By: Rossy Pasternak
The NHL trade deadline is now officially over, and what a boring deadline day it was. For the purpose of this article, the start of the trade deadline is going to be the Dion Phaneuf trade, as it really kicked off the trading season in the NHL.
Dion Phaneuf to the Ottawa Senators
Toronto gets: D, Jared Cowan; F, Colin Greening; F Milan Michalek; F, Tobias Lindberg; 2017 2nd round pick.
Ottawa gets: D, Dion Phaneuf; F, Matt Frattin; F, Casey Bailey; F, Ryan Rupert; D, Cody Donaghey.
Toronto: The Leafs got a good haul for Dion Phaneuf – which is something I thought I would never say. The fact that the Leafs got rid of Phaneuf, without keeping part of his salary, is a win in itself. Add on the good prospect in Lindberg, and a second round pick, and this is a great trade for the Leafs. Cowan will be bought out in exchange for cap space this summer, as a result of a quirk in his contract. Michalek and Greening will serve as veterans for the remainder of the season, and until they get traded at the deadline next season.
Ottawa: For a small-market, low budget team, this is a curious move. The Sens gave up good value for the burden of a huge contract. Phaneuf is a very good second pairing defenseman, and will probably play well for Ottawa. The problem is, they are using $7M in cap space on him for the next five years. The extras in this trade are players who will most likely either leave the organization in the offseason, or be AHL depth.
Verdict: Leafs win by default because they get rid of Phaneuf’s contract.
Sharks Add Depth
Toronto gets: F, Raffi Torres; 2017 and 2018 2nd round picks.
Colorado gets: F, Nick Spaling; D, Roman Polak
Toronto: The Leafs maximized Polak and Spaling’s value with this trade. Getting a 2nd rounder for each of the players is something no one thought would happen, and is likely a result of the Leafs also taking on Raffi Torres’ contract, creating more cap space for the Sharks.
San Jose: The Sharks did well to add two very good depth pieces. Polak can slot in on the third pairing, and provide some great defence there. Spaling can centre the third line and bring a shut-down presence to the Sharks lineup down the middle.
Verdict: The Sharks do well to get some good players, but they overpay. Only time will tell how these picks work out, but for now, Leafs win.
Chicago Brings Back Andrew Ladd
Chicago gets: F, Andrew Ladd; D, Jay Harrison; F, Matt Fraser.
Winnipeg gets: F, Marko Dano; 2016 1st round pick; conditional 3rd round pick.
Chicago: The Blackhawks brought in a player with exceptional leadership and hockey abilities. The top-6 forwards for the Blackhawks are now arguably the best in the NHL. Jonathan Toews and Marian Hossa have a new linemate who fits perfectly with their games, and can add to the offence.
Winnipeg: The Jets cut bait on their captain, who would have left in free agency anyways. Getting top prospect Dano, along with a 1st round pick, and a conditional 2018 third that they only get if Chicago wins the Stanley Cup in 2016. That is a great package in return for a pure rental player.
Verdict: Both teams got what they want in this trade, but Chicago is the team that moves closer to winning the Stanley Cup. For that reason, the Blackhawks are the winners of this deal.
The Blackhawks Keep Adding
Chicago gets: F, Tomas Fleischmann; F, Dale Weise.
Montreal gets: F, Phillip Danault; 2018 2nd round pick.
Chicago: The Blackhawks, after already bolstering their top-6, bolster their depth forwards with this deal. Weise and Fleischmann both provide secondary scoring; Weise via his grit, and Fleischmann with his speed.
Montreal: The Canadiens’ big prize in this deal is the centre, Danault. In his first game as a Hab against the Maple Leafs, Danault showcased his speed and skill, and generally had a very good game. This trade allows for Montreal to see what they have in their young players, and so far, they have to like what they see.
Verdict: Again, the win goes to the Blackhawks because it improves their cup-contending roster.
Florida Makes a Flurry of Moves
Florida gets: F, Jiri Hudler (Calgary); F, Teddy Purcell (Edmonton); D, Jakub Kindl (Detroit).
Calgary gets: 2016 2nd round pick, 2018 4th round pick.
Edmonton gets: 2016 3rd round pick.
Detroit gets: 2017 6th round pick.
Florida: These trades provide Florida with enough depth and talent to be seriously considered a contender to come out of the Eastern Conference in this years playoffs. Kindl is a good depth defenseman who can help out while Willie Mitchell gets healthy. Hudler and Purcell slot into the already deep lineup, and provide more scoring and grit to this team. The Panthers are a team who should be feared come playoff time.
Calgary: This is the best the Flames could do for Hudler, who his having a down year compared to last season. This is probably fair value for him.
Edmonton: I personally don’t think Purcell is worth the third rounder, but it was the going rate for players like him.
Detroit: A 6th round pick isn’t much, but then again, neither is Kindl.
Verdict: The Panthers acquired three players who will help their current roster, and bring them closer to coming out of the East. Florida wins, but they gave up a lot of value in terms of picks.
Justin Schultz Gets a New Home
Pittsburgh gets: D, Justin Schultz.
Edmonton gets: 2016 3rd round draft pick.
Pittsburgh: The Penguins take a chance on Justin Schultz, who has struggled for the past while. Schultz this year only has 10 points in his 45 games, and is a horrible -22. This is a pretty low price to pay for a defenseman who was once considered a very promising player. If Schultz can find his game, this is a great trade for Jim Rutherford and the Penguins.
Edmonton: The Oilers did well in getting pretty good value for Schultz, considering that he has struggled mightily this season.
Verdict: Honestly, this is one of the hardest trades to deliver a verdict on. In my opinion, the Oilers won because I think Schultz will continue to struggle.
Eric Staal Leaves One Brother for Another
New York gets: F, Eric Staal.
Carolina gets: F, Aleksi Saarela; 2016 2nd round pick; 2017 second round pick.
Rangers: The Rangers somehow added to this very good roster. When Henrik Lundqvist is on your team, you better go for it – and that is what the Rangers are doing. Staal is a great addition for the Blueshirts, and will have every opportunity to increase his value for free agency, while also competing for a Stanley Cup.
Carolina: Saarela is a decent prospect, but the two 2nd rounders carry the real value of this deal. The Hurricanes had no leverage for this trade, but somehow managed to get those picks and a pretty good prospect. Staal may even return to Carolina, his home since he was drafted, this offseason to play with brother Jordan once again.
Verdict: This is a win-win trade, but the Rangers get the W because of the immediate impact of the deal.
Colorado Makes Two Additions
Colorado gets: F, Mikkel Boedker (Arizona); D, Eric Gelinas (New Jersey).
Arizona gets: F, Alex Tanguay; F, Conner Bleackley; D, Kyle Wood.
New Jersey gets: 2017 3rd round pick.
Colorado: The Avalanche manage to make themselves serious favourites to lock up a wild card spot in the West with these trades. Boedker adds to an already crazy good forward group, while Gelinas will help shore up the iffy defence. These trades would be great for a contending team, but for the Avs, it only marginally helps their situation. Barring a massive upset, Colorado will not make it out of the first round, which brings me to question why these trades were necessary. The Gelinas deal makes more sense, since he has another year on his deal.
Arizona: The ‘Yotes do well to get value for a pending UFA that they weren’t going to sign.
New Jersey: Gelinas couldn’t consistently crack the Devils’ lineup, and this trade allows them to get value back for him while giving more time to more promising players.
Verdict: All three teams did well in these deals, but I give the nod to both Arizona and New Jersey, who managed to get more value from their assets than Colorado will.
Dallas Gets Even Better
Dallas gets: D, Kris Russell
Calgary gets: D, Jyrki Jokipakka; F, Brett Pollock; Conditional 2016 2nd round pick.
Dallas: Dallas acquired someone who will play on their second pairing, and fill a hole in the lineup. Unfortunately, they paid a premium for him, and it is a deal that will likely come back to bite them in the future. For this season however, this is a good deal for the Stars, since they have Stanley Cup aspirations.
Calgary: Calgary took one of the most overrated players on the trade market, and got back arguably the best package received for any player. Jokipakka will most likely end up having a long career as a bottom-pairing defenseman, and Pollock will be an effective NHLer. The best part of the deal for the Flames however is the conditional 2nd round pick, which becomes a 1st rounder if the Stars make it to the Conference Finals with Russell playing 50% of the games in rounds 1 and 2.
Verdict: The Flames win this trade because of the huge package they received in return for Russell.
Jamie McGinn Goes Back to the West
Anaheim gets: F, Jamie McGinn.
Buffalo gets: Conditional 3rd round pick.
Anaheim: The Ducks moved out Patrick Maroon for a prospect and a 4th round pick in 2016, so in essence, they replaced Maroon with McGinn. McGinn is the better player, and brings more natural skill to the Ducks lineup while still matching Maroon’s size and determination. The Ducks have been on fire lately, and McGinn will only help.
Buffalo: The Sabres cut bait on one of their expiring deals, and get good value back. The pick is a 3rd in 2016, but if the Ducks make the Conference Finals with McGinn playing more than 50% of the playoff games, the pick becomes a 2017 second rounder.
Verdict: This is a cheap addition for the Ducks, and one that should help. They gave up a lot for him, but also got most of it back via Maroon’s trade. Ducks win.
That is a wrap for the NHL Trade Deadline! It has been an exciting few weeks, and these are only some of the trades that took place. Lee Stepniak and John-Michael Liles were both shipped out to Boston, and the Canadiens swapped Devante Smith-Pelly for the Devils’ Stefan Matteau. These trades, and many others, were some of the more minor trades we didn’t cover.
It will take time to tell who wins these trades – possibly a decade, with all the draft picks swapped. What do you think of the trades? Do you agree with my analysis? Disagree? What trades do you think were the most significant? Comment below!
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