Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Let's make a deal: A look back at this season's biggest trades

After sending the overpaid underacheiver
to Ottawa, the Coyotes understood what
it felt like to be a Canadian voter
The Phoenix Coyotes finally made the long-awaited Kyle Turris trade over the weekend, dealing the disgruntled center to the Ottawa Senators in exchange for young defenceman David Rundblad and a draft pick.

The trade was a rare early-season blockbuster in a league where most trades seem to happen at the trade deadline or in the offseason. It will also be the last NHL deal for a while, since the league-wide holiday trade freeze went into effect on Monday.

So while NHL general managers step away from the negotiating table for a well-deserved break, let's take a look back at some of the significant trades the league has seen since the end of training camp.

The trade: The Devils send David Steckel to the Leafs for a fourth-round draft pick.
The view from Toronto: Steckel gives the team a faceoff specialist who can take the first draw after a Maple Leaf penalty, which is always in the defensive zone, as well as the second draw after a Maple Leaf penalty, which is always at center ice.
The view from New Jersey: Steckel's main role last year with the Capitals was being the guy who'd go up to Alexander Ovechkin before every game and remind him to occasionally score a goal or two, although I'm sure someone else will remember to do that.
Final verdict: The deal saw the Leafs acquire an above-average fourth line center, which I think we all agree was their only major weakness heading into the season.

The trade: The Blues trade Nikita Nikitin to the Blue Jackets for Kris Russell.
The view from St. Louis: Like that old hockey cliché says, any time you can get a decent defenseman in return for an obviously fictional player with a ridiculous made up name, you need to make the deal.
The view from Blue Jackets: While it's not uncommon for departing employees to steal a few office supplies on the way out, it still wasn't cool for Russell to try to leave the arena dragging Rick Nash behind him in his hockey bag.
Final verdict: This was a major deal that will have a significant impact, according to the immediate families of whoever these two guys are.

The trade: The Senators send David Rundblad and a second round pick to the Coyotes for Kyle Turris.
The view from Ottawa: Rundblad had developed a reputation for committing lazy turnovers that led directly to easy goals for the other team, and the Senators already have a ton of guys who are good at that.
The view from Phoenix: Turris described his time in Phoenix by saying "it's something that was a frustrating situation and I'm just glad it's in the past", with the "it" presumably referring to "sunlight".
Final verdict: In hindsight, Turris probably regrets not being more specific with that "no trades to teams with scoreboards from the 1950s" contract clause.

The trade: The Canucks acquire David Booth, Steven Reinprecht and a draft pick from the Panthers for Mikael Samuelsson and Marco Sturm.
The view from Vancouver: When it comes to the playoffs, ex-Panther Booth doesn't know the meaning of the word "lose", although the same could technically be said for the words "win" and "playoffs".
The view from Florida: Both of the players they acquired are old and overpaid and will be unrestricted free agents next year, so they can pretty much buy houses in Florida any time now.
Final verdict: As per tradition, this blockbuster trade between the Canucks and Panthers did not involve any clutch goaltenders.

The trade: The Canadiens trade Jaroslav Spacek to the Hurricanes for Tomas Kaberle.
The view from Carolina: Spacek fills a critical need for the Hurricanes blueline, in the sense that he is a hockey player who is not Tomas Kaberle.
The view from Montreal: You have to give the Canadiens credit for being much more responsive than the Maple Leafs when you complain about the head coach, according to Kaberle's dad.
Final verdict: When it was pointed out that Kaberle has an additional two years left on his high-priced contract, Pierre Gauthier told reporters "Yes, I'll definitely have to deal with that when I'm general manager here during the 2013-14 season" before laughing sarcastically and then going back to updating his resume.


  1. Steckel came from the Devils, not the Caps.

  2. ^ that's what I was about to say. He got traded to New Jersey at the trade deadline last year

  3. Give DGB a break. His brain is full of obscure trivia from the 80's and 90's. So he blew a fact that's less than a year old. Big deal. At least he didn't go with a Crosby concussion joke.

  4. Sens getting new scoreboard, maybe he had the clause and Ottawa following suit?


  5. The clutch goaltenders line was slick

  6. To Anonymous and, uh, anonymous. Read the article again. DGB clearly states that Steckel came from the Devils, while referencing Steckel's time in Washington. It saddens me that there was more than one of you that required an explanation here.



  7. I see that my ninja-like editing skills have had the desired effect.

  8. Hey. Excuse me. Me DGB. Dave Steckel actually played for .... Who gives a damn. Good writing sir! And better editing. Quit being a bunch of smart asses and have a good laugh.

  9. Currently attempting to contact Steckel's mother to verify what teams he played for.

  10. Article was awesome, these additional comments even better! :)

  11. Didn't all you Leaf fans think Kaberle was Niklas Lidstrom up until a year ago?

  12. No, we all thought he was a piece of shit. We just over-hyped him as we do with all players in Toronto secretly hoping to trade him and get a big return (THANK YOU BOSTON)

  13. Hey wait, Steckel was traded from the...
    ***DGB Waves Hand***
    We don't need to see his identification.
    These aren't the droids we're looking for.
    You can go about your business.
    Move Along. Move Along.

  14. Nikita Nikitin is a real person?

    And I loved the whole Canucks/Panthers bit!

  15. As an american,

    I think I can still relate to photo caption, brillant!

  16. This one isn't gold. Sorry DGB I would more or less relate it to iridium.

  17. It may be hard to continue with the Luongo jokes after his SO last night. I enjoyed them while they lasted though!

  18. I think the first one is the way its suppose to because He played for both teams last season and his main task was what is noted

  19. Steckel gives the team a faceoff specialist who can take the first draw after a Maple Leaf penalty, which is always in the defensive zone, as well as the second draw after a Maple Leaf penalty, which is always at center ice.

    First reaction: wait, what?

    Split second later: I lol'd.

    funny stuff

  20. Ugh DGB, you're trying waaay too hard to make the exact same Luongo joke (only acceptable for some time after the yearly Canucks choke job). Can you make fun of some other goaltender, please? Even as a Flames fan I'm worn down by them.

  21. To Anonymous,

    Vancouver always lays off Luongo for at least one game after a shutout. First week save, he is back under the bus.

    Yours, A Canucks Fan

  22. Hey, look at the bright side...I'm sure Cory Schneider will be ready to take over the starting role in 2022.

  23. No joke about the Jackets acquiring Kris Russell's twin brother a couple months before trading him?

  24. Luongo has seen more bus-undercarriage than a 55-year old bus-mechanic.
    And the "center-ice faceoff"-joke was funny I think.
    All told.

  25. Final verdict: As per tradition, this blockbuster trade between the Canucks and Panthers did not involve any clutch goaltenders.

    I uttered a hushed, middle-school era "Oooooo" as I read that line.