Tuesday, February 02, 2010

The Fine Art of the Early Trade

You can say what you will about the moves that have been made (and by the looks of it, who hasn't), but what has gone on with the Calgary Flames, Toronto Maple Leafs, and New York Rangers is the correct way to go about the trade deadline. Especially with a prolonged break with the Olympics heading up; they are trying to set-up their teams nicely and get some kind of chemistry going prior to the break.

Also, this is economically responsible of them. There won't be much time to make a deal after the Olympic break, as the trade deadline is three days after the trade freeze is lifted. So, even if these teams are going to make another move-- they have a month's time to actually look at their team play some games with their new rosters, they can assess their situations accordingly, and then think about who they'd be able to get with the money they have remaining and who they could be willing to part with.

You have to believe that Darryl Sutter isn't done in Calgary. With all that he's shipped off, there must be a method to his madness and could be in a position to make another deal. While the thought of Ilya Kovalchuk is a long-shot at this point, some kind of minor move may be coming from Calgary. Unless Sutter has completely lost his mind and just is making himself become the Mad Hatter and moving people for the sake of moving, there has to be a meaning to all these moves he's making.

Then you look at Toronto, who seems to be making good moves in terms of trying to move more contracts that are an albatross around the neck of the team. With their acquistions, especially of Dion Phaneuf; it's makes a statement that they will beat you up if they can't beat you on the score sheet. The only need to be addressed would need to be some support for Phil Kessel, which should come in time with their younger guys developing in the minors and juniors.

As for the Rangers, Brandon Prust brings about a younger, less cocky version of Sean Avery; with actual skill and putting it to use every night. Olli Jokinen could be the wild card. He's only netted 11 goals this season and could be sought after because of his past performances. Of course, his past performances were on craptastic teams and may not actually reflect on his skill level. If he can't make a big points push with Marian Gaborik on his wing, it'll show that he's not as good as people think he is. Who knows, considering he couldn't spark Jarome Iginla in Calgary.

Either way, the fact these teams made these deals this early, they have a window to see how the new team gels and will have time to make adjustments accordingly. It has proven successful before when you look at moves like the Hurricanes made to get Doug Weight and Mark Recchi in 2006, before they made their run to an eventual Stanley Cup championship. Plus, it fires the first salvo to the other teams who may have been waiting until the 11th hour in order to get something done-- this could make them maybe rush themselves to make a move earlier than they would have liked, which could be great or disastrous.

1 comment:

Vince said...

I bet if you back to Olli's Florida years, took all his points from games outside the southeast division and projected it out over 82 games you'd find he's the same player now that he was then.....maybe.