Thursday, March 09, 2006

Trade Deadline Comes and Goes

There were no real blockbuster/mind blowing trades at the NHL deadline at 3PM EST. However, there were a few transactions that did raise a few eyebrows amongst NHL analysts and bloggers alike. It's a different world now that teams and GM's have to now factor the cap salary room when trading for players. In the past, teams were permitted to gear up for the playoffs with "rent-a-players". But this time, there was no significant "arms race" in 2006.

The next order of business is to calm down all the fans in Pittsburgh who are upset that they once again must watch a popular player get traded away from the Penguins. Mark Recchi was went to the Carolina Hurricanes at the deadline for Niklas Nordgren, forward journeyman Krys Kolanos and a second-round draft pick in 2007. Don't worry, fellow Pittsburghers! The sun will rise again! The Penguins are still here (for the time being). We survived trading Kovalev, Jagr, Lang, Kaspar, Straka, etc. And now with Recchi gone it's just another player that we can replace.

As Penguins fans, we get the last laugh- as to the Carolina fans and their "playoff weapon" has come from the team that they've spent the past week vilifying!

Another strange trade happened yesterday. Colorado Avalanche GM Pierre Lacroix traded his #1 goaltender David Aebischer, fresh off his Olympic success, for an injured and unhappy Monreal Canadiens goalie Jose Theodore. It's befuddling and amazes a lot of the hockey experts as to why the Avs would trade for an injured underperforming goalie. Montreal is in great shape with this trade by also getting Todd Simpson from the Blackhawks.

Two other teams making a push for the playoff race is Vancouver and Edmonton. It's about time these guys start taking winning seriously! The Oilers went shopping and got Sergei Samsonov from the Boston Bruins for center Marty Reasoner, forward Yan Stastny and a second-round draft pick in 2006. They also rescued Dwayne Roloson from the platooning Minnesota Wild as a quality #1 goalie that they needed since CuJo left.

Vancouver had to find replacements for their blueline and get a goalie that doesn't choke. They raided the Blues Eric "tinted visor" Weinrich but sacrificed more of their "Czech-osity" in Tomas Mojzis. Sean Brown from the Devils will also get things done. They got their goalie that they needed from the platooning Buffalo Sabres Mika Noronen for a '07 pick. Good job, Canucks! May you finally get to see what it looks like deeper in the playoffs.

Other notables as former Penguins making new homes again: Rico Fata was picked up by the Washington Capitals off wavers from the Atlanta Thrashers. Kris Beech finds himself back with the Washington Capitals after being sent there by the Nashville Predators for Brendan Witt. Ville Nieminen was sent packing from Broadway (New York) to Silicon Valley (San Jose) yesterday for a draft pick.
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