I don't really know what his value would be. I think he's the most trade-able player on our blueline, but I highly doubt they would deal him by himself – more likely he'd be used as a sweetener at the draft to move up or package with our firsts for a forward. I think he may have overachieved in '11-12 and he was pretty bad for the first month or two of this year, but he's versatile and he can play top 4 minutes.
His name sounds like a tongue-twister. Say it five times fast. I can't think of a team that flies under the radar anywhere close to the way that Columbus does, so I confess complete ignorance. The name alone would seem worth a 2nd round draft choice, and if he is potentially a top four defensive defenseman, that's just what we are looking for here in Toronto.
I don't know if Columbus would want to trade him, him with Tyutin has been a fantastic pairing for awhile now. And he's young.
He and Tyutin were a great pairing last year, but they actually didn't play much together after the beginning of the season this year. He was playing poorly and got injured and I believe they didn't play together regularly after the injury. Dalton Prout is the real hero this year. Nikitin was paired with him when he came back and Prout settled his game down. He really does need the right partner to be effective.