Knock it off already.
Calgary has helped usher in the zany time period of the NHL schedule that leads up to the trade deadline by sending their heart and soul to the Penguins for two prospects and a first round pick. This of course leads to wild speculation by many fans. And while it’s fun to dream, you’re only setting yourself up for the fall.
The Flames traded Jarome Iginla to the Penguins, a team loaded with top end talent. They received two NCAA prospects and Pittsburgh’s first round pick in 2013.
The Oilers aren’t going to make any jaw dropping moves this trade deadline. Let me rephrase that – they’re not going to be making any jaw dropping moves that immediately help the Oilers. They’re probably not going to acquire a difference maker, nor are they likely to acquire a top six physical guy who can score. No one from a playoff team is going to give it to them. And why would they? Playoff teams are trying to compliment their rosters, not shake them up.
Jaromie Iginla, a guy with 525 career goals and 1095 career points was traded for two prospects and a first overall pick. You can say that Calgary General Manager Jay Feaster was handcuffed to the deal because Iginla wanted to go to Pittsburgh, but two prospects and a first overall is what Iginla was worth late last night.
Could Feaster have gotten more if he held his cards a little longer? Maybe.
The Oilers don’t have Jarome Iginla, or a reasonable facsimile thereof. The Oilers do have pending unrestricted free agents Ryan Whitney, Ladislav Smid, Ryan Jones, and Nikolai Khabibulin. Also around is Ales Hemsky, but if he goes, I wouldn’t expect the return to be blowing any doors off.
Stop thinking Ryan Whitney is going to get you an every day NHL defenceman at the trade deadline. If it’s any kind of a defenceman, it’ll likely be a prospect. Or a pick. Whitney’s been the fifth through seventh defenceman on this team for most of the year. He’s dying to get out of Edmonton. If you’re the Bruins, what is that worth to you?
Is there any deadline deal made in the last few years that has made the Oilers a better team immediately? Hell no. The Oilers have been habitual sellers since Ryan Smyth got dealt to the Islanders.
This year, the Oilers are the closest to making the playoffs since 2007-08, and really, they’re not that close. They’re certainly not in a position to be thinking about making their roster better for the playoffs, and they’ll sell the parts they don’t want to keep. And they’re going to sell for a significant discount. Selling at the deadline is like going to the pawn shop for beer money, you leave with just enough for one can of piss warm lager.
Playoff teams are ready to make an impact by giving up the least they can. The Penguins traded two non roster players and a first overall pick for a guy who could literally end up playing on the third line. They didn’t give up a lick of their current roster to do it, either.
If a playoff team wants what Edmonton’s offering, they’re going to spend as little as possible to do so. You’ve seen this time and time again over the past six years. Why is it any different now?
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