Now that the witching hour has passed, lets talk about playoff bound teams that have addressed needs, winners and losers etc. I’m going to focus on the last two days because the most significant deals went down then except for the Miller/Ott for Halak/Stewart trade which happened last week.
The Sabres traded their captain, Steve Ott and G Ryan Miller to the Blues for G Jaro Halak and RW Stewart. Even though they traded goalies, the Blues relieved a logjam at the goalie position because they have a clear cut # 1 (Miller) and # 2 Brian Elliot. The Sabres promptly sent Halak to the Capitals and in return received G Michael Neuvirth and D man Rusty Klesla. Sabres got younger in goal and Stewart is a feisty 30-40 points a year guy. Blues are trying to get by the LA Kings and win the Cup this year.
Ryan Callahan for Martin St. Louis, bit of a head scratcher to this observer because Callahan has more upside than St. Louis because of his age. Tampa GM Stevie Y moved him allegedly at his request because of an Olympic roster snub? According to reports, the Rangers and Callahan were only a half million per year apart in their negotiations. Callahan kinda looks greedy and is going from being a star on Broadway to the NHL equivalent of the boonies . Curious to say the least.
Marion Gaborik to the LA Kings from the Columbus BJs for Matt Frattin and a second and a third round pick. Good trade for the Kings if Gaborik stays healthy, an iffy proposition at best. LA GM Dean Lombardi also added a young D man Brayden McNabb, who has a total of 37 NHL games under his belt. Lots of draft picks being exchanged, Kings win that because they get two seconds from 2014 and 2015 from the Sabres.
The Buffalo Sabres continue to rid themselves of very good players by trading W Matt Moulson to the Minnesota Wild for Torrey Mitchell and two second round picks. It seems to me that new Buffalo GM Tim Murray is shedding any player his predecessors Darcy Regier and Pat LaFontaine brought to the team and is stockpiling draft picks from premier teams he is trading with. For instance, that second round pick from the Wild would be approximately the 50th pick. Good or bad? Can’t rate the picks for years for obvious reasons…
With the picks acquired in the Ryan Miller trade, a first and a third rounder from the Blues, they would be picking at the end of the rounds as well. So while socking away picks is good, the draft order matters and the picks from the Blues will be later in the rounds than Minnesota. Yeah, I’m confused also.
Going forward, forward David Legwand, arguably Mr. Nashville Predator,was traded to the Detroit Dead Things for Patrick Eaves, a fourth liner.
Les Habitantes de Montreal win the Tomas Vanek sweepstakes, sending a minor leaguer to the Islanders in return.
Boston adds blueline depth with the addition of Andrei Meszaros from the Flyers. He was deemed expendable by Philly with the addition of Andrew MacDonald from the Islanders. Flyers seem to be the winners in this one, giving up a minor league player and two draft picks for the NHLs shot blocking leader.
The dizzying pace continues…
Dustin ‘Pancakes’ Penner is moved again at the deadline going from the Ducks to the Capitals for a 4th round pick? Come on, what the hell is wrong with big D? He has two Cups, yet seems to be deemed expendable fairly often..
Lastly and leastly, the Vancouver Funucks Cafucks or whatever you wanna call the ongoing soap opera in BC, got rid of Luongo finally. Hey that kinda rhymes. I hear he has a home in South Florida, that’s comforting to me.
Winners: Kings, Wild, Flyers Canadiens. Losers Islanders, Sabres Canucks.
The best part of the year is ahead, looking forward to rating these moves after the playoffs. Sometimes they look great on paper and turn out to be meaningless. Yet, hope springs eternal in the best tournament on the planet,
THE NHL PLAYOFFS!!! 4/16/14