Friday, March 3, 2006
Updated: March 10, 11:00 AM ET
Who went where and what does it mean?
By Scott Burnside
The dealing is done. Here is ESPN.com's Scott Burnside analysis of each trade made after the Olympics.
March 9, 2006
San Jose gets: a third round pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Bob Clarke, as is his wont at deadline time, is stockpiling forward depth for what he imagines will be a long playoff run. Although Dimitrakos had only 16 points in 45 games this season, the 26-year-old was a surprise contributor to the Sharks' run to the conference final in 2004 with nine points in 15 games.
Phoenix gets: a draft pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: At one point this season, Wayne Gretzky had Lundmark quarterbacking the power play from the point as the Coyotes tried to resurrect the career of a player taken ninth overall in 1999. With the Coyotes' playoff hopes all but extinguished, it will be up to Calgary coach Darryl Sutter to coax more production out of Lundmark. The Flames, like the Senators, coveted Olli Jokinen, and Lundmark is a huge step down from that level of player. Still, the Edmonton native has lots of tools. Now if he could only find them.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: If ever there was a doubt that Edmonton's future is now, then this deal dispels that notion. Although Samsonov is injury-prone, he is a talent and will add a much-needed offensive element to an Oiler team that fancies itself a Cup contender. Samsonov didn't come cheaply, though, as Reasoner has shown flashes that he's a player in spite of his team-worst minus-12. Samsonov will be an unrestricted free agent this summer.
Calgary gets: a fourth-round pick
Instant analysis: Wiemer adds toughness and grit to a forward unit that could use it. He'll be especially effective providing a little space for diminutive Devils forwards Scott Gomez and Brian Gionta.
Instant analysis: This exchange of spare parts will obviously have no effect on the playoff race, but it will give the enigmatic Jackman a chance to get his act in gear under disciplinarian Mike Keenan.
Phoenix gets: W Yannick Lehoux
Instant analysis: Another exchange of spare parts will have little effect on either team. Jackman is a former second-rounder who had trouble making Columbus and Phoenix; Lehoux bounced up and down between L.A. and Manchester of the AHL.
Islanders get: a third-round pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: At 6-foot-5, 230 pounds, Kvasha always looks like he should be doing more than he is. Perhaps playing for Gretzky will unearth the gem that many have believed Kvasha represents. Perhaps.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: The Canucks got older and wiser along the blue line in a hurry with the additions of Keith Carney, Sean Brown and Weinrich. Weinrich has oodles of experience and has played well in a bad situation in St. Louis this season. Come playoff time this deal could have bigger implications.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: The Stars hope Mitchell, who led the Wild with a plus-15, will be a better fit than Janne Niinimaa, who was acquired earlier from the Islanders but has been a healthy scratch. The Wild are the latest team to try to coax more out of Skoula.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: When Florida re-signed captain Olli Jokinen, the Senators' search for help down the middle led them to the underachieving Arnason. The change of scenery might be just the tonic for the offensively gifted Arnason. The Hawks secured a legitimate prospect in Bochenski, who started the season playing with Dany Heatley and Jason Spezza.
Vancouver gets: a conditional pick in 2007
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: This move was made with the belief that hard-hitting Garnet Exelby will be lost to the Thrashers for the foreseeable future after taking a cheap-shot elbow to the head from Ryan Hollweg Wednesday night. But if the Canucks can afford to part with a defenseman given their defensive woes, it makes you wonder how big a role McCarthy will play. A fourth-round pick becomes a third if the Thrashers sign him.
Pittsburgh gets: a fourth-round pick in 2007
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: The lumbering Cross was essentially driven from Edmonton early in the season, but he's certainly a hard-working sort, even if he doesn't really fit the mold of the new NHL defenseman. The Penguins get more for the future.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: As with Sean O'Donnell (see below), we've never quite understood the fascination with Witt, especially in the new NHL. Nonetheless, the Predators bolstered a deep defensive corps with the addition of the veteran blue liner who's been champing at the bit to get out of Washington since before the season started. Predators GM David Poile paid a heavy price -- some would say too heavy. There must be something about the late-blooming Beech that Washington GM George McPhee likes as he returned him to the Caps' fold after making him the seventh overall pick in 1999.
Anaheim gets: third-round pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: This is an interesting move by assistant GM Don Maloney, who was doing the dealing for the Rangers. On one hand, the Rangers are a tightly knit, physical, defensively sound group, which makes you wonder how the free-wheeling Ozolinsh will fit in. On the other hand, they have almost no offensive presence on the back end, so Ozolinsh could become a key component. Ozolinsh, who has a boatload of playoff experience, missed 20 games after entering the league's substance abuse and behavioral health program. He was cleared to play just before the Olympics and remains in the follow-up care phase of the program. The move clears up $2.75 million in cap room for the Ducks for next season.
Detroit gets: seventh-round pick in 2007
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: After unloading Denis Gauthier and Sean O'Donnell, the Coyotes partially replenished their defensive stock with journeyman Rivers, who had played in just 15 games this season. Still, you can bet former Detroit assistant Barry Smith, now an assistant in Phoenix, sees something in Rivers.
Anaheim gets: draft pick, prospect to be named
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Anaheim GM Brian Burke is hedging his bets, adding Jeff Friesen to help keep the Ducks in the playoff picture (they're currently ninth in the West) and shedding potential unrestricted free agent Carney in exchange for young assets. With the Canucks blue line decimated by injury, Carney will be a steadying presence. His ice time will be modest after the Big Three return from injury.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Credit Carolina GM Jim Rutherford for reacting decisively to fill the void created by the serious injury to Erik Cole. Yes, Recchi was part of a huge mess in Pittsburgh, where he was a whopping minus-28, but the veteran forward still has terrific jump and should fit in well with the 'Canes' attacking style. Recchi, who waived his no-trade cause, will fill in nicely on the top line with Eric Staal and handle significant power-play duties. The Penguins, meanwhile, get a player with good offensive tools in Nordgren and a former first-round pick in Kolanos who was picked up off waivers earlier this season but hadn't played.
Washington gets: a second-round pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: During a disastrous season in which Friesen has appeared in just 33 games, GM Brian Burke is hoping the swift-skating winger can regain his offense. It'll be a tall order for a guy who has three goals and seven points, but with front-line forwards in short supply (or their cost too high), Burke will take what he can get. Look for Friesen to get time on the Ducks power play to try to get him into the mix quickly.
Buffalo gets: a second-round pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Has Vancouver GM Dave Nonis landed this year's Miikka Kiprusoff? It might be a stretch given that Noronen has played only four NHL games this season, the last on December 2. Still, many believe Noronen, the 21st pick in 1997, has all the tools to be a top-flight goaltender. Although Noronen arrives in Vancouver ostensibly as Alex Auld's backup, Noronen will get plenty of opportunity to show his stuff. Don't be surprised if he becomes the Canucks' playoff netminder.
Phoenix gets: LW Josh Gratton
, two second-round picks in 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: It wouldn't be a trade deadline without GM Bob Clarke making a big splash, and he held true to form with his acquisition of former first-rounder Gauthier. Although Gauthier, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent at season's end, has never exactly lived up to his pre-NHL billing, he is a force. At 6-foot-3, 224 pounds, the heavy-hitting Gauthier fits the Flyer prototype and bolsters an already impressive blue line. In Gratton, the Coyotes get a bruising 23-year-old who led the AHL's Phantoms in penalty minutes -- but the real juice in this deal for Phoenix is in the two draft picks.
Phoenix gets: C/RW Joel Perrault
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: We still can't quite figure out the continuing attraction to O'Donnell, who was in and out of the Coyotes lineup. At 34 and slow to begin with, O'Donnell hasn't exactly set the world on fire in the new NHL. Former fifth-rounder Perrault, 23, is a fringe player.
New Jersey gets: a fourth-round pick in 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: No matter how much Canucks fans squint, Brown looks nothing like the injured Ed Jovanovski, Mattias Ohlund or Sami Salo. Still, Brown, 29, is a defenseman who isn't hurt, so that sets him apart. The 6-foot-3, 215-pound former first-rounder Brown couldn't crack the Devils and was made expendable by the acquisitions of Brad Lukowich and Ken Klee.
Islanders get: a third-round pick in 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Lukowich is a character guy who's been on championship teams in Dallas and Tampa Bay. Along with deadline acquisition Ken Klee, Lukowich will help fill the void while Richard Matvichuk's lower back heals. The Isles continue to stockpile picks for whoever takes over for Mad Mike Milbury.
Chicago gets: a sixth-round pick in 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Simpson is a 6-foot-3, 220-pound bruiser who had trouble cracking a woeful Chicago lineup, which tells you the expectations for the 32-year-old journeyman will be modest. Simpson will be a depth guy for the playoffs; the sixth-round pick will deliver a fringe NHLer, at best.
March 8, 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Hours after acquiring a soon-to-be 37-year-old defenseman with great character but limited mobility in Luke Richardson, the Leafs give up a solid if unspectacular defenseman in exchange for a prospect with a moderate upside (Suglobov was the leading scorer for the AHL's River Rats when called up by the Devils in mid-January, but did not dress for the last six Devils' games). Short-term, the Leafs take a small step back, while long-term they take a small step forward. That pretty much sums up the team's place in the hockey universe. In Klee, the Devils get a solid veteran who should have little problem fitting in to Lou Lamoriello's system.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: This is the kind of deal that makes or breaks a GM. If Colorado GM Pierre Lacroix has guessed right and Theodore, a former Hart and Vezina trophy winner, regains his form, the Avalanche are a legitimate Stanley Cup threat. But this year's Theodore has been a long way from the one who was the toast of Montreal a few short years ago. Along with various off-ice issues, there is the troubling heel injury he sustained while slipping on icy steps during the Olympic break that will sideline him for at least another two weeks. If Theodore and/or the Avalanche falter, Lacroix will rue the day he dealt two-time Swiss Olympian Aebischer, who had shaken off early-season woes to earn the trust and respect of his teammates. The Habs now have a formidable 1-2 punch with a distinctively international flavor in Aebischer and French-born Cristobal Huet, who was showing signs of wearing down under a heavy workload.
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: The reliable Parrish and the underrated Sopel will help a Kings team that has struggled at both ends of the special teams spectrum this season. This deal should help ensure a postseason berth for Andy Murray's Kings and may be a crucial factor in any playoff success the team has. In Grebeshkov, the Isles pick up the Kings' first pick, 18th overall, in 2002, while Tambellini, son of Canucks assistant GM and former Islander Steve Tambellini, was the 27th overall pick in 2003. These are two promising young players for the next Islander regime.
Columbus gets: a conditional draft pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: This curious move by GM John Ferguson brings in a defenseman who will turn 37 before the end of the month and who has played just 44 games this season because of injuries. It remains to be seen just what use he will be to a Leaf team stranded between dismantling and challenging. True, the Leafs defense has been woeful, but Richardson is no better than a fifth or sixth man. As for the Blue Jackets, the draft pick becomes another asset down the road for a team whose future always seems to be a year away.
Rangers get: a third-round pick in 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: Funny, this is the kind of deal the Rangers used to make, but in reverse. The Sharks are a long-shot to make the playoffs, but by adding Nieminen, they bring in a player who won a Cup in Colorado in 2001 and went to the seventh game of the 2004 Cup final with the Flames. (The spirited agitator also may well be the best quote in hockey.) The Rangers continue to behave like a franchise with a plan -- they peeled off a fringe player and added a draft pick while looking toward a long playoff run. If the Sharks squeeze into the playoffs, this is a win-win deal.
Minnesota gets: a first-round pick in 2006, conditional pick
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: The Oilers, thought to be interested in proven veteran netminders Curtis Joseph and Ed Belfour, are gambling instead that Roloson has the goods to backstop them through a long playoff run. Roloson, who became the odd man out in Minnesota after Manny Fernandez signed a multiyear deal last week, has struggled this season and is set to become an unrestricted free agent in the off-season. If the Oilers sign him, they will provide the Wild with a third-round pick.
March 1, 2006
Atlanta gets: C/LW Joel Stepp
Scott Burnside's instant analysis: This trade might be interesting down the road if Hurme can regain his NHL form after a near-death experience thanks to a staph infection. The Thrashers needed to clear a log-jam of goaltenders in their system, and there might be a future for Hurme, 31, as a back-up or mentor at the AHL level. Stepp, 23, was the 69th pick overall in 2001 and was toiling in the ECHL; he will have little or no impact on the Thrashers.
February 28, 2006
Scott Burnside's instant analysis:
If the Flames reproduce their playoff march of 2004 Hulse, 32, will fill in late in the spring if they run into injuries along the back end, as they did two springs ago. This is Hulse's second go-round with the Flames and his third NHL team of the season, having started in Phoenix. Severson, 27, had 13 goals in 54 games with Omaha in the AHL and becomes another piece of the depth puzzle for the Blue Jackets, who are looking to next season.
Scott Burnside is an NHL writer for ESPN.com.