At their core, all NHL general managers are gamblers.
They have to be.
When it comes to building a successful NHL team, there is no such thing as a sure thing, no guaranteed methods for picking winners and seldom, if any, safe bets.
Be it on draft day, the beginning of free-agency or the trade-deadline, the players GMs bring onto their teams represent a living-breathing gamble each team is hoping will pay off.
Anyone who's sat down at a blackjack table, splashed down some chips and waited to see what hand the dealer delivers to them knows the anxiety each GM faces when they acquire a new player.
Because even opting to stand pat on a 20 out of the chute can turn out to be a bad strategy, and hitting again and again even when the dealer has a king showing can yield a small fortune.
This summer, every NHL GM placed their bets on various players and hoped for some kind of payoff come October.
As in the casino, these bets came in all forms—draft-picks, trades and free-agent acquisitions.
With the first month of the 2010-11 NHL season in the books, Bleacher Report is taking a look at the 10 best payoffs so far.
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