NHL Trade Deadline: Phoenix Coyotes and Columbus Blue Jackets Make a Deal

April WeinerCorrespondent IFebruary 28, 2011

NHL Trade Deadline: Phoenix Coyotes and Columbus Blue Jackets Make a Deal

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    A short while ago, the Phoenix Coyotes and Columbus Blue Jackets made a surprising trade. The Coyotes were not expected to make moves today, since they have been sitting well in the conference.

    Unfortunately, Phoenix's best defenseman, Ed Jovanovski, recently went down with an injury. Phoenix wanted to boost defense in place of Jovanovski.  

    To Phoenix:

    Defenseman Rostislav Klesla

    Prospect Forward Dane Byers

    To Columbus:

    Forward Scottie Upshall

    Defenseman Sami Lepisto

    Here are the pros and cons of this trade.

Pros from the Trade

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    The trade seems better for the Columbus Blue Jackets than for the Phoenix Coyotes.

    The Blue Jackets have three pros, while the Coyotes only have one.

Columbus Blue Jackets Get More for Their Money

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    The Columbus Blue Jackets were paying Klesla $2.975 million a year. Scottie Upshall makes $2.25 million and Sami Lepisto makes $800,000. For less than a million more than they were paying for Klesla, the Blue Jackets get two players.

    Plus, neither Upshall nor Lepisto has a contract beyond this season. Columbus can determine if they want to re-sign either player. Phoenix is stuck with Klesla's $2.975 million salary for the next few years.

    Byers doesn't figure into this discussion much because he has played this entire season in the AHL. If he did play in the NHL, he would only make $500,000.

Columbus Blue Jackets Gain Surge in Scoring with Scottie Upshall

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    Scottie Upshall has been one of the top scorers for the Phoenix Coyotes this season.

    As much as the Columbus Blue Jackets needed defense, they need offense as well.

    Upshall will help provide the offense. He should have at least a few more goals and some assists left for the rest of the season.

Columbus Blue Jackets Gain the Potential of Sami Lepisto

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    Sami Lepisto does not have quite the same potential that Rostislav Klesla does. However, Lepisto does have quite a bit of talent.

    Lepisto has the potential of helping the Columbus blueline and really stand out.

    Plus, he's young; his best years are still ahead of him.

Phoenix Coyotes Get What They Were Looking For: Defense

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    The Phoenix Coyotes made this trade because they were looking for defensive relief in light of Ed Jovanovski's injury.

    They found it in Rostislav Klesla.

    Klesla is a talented d-man who has yet to meet his full potential—he has battled injuries the past couple of seasons.

    Klesla could definitely reach that potential in Phoenix.

Cons of the Trade

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    The Phoenix Coyotes have more cons from the trade than the Columbus Blue Jackets do.

    The Coyotes have three cons, as opposed to the Blue Jackets' one.

Scottie Upshall Was a Loyal Member of the Phoenix Coyotes

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    Scottie Upshall gained recognition recently when he took to his Twitter account to express appreciation at prospective new owners Matt and Jenny Hulsizer's support of the team.

    Upshall seemed to genuinely enjoy the organization and the community in Phoenix. Where others may have scoffed at the organization, Upshall was there to rebuff critics.

    The Coyotes better have someone as committed and outspoken about the organization to step into Upshall's shoes (besides captain Shane Doan, of course).

Rostislav Klesla: Injury Prone

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    Rostislav Klesla's career has been shortened by injuries. He has played a full season only once in his career.

    The past two years have been the worst for Klesla, having only played 60 games combined between the two years. He has missed time this year as well.

    While Klesla does have a lot of potential and could be an enormous addition to the Coyotes, he won't serve his purpose or do anyone any good if he is injured.

Phoenix Coyotes May Have over-Corrected to Solve a Problem

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    You know when you're driving and an animal runs out into the street out of nowhere? The instinct is to swerve to avoid hitting the animal. Unfortunately, often that's the wrong move to make because you could be sending your car into incoming traffic and endangering your life.

    That may be what the Coyotes just did. The example is a little dramatic, but it could hold true. Ed Jovanovski went down with an injury. GM Don Maloney needed a solution so he traded for a great defenseman.

    However, he also sent one of his top scorers away to get that defenseman. Will the Coyotes be able to generate enough offense to replace Upshall? Hopefully. Otherwise, they just created a new problem in trying to solve another one.

Columbus Blue Jackets Traded Away Last Remaining Original Member

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    Rostislav Klesla was the only remaining original Columbus Blue Jacket still on the team. This may not seem like such a bad thing and it probably will not have too much of an impact.

    However, it is hard for a city and organization to say goodbye to a player like that.