that teams shouldn't give no-movement clauses to unrestricted free agents because it's all but a requirement to get a player signed -- regardless of whether he is a franchise player or a depth defenseman.

"It's a fait accompli," one NHL source said.

Flames GM Jay Feaster's hands definitely were tied in Calgary, thanks to a wide range of no-trade restrictions on that roster. The fight has to be in limiting how far-reaching the no-trade clause is. And although the players like having the control of a no-trade clause, not everyone on their side of the table thinks the clauses are in the best interest of all the players. One respected agent believes no-movement clauses potentially hurt the overall revenue the league brings in, which in turn cuts into the amount of money players can earn.

"I hate them. First and foremost, you're giving players' money to an individual," he said. "When Rick Nash gets to handcuff the Blue Jackets and doesn't allow them to get as good a return as they could have gotten, in theory, they won't perform as well, hurting their revenues. And the [NHL]PA won't get as much money."