A tough, tough deal to make.

That goes for a number of NHL teams, including the Maple Leafs, when it comes to the apparent availability of 27-year-old power forward Rick Nash, a player the Columbus Blue Jackets believed they had locked up on a long-term deal but now are prepared to move, possibly before the Feb. 27 NHL trade deadline.

Do the Leafs want him? Yes. So do at least a half-dozen other NHL clubs, and probably two or three have the needed combination of players, prospects, picks and cap space to engineer a deal with Columbus GM Scott Howson.

There is, however, a big difference between wanting and getting, and it's worth noting, this is a complicated deal made more complicated by the fact the current collective bargaining agreement expires at the conclusion of this season.