NHL Trades That Neither Team Has Won Yet

Allan Mitchell@@Lowetide_Featured ColumnistJanuary 21, 2015

NHL Trades That Neither Team Has Won Yet

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    Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

    NHL teams enter into deals with the best of intentions. Over the years, every general manager has stated at one time or another that a good trade benefits both teams. Sadly, many trades don't work out for either team, and players enter the journeyman portion of their careers.

    In all cases, trades are made for a reason. Plugging holes in a specific area or giving a struggling young player a chance to flourish elsewhere, a GM's only real need is full value coming the other way.

    Here are trades that involved current NHL players that didn't help either team. In some cases, these trades continue to be issues in terms of cap hit and roster makeup.

8. Buffalo Sabres Trade Zack Kassian to the Vancouver Canucks for Cody Hodgson

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    Jonathan Hayward/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On February 27, 2012, the Vancouver Canucks traded Cody Hodgson and Alexander Sulzer to the Buffalo Sabres for Zack Kassian and Marc-Andre Gragnani.

    What Did Each Team Want? The Sabres wanted a top-flight young center with a solid future who could help out a team badly in need of offense. Vancouver was looking for a rugged winger who could play with skill and police other teams who tried to intimidate its skill players.

    What Did Each Team Get? Buffalo got some good mileage out of Hodgson, who delivered solid offense between 2012 and 2014. He has been very poor this season and has fallen down the team's depth chart. The Canucks have an enforcer who has shown glimpses of being skilled enough but cannot consistently fill that role. There's every chance both players will have new addresses by the fall.

7. San Jose Sharks Trade Dany Heatley to Minnesota Wild for Martin Havlat

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    JACK DEMPSEY/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On July 3, 2011, the San Jose Sharks traded Dany Heatley to the Minnesota Wild for Martin Havlat. The story was covered by The Canadian Press for NHL.com.

    What Did Each Team Want? The Sharks were looking for a speedy winger who could help the offense and use his speed to upset opponents. Minnesota was looking for a top-end scorer.

    What did Each Team Get? Havlat delivered for San Jose when he was healthy, but staying in the lineup was always an issue. The Wild received solid production from Heatley in Year 1. But his foot speed became a major problem, and the offense eroded during his time in the organization. Martin Havlat is playing for the New Jersey Devils this season and is productive when healthy. The Anaheim Ducks waived Heatley earlier in 2014-15, and he is currently playing for the Norfolk Admirals of the AHL.

6. Columbus Blue Jackets Trade Marc Methot to Ottawa Senators for Nick Foligno

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    Michael Dwyer/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On July 1, 2012, the Columbus Blue Jackets traded Marc Methot to the Ottawa Senators for Nick Foligno

    What Did Each Team Want? The Blue Jackets were looking for a winger with size and skill, and Ottawa needed a reliable defender with size.

    What Did Each Team Get? The trade has been a success for both teams. Columbus acquired a solid winger who is blossoming this season, and the Senators acquired a strong possession player. In evaluating a trade like this one, it's important to look longer term over the immediate information. Foligno has signed a big contract for six years and big money ($33 million), as reported by Craig Merz of NHL.com. Methot is waiting for his contract, according to Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun.

5. Carolina Hurricanes Trade for Jordan Staal

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    Karl B DeBlaker/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On June 22, 2012, the Carolina Hurricanes acquired Jordan Staal from the Pittsburgh Penguins. To get him, they sent away Brandon Sutter, Brian Dumoulin and a first-round pick. 

    What Did Each Team Want? Carolina was looking to increase its presence at center and reunite Jordan with his brother Eric. The Penguins were relieving cap pressure, adding a replacement center in Sutter and a prospect and a pick.

    What Did Each Team Get? The Hurricanes have a big and effective two-way center who is delivering a little less offense than hoped for in Carolina. He's also faced injury problems that have impacted the team's success. Pittsburgh acquired a center who is not close to Staal, but the draft pick may pay off in a big way. Derrick Pouliot looks like a home run as a prospect. It will be a few years before we know the winner in this trade. 

4. St. Louis Blues Trade Erik Johnson to Colorado Avalanche for Kevin Shattenkirk

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    Tom Gannam/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On February 19, 2011, the St. Louis Blues dealt Erik Johnson, Jay McClement and a first-round pick to the Colorado Avalanche. In return, they received Kevin Shattenkirk, Chris Stewart and a second-round selection. Both draft picks were for the 2011 Entry Draft. 

    What Did Each Team Want? The Blues were looking to add a big power forward in Stewart and felt Shattenkirk was a capable young defender who could grow into a bigger role. Colorado was looking for a franchise defenseman, and Johnson's resume was solid if unspectacular.

    What Did Each Team Get? It has worked out well for both teams but not in the way imagined at the time. St. Louis received an outstanding offensive defender in Shattenkirk, who is among the league's top-scoring defenders. The Avalanche received a slow-developing Johnson, who is now a minutes-eating defender in all disciplines for Colorado. Stewart had solid moments but was unable to deliver enough offense and was dealt to the Buffalo Sabres. Despite picking later, St. Louis got the better of the draft picks—so far—as Ty Rattie is having an easier time in pro hockey than Duncan Siemens.

3. Pittsburgh Penguins Trade James Neal to Nashville for Patric Hornqvist

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    John Russell/Getty Images

    What Was the Trade? On June 27, 2014, the Nashville Predators traded Patric Hornqvist and Nick Spaling to the Pittsburgh Penguins for James Neal

    What Did Each Team Want? The Predators wanted a quality scoring winger who could push the team offensively. Pittsburgh needed to relieve its cap crunch and add some depth to the forward group.

    What Did Each Team Get? Nashville has its scoring winger, but it's rookie Filip Forsberg. The Predators are getting production out of Neal, and he could be a major factor down the stretch. The Penguins received two productive players, and Hornqvist looked very good until his injury. The jury is still out on this one, and it may be that rare trade that works for both sides. 

2. Ottawa Senators Trade for Bobby Ryan

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    LM Otero/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On July 5, 2013, the Anaheim Ducks traded Bobby Ryan to the Ottawa Senators. In return, they acquired Jakob Silfverberg, Stefan Noesen and a 2014 first-round pick that would be used on Nick Ritchie.

    What Did Each Team Want? The Ducks were looking for a good hockey deal for a tremendous young player. Anaheim had cap issues and needed to make a move, necessitating the cost-cutting three-for-one deal. Ottawa was looking for an impact player after losing Daniel Alfredsson to free agency.

    What Did Each Team Get? Anaheim received real quality in the deal, with Silfverberg grabbing a regular job right away. Noesen closed out his junior career with a solid year, and the Ducks got lucky as the Senators' draft pick landed at No. 10 overall in 2014. That allowed them to take the best power forward prospect in the draft, Nick Ritchie. The Senators received a handsome reward for that talent, as Ryan is the team's leading scorer and most effective forward. Both teams did well, but there is no clear winner at this time.

1. New York Rangers Acquire Martin St. Louis

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    Gene J. Puskar/Associated Press

    What Was the Trade? On March 5, 2014, the New York Rangers acquired Martin St. Louis, now 39, from the Tampa Bay Lightning. In return, they gave up Ryan Callahan and several draft picks. 

    What Did Each Team Want? The Rangers were getting a brilliant offensive player who they hoped would lead them to the Stanley Cup. Tampa Bay was trying to get maximum value for its aging franchise player.

    What Did Each Team Get? New York went deep into the spring on a tremendous run for the Stanley Cup. Although it fell shy, the immediate return on St. Louis was brilliant. The Lightning received a quality player in Callahan who plays big minutes at even strength on a strong possession line. They also used one of the draft picks to trade down at the 2014 draft and pick up Dominik Masin and Johnathan MacLeod. The Lightning also have the Rangers' first-round selection in 2015 from the Martin St. Louis trade. It's going to be several years before the call can be made on this deal. 


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