Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Soupy traded out

The Buffalo Sabres did what everyone was expecting them to do, and traded away Brian Campbell. While in the long term this is good for the team, it hurts them for this season.

Apparently Campbell had rejected a three year, $17.25 million dollar contract and to be honest even that was significantly more than he is worth (although not more than he will get). As a result there was no way he was going to sign, and so in the long term it was worth giving him up in exchange for a first round draft pick (especially as Buffalo traded away their last first rounder for a center that only stuck with the team for three months). As such this deal really isn't that bad as a long term strategy.

Additionally in the deal the Sabres picked up forward Steve Bernier (whose contract is only through the end of this season) and a also gave up a seventh round draft pick. Now a seventh round draft pick usually doesn't amount to much a getting a player like Gaustad in the seventh round is more the exception then the rule. As for Bernier, I don't really know much about him (apparently he has a fun accent) the Sabres currently are a tad bit injured up front, and he looks to be an improvement over Peters or Gragani.

However a little extra depth on offense, fails to make up for the sudden loss of depth on the backend. While I don't mind seeing Paetsch get more minutes on defense, I'm still not sold on Pratt (or Spacek for that matter) and realize that neither Weber nor Sekera come close to Campbell's skill level. While out top two are still intact seeing who Spacek ends up paired with will be interesting. Short term I think this puts us a step back as far as this seasons playoffs go. In their next step to those ends Buffalo faces off against the Predators and former Sabre JP Dumont tonight. Also I'm fairly certain that Paetsch has picked up the spin move, so that shouldn't be totally gone from the lineup.

A bunch of other trades yesterday as well. Notably, the Capitals picked up goalie Huet from the Canadians, and the Penguins sent Colby Armstrong and a few other multiple year contract players to Atlanta in exchange for Hossa. This helps the capitals alot as it greatly improves their goal tending, not 100% sure why Montreal thought this was a good idea, but they shouldn't be too hurt by this. The bigger question is why the Penguins would give up close to everything they have besides Crosby and Malkin for Marion Hossa. Colby Armstrong is a really good player and by himself may be better than Hossa, never mind that he still his a few years on his contract while Hossa will be an unrestricted free agent this summer. Atlanta benefits nicely as they will actually have a core to work with next season, and may even be able to bring Hossa back. Also alot of pointless deals as well (two evenly matched midline players with expiring contracts) and a fourth line rental to a non playoff team, from a non playoff team, in exchange for a late round draft pick. Why everyone things deadline deals are a good thing is beyond me.

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