Not sure you're thinking of the right player. His injury history is no where near as bad as Colas and he's much better offensively. And while he's definitely an offensive defenseman, he's not a major liability defensively. He's currently playing top-line minutes on one of the better defensive teams. He's at least no worse or more mistake-prone than Q or Smith, so we'd at least break even on defense while greatly improving our offense from the back end.
And I'm not sure how moving an AHL player, who may not have a future here (and maybe not even an NHL future), a player in the scratch rotation, and a player that doesn't fit here, and probably won't be back, is shooting anything.
Kronwall - Ericsson
Smith - DeKeyser
Lashoff - Griffin
^^^^ Is not a D corp I want entering the playoffs. We are weakest at D, why would we want to make that worse by making Lashoff a regular, a rookie a regular, and giving Smith more ice time? What happens if one, or even multiple, D-men go down with injuries? We'd really be up sh**s creek then. Just cause our young forwards have flourished this season doesn't mean our young D-men will too. Case and point: Smith and Kindl. We should be trimming forwards and adding defensive depth.
About Zidlicky, you're correct about his injuries. I think his injury in Minnesota a few years ago just stuck out in my mind cause he was on my fantasy team that year, other than that you're right, he's been pretty healthy. He's a great puck mover and for an offensive D-man he isn't afraid to hit at all. I just think members around here would start throwing fits about his defense... though he's no worse than Q and the gang at this point either like you said.
At the end of the day, whether he were to re-sign at the end of the season with us or not, at 37 years old he's a rental. I might be willing to part with our 1st for that this year, if the draft class really is as weak as they say.