Who adds what?
Joined: Jul 2017
For Columbus or Montreal to trade for Laine, with cap space to match most offers, but without any reason to believe he's worth 12M if the other somehow offer sheets him to that, the offer sheet compensation of four first round picks is the maximum they should consider trading for an un-signed Laine, because that could be all they end up with if they can't sign him before some other team offersheets him.
For teams without extra cap space, the most they should trade is the compensation for the lowest offer sheet they can't match. For instance, a Winnipeg fan commented the other day that they'd trade Laine for John Carlson. I laughed it off at first. Tonight I tried to build a Caps team to see if/how that could work for Washington. I was able to clear cap space to offer Laine an 8M AAV. If an offersheet comes in at 9M, then, I'd have to either make more trades at a loss, to match, or take two 1sts, a 2nd, and a 3rd, and call that a good enough return for seven years of John Carlson, who could fetch that as a rental.
RFA might seem pretty cool to Winnipeg, when they imagine getting four first picks from a struggling team for a guy they don't even really need, since Connor is good enough at 1L, but trading for an RFA can be a real liability in a summer that has reportedly seen two pretty big offersheets written, already. Does that make sense? Might have to work out an NBA-style sign-and-trade to move Laine to some teams. I know they don't typically happen in the NHL, but neither did offer sheets until pretty recently. Things change, even in hockey.