This is Sarah Jessica Parker. All of North America was swept up with NHL trades yesterday and there’s a "tell" about possible Oiler trades. Once again, the deadline is all about the blue.
Injuries to defensemen are going to happen during the long run to the Stanley. The best recent example were the 2006 Buffalo Sabres. The club started the playoffs with the following players on D:
- Teppo Numminen (later lost to hip flexor)
- Henrik Tallinder (later lost to broken left arm)
- Dmitri Kalinin (later lost to broken ankle)
- Toni Lydman
- Brian Campbell
- Jay McKee (later lost to infected shin)
You know, that’s a nice group of defensemen. No Pronger in the 6, but veterans with the ability to make plays in big games and a couple of puck movers too. Here’s what they looked like in G7 of the conference final later that spring:
- Brian Campbell
- Toni Lydman
- Rory Fitzpatrick
- Doug Janik
- Jeff Jillson
- Nathan Paetsch
Buffalo has horrible luck as an organization, but that’s a devastating change in what was about 7 weeks of playoff hockey. For that reason, NHL teams stock up on defensemen at the blueline. Who can blame them?
Yesterday, the NHL exploded with deadline deals. I can’t imagine the actual deadline being as busy, and the talent that was exchanged is breathtaking. Here’s a quick rundown:
- Colorado acquired goalie Brian Elliott from Ottawa for G Craig Anderson. Avs clearly had no interest in keeping Anderson around and get an inexpensive option with some NHL experience. Sens will see what Anderson can do over the rest of the season and may re-sign him. Looks like a blah trade, but you never know.
- San Jose acquired D Ian White from Carolina for a 2012 2nd rd pick. A couple of things about this trade: I don’t think SJS gave up much when you consider that pick will likely be in the 50’s. Also, the fact that the Hurricanes wanted a pick in 2012 is a tell in terms of the quality and depth of this year’s draft. Good deal for the Sharks.
- Tampa Bay acquires D Eric Brewer from St. Louis for D Brock Beukeboom and a 3rd rd pick in 2011. Brewer hadn’t been in the black plus minus since 2000-01; he’s healthy and can help a defense. Beukeboom is a hitter and he can skate, and that combination added to size (he’s 6.02, 200) make him an attractive prospect. I suspect he’s from the Matt Greene tree, although I haven’t seen him play. The pick is another bullet. I think Yzerman did very well, but the Blues did too. Helps both teams.
- Atlanta acquired F Blake Wheeler and D Mark Stuart from Boston for F Rich Peverley and D Boris Valabik. This was a salary dump for the Bruins, but the did well in getting a skill player like Peverley. Wheeler gives the Thrashers more size and Stuart is an NHL defenseman–a very valuable item at this time of year. Thrashers win the trade, and could win it by a nice margin if they can sign Stuart to a reasonable deal before July 1.
- Boston acquired D Tomas Kaberle from Toronto for C Joe Colborne, Boston’s 1st rd pick in 2011 and a conditonal 2nd rd pick in 2012. I think Boston got a fine player and gave up less than what one might believe at first blush. Colborne has stalled in the AHL (but he’s a rookie pro, so there’s time) and that first round pick is likely to be 25-30. Burke did okay, but I do believe he could have gotten more one year ago.
- St. Louis acquired F Chris Stewart, D Kevin Shattenkirk and a conditional 2011 or 2012 2nd rd pick from Colorado for D Erik Johnson, F Jay McClement and a condtional 1st rd pick in 2011 or 2012. This is the kind of trade that will probably cost someone their job. When you deal a first overall pick (Johnson) you better be right. Doug Armstrong is rather new to the job and this could cost him the rest of the honeymoon. Shattenkirk looks like a really good young puck mover and Stewart is a big man with skill, but that first overall pick still has time to turn into Rod Langway. If injuries don’t end a career here, I think Colorado wins the trade because Johnson could be an absolute killer for a decade rolling forward.
What does this mean? I suspect the Oilers have calls coming in about Penner, Hemsky, Cogliano and other forwards, but even the Oilers will have some teams knocking and asking about defense. Vandermeer, Smid, Gilbert?
You never know. Silly season is even sillier this year.
It’s the second edition of Nation Radio today at noon on Team 1260. I’d love your emails (firstname.lastname@example.org) and hope you can tune in.