Two major trades were completed within the past few days and I've gotten a couple of emails asking for my opinion about them.
Earlier this summer, Dany "Drama" Heatley demanded a trade out of Ottawa, refused a subsequent deal to Edmonton, (with his no trade clause), and after a plethora of crazy rumors ended up being traded to San Jose for Jonathan Cheechoo, Milan Michalek, and a second round draft choice. (Ottawa also threw in a fifth rounder). Good deal or bad?
I think Ottawa got as much as they could for the malcontent. Cheechoo will probably never return to his 56 goal form, but he could still put in 20-30. Michalek is a slick young player with consistency problems. He might turn out to be a very good player.
Heatley will probably light up the Western Conference with goals galore in the regular season, but don't expect the Sharks to win an extra playoff series as a result of his grit or determination. They still look like a "one and done" team to me.
This is probably an even deal for both sides.
The Boston Bruins had no room in their salary cap to sign Phil Kessel, even at half the price that he ended up signing for with the Leafs. (27 million for 5 years). They were almost in a position where they had to trade him. The Leafs needed skill and scoring, but at what price? Toronto GM Brian Burke traded two first round picks and a second rounder for the potential superstar. (Note how I said "potential".) Good deal or bad?
I think Toronto overpaid. Once again, they sold their future for a chance at the present. (For a franchise that has attempted this over and over again and came up shooting blanks, you might think they would learn?) One might argue, Kessel is young, he might get 36 goals a year for a very long time. Maybe and maybe not.
At best, he's a one dimensional player. He's not an assist guy and is not known for his defense. He's not necessarily known for being a good locker room presence either. He's a sniper, period.
The American has played in the NHL for three seasons and averaged 22 goals per. Will he get 36 again this year? It's not going to be easy, not without the help of Marc Savard, (63 assists), and David Krejci, (51 assists). This contract smells a lot like the Jason Blake deal, which most fans would say was a stinko so far for the Leafs.
In the meantime, Boston could end up with two Kessels, with their prime picks.
Also, Kessel is known to be somewhat moody. Will he be able to succeed in the pressure cooker also known as the center of the hockey universe? This blogger has his doubts.
What do you think?