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Lightning Round: Eastern Conference trade deadline recap

How did the Lightning’s competition fare at the deadline?

Boston Bruins v Ottawa Senators Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images

The NHL Trade Deadline has come and gone. The Tampa Bay Lightning made one last deal before the 3pm deadline passed acquiring Barclay Goodrow. But how did the rest of the Eastern Conference fare? There were some buyers, some sellers, some big trades, and some small trades. Let’s take a look through all of the day’s deals for the rest of the Eastern Conference and see how they did, and how it may impact the Tampa Bay Lightning in the short and long term.

All trade information comes from

Note: There were a lot of deals made today. There were a number of trades made for AHLers or very minor trades with little impact at the NHL level. Many of these will be left out unless I have something interesting to say about them.

Montreal Canadiens acquire 2020 third round pick from Washington Capitals for Ilya Kovalchuk

Short Term: Kovalchuk revitalized himself in Montreal after mutually terminating his contract with the Los Angeles Kings. He provides the Capitals a little more offensive depth at the forward position. The Lightning are unlikely to face the Capitals, except in the Eastern Conference Finals. This is a small move that strengthens the Capitals a little bit more.

Long Term: The Canadiens have stockpiled about a million draft picks and host the NHL Entry Draft this summer. This gives them a little more ammunition to re-stock their farm system for the future, but third round picks rarely turn out to be a Brayden Point or Anthony Cirelli.

Detroit Red Wings acquire Kyle Brodziak and 2020 conditional 4th round pick from Edmonton Oilers for Mike Green, 50% salary retained

Short Term: Mike Green was on an expiring contract and had a 10 team no trade list. Apparently, he didn’t put Edmonton on the list on February 1st when he was required to submit that list. Mike Green is 34 years old and on an expiring contract. Brodziak is likewise an older player at 35 years old and is on an expiring contract as well. The Red Wings are far out of the playoffs and have a substantial lead on finishing worst in the league. So there is little short term worry here.

Long Term: The 2020 4th round pick becomes a 2021 3rd round pick if Edmonton makes it to the Western Conference Final and Green plays in 50% of games. 4th round picks are a long shot to make the NHL and it’s hard to find stars there. Even if it becomes a 3rd round pick, there’s not much long term effect here.

Ottawa Senators acquire 2021 4th round pick from Colorado Avalanche for Vladislav Namestnikov

Short Term: The Senators aren’t making the playoffs. Namestnikov is a depth piece. Good luck in Colorado, Vladdy!

Long Term: Again, later round pick. Ottawa is better at drafting and developing than I think they get credit for, but still.

New York Islanders acquire Jean-Gabriel Pageau from Ottawa Senators for 2020 conditional 1st round pick, 2020 2nd round pick, and 2022 conditional 3rd round pick

Short Term: Pageau adds some offense up front for the New York Islanders. They are a strong, structured defensive team that has lacked offensive firepower. He is 27 years old though and having a career year going on a shooting binge. So there’s definitely some question if he can continue to fill the net with the Islanders.

Long Term: For the Islanders, this was a hefty price to pay and leaves them not picking until the third round this summer. The Islanders turned around and re-upped Pageau for six years at $5 million. That just adds to the hefty price of the trade and I think this is a contract they are going to regret. For the Senators, they’ve added a couple of really good picks. The condition on the 2020 1st round pick is only to lottery protect it from the top three just in case the Islanders somehow miss the playoffs and then win the lottery. The 2022 third round pick is only if the Islanders win the Stanley Cup.

Carolina Hurricanes acquire Vincent Trochek from the Florida Panthers for Erik Haula, Luca Wallmark, Chase Priskie, and Eetu Luostarinen

Short Term: The Hurricanes have added a player that has two 50 point seasons and a 75 point season on his resume with three seasons of 23+ goals topping out at 31 goals in 2017-18. Unfortunately, Trochek broke his ankle and has not been the same. He’s played in 55 games this season and last season with just 10 goals in each season. The Hurricanes have upgraded over Erik Haula with Trochek, especially if Trochek can get back to the high level he was at before the injury. Trochek has two years left on his contract at $4.75 million. Even with his current production level, that’s a pretty good cap hit. On the Panthers side, they seem to have waved the white flag on this season even though they aren’t that far off from a playoff spot.

Long Term: Haula is a UFA after this season and hasn’t been very exciting over the past two seasons after breaking out with 29 goals and 55 points in 2017-18 with the Vegas Golden Knights. Wallmark is a nice depth scoring piece. Priskie was signed out of the NCAA ranks last summer and has 31 points in 52 games on the blue line in the AHL this season. Luostarinen was a 2nd round pick by Carolina in 2017 and has 25 points in 44 games.

I don’t feel there’s much long term impact here, other than the potential for Carolina to get more out of Trochek than the Panthers have gotten the past two years. The two prospects are decent, but don’t really look like stars in the making.

Philadelphia Flyers acquire Nate Thompson from the Montreal Canadiens for a 2021 5th round pick

Short Term: The Flyers add a fourth line center that has faded from his prime years. He’s a UFA after this season. Philly is holding on to a playoff spot and added a little bit of forward depth for their playoff push.

Long Term: A 5th round pick. I hope you already know my thoughts on this.

Pittsburgh Penguins acquire Patrick Marleau from San Jose Sharks for 2021 conditional 3rd round pick

Short Term: Marleau has come a long way from getting dumped by the Toronto Maple Leafs over the summer. He’s taking another shot at the Stanley Cup by going to Pittsburgh and giving them some depth scoring. He has 10 goals and 20 points in 58 games this season.

Long Term: None. Marleau is a UFA this summer.

Buffalo Sabres acquire Wayne Simmonds (50% salary retention) from New Jersey Devils for a 2021 conditional 5th round pick

Short Term: Uhhh... sure. Good job Buffalo. This is going to put you into the playoffs.

Long Term: Ok. Oh, the pick becomes a 4th round pick if the Sabres make the playoffs and Simmonds plays 10 games. Good luck with that.

Philadelphia Flyers acquire Derek Grant from the Anaheim Ducks for Kyle Criscuolo and a 2020 conditional 4th round pick

Short Term: Hang on. Let me go look up who Derek Grant is. It’ll take me just a moment. Alright, sorry about that. Grant is a 29 year old forward. He’s been around the league playing with Ottawa, Calgary, Buffalo, Nashville, Anaheim, and Pittsburgh. He has 14 goals and 20 points in 49 games this year. A little bit of offensive depth for the Flyers.

Long Term: None. Grant is a UFA and Criscuolo was just AHL depth. And you know how I feel about 4th round picks.

Ottawa Senators acquire Matthew Peca from Montreal Canadiens for Aaron Luchuk and a 2020 7th round pick

Short Term: None. Peca never caught on in the NHL with the Canadiens when he signed a two-year contract as a UFA two summers ago. Luchuk is an ECHLer that has played one AHL game this season. With how much the Senators did today, it seems like Peca was acquired to fill in some of the holes on the roster for a minimal cost.

Long Term: None.

Boston Bruins acquire Nick Ritchie from Anaheim Ducks for Danton Heinen

Short Term: A fairly lateral move for the Bruins. Ritchie has a little more offense, Heinen has a little more defense. They’re basically the same age, less than 6 months apart.

Long Term: The Bruins saved $1.3 million in cap space next year by making this swap.

Detroit Red Wings acquire Lightning Legend Sam Gagner, 2020 2nd round pick, and 2021 2nd round pick from Edmonton Oilers for Andreas Athanasiou and Ryan Kuffner

Short Term: Not much. The Red Wings are still in the basement even with adding Tampa Bay Lightning Legend Sam Gagner.

Long Term: The Oilers have taken a pretty good offensive forward out of the Atlantic Division in Athanasiou. Just don’t look at his defensive metrics. Also funny that this is the second time that Steve Yzerman has acquired Sam Gagner in a salary dump(ish) transaction. Will be interesting to see what Yzerman does with a couple 2nd round picks. While I’m more indifferent about 3rd and 4th round picks, 2nd round picks have a good bit more value in rebuilding a farm system.

Pittsburgh Penguins acquire Evan Rodrigues and Conor Sheary from Buffalo Sabres for Dominik Kahun

Short Term: Hoooooo boy. Pittsburgh added some more offensive ability in Conor Sheary. He’s struggled a bit the past three seasons, but he did put up 23 goals and 53 points in 2016-17 with the Penguins. There’s a chance he could really rekindle his offense in Pittsburgh. Rodrigues asked for a trade earlier this season and has struggled offensively. Kahun had 10 goals and 27 points in 50 games for the Penguins this season. The Penguins basically traded one pretty good depth forward for two decent depth forwards, one of which has potential for more.

Long Term: Kahun is only 24 and a restricted free agent, but I don’t see Buffalo being much of a threat in the Atlantic. Sheary is a UFA this summer while Rodrigues is an RFA.

Columbus Blue Jackets acquire Devin Shore from Anaheim Ducks for Sonny Milano

Short Term: Interesting trade, I guess. Shore has just four goals and 10 points in 39 games for the Anaheim Ducks this season. He’s having a down season after three seasons of being around the 30 point mark. Milano has five goals and 18 points in 46 games for Columbus this year.

Long Term: Shore is a little older and a little more expensive and will be an RFA this summer. He’s 25 and has a couple more years left until UFA.

Carolina Hurricanes acquire Sami Vatanen (50% salary retained) from the New Jersey Devils for Fredrik Claesson, Janne Kuokkanen, and a 2020 conditional 4th round pick

Short Term: Carolina had already bolstered their forwards with the Trochek trade. With this, they added to the blue line. Vatanen is a player that I had been interested in a couple years ago when the Devils acquired him from the Anaheim Ducks, but he has been on the down slope since then. He’s still a valuable defender though and adds to their depth.

Long Term: Claesson is a UFA after this season. Kuokkanen is younger at 21 years old. He’s spent most of the past three seasons in the AHL where he’s been an offensive producer. He’s played 11 games in the NHL, but has been held scoreless. He’s more of a playmaker than a scorer, but has potential still to become a depth offensive player.

Carolina Hurricanes acquire Brady Skjei from the New York Rangers for a 2020 conditional 1st round pick

Short Term: Yet another defensive upgrade for the Hurricanes. He’s a solid defenseman and has put up at least 20 points in the past three seasons. He also had 39 points for the Rangers in 2016-17 as a rookie. He’s trailed off a little since then, but so have the Rangers.

Long Term: The Rangers get a first round pick and those are nice to have. It will be the later of Carolina or Toronto’s pick as Carolina owns Toronto’s 1st for the Patrick Marleau salary dump trade last summer. Skjei is under contract for four more seasons at $5.25 million.


That’s it. There weren’t too many shocking, blockbuster trades made. But there sure was a ton of activity. The Kovalchuk trade actually happened yesterday, but there were a total of 32 trades made on deadline day for a total of 58 players changing addresses and 26* draft picks changing hands. It’ll be 27 draft picks if a condition on a 7th round pick is met.

Oh, and we can’t forget a trade for the most traded asset in NHL history.

Calgary Flames trade Future Considerations to the San Jose Sharks for Brandon Davidson

Future Considerations is on the move once again. Best of luck to you in San Jose, Future Considerations!