Title: NHL Trade Deadline Coverage
Date: February 26, 2008
Original Source: The On Deck Circle
Synopsis: Like I did for the NBA, I live-blogged the NHL Trade Deadline, complete with analysis of each trade with help from friends Paul and Matt.
Welcome to The On Deck Circle’s all-day coverage of the NHL Trade Deadline. The deadline is Tuesday, February 26, at 3PM EST. Check back to the site and this post all day for updates and opinions on trades.
I will update the site in as close to real time as I can, immediately posting trades that become official and posting my (or Paul’s) opinions on them shortly after. To review what has gone down so far and to give you a feel for how things will continue to go down today, here is a look at what has happened on the trade market so far on D-Day 08.
Alright, the day has ended and I want to pass out. A whole bucnh of trades that we tried to cover semi-in depth. Thanks to Paul for the help. Hope you hockey fans enjoyed.
Official Deadline Trades
5:00 – Just double checked, and two more deals went through after I bounced from Mo Cash/Douglas’ place, not sure why Nashville is so behind:
*Nashville Predators acquired Jan Hlavac from the Tampa Bay Lightning for a 7th round draft pick.
*Nashville Predators acquired Brandon Bochenski from the ANaheim Ducks for future considerations.
3:40 – A few other small deals trickled in:
*Anaheim Ducks acquired J.S. Aubin from the Los Angeles Kings for a 7th round pick.
*Atlanta Thrashers acquired Joe Motzko from the Washington Capitals for Alexandre Giroux.
3:25 – Anaheim Ducks acquired Marc-Andre Bergeron from the New York Islanders for a 3rd round pick.
3:18 – Florida Panthers acquired Chad Kilger from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a 3rd round pick.
3:17 – Phoenix Coyotes acquired Al Montoya and Marcel Hossa from the New York Rangers for Fredrik Sjostrom, David Leneveu, and Josh Gratton.
3:14 – Detroit Red Wings acquired Brad Stuart from the Los Angeles Kings for a 2nd and a 4th round draft pick.
3:10 – Minnesota Wild acquired Chris Simon from the New York islanders for a 6th round pick.
3:02 – The deadline is here, and TSN thinks the deals are done. The NHL doesn’t operate like the NBA with this stuff, so we are probably out of trades, leaving the total at 14. Lots of coverage all over the site and momentarily we’ll have an opinion up on the Hossa deal, which now includes Pascal Dupuis.
2:57 – Pittsburgh Penguins acquired Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis from the Atlanta Thrashers for Colby Armstrong, Angelo Esposito, Erik Christiansen and a 1st round draft pick.
2:53 – New York Rangers acquired Christian Backman from the St. Louis Blues for a 4th round pick.
2:52 – Pittsburgh Penguins have acquired Hal Gill from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a 2nd and a 5th round pick. (Wow)
2:50 – Still nothing brewing and TSN/ESPN don’t even have concrete rumors for us. It’s going to be an interesting 10 minutes.
2:30 – Nothing has happened in the last hour, but Yao Ming is out for the season and TSN is pretty sure Hossa is going somewhere in the next half hour.
1:43 – Somehow I missed this blockbuster half an hour ago: New York Islanders acquired Rob Davison from the San Jose Sharks for a 7th round draft pick.
1:37 – Washington Capitals acquired Matt Cooke from the Vancouver Canucks for Matt Pettinger.
1:15 – Washington Capitals acquired Sergei Federov from the Columbus Blue Jackets for Ted Ruth.
1:05 – Colorado Avalanche acquired Adam Foote from the Columbus Blue Jackets for a conditional first round draft pick and an additional conditional draft pick.
12:40 – Ottawa Senators acquired Martin Lapointe from the Chicago Blackhawks for a 6th round pick.
12:20 – Missed a lot during my lunch break. Here are a few deals that went down in the last hour:
*San Jose Sharks acquired Brian Campell and a 7th round draft pick from the Buffalo Sabres for Steve Bernier and a 1st round pick.
*Dallas Stars acquired Brad Richards and Johan Holmqvist from the Tampa Bay Lightning for Mike Smith, Jussi Jokinen, Jeff Halpern and a 4th round draft pick.
*Washington Capitals acquired Cristobal Huet from the Montreal Canadiens for a 2009 2nd round pick.
*Carolina Hurricances acquired Tuomo Ruutu from the Chicago Blackhawks for Andrew Ladd.
*Colorado Avalanche acquired Ruslan Salei from the Florida Panthers for Karlis Skrastins and a 3rd round pick.
11:20 – Florida Panthers acquired Wade Belak from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a fifth round draft pick.
10:45 – New Jersey Deviles acquired Bryce Salvador from the St. Louis Blues for Cam Janssen.
Feb 25 – This isn’t technically a deadline deal, but it happened late Monday night: Philadelphia Flyers have acquired Vaclav Prospal from the Tampa Bay Lightning for Alexandre Picard and a conditional draft pick.
Feb 20 – Calgary Flames acquired Jim Vandermeer from Philadelphia for 2009 3rd-round pick.
Feb 19 – Philadelphia Flyers acquired Jaroslav Modry from Los Angeles for 2008 third-round pick.
Feb 11 – The Ottawa Senators acquired winger Cory Stillman and defenseman Mike Commodore from the Carolina Hurricanes for defenseman Joe Corvo and winger Patrick Eaves.
Feb 8 – Detroit Red Wings acquired Francis Lemieux from Montreal for Brett Engelhardt.
Feb 7 – San Jose Sharks acquired J.D. Forrest from Carolina for future considerations.
Feb 1 – Columbus Blue Jackets acquired Dick Tarnstrom from Edmonton for Curtis Glencross.
Jan 31 – Pittsburgh Penguins acquired Dave Gove from Carolina for Joe Jensen.
Jan 29 – San Jose Sharks acquired Jody Shelley from Columbus for 2009 6th-round draft pick.
Jan 22 – Columbus Blue Jackets acquired Mark Rycroft from Colorado for Darcy Campbell and Philippe Dupuis.
Jan 17 – Chicago Blackhawks acquired Craig Adams from Carolina for 2009 conditional draft pick.
Jan 15 – Dallas Stars acquired Dan Jancevski from Tampa Bay for Junior Lessard.
Jan 10 – Florida Panthers acquired Magnus Johansson from Chicago for 2009 seventh-round pick.
Jan 9 – Anaheim Ducks acquired Darryl Bootland from NY Islanders for Matt Keith.
Jan 2 – Boston Bruins acquired defenseman Shane Hnidy and a 2008 sixth-round pick from the Anaheim Ducks for right wing Brandon Bochenski.
Feb 25 – Colorado Avalanche sign Peter Forsberg.
Jan 28 – Anaheim Ducks sign Teemu Selanne.
Hossa Dealt to Penguins!
Pittsburgh Penguins acquired Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis from the Atlanta Thrashers for Colby Armstrong, Angelo Esposito, Erik Christiansen and a 1st round draft pick.
Wow, this came out of nowhere. The Penguins get one of the premiere offensive players in the game and have made the biggest move in the East. Hossa is having an off year this year with ‘only’ 56 points. I love this deal for the Penguins in that it allows Malkin to stay at centre, where he has been ripping it up since Crosby has gone out. When Crosby comes back, the Penguins will easily have the most potent offense in the East. I don’t think they’ll split up Malkin and Malone, but the thought of a line composed of Malkin, Crosby and Hossa is incomprehensible. The only reason I wouldn’t like this deal is that they have absolutely no room to sign Malkin and Hossa for the longterm. This could be chalked up as a desperate team mortgaging a healthy future for a rental player. Having said that, it will all be worth it if they hoist the cup. Also in the deal, the Pens pick up Pascal Dupuis who was underused in Atlanta. He is basically just another body in the deal, but apparently he’s super ripped and has like a 16 pack or something so, like, whateva!
Atlanta wins big on this trade. If they didn’t deal Hossa at the deadline they could have potentially lost him for nothing in the off season which would have been a disaster. Erik Christensen is a quality third line player who once led the WHL in scoring. He has plenty of offensive upside and is in only his third NHL season. Angelo Esposito was once poised to go in the top 3 in the entry draft before being cut three times in a row by the Canadian national junior team. He has tons of potential and the motivation to prove everyone wrong. If he is treated right in Atlanta he could be a superstar. Colby Armstrong is a secondary scorer who provides a physical presence and leadership in the dressing room. Of all the players Atlanta picked up, Armstrong is the biggest part of the deal. Two seasons ago he threw up 42 points in 49 games (albeit playing alongside Crosby for a big part of the year) as well as killing penalties and playing on the powerplay. Atlanta also picks up a first round pick which makes this deal that much sweeter. While the news of this broke, every single Leafs fan smashed a nearby mirror (ala dudes night out) and is basking in the 7 years of bad luck to come which could have been avoided if we made this exact same deal for Sundin.
Analysis by Paul O’Neill
Nashville Predators acquired Brandon Bochenski from the ANaheim Ducks for future considerations.
This marks an unbelievable fifth stop on his three year NHL journey, and at age 25 he should catch up to and pass Chad Kilger very soon. He showed flashes in 05-06 with 13 points in 20 games on a high octane Senators team, but if you exclude that stint he has just 38 points across 93 other NHL games. He could still have a bright future, but a lot of the luster has worn off this kid in a short time. Ottawa-Chicago-Boston-Anaheim-Nashville already, wow.
Hlavac to Nashville
Nashville Predators acquired Jan Hlavac from the Tampa Bay Lightning for a 7th round draft pick.
You brought me back after a long day to write about this? All I’ll say is Hlavac is a decent fourth liner with 22 points this season. His first two years (42 and 64 points) made him look like a budding star, but he hasn’t surpassed 27 points in the seven years since.
Giroux for Motzko
Atlanta Thrashers acquired Joe Motzko from the Washington Capitals for Alexandre Giroux.
Umm, I’m not going to touch this one, sorry. These guys have a combined 9 points in 29 career games.
Anaheim Ducks acquired J.S. Aubin from the Los Angeles Kings for a 7th round pick.
Anaheim picks up a quality backup in J.S. Aubin for basically nothing. This is basically an insurance move if Giguere gets injured as Anaheim would prefer to have a somewhat proven NHL goaltender give them at least a glimmer of hope. I’m partial to Aubin or what he did down the stretch last year as the Leafs made a push for the playoffs. He is a decent goaltender, but nothing remarkable. Typical of Burke, doing some tinkering before the deadline. Oh, and a 7th round pick is worth the equivalent of getting a rain cheque on a blowjob from a swamp donkey who can’t remember her name or where her bra is at 4am after the bar on a Tuesday night.
Analysis by Paul O’Neill
Leafs Deal The Chad
Florida Panthers acquired Chad Kilger from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a 3rd round pick.
Cliff Fletcher does it again, scoring a 3rd rounder for Kilger. Give the Leafs a 2nd, 3rd, 5th, and 5th on the day. Give the Panthers a gritty penalty killing specialist who can also score, with three straight seasons of double digit goals and 27 points this year. While he has been inconsistent over time and has struggled to catch on with teams in the long term, Kilger clearly has NHL skills and is a good 3rd or 4th line addition. At just 31 years old, this is Kilger’s 8th team, giving him a good shot to break some sort of record eventually. Again, typical deadline deal.
Bergeron to Ducks
Anaheim Ducks acquired Marc-Andre Bergeron from the New York Islanders for a 3rd round pick.
The Ducks add what TSN called a ‘non-Duck’ defenseman, probably because Marc-Andre is a little smaller than the rest of the blue line gang. Another typical deadline trade, the Islanders get a middle ground pick and some financial relief for an expendable player. The Ducks add a solid defender who is a great offensive weapon on the powerplay (14 of his 18 points have come that way). He has been pretty consistent throughout his career and has considerable upside, so a 3rd round pick is an acceptable price tag.
Spare Change Trade
Phoenix Coyotes acquired Al Montoya and Marcel Hossa from the New York Rangers for Fredrik Sjostrom, David Leneveu, and Josh Gratton.
Montoya is a former #6 overall pick with some long term potential, though the world seems down on the former U.S. Junior National goalie. Marcel Hossa is probably the wrong Hossa, but he does have 8 points in 36 games this season. Josh Gratton’s Hockey Fights link came up on Google ahead of his player stats, so that’s what you need to know there. He’s only played one game this year but tallied 188 penalty minutes in 52 games last season. Sjostrom is a decent 24 year old prospect who has 19 points in 51 games this year (a slight improvement over his first three NHL seasons). He has the potential to end up the best player in this deal. LeNeveu is also a 24 year old prospect, but not a top one. He has put up bad numbers in 21 career games but may end up a decent back-up down the line. This trade followed the “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” saying to the limit.
Simon to Wild
Minnesota Wild acquired Chris Simon from the New York Islanders for a 6th round pick.
You can argue that the Wild needed toughness until you’re blue in the face, you will not get me to agree with this move. They got pounded by the Ducks last year, sure, but they already have Fedoruk and Boogard. Also, Simon is a freakin’ nut case and shouldn’t even be allowed in the NHL after all of hs transgressions. From New York’s point of view, this is definitely addition by subtraction, removing an unstable element from the locker room, so good move.
Stuart to Detroit
Detroit Red Wings acquired Brad Stuart from the Los Angeles Kings for a 2nd and a 4th round draft pick.
Hmm, Brad Stuart’s fifth team at just age 28. He is a good defenseman and it’s strange that he hasn’t found a home yet. He likely hasn’t in Detroit, either, as this has rent-a-player written all over it. The Wings couldn’t land Rob Blake, so they grab one of his teammates. Stuart is a good two-way defenseman, tallying 21 points this year and having four seasons of 29 points or more. A 2nd and a 4th might be a little much, though, and you have to like the deal for the Kings for that reason.
Rangers Get Backman
New York Rangers acquired Christian Backman from the St. Louis Blues for a 4th round pick.
Your typical deadline deal, the type we’ve been seeing all day. After missing out on better defensemen, the Rangers had Backman, a 27 year old ‘prospect’ with some offensive upside. It’s a move for blueline depth, and it serves that purpose. For St. Louis, they get a mid-round pick for an expendable player while saving a little cash. Wash, rinse, repeat.
Hal Gill to Pitt
Pittsburgh Penguins have acquired Hal Gill from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a 2nd and a 5th round pick.
Wow is all I can say here. Kudos to Cliff Fletcher for getting a 2nd and a 5th for that stiff. TSN used their catch phrase of the day #2 (#1 is ‘The most surprising trade of the day’), calling Gill a “big body with a long stick,” whatever that means. The Leafs get more for Gill than could have been expected, while the Pens pick up a useful piece for the playoffs. Sure, he’s hated in Toronto, but who isn’t? They get a big bruising defenseman capable of handling power forwards and clearing out the traffic in front of the net. Looking at Pittsburgh’s potential match-ups, they’ll need his size and the depth he gives them.
Cooke for Pettinger
Washington Capitals acquired Matt Cooke from the Vancouver Canucks for Matt Pettinger.
The Canucks deal a fan favorite in Matt Cooke, though he has had some contract issues with the team and may have worn out his welcome with management. Initially I thought the Capitals had added another great piece for a playoff push, and they have, but this trade must be more even below the surface than I thought since the Canucks are in the thick of things in the West, too. Cooke has veered off a bit since his high-potential time before the lockout. Pettinger gives the Canucks a former 20-goal scorer with some toughness and even though he has just 7 points he should crack the third line. Pretty even deal here, hence the lack of real analysis in this paragraph, and the Capitals need a serious team bonding field trip to acclimate all of these new players. Farhan Lalji called this a swap of spare parts.
Federov to Capitals
Washington Capitals acquired Sergei Federov from the Columbus Blue Jackets for Ted Ruth.
The Capitals pick up a former Hart Trophy winner and an amazing two-way player. His speed has declined somewhat since his prime, but with a change of scenery and put on a line with other Russian superstars in Semin and Ovenchkin, he could provide glimpses of his old self. However, there is something that tells me that this is just too little too late. In 50 games this season he only has 9 goals and 5 powerplay points. To put that in perspective, Scott Nichol of the Predators has 9 goals in 55 games and Scott Nichol is a real piece of shit. My prediction, Fedorov gets 6 points in the first 10 games and then 0 points and is a healthy scratch by the end of the year. The good news for Washington is that they’re not on the hook for his salary for next year and can learn from this fuck-up as I am trying to learn from my wicked smart awesome ideas in Cuba.
For the BJs, they get a good prospect doing well in the NCAA for Notre Dame, a team that appears to have a chance to crack the Frozen Four this year. He is a long-term prospect, but in the short term Columbus saves a few dollars.
Analysis by Paul O’Neill
“Wow This Doesn’t Matter” Trade of the Day
New York Islanders acquired Rob Davison from the San Jose Sharks for a 7th round draft pick.
I hope you don’t actually expect us to blog about this one.
Foote Back to Colorado
Colorado Avalanche acquired Adam Foote from the Columbus Blue Jackets for a conditional first round draft pick and an additional conditional draft pick.
Adam Foote comes back to the Avalanche, along with pretty much everybody else from their past Stanley Cup runs. Foote is a mean defensive presence who bolsters a stacked Avalanche lineup. Foote is having a decent season with 15 points in 62 games this year and is a proven playoff performer. He is a shutdown defenseman with experience in big time games. He also provides leadership to an Avalanche team that is going to have a serious leadership problem, as in too much leadership, as in, who’s going to wear the pants in the dressing room?
The Blue Jackets get a first round pick and another conditional pick. WHAT? A first round pick for Adam Foote? This is a great pickup for the Blue Jackets who are once again…building for the future. It has to be incredibly frustrating to be a Blue Jackets’ fan (the one gay guy eating by himself in the corner of the JDUC). If there was a year where they would be a contender, this was their shot. At least they have the humility to know that they should be sellers once again.
Analysis by Paul O’Neill
Senators Add Lapointe
Ottawa Senators acquired Martin Lapointe from the Chicago Blackhawks for a 6th round pick.
The Senators pick up Marty Lapointe basically for nothing. The Blackhawks basically did this to save a little bit of pocket change, and the 6th round pick will be inconsequential. This is our typical rent-a-player deal, as the Sens needed some extra forward depth and veteran poise. Lapointe has almost 1000 games of NHL experience and while he’s never netted more than 27 goals or 57 points, he has been a consistent and reliable 3rd line forward for good teams in the past. He also has two Stanley Cup rings from his time with the Red Wings, which is probably the reason a few teams actually wanted this relative nobody.
Sharks Score with Sabres’ Campbell
San Jose Sharks acquired Brian Campell and a 7th round draft pick from the Buffalo Sabres for Steve Bernier and a 1st round pick.
The Sharks finally get the puck moving defenseman (most overused phrase in hockey) they’ve been clamoring for all year. All they had to give up was a struggling Steve Bernier and a first round pick. Campbell should help boost a surprisingly struggling Sharks offence (3rd last in the West in goals scored) and could be the final catalyst the Sharks need to explode on the West. With Nabokov having one of the best seasons of any goaltender in the NHL, the Sharks have the goaltending, forwards and defense set for a Stanley Cup run.
The Sabres get a young Steve Bernier in only his third NHL season. They acquire a huge body and a physical presence who can play a secondary scoring role as well as the role of crash-and-banger. Steve Bernier fits right in with the young core of players in Buffalo and provides a bright future for the Sabres’ forward core. He has a ton of potential and could blossom into a first line power forward putting up 70-80 points a season. The first round pick makes the deal oh so sweet as they get out of signing Campbell to a massive contract extension and further solidify their future.
Analysis by Paul O’Neill
Stars Win the Brad Richards Sweepstakes
Dallas Stars acquired Brad Richards and Johan Holmqvist from the Tampa Bay Lightning for Mike Smith, Jussi Jokinen, Jeff Halpern and a fourth round draft pick.
Huge deal for both sides, one would expect that Tampa would be able to get a little more for Richards if it weren’t for his salary. I really like this deal from Dallas’ perspective. Richards is two years removed from a 91 point season and is a former Conn Smythe trophy winner. Dallas is a lock to finish 2nd in the West and with Richards lighting it up on the powerplay (absolutely essential in the playoffs) Dallas has a legitimate shot at taking on the Wings in the conference finals.
Tampa picks up a quality young goaltender in Mike Smith who challenged Turco for the starting spot all throughout last season. He is signed for two more years and provides stability in Tampa’s net which they have been craving all year (all existence?). He had a 2.22GAA and 3 shutouts in 23 games last season. Tampa also picks up Jussi Jokinen who had a fantastic rookie year followed up by a tiny sophomore slump last year. If he is put in a scoring role with St. Louis and Lecavalier, the South East division could finally have another legitimate contender.
Analysis by Paul O’Neill
Capitals Land Huet
Washington Capitals acquired Christobal Huet from the Montreal Canadiens for a 2009 2nd round pick.
The Canadiens made a firm statement with this deal: 20-year old Carey Price is the goalie of the future. That statement makes a good deal of sense, as Price has always been a highly touted prospect and has had moderate success in his time at the big-league level so far this year, posting a .909 save percentage and one shutout in 26 games (25 starts). Price is a good looking goalie on and off the ice, and seems to have a solid career ahead of him. The Canadiens also got a 2nd round pick two years from now which could be useful as a future player or a tradable asset if they are competititve at this time next season.
For the Capitals, they add a much needed back-up behind Olaf Kolzig. Kolzig has been shaky with an .888 save percentage and Brent Johnson is not a reliable back-up for a team still looking to sneak into the playoffs. Kolzig is also 37 and is therefore not the goaltender of the future for this young team. Huet is just 32 and doesn’t have many miles on him, so it seems likely he will be the choice in net for the next few years while a young goalie develops in the minors (Neuvirth and Varlamov), though he is a free agent so they may have to pay for him to stay. Huet has done well in four seasons as a platoon goaltender, posting a career .917 save percentage and 2.49 GAA.
Very smart trade for both teams from a future perspective, though you have to question Montreal’s depth in the crease should Price falter under playoff pressure.
Ruutu Swapped for Ladd
Carolina Hurricances acquired Tuomo Ruutu from the Chicago Blackhawks for Andrew Ladd.
This was a bit of a shocking deal and broke the usual deadline mold. Normally, trades are veterans and playoff pieces for prospects and picks. This, however, is prospect for prospect between two teams from different ends of the spectrum. The Hurricanes are poised for a playoff run and Ruutu adds a little more polish and experience. He is not a big upgrade over Ladd, but gives the Hurricanes a more flashy forward with some serious toughness. For Chicago, Ladd is two years younger than Ruutu and probably has a higher upside. He also might fit better with the young core of Sharp-Kane-Toews. I would expect Chicago to save a little more cash and continue to build for the future by dealing Robert Lang and maybe Jason Williams later in the day.
Salei to the Avs
Colorado Avalanche acquired Ruslan Salei from the Florida Panthers for Karlis Skrastins and a 3rd round pick.
Again looking to add depth, the Avs pick up a veteran defenseman to add to the point for the playoff push. The Avs look determined to move out of the 10th seed in the West and get back to the promised land. They had to give up Skrastins to get him, so they are probably still looking to add another defenseman by the end of the day, but Salei is a huge offensive upgrade. Salei is also an additional power play option, with 8 of his 23 points this year coming with a man advantage. For Florida, Salei was expendable in a wasted year, and they save a little bit of cash for the rest of this season (though they spent it on Wade Belak). The third round pick is a good score for Florida, and the move opens up some extra playing time for their young D-men in Allen and Murphy.
Florida Panthers acquired Wade Belak from the Toronto Maple Leafs for a fifth round draft pick.
I’m not sure that Belak is the piece to push the Panthers over the top in the East. In fact, this deal is probably addition by subtraction in Toronto – when you don’t have any good players to protect, there is no point in having an enforcer. My philosophy on enforcers in hockey is that you only really need one if you have high-priced asset(s) to protect (e.g. Crosby, Ovechkin, etc). For the Panthers, Belak immediately becomes their top enforcer and despite playing only 30 games this year, he is their new leader in penalty minutes with 66 (since they traded Salei, who had 75). You can aruge that the Panthers needed a tough guy, but they won’t make the playoffs anyways so I question giving up anything to get a player that averages roughly 1 point every 20 games for his career.
Check this out for Kevin Smith’s take on the deal.
Jansen for Salvadore
New Jersey Deviles acquired Bryce Salvador from the St. Louis Blues for Cam Janssen.
The Devils shore up their defense a little bit heading into yet another playoff run. Salvador is a bit of an unknown for a 32 year old with over 400 games of NHL experience. While he is by no means an offensive threat (11 points in 56 games this year), he has a great plus-minus (+12) on a mediocre team. From Jersey’s point of view, it adds depth and an extra option for their third defensive pairing, plus some extra playoff experience (36 career playoff games). For the Blues, they get a little something in return for a player who was probably leaving via free agency this summer, and they save a small amount of cash for the rest of this season. Janssen has two years left at the league minimum salary, and at age 23 he has time to develop on this rebuilding Blues squad. Janssen has just 1 point in 95 career games, a startling number for a forward, but his value comes in his aggression and toughness, providing the Blues an enforcer of the future to protect some of their up-and-coming assets.
Flyers Get Prospal
Philadelphia Flyers have acquired Vaclav Prospal from the Tampa Bay Lightning for Alexandre Picard and a conditional draft pick.
The Lightning get a mid-level defense prospect in Picard for a player that obviously doesn’t figure in to their rebuilding plans. Prospal gives the Flyers a veteran scorer who has 57 points in 62 games this season. He is also an expiring contract, so the financial risk is low. Despite season-to-season inconsistency, Prospal has been around for some time, having scored 20 goals four times and 50 points seven times (he’s on pace for his third season of 70 points). For the Flyers, it is a move to fight off competition for the hotly contested lower seeds in the East, as Buffalo and the Islanders are both within striking distance. This is your typical NHL deadline trade, with a veteran being acquired for a playoff push for prospects and draft picks – in this case, it’s just slightly more mediocre than usual.
Avalanche Sign Forsberg
The Colorado Avalanche have agreed to a one-year, $5M contract with Peter Forsberg.
When prorated, the deal is only worth $1M. Still, that seems like a sizable bank roll for a guy who hasn’t been in the NHL since his disappointing stint in Nashville in a similar rental player role last year. Thought to be the key to the Predator Playoff Puzzle, Nashville fizzled out in five games. Sure, Forsberg had ankle problems and was far from 100%, but there is nothing saying that isn’t still the case right now. His heart is clearly in the right place, but his body simply may not hold up to the grind of the NHL any longer. If the Avs can get 12 games out of him the rest of the way (they have 19 remaining), they’ll consider themselves lucky. If they fail to make the playoffs, this was a waste of $1M. But if Forsberg can give the team a psychological boost and some playoff experience for the stretch run, the Avs may wind up in the playoffs rather than their current seed in the West, 10th. Forsberg averaged well over a point a game for his career, and with two Stanley Cup Rings he is a proven playoff performer. He has the heart and the credentials, and the financial risk is insignificant, but a lot of weight still rests on that on-again, off-again ankle for the next 19 (and more?) games.