Jay Bouwmeester traded to St. Louis

Jonathan Willis
April 01 2013 07:18PM

Photo: Resolute Wikimedia

According to multiple media reports, the Calgary Flames have sent veteran defenceman Jay Bouwmeester to the St. Louis Blues. Coming back is a conditional first round draft pick, as well as prospects Mark Cundari and Reto Berra.

The Return

The conditional first round draft choice. As per James Mirtle, the first round pick will be a 2013 selection if St. Louis makes the playoffs this season, and a 2014 pick if the Blues fail to make the playoffs. Should the first round pick be deferred to 2014, Calgary will also receive the Blues' fourth-round selection in 2013.

Mark Cundari. The soon to be 23-year old Cundari was never drafted, but plays a well-rounded game - he has ability with the puck, doesn't back down physically, and is strong positionally. The problem is that he's undersized for the position, listed at 5'10", 210 pounds. He's a decent prospect, but hardly a blue-chipper. The good news is that he's good enough to play regularly in the AHL right now.

Reto Berra. A fourth-round draft pick in 2006. Berra is likely best-known in North America for his work representing Switzerland at the World Juniors (he also played at the 2012 World Championships). He's spent the last few seasons in the top Swiss league, posting mediocre numbers (he has a 0.906 save percentage this season). The good news is that he's interested in coming to North America; the bad news is that based on his work overseas he may not have much of an impact.  

It's a very similar package to what the Flames received for Jarome Iginla: a first round draft pick and a pair of middling prospects that will fill depth roles but cannot be regarded as high-end acquisitions.

The Context

Bouwmeester led the Flames in ice-time this season, averaging 25:09 per game; he also led the Flames' blue line in quality of competition and the percentage of shifts started in the defensive zone. Elliotte Friedman tweets that the Blues will assume responsibility for the entirety of Bouwmeester's contract, saving the Flames $6.6 million dollars next season and slightly more ($6.68 million) in cap hit. 

However, on the same day that Buffalo dealt Robyn Regehr - older, not signed for next season, and averaging almost 7:00 less per game - for a pair of second round draft picks, the return for a legitimate top-pairing NHL defenceman like Bouwmeester seems underwhelming. With the additional context of the Douglas Murray trade (again, for two second round picks) days earlier, that feeling is reinforced. 

In the defence of Flames management, Bouwmeester's no-trade clause doubtless limited the number of teams they could negotiate with. Even so, this is clearly a trade that favours St. Louis - in a fight for their playoff lives, they managed to add a top-pairing defenceman for what is likely to be a middling first round pick and two guys they likely won't ever miss. 

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#2 the-wolf
April 01 2013, 08:41PM
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Speechless......

There was no rush here either. Wait until summer if you had to.

I understood the Iginla trade - UFA, owner and KK interference, 35 years old.

But this? Beyond pathetic. It seems obvious to me now that Feaster is trying to shortcut the process with older prospects who he thinks can step right in next season. Because he doesn't want an Oilers style rebuild.

The irony? These moves pretty much guarantee that we will be picking top 5 in the draft for years and rebuilding Oilers style.

What would Philly have paid at the draft for a quick turnaround?

And the apologists can shove it. Tired of their logic that states, "they got the best deal possible because that's the deal they made. No way could another GM have done better, Jay is obviously the standard, if there was better he'd have gotten it!"

Well, seeing what Regehr got today vs when we traded him blows that theory out of the water.

Feaster is a bumbling idiot and needs to be dismissed this summer. No more big name trades until a new GM is in place. Feaster can trade the Babchuks, but that's it.

Better quit laughing at the Oil folks, it's going to be 5 long years minimum, you know, of "wandering in the desert."

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#3 Stockley
April 01 2013, 08:59PM
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Kypreos wrote:

I would sooner have a first in a deep draft and two prospects for Leopold and 3rd.

All day long baby!

If the Blues fail to make the playoffs we instead get a high pick in a less deep 2014 draft.

Give me a minute munching defenceman or a more substantial return all day long baby.

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#4 FireOnIce
April 01 2013, 07:26PM
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...and goalie Reto Barra.

Wow. It really is time to fire Feaster. More magic beans for the heaping pile of BS that is the Calgary Flames.

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#5 Craig
April 01 2013, 07:27PM
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Welp two elite players gone... not a single relevant prospect to be seen. What trade will underwhelm us next!

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#6 dotfras
April 01 2013, 07:27PM
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Like the first, (definitely cheering for the Blues to claim 8th seed in the West), not sold on two guys who probably won't play in the NHL.

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#7 Austin
April 01 2013, 07:32PM
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How come we can't get any really good prospects?!?!?! Seriously!!!!!! My goodness! Who the heck are these guys. Kipper is obviously being traded by CGY since we have MacDonald, Ramo, Brossoit, Tayllor, Ortio, and this new guy. Holy crap we better get something good from Kipper.

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#8 negrilcowboy
April 01 2013, 07:32PM
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berra is a 26 yr old, yikes. this has gotta be an april fools joke right jay?

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#9 Baalzamon
April 01 2013, 07:34PM
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@Franko J

Apparently the Flames have allowed Toronto to talk to Kiprusoff about a hypothetical extension. Seems to me... that the Flames think Berra might be another option vs. Ramo.

Commence Feaster's press conference where he blatantly and shamelessly oversells these to random players he just acquired for no particular reason.

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#10 schevvy
April 01 2013, 07:35PM
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Sigh...quality is way better than quantity Feaster. Yuck

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#11 FireOnIce
April 01 2013, 07:36PM
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While I'm not sure of the accuracy of this (given that it's April 1st), here's what Cam Charron had to say on Twitter re: Barra

Cam Charron ‏@camcharron

"The Flames prospect goaltender pool is too crowded. Nobody goes there anymore." -Reto Berra

So... a low 2013 (or 2014) 1st rounder, and a D prospect. For an elite-level defenseman that plays 30 minutes a night.

Wow. FIRE JAY FEASTER! Next thing, he'll be double booking Celine Dion concerts the same night as Flames game.

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#12 MC Hockey
April 01 2013, 07:38PM
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@FireOnIce

Quote "Wow. FIRE JAY FEASTER! Next thing, he'll be double booking Celine Dion concerts the same night as Flames game"....hilarious! Just needed good old Ed McMahon beside you saying HEYO!

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#13 mk
April 01 2013, 07:39PM
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I can't believe Buffalo was able to get two 2nd round picks for Regehr; what did we get? Ugh.

Feaster's track record is so...underwhelming.

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#14 schevvy
April 01 2013, 07:41PM
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At this rate...Flames should've kept Sutter.

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#15 First Name Unidentified
April 01 2013, 07:41PM
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dang! I was hoping we would do the Jbo to Ottawa for Bishop deal. This is getting worse in terms of returns. Even Reghier got 2 seond rounders...

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#16 First Name Unidentified
April 01 2013, 07:42PM
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@schevvy

Totally agree with you, at least Sutter would have done better negotiating

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#17 Franko J
April 01 2013, 07:44PM
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As of April 28th the current regime should be gutted. From the President on down to the coaching staff. If the Flames are making trades like this one Feaster and company surely have no clue to building a team. As well, the ownership appears that they are going on the cheap side of a roster. Maybe they want to recoup past financial losses. Can we say salary dump?

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#18 Jonathan Happy
April 01 2013, 07:45PM
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Mitch P wrote:

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I imagine the chances of that first rounder (J-Bo) working out better than either of the two second rounders (Regehr) are pretty good. Toss in a couple 'who knows' prospects and think we got a better return for J-Bo.

Yeah. Barely.

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#19 Double Dion
April 01 2013, 07:45PM
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I am once again underwhelmed Jay. At least we're getting picks. Hopefully we don't use them on guys playing midget AA in Quebec. He`d better draft well, because none of the guys he`s picked up are going to be players.

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#20 Mitch P
April 01 2013, 07:47PM
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There's enough knee-jerk reaction happening in this thread that five people just tore their ACL.

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#21 Kevin R
April 01 2013, 07:49PM
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I'm speechless! WTF! A conditional freaking 1st. Part of the appeal of this 1st to St Louis is it may have been a potential lotto pick if they bubbled. I cant believe this. Maybe we'll get a 5th for Kipper & 3rd for GlenX. & while we're at it how about trading Sven so we can get our 2nd back. OMG! I wanna puke.

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#22 RKD
April 01 2013, 07:51PM
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We all hoped the Flames got returns like these: Kassian/Myers, Depres/Matta/Bennett/ Rattie

So for trading Jay-Bo and Iggy Feaster has landed:

Hanowski/Agostino/Cundari/Berra/

plus a first round pick and a conditional first round pick.

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#23 mk
April 01 2013, 07:51PM
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On a side note, how bad is our defense now?

- Wideman - Giordano - Brodie - Butler - Smith? - Babchuk? - Sarich?

Wow.

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#24 Double Dion
April 01 2013, 07:51PM
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I sometimes think Feaster assumes he`s smarter than everyone else. It is a little problematic for me. We do a lot of off-the-board type things.

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#25 the forgotten man
April 01 2013, 07:55PM
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I've said it once and I'll say it again...quality over quantity. No more us trading one guy for 3+ assets/picks. Either trade straight up man for man, or holy hell maybe we can package a bunch of our crap for another teams decent asset.

Frustrating...

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#26 Baalzamon
April 01 2013, 07:56PM
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It's actually a guaranteed 1st. The condition is WHEN not if. If the Blues make the playoffs, it's a 2013 1st rounder. If they don't, it's a 2014 1st and a 2013 4th.

That's not something to complain about, IMO. Frankly, it's kind of funny: the Blues want insurance against the Bouwmeester playoff curse.

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#28 mk
April 01 2013, 07:57PM
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the forgotten man wrote:

I've said it once and I'll say it again...quality over quantity. No more us trading one guy for 3+ assets/picks. Either trade straight up man for man, or holy hell maybe we can package a bunch of our crap for another teams decent asset.

Frustrating...

That's the entire problem - no other GM wants to trade quality for quantity. Feaster might be killing the franchise by a thousand cuts.

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#29 Chris Fairfield
April 01 2013, 08:02PM
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Franko J wrote:

As of April 28th the current regime should be gutted. From the President on down to the coaching staff. If the Flames are making trades like this one Feaster and company surely have no clue to building a team. As well, the ownership appears that they are going on the cheap side of a roster. Maybe they want to recoup past financial losses. Can we say salary dump?

DAMMIT FEASTER!

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#30 ChinookArch
April 01 2013, 08:03PM
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Feaster said that there was a lot of interest in Bouwmeester, but that the cap hit was to big, and some teams couldn't make it work. Why didn't he eat some of the contract?

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#31 Emir
April 01 2013, 08:03PM
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I'm really beginning to struggle on how I support jay anymore. Really thought we would do better when trading jbo.

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#32 the forgotten man
April 01 2013, 08:03PM
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Rob wrote:

Too funny...

Lets see what pro man has to say

"Mark Cundari could quite possibly be the best defensemen in the Blues' minor league system. Cundari had a stellar junior performance with the Windsor Spitfires of the OHL, and after he was signed as a free agent by the Blues, he was an instant success at the AHL level with the Rivermen in 2010-11. In 69 games played in his rookie season, Cundari had 10 goals and 30 points with a plus-6 rating."

Sounds ok to me, maybe even a tj Brodie who can hit!

5'9"...he'll fit in with our smurf village forwards.

Is it an improvement going from oldest team to smallest team? Maybe I skipped that class.

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#33 Stockley
April 01 2013, 08:04PM
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No one will ever convince me that two prospects you need hockeydb.com to identify and a conditional 1st was the best Feaster could do for a player like Bouwmeester. I don't understand how these guys still have jobs. A handicapped monkey on acid could do a better job than this. I would have been more content to see them take on some of Jay's salary and get back more legitimate prospects.

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#34 negrilcowboy
April 01 2013, 08:09PM
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ChinookArch wrote:

Feaster said that there was a lot of interest in Bouwmeester, but that the cap hit was to big, and some teams couldn't make it work. Why didn't he eat some of the contract?

if there's one thing feaster is apparently talented at it would be eating.

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#35 FireOnIce
April 01 2013, 08:09PM
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ChinookArch wrote:

Feaster said that there was a lot of interest in Bouwmeester, but that the cap hit was to big, and some teams couldn't make it work. Why didn't he eat some of the contract?

Feaster either cannot read, or he chooses to just ignore the CBA. Proclaiming that the cap hit was "too harsh" for some teams just means he should've eaten some of it. Besides, it's only this season and next.

Eat even $2.8M of JBo's salary, make him a $4M D-man and he's all of a sudden palatable. But that didn't happen.

Hence, Feaster is illiterate, or just flat out doesn't bother reading the CBA (or doesn't care what it says). I mean, he IS the smartest person in the room at all points in time, right?

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#36 piscera.infada
April 01 2013, 08:13PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

If Bouwmeester and Regehr (or Murray, for that matter) were identical players, the Flames absolutely came away with a steal here.

But they aren't. Bouwmeester is significantly better, and commanded only a marginally bigger return.

Unfortunately, both Regehr and Murray don't have 6.8 million dollar cap hits (Regher at 4 million next year, Murray 2.5 million dollars).

While I can appreciate people thinking these last two trades were "underwhelming" who did you think we would get? Teams are not looking to overpay for players with large contracts who haven't played on a competitive team for the last three years (unless you think battling for the final playoff spot, only to come up short is competitive.

As was stated in a comment on an earlier article about the Iginla trade - 'teams do not value players based on the fuzzy feelings of a playoff run 9 years ago.' They also don't value players based on the fact that they played amazingly in Florida 4 years ago. I understand Bouwmeester eats up minutes, and he's having a (relatively) good season. But he has still for all intents and purposes been a colossal bust for the Flames.

You can't call for a rebuild, and then whine and moan when it happens. I, for one am excited about what we're doing. Perhaps we aren't getting Tarasenko's or Matta's (the 'blue chip guys'). But were we really expecting that?

If you were, you're dreaming.

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#37 Colin
April 01 2013, 08:14PM
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I've given the benefit of the doubt to Feaster before, I defended him in the ROR debacle and how a person with a law background could interpret the MOU with regards to RFA players coming from Europe to play here he might not have been subject to waivers. I even defended him on the Iginla trade, I expected it to be a low return.

However this is unexceptable, I don't care about the NTC or whatever. He had an assest that wanted to be moved, it shouldn't be hard to move him. It also shouldn't be hard to get a good return.

This is unexceptable, the return on bouwmeester is hot garbage unless STL is the lowest point team to get into the playoffs and is bounced first round. As of right now I am calling for the firing of Feaster after every decision he makes, his decision making is crap. The best feaster is going to be able to say is atleast the Heat might be good in a couple of years.

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#38 Kevin R
April 01 2013, 08:15PM
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Captain Ron wrote:

LOL Babchuk probably plays in this one

Well buddy, God help us. I think I will be walking Molly a little longer tonight. I'm just sick about this. I have no faith in Feaster anymore. This looks like a mad salary dump. I wonder if Edwards is so pissed that we had to move Iggy to a real contender, he's saying, why spend over the floor for this garbage. Cant blame him myself. I never thought this team would wander in the desert like they this one is about to. I hear Kipper is talking extension with the Leafs, maybe we can get an upgrade to a 5th rounder if that happens. God help us.

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#39 Franko J
April 01 2013, 08:16PM
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Baalzamon wrote:

Apparently the Flames have allowed Toronto to talk to Kiprusoff about a hypothetical extension. Seems to me... that the Flames think Berra might be another option vs. Ramo.

Commence Feaster's press conference where he blatantly and shamelessly oversells these to random players he just acquired for no particular reason.

Maybe Berra and Baertschi are buddies.

However if Berra is another option I guess this team has no confidence with Taylor.

Again this team has failed to make a true impact to the roster.

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#40 MakaVillian
April 01 2013, 08:20PM
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ChinookArch wrote:

Feaster said that there was a lot of interest in Bouwmeester, but that the cap hit was to big, and some teams couldn't make it work. Why didn't he eat some of the contract?

Maybe Ownership isn't willing to eat any money in these trades, I mean I can't believe its just Feaster that has the final say on the money front.

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#41 Gusset
April 01 2013, 08:30PM
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Lol, way to go feaster. Gave away our best d man for an ahl d, Henrie karlson type goalie and the 20 to 25 th draft pick. Really? I mean really? You incompetence has officially become comical. I'm interested to see what you hav given kipper away for.. Two ahl 3rd liners and a 5th? The heat will be a really good team I guess.

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#42 Jeff Lebowski
April 01 2013, 08:39PM
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Everyone wanted first round draft picks when the talk on this forum was about trading the best players. Feaster did that. Plus two other assets. Again. Or he got two picks (1,4) plus two players. For J (4 goals/season in CGY) Bo.

What are you all belly aching about?

Regher, Murray 2 seconds. What should JBo net?

Did you really think JBo would net a top prospect plus a 1st? Or a top prospect alone?

Show me a trade where a top prospect was involved? Who were the principals?

Also this sets up for an oiler scenario. Get the 1 st overall ( or at least top 5) for a few years in a row. You all wanted a rebuild.

Ekblad, McDavid, Day here we come!

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#43 clYDE
April 01 2013, 08:40PM
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Just went on some St. Louis sites. They are shocked they got a first pairing def for a 20-25 draft a 5-6 def at best and a goalie who isn't expected to be able to play here. Especially with def at such a premium. I am shocked as well. This is beyond unbelievable.

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#44 Stockley
April 01 2013, 08:43PM
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Gusset wrote:

Lol, way to go feaster. Gave away our best d man for an ahl d, Henrie karlson type goalie and the 20 to 25 th draft pick. Really? I mean really? You incompetence has officially become comical. I'm interested to see what you hav given kipper away for.. Two ahl 3rd liners and a 5th? The heat will be a really good team I guess.

At this point, with the way he's been playing, we might be lucky to get some magic beans for Kipper. He looks all used up this year.

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#45 Colin
April 01 2013, 08:45PM
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GOOD NEWS, Colorado won and we're gonna lose, so while Feaster stockpiles draft picks that are gonna spend four years in College at least our own pick should be high.

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#46 Ken V.
April 01 2013, 08:45PM
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I laugh and call everyone in management as&holes when we don't win the lotto pick. If JBo was an RFA then someone would send him an offer sheet so we should have got unconditional 1st and 3rd or prospect with an ounce of potential.

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#47 Stockley
April 01 2013, 08:45PM
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the-wolf wrote:

Speechless......

There was no rush here either. Wait until summer if you had to.

I understood the Iginla trade - UFA, owner and KK interference, 35 years old.

But this? Beyond pathetic. It seems obvious to me now that Feaster is trying to shortcut the process with older prospects who he thinks can step right in next season. Because he doesn't want an Oilers style rebuild.

The irony? These moves pretty much guarantee that we will be picking top 5 in the draft for years and rebuilding Oilers style.

What would Philly have paid at the draft for a quick turnaround?

And the apologists can shove it. Tired of their logic that states, "they got the best deal possible because that's the deal they made. No way could another GM have done better, Jay is obviously the standard, if there was better he'd have gotten it!"

Well, seeing what Regehr got today vs when we traded him blows that theory out of the water.

Feaster is a bumbling idiot and needs to be dismissed this summer. No more big name trades until a new GM is in place. Feaster can trade the Babchuks, but that's it.

Better quit laughing at the Oil folks, it's going to be 5 long years minimum, you know, of "wandering in the desert."

We'll be lucky if it's just 5 years at this rate. Holy crap.

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#48 negrilcowboy
April 01 2013, 08:51PM
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feaster claiming they realy wanted berra, best goalie not playing in the nhl. geez here we go again. feaster translated into english means roll up your pants, your shoes are covered in chit.

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#49 Ted
April 01 2013, 08:53PM
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Very disappointed in this deal. A d-man who projects, at best, to be a third pairing. Another goalie "prospect" who is not even considered a prospect by Hockey Future. The real kick in the nuts has to be the conditional nature of the 1st round pick.

Feaster didn't need to trade Jay Bo. My question now is why trade just for the sake of making a trade?

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#50 Stockley
April 01 2013, 08:53PM
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negrilcowboy wrote:

feaster claiming they realy wanted berra, best goalie not playing in the nhl. geez here we go again. feaster translated into english means roll up your pants, your shoes are covered in chit.

For a best goalie playing in Europe he has pretty pedestrian statistics.

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