I think it's an interesting enough topic it deserves it's own thread. It's possible as Ovie has only a limited 10 team "no trade" clause.
I also think, perhaps unlike in years past, it's a realistic discussion at this point. As a franchise, how long can you wait? The Caps have largely done things the "right way": patiently developing draft picks, adding some pieces here and there, growing through the draft. For most championship teams in a salary cap world that's how it works and develops success. They're clearly a phenomenal team, their regular season record speaks for itself.
So what do you do with an immensely talented regular season team that CANNOT get out of the 2nd round?
Last offseason the Caps decided to stand pat and try again. They only added Eller. Went all in at the deadline for Shattenkirk. Doesn't work again. Clearly I think you have to have some dramatic changes this go around. What do you do?
(1) Trade Ovechkin, or
(2) Trade several others, or
(3) Tweaks, add a few pieces, try again?
I frankly don't think #3 should be an option for them at this point and I think they're running out of time.
Barry Melrose last night on ESPN at Night, after thinking long and hard, thinks the answer is yes to whether or not to trade Ovechkin.
"For his sake, not for the Washington Capitals sake. Look at what we’re talking about now, where it’s ‘Alex Ovechkin let the team down.’ He can’t win in Washington right now."
I agree with him. The pressure is SO insane at this point you either blow up a substantial part of what's around him or trade the guy himself. It's about the only time I can imagine where trading a generational talent makes sense and COULD be a win win trade.
What would they get? In my mind it'd have to be a proven scorer (a la Tarasenko, Kucherov, Marchand maybe, others?) and probably significant compensation on top of that going the Caps way.