2015 Trade Deadline Winners and Losers

NHL trade rumors

As it comes with every NHL season, the trade deadline leads to mass quantities of rumors, speculation, and the occasional false report. This year, many felt it would be a quiet deadline with the amount of activity teams were involved in before March 2nd. But that was anything but the case, and there was a flurry of activity right until the 3 PM deadline. Some teams made moves for the present, others for the future, but regardless there were winners and losers on both sides.

Winners:

Anaheim Ducks – The Ducks have had a pretty solid season up to this point, as they have found themselves at the top of the Western Conference for most of the season. Yet, they have hit a little bit of a cold stretch, begging many to question whether or not they truly have a team comprised for a deep cup run. They decided to reacquire James Wisniewski on the back line, which brings depth and experience. Simon Despres for Ben Lovejoy was a solid move as well, and bolstering their secondary scoring with the likes of Tomas Fleischmann should bode well for Bruce Boudreau and his squad to be competitive come playoff time. And don’t forget Korbinian Holzer, who won’t be lighting up the scoring sheet but is a solid addition to their defense.

Arizona Coyotes – They are not a team in win now mode, but boy did GM Don Maloney earn his paycheck. Out were Keith Yandle, Zybnek Michalek and Antoine Vermette, and in were an influx of young talent including Klas Dahlbeck, Anthony Duclair, Maxime Letunov, and two first round picks to go along with a second rounder. Not too shabby Mr. Maloney, not at all. While team captain Shane Doan has expressed his dissatisfaction with blowing up the current roster of veterans, Maloney showed that enough is enough, and that Arizona needs to change with the times. Also, the entire hockey world is salivating on thinking of seeing Duclair reunited with his line mate Max Domi after the show they put on in the World Juniors. The future may very well be bright in Arizona, and could become a hotbed of hockey in the very foreseeable future.

Chicago Blackhawks – When Hart Trophy favorite Patrick Kane went down with injury a few weeks ago couple with the injury to Johnny Oduya, life seemed bleak for the Blackhawks. Yet, Stan Bowman worked his magic once again acquiring Kimmo Timmonen from Philadelphia and Antoine Vermette from Arizona. Bolstering his bottom six with Andrew Desjardins also may fly under the radar as a slick move. With Timmonen, there are doubts whether or not he can be the player of the past, as he is coming off of blood clots thought to have ended his career. If he can remain healthy, it could be the steal of the deadline. Vermette gives them depth up front to try and survive until the Conference Finals, should they make it that far as that is the preliminary timeline for Kane’s return. They may have given up a lot in terms of picks, but Chicago is always in win-now mode, and this year is no different.

Losers:

Edmonton Oilers – The Oilers find themselves on this part of the list simply for the fact that Craig MacTavish did nothing, absolutely nothing. The only excitement surrounding Edmonton was that Jeff Petry was moved to the Montreal Canadiens for a second round draft pick. For Petry, who was primed to lead their blue line and only get a second round pick for him shows that it is still going to be a long time until Edmonton gets back to its glory days. Fire up those VCR’s Edmonton fans and throw in your 1980s cup videos.

New Jersey Devils - Oh what could have been for the boys from the Garden State. Jaromir Jagr and Marek Zidlicky were shipped out for a nice return of draft picks, and it is questionable if either of them will be back. The issue with Zidlicky and his no trade clause was that it limited management to what deals they could do for him, and possibly could have gotten a greater return than just a pick. That is punishment for giving a 38 year old a NTC to begin with. Still on the payroll are Michael Ryder and Martin Havlat. Could President and GM Lou Lamoriello have moved them? Possibly, if he had played them in the games leading up to the deadline. Instead, they remained as healthy scratches for a team still trying to garner the final wild card spot. Both are UFA after this season, and I do not see either coming back, as Ryder has seriously left something to be desired since becoming a Devil and the Havlat experiment has all but failed at this point.

Ottawa Senators – Ottawa for the most part remained quiet and are focused on next year. However, with the plethora of defenders they have and little to no support up front, they may have been able to make a few moves in shipping out players like David Legwand, Milan Michalek and Colin Greening. Those contracts are going to hurt the books of the Senators and Ottawa could have helped itself out by relieving some of those numbers.

Peter Rossi

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