Last week NHL general managers (GMs) managed to break an all-time record for most trades in any single trade-deadline day. A total of 31 trades were made involving a total of 55 players, who now have new home teams, new jerseys and one-way tickets straight out of town. Since the Olympic break ended, nearly every NHL team has been involved in one transaction or another. Just like any trade deadline, however, there were some teams more active than others. Here, the Manitoban summons the power of augury to assess the moves of last week’s major players.
Who’s in: Aaron Ward, Curtis McElhinney, Joey MacDonald, Lubomir Visnovsky, Nathan Oystrick
Who’s out: Justin Pogge, Vesa Toskala, Ryan Whitney, Nick Boynton, Petteri Nokelainen, Evgeny Artyukhin
Forecast: The Ducks basically got back the same types of players they traded away. There are about six untouchables in Anaheim, everyone else can be shuffled accordingly.
Who’s in: Dennis Seidenberg, Matthew Bartkowski, Steven Kampfer
Who’s out: Derek Morris, Byron Bitz, Craig Weller
Forecast: Last place in the league in offence, the Bruins will look to defenseman Dennis Seidenberg to lead the scoring charge. Apparently they will also look to Tim Thomas to chip in a few before the season is over.
Who’s in: Andy Delmore, Steve Staios, Vesa Toskala
Who’s out: Riley Armstrong, Aaron Johnson, Dustin Boyd, Curtis McElhinney
Forecast: Short of trading away players they just acquired, the Flames didn’t have very many options come trade day. GM Darryl Sutter probably shrugged, closed his eyes, and picked names out of a hat. Steve Staios was not expected, but everyone in the hockey world knows that judgments from “the hat” are both legal and binding.
Who’s in: Justin Pogge, Cedric Lalonde-McNicoll, Brian Pothier, Oskar Osala
Who’s out: Aaron Ward, Scott Walker, Andrew Alberts, Joe Corvo, Stephane Yelle, Harrison Reed
Forecast: The front office tries desperately to send a clear message for the team to bomb the rest of the season. The Hurricanes hear none of it and play their way out of a top three draft pick. Carolina becomes the hottest team in the league and misses the playoffs.
Who’s in: Peter Mueller, Kevin Porter, Stephane Yelle, Harrison Reed
Who’s out: Wojtek Wolski, Cedric Lalonde-McNicoll
Forecast: At the age of 24, Wojtek Wolski is deemed too old for the Avalanche, so he is traded for the statistically worse 21-year old Peter Mueller. The 38-year-old Adam Foote will spend rest of the season telling Colorado brass he was born in the ‘80s.
Columbus Blue Jackets
Who’s in: Alex Picard, Matt Rust, Nathan Paetsch, Greg Moore
Who’s out: Chad Kolarik, Mathieu Roy, Fredrik Modin, Milan Jurcina, Raffi Torres, Dylan Reese
Forecast: With five teams ahead in the line for a playoff spot, the Blue Jackets officially went into sell mode. Luckily Modin, Jurcina and Torres are not exactly the corner stones of a franchise. Mike Commodore on the other hand, he’s the next Bobby Orr.
Who’s in: Aaron Johnson, Ryan Whitney, Matt Marquardt
Who’s out: Steve Staios, Lubomir Visnovsky, Denis Grebeshkov, Cody Wild
Forecast: After dealing away most of their defensive core, the Oilers forget to make room up front for Taylor Hall. The team “accidentally” forgets Fernando Pisani during a road trip to California.
Who’s in: Craig Weller, Byron Bitz, Mathieu Roy
Who’s out: Matt Rust, Dennis Seidenberg, Matthew Bartkowski
Forecast: Following a veritable who’s who of who cares, the Panthers try to make missing the playoffs seem exciting. Hockey fans in Florida miss Ed Jovanovski.
Who’s in: Wojtek Wolski, Derek Morris, Mathieu Schneider, Lee Stempniak, Petteri Nokelainen, Miika Wiikman, Chad Kolarik
Who’s out: Peter Mueller, Kevin Porter, Anders Eriksson, Alex Picard, Matt Jones, Sean Zimmerman
Forecast: After surprising the critics this season, the Coyotes are poised to make a run in the playoffs. Not wanting to mess with team chemistry, GM Don Maloney only added five new players to the starting roster. This is an interesting philosophy.
Who’s in: Alexei Ponikarovsky
Who’s out: Chris Peluso, Luca Caputi, Martin Skoula
Forecast: Two years ago Marian Hossa was brought in to help Pittsburgh break into the Stanley Cup finals. Last year, the import was Chris Kunitz. There seems to be a declining trend going on here.
Toronto Maple Leafs
Who’s in: Matt Jones, Luca Caputi, Chris Peluso
Who’s out: Martin Skoula, Lee Stempniak, Joey MacDonald
Forecast: The Leafs have generated a large stock of draft picks over the trade deadline. Come draft day, Brian Burke will realize that no number of fifth- and seventh-round picks can buy back a first round selection. Perhaps throwing Colton Orr into the package will help grease the wheels?
Who’s in: Sean Zimmerman, Yan Stastny, Andrew Alberts
Who’s out: Mathieu Schneider, Pierre-Cedric Labrie
Forecast: Tried to address the lack of scoring by acquiring Paul Stastny. Will slump into a post-season depression when they realize they got his brother.
Who’s in: Joe Corvo, Milan Jurcina, Scott Walker, Eric Belanger
Who’s out: Brian Pothier, Oskar Osala
Forecast: The Capitals addressed several holes in their roster and will go far in the playoffs. Mike Green and Joe Corvo will comprise the biggest “meh” defensive pairing in all of hockey.