All of the major moves were tracked and analyzed before the 3 p.m. ET deadline on Friday, March 3.

Friday, March 3


Jan 26, 2023; Denver, Colorado, USA; Anaheim Ducks defenseman John Klingberg (3) controls the puck in the third period against the Colorado Avalanche at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Things were quiet on the John Klingberg front for most of the week, but the Ducks managed to move the defenseman just before the deadline, dealing him to the Wild.

Team Trade assets
Minnesota Wild John Klingberg (D)
Anaheim Ducks 2025 fourth-round pick (MIN), Andre Sustr (D), Nikita Nesterenko (F)

What it means for the Wild

They get a good offensive defenseman rental — at the deadline buzzer — for not much of anything of significance. Klingberg plays heavy minutes and has a history of being a productive facilitator, which was clearly appealing to a Minnesota team that ranks 31st in goals scored and 25th in expected goals at 5v5.

The issue with Klingberg is his defensive ability, as he doesn’t defend entries very well and can be a liability in his own end. I guess the Wild are banking on being able to shield him a bit down the stretch, as they rank seventh in goals against and second in expected goals against at 5v5.

What it means for the Ducks

They had to take whatever they could get for Klingberg, and that ended up being not much at all. He bet on himself with a one-year contract in Anaheim last summer, and the Ducks were hoping they could parlay that into a midseason cash-in. It didn’t work out for either side.


Feb 24, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Minnesota Wild forward Jordan Greenway (18) follows the play against the Toronto Maple Leafs in the second period at Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

The Sabres acquired Jordan Greenway from the Wild in exchange for two draft picks.

Team Trade assets
Buffalo Sabres Jordan Greenway (F)
Minnesota Wild 2023 second-round pick (VGK), 2024 fifth-round pick (BUF)

What it means for the Sabres

They’re taking on a bit of a reclamation project in Greenway, who is a big-bodied forward who plays a two-way game and is strong defensively. However, he has had some trouble putting it all together early in his career.

My guess is Buffalo sees potential in the 26-year-old and believes he can benefit from a fresh start and fit into its competitive window. At the very least, he makes the Sabres a tougher team defensively, something that continues to be an area of need.

The real intrigue is whether Don Granato can help fully unlock Greenway in some of the ways that he did with Tage Thompson, who was a teammate of Greenway’s in the U.S. National Development Program.

What it means for the Wild

They move on from a once-exciting prospect in the first year of a three-year contract that they handed him last January, but they get respectable value coming back and don’t have to retain any of that money. It’s not exactly a major win, but it’s not unforgivable or inexplicable either.


Feb 21, 2023; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Detroit Red Wings left wing Jakub Vrana (15) handles the puck against the Washington Capitals during the second period at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

St. Louis has been major sellers ahead of the deadline, but the Blues briefly took the opportunity to buy, adding Jakub Vrana from the Red Wings.

Team Trade assets
St. Louis Blues Jakub Vrana (F)
Detroit Red Wings Dylan McLaughlin (C), 2025 seventh-round pick (STL)

What it means for the Blues

Vrana can be a very productive offensive player when he’s right physically and mentally, but he hasn’t been able to stay on the ice due to injuries and off-ice struggles in recent years. He’s only played 42 games for Detroit over the last three seasons.

For a St. Louis team looking to rebuild or retool, this is a low-risk bet worth making. The Blues get a guy with a high ceiling for a year and a half at only $2,625,000 on the cap (Detroit is retaining 50%) and can see if he benefits from a change of scenery. If it works out, Vrana can either become part of the team’s future or a valuable trade chip next season.

What it means for the Red Wings

It wasn’t working out for Vrana in Detroit, and a divorce was inevitable. Instead of buying him out and having a dead cap for the next several years, the Red Wings found a taker for him and only have to retain 50% through next season. They also get a prospect and a late pick.

It’s a tough break that the Anthony Mantha-Vrana swap didn’t work out, but this isn’t the worst way out for Detroit.

Thursday, March 2


Jan 31, 2023; Raleigh, North Carolina, USA; Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick (32) looks on during warmups Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Jonathan Quick’s time in Columbus was, well, quick. (I’m sorry.) After landing him from the Kings, the Blue Jackets moved the goaltender to Vegas.

Team Trade assets
Vegas Golden Knights Jonathan Quick (G)
Columbus Blue Jackets Michael Hutchinson (G), 2025 seventh-round pick (VGK)

What it means for the Golden Knights

They get some goaltending insurance with a couple Stanley Cups and a Conn Smythe on his resume, which is nice considering starting goaltender Logan Thompson is apparently still a long way from a return. That being said, Quick has been terrible this season. Vegas is probably praying it doesn’t need to turn to him much down the stretch.

What it means for Blue Jackets

They get a body and a seventh-round pick for a guy who most certainly didn’t want to play for them.


Feb 25, 2023; San Jose, California, USA; Chicago Blackhawks center Max Domi (13) reacts after scoring a goal against the San Jose Sharks during the third period at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

The Stars, who have been in on some big names, and make a splash by acquiring Domi from the Blackhawks.

Team Trade assets
Dallas Stars Max Domi (F), Dylan Wells (G)
Chicago Blackhawks Anton Khudobin (G), 2025 second-round pick (DAL)

What it means for the Stars

Domi is a nice playmaker who scored some big goals down the stretch for Carolina after being acquired at the deadline last year. He brings a dynamic offensive skillset, but he is pretty awful defensively and can be a liability on that side of the ice. For a Dallas team that has needed an offensive boost, he might help.

What it means for the Blackhawks

They add a second-rounder to their stockpile of future picks for the rebuild.


Oct 7, 2022; Detroit, Michigan, USA; Detroit Red Wings left wing Tyler Bertuzzi (59) skates with the puck in the second period against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

The rich get richer … again. The Bruins made another big splash by adding Tyler Bertuzzi from the Red Wings.

Team Trade assets
Boston Bruins Tyler Bertuzzi (F)
Detroit Red Wings Conditional 2024 first-round pick (BOS), 2025 fourth-round pick (BOS)

What it means for the Bruins

We already knew they were going for it, but they’re really pushing in all their chips this season. The acquisition of Bertuzzi, who is due to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, was made possible as a result of Taylor Hall going on long-term injured reserve for the remainder of the regular season due to lower-body injury.

Regardless of where he slots in, Bertuzzi is a nice piece of insurance for Boston, especially as a replacement for Hall. He’s a strong playmaker and passer with the finishing ability to notch 20-30 goals in a season when healthy. He also has a physical edge to his game, and that’s something the Bruins have seemed to covet with the additions of Dmitry Orlov, Garnet Hathaway and now Bertuzzi.

What it means for the Red Wings

The thing about Steve Yzerman’s ability to run a team is that his focus is on the bigger picture. So his decision to start selling suggests he really doesn’t think Detroit is ready to be a true contender and hang with the big dogs in the East this season.

This move in particular suggests the Red Wings didn’t plan on Bertuzzi being part of their future, perhaps due to the price tag he might command this summer. Also, they probably figured they’d rather have a few more pieces of draft capital.

As it stands, Detroit has five first-round picks and 26 overall selections in the next three years. Between those assets and the team’s financial flexibility, the Red Wings will have an opportunity to make a lot of noise over the next few summers.


Larkin on the Bertuzzi trade

Wednesday, March 1


Nov 27, 2022; Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA; Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (6) looks on during the third period against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

After requesting a trade from the Coyotes, Jakob Chychrun has (finally) been set free from Arizona, and he is heading to Ottawa.

Team Trade assets
Ottawa Senators Jakob Chychrun (D)
Arizona Coyotes Conditional 2023 first-round pick (OTT), conditional 2024 second-round pick (WSH), 2026 second-round pick (OTT)

What it means for the Senators

They get a really good young defenseman in Chychrun, 24, who is under control for two more seasons at a bargain-bin $4.6 million on the cap. Ottawa was interested in Chychrun for a while, as he fits an immediate need and makes its blue line much more solid while also fitting into its longer-term picture and competitive window, and the price point must feel like a steal.

I mean, this is almost downright thievery. Patience pays off sometimes.

What it means for the Coyotes

Well, it seems like they strongly overplayed their hand, and it proved costly.

Arizona had been shopping Chychrun for quite some time but reportedly was seeking a bold package that included multiple high draft picks and top prospects. No team was willing to meet that steep price, though at least one team (Kings) reportedly came close. As potential suitors kept dropping off the board, the Coyotes may have realized that they backed themselves into a corner and adjusted their demands.

However, for a team that showed so much patience with negotiations and said it would be willing to keep Chychrun if the right deal didn’t come along, did Arizona really think this was a deal it couldn’t pass up right now?

Chychrun is too young and too affordable with too much control to rush into dealing, even with the trade request and awkward tension. It feels like the Coyotes completely chunked this whole thing, so they better hope those picks turn into something.


Jan 17, 2023; Tempe, Arizona, USA; Arizona Coyotes defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere (14) passes the puck against the Detroit Red Wings in the first period at Mullett Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Carolina wanted additional firepower on the blue line, and it found it in Shayne Gostisbehere.

Team Trade assets
Carolina Hurricanes Shayne Gostisbehere (D)
Arizona Coyotes 2026 third-round pick (CAR)

What it means for the Hurricanes

Their blue line continues to find a way to be an embarrassment of riches, and Gostisbehere should fit in quite nicely with that system. He moves the puck well and has a cannon of a shot, so he should have ample opportunity to produce on a Carolina offense that loves to work through the point.

It’s also a good story for Gostisbehere, who was on the outs before getting an opportunity to prove himself in Arizona on a tank-built roster. He took advantage of that opportunity and now parlays it into a job on one of the better teams in the Eastern Conference.

What it means for the Coyotes

They got a year and a half of solid play from Gostisbehere, and now they get to turn his expiring contract into a draft asset. I’m surprised they couldn’t get more, but it would have probably been a mistake to hold onto Gostibehere, given his age and role.


Detroit Red Wings defenseman Filip Hronek skates with the puck against the Washington Capitals during the second period of an NHL hockey game, Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2023, in Washington. (AP Photo/Julio Cortez)

The Canucks emerged as very surprising buyers when they landed Filip Hronek from Detroit in a deal that exactly nobody saw coming.

Team Trade assets
Vancouver Canucks Filip Hronek (D)
Detroit Red Wings Conditional 2023 first-round pick (NYI), 2023 second-round pick (VAN)

What it means for the Canucks

They get a good 25-year-old defenseman who is under contract at a decent $4.4 million through next season, but the real question is … why?

The Canucks aren’t going anywhere this season and seem more geared toward a rebuild than a team that should be surrendering first-round picks, especially ones that are set to come in a notably deep draft this summer. Also, this trade already puts them over next year’s projected cap with 30 roster spots.

I’m so confused as to what the end goal is here. This seems entirely unnecessary.

What it means for the Red Wings

They get two high draft picks to add to their capital for a guy that probably wasn’t all that important to them. I would have loved it if Detroit had turned these picks into Chychrun, though.


Colorado Avalanche center Lars Eller, just acquired from the Washington Capitals, warms up before the second period of the team's NHL hockey game against the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday, March 1, 2023, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

Colorado added some center depth by handing over a pick to the Capitals for Lars Eller.

Team Trade assets
Colorado Avalanche Lars Eller (C)
Washington Capitals 2025 second-round pick (COL)

What it means for the Avalanche

They needed help down the middle and, honestly, every working, healthy body they can have on a depleted roster for insurance is crucial. Eller comes over as a veteran with a good mind for the game and a history of scoring goals in big moments. This could be a nice, underrated add for a team looking to make another Stanley Cup run.

What it means for the Capitals

They continue to sell veteran expiring pieces heading for unrestricted free agency, and now they have another solid draft pick to show for it.


Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick, right, makes a glove save as Arizona Coyotes center Nick Schmaltz watches during the second period of an NHL hockey game Saturday, Feb. 18, 2023, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)

In what might be the most stunning of the many, many trades leading up to Friday’s 3 p.m. ET deadline, the Kings sent goaltender and franchise icon Jonathan Quick to the Blue Jackets in a deal that brings defenseman Vladislav Gavrikov and goaltender Joonas Korpisalo to Los Angeles.

Team Trade assets
Los Angeles Kings Vladislav Gavrikov (D), Joonas Korpisalo (G)
Columbus Blue Jackets Jonathan Quick (G), Conditional 2023 first-round pick (LAK)

What it means for the Kings

They’re committed to solidifying the roster for a playoff run, even if it means pissing off fans and one of the most influential and beloved players in the history of the franchise. And make no mistake about it, the surly Quick is quite ticked off by being moved.

But for all the things he’s done for the Kings over his 16 seasons in L.A., the 37-year-old Quick has been rather ineffective and is in the final year of his contract, which gave the Kings an opportunity to seek an upgrade. Korpisalo doesn’t have the impressive resume Quick does, but the 28-year-old is younger and has performed better than Quick this season.

Gavrikov is a top-four guy and will provide some defensive reinforcement to the blue line.

L.A. ranks in the bottom-third of the league in goals allowed and penalty killing despite being top-10 in expected defensive results, so improvements on the blue line and in net is a good approach that theoretically helps close that gap. However, it’s hard not to feel like the Kings still sort of struck out a bit considering how close they were to reportedly landing Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun, who moves the needle quite a bit more than Gavrikov and comes with control.

If Gavrikov/Korpisalo was L.A.’s Plan B to Chychrun and Karel Vejmelka, that’s a tougher pill to swallow. But Arizona’s asking price for Chychrun is reportedly quite high and the Kings weren’t willing to meet it. Finding and executing a Plan B is probably better than doing nothing at all.

What it means for the Blue Jackets

They managed to find a taker for Gavrikov after reportedly getting burned by Boston, but they don’t get a guaranteed first-round pick in return like they had hoped. (Columbus gets a first-rounder only if the Kings make the playoffs; otherwise, it gets two second-rounders.)

Either way, the trade does give the Blue Jackets an opportunity to make additional moves before the deadline. They could potentially flip Quick to a contending team that is looking for goaltending insurance and might be enticed by the veteran’s history of postseason success. They can also use the pick(s) from Los Angeles as part of a bigger deal.

Remember, it’s been reported that Columbus has interest in Chychrun and was hoping to acquire a first-round pick to include in a proposal for the Coyotes defenseman. The Blue Jackets are now in a better position to do that, even if the pick isn’t guaranteed.

Tuesday, Feb. 28


Feb 19, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane (88) skates against the Toronto Maple Leafs at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Showtime heading to New York

The Patrick Kane era in Chicago is coming to a close, as the Blackhawks reportedly will send Kane to the Rangers in a three-team trade that also involves the Coyotes. Parts of the deal are listed below.

Team Trade assets
New York Rangers Patrick Kane (RW)
Chicago Blackhawks Conditional 2023 second-round pick (NYR), fourth-round pick (NYR)
Arizona Coyotes TBD

What it means for the Rangers

They make yet another splash and add more star power to a lineup that already had quite a few headliners. The best part? They didn’t have to give up much thanks to Kane’s no-movement clause and the Blackhawks’ lack of leverage. It became quite clear in recent weeks that, if Kane was going to leave Chicago, it was likely going to be for the bright lights of Madison Square Garden.

Although he’s had a down year on a struggling Blackhawks team, Kane has recently picked up his performance, and his resume speaks for itself — three Cup wins, Conn Smythe, Art Ross, Hart Trophy and an unlimited supply of offensive highlights and clutch performances.

Adding Vladimir Tarasenko and Kane in midseason makes the Rangers way more dangerous offensively and gives them some Stanley Cup pedigree. It also helps push some depth down the lineup, but Kane isn’t entirely the player he once was and won’t help much defensively.

This is a New York team that will likely attempt to outscore its problems down the stretch, but the Rangers are certainly in a much better position to do so thanks to the work of general manager Chris Drury.

What it means for the Blackhawks

Well, it’s a tough pill to swallow for Blackhawks fans, many of whom probably wanted to see Kane play his entire career in Chicago. To make matters worse, the return is underwhelming because Kane had ultimate control over his destination and there was no potential for a bidding war.

That being said, the Blackhawks can end up with a first-round pick if all goes well. And there’s still a chance Kane could end up back in Chicago this summer if he hits free agency. Maybe that helps lessen the sting a bit.


Feb 11, 2023; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; Edmonton Oilers right wing Jesse Puljujarvi (13) celebrates his goal scored against the Ottawa Senators in the third period at the Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

Hurricanes land Puljujarvi

Jesse Puljujarvi has been the subject of trade rumors in Edmonton for quite some time. He’s finally heading for a fresh start in Carolina after the Hurricanes struck a one-for-one deal with the Oilers.

Team Trade assets
Carolina Hurricanes Jesse Puljujarvi (RW)
Edmonton Oilers Patrik Puistola (LW)

What it means for the Hurricanes

They get a reclamation project with plenty of potential in Puljujarvi, who was the fourth overall pick in 2016 but never really hit his ceiling in Edmonton. He’s a solid play driver with a 200-foot skill set but has struggled with finishing ability in the past. He has 51 goals in 317 career NHL games, only five of which have come this season as his role diminished with the Oilers.

A change of scenery and a strong possession team in Carolina could help reinvigorate Puljujarvi’s career and unlock some of that potential — think Valeri Nichushkin after leaving Dallas for Colorado — but the Hurricanes have collectively struggled with finishing ability already this season. So Puljujarvi’s profile is awfully similar to what Carolina already has.

What it means for the Oilers

A split from Puljujarvi was seemingly inevitable. Edmonton gets back a 22-year-old prospect who was taken in the third round in 2019. Puistola has been playing in the Finnish Liiga and is putting up solid but not overly impressive numbers, including 15 goals and 38 points in 56 games for Jokerit this season.

While the return may not be what Oilers fans wanted to see, the team does shed the entirety of Puljujarvi’s remaining contract ($3 million on the cap), and that gives Edmonton flexibility to work another trade.


Feb 11, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Nashville Predators defenseman Mattias Ekholm (14) clears the puck against the Philadelphia Flyers in the first period at Wells Fargo Center. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports

Oilers add defensive help with Ekholm

The Oilers needed to upgrade their blue line ahead of Friday’s trade deadline, and they accomplished that (at least in part) by acquiring Mattias Ekholm from the Predators.

Team Trade assets
Edmonton Oilers Mattias Ekholm (D), 2024 sixth-round pick (NSH)
Nashville Predators Tyson Barrie (D), Reid Schaefer, 2023 first-round pick (EDM), 2024 fourth-round pick (EDM)

What it means for the Oilers

Again, Ekholm is a much-needed upgrade on the blue line. Barrie was having a bit of a resurgence offensively this season, but Ekholm is a better two-way presence and moves the puck very well. He fits the mold of what Edmonton needs right now. He’s also signed through 2025-2026, his age-35 season, at $6 million per. (The Predators are retaining 4% of his cap hit in the trade.)

The Oilers are getting another out-of-this-world season from Connor McDavid, and GM Ken Holland is rightfully desperate to continue the postseason momentum from last spring. Unfortunately for Edmonton, it ranks in the bottom-third of the league in goals allowed, penalty killing and goaltending this season, so it seriously needed some help in the goal prevention department. This deal should help.

What it means for the Predators

They are fully committed to selling before the trade deadline, a plan that provided hints when they traded Tanner Jeannot to the Lightning. This trade seems like a win-win, as the Oilers get what they need while Nashville escapes Ekholm’s contract, which no longer fits its competitive timeline and brings in Barrie (on a shorter deal) along with some future capital.

The Predators now have 12 total picks (including two first-rounders) in a very deep draft this summer, and they own 21 total picks in the first four rounds over the next three years. That’s how you begin a rebuild.

Monday, Feb. 27


Feb 21, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Jake McCabe (6) warms up before the game against the Vegas Golden Knights at United Center. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Oh, you thought the Maple Leafs were done? Not so fast. Toronto has made another notable trade ahead of the deadline by scooping up Jake McCabe and Sam Lafferty from the Blackhawks.

Team Trade assets
Toronto Maple Leafs Jake McCabe (D) and Sam Lafferty (F)
Chicago Blackhawks 2025 conditional first-round pick (TOR), 2026 second-round pick (TOR), Joey Anderson (RW) and Pavel Gogolev (RW)

What it means for the Maple Leafs

They’re continuing to plug some holes in their roster and fill out the depth. McCabe may not be an overly sexy get, but he’s a solid defensive defenseman and helps the Leafs (and their cap crunch) at $2 million on the cap for the next 2 1/2 years. (The Blackhawks retain 50% of McCabe’s contract in the trade.)

As far as his impact this year, McCabe should give Toronto more depth and insurance on the blue line … although the Leafs seemed to already be solid in that area to begin with. Then again, the playoffs are a grind (if you make it out of the first round), and it never hurts to have extra bodies.

Lafferty is a serviceable depth player who kills penalties but doesn’t move the needle a ton beyond that.

What it means for the Blackhawks

They continue the clearance sale and get two high draft picks, a roster player and a prospect for two guys that they probably won’t miss all that much. It’s not a bad deal for either side.

Sunday, Feb. 26


Feb 16, 2023; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; San Jose Sharks right wing Timo Meier (28) readies for a face off against the Vegas Golden Knights during the first period at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

The arms race in the Eastern Conference continues, as the Devils have answered the Rangers, Maple Leafs and Bruins by making a big splash of their own. The Sharks have agreed to send Timo Meier to New Jersey in a trade that involves eight players and four draft picks.

Team Trade assets
New Jersey Devils Timo Meier (LW), Scott Harrington (D), Timur Ibragimov (F), Zachary Emond (G), 2024 fifth-round pick (COL)
San Jose Sharks 2023 first-round pick (NJ), conditional 2024 first-round pick, Shakir Mukhamadullin (D), Fabian Zetterlund (RW), Nikita Okhotiuk (D), Andreas Johnsson (LW), 2024 seventh-round pick (NJ)

What it means for the Devils

They’re adding a star player to the top six of a lineup that needed a little more juice on the wing, so that’s massive for a team that is looking to make a run this year. It has to be a relief for New Jersey, which has been trying to bolster the wing for a while now, to finally land a big fish in Meier and accelerate a rebuild that was already ahead of schedule.

The package going the other way is fairly significant — especially considering a contract extension for Meier, who is due to become a restricted free agent this summer, is not included. Apparently, the plan is to get Meier in a Devils sweater now and worry about an extension later.

He’s due a $10 million qualifying offer this summer, so keeping him around will be pricey. However, Meier, 26, is still fairly young and could fit in well with New Jersey’s long-term plans. As long as he sticks around, I would say the cost is worth the acquisition.

Meier has already put up 31 goals and 52 points on a struggling Sharks team this season, and his production could see a jump playing next to Nico Hischier or Jack Hughes at the top of the Devils’ lineup. (It’s worth noting that both Meier and Hischier are from Switzerland, so a Swiss connection could be fun to watch.) In any case, New Jersey didn't have to give up any of its A-grade prospects in the deal, and that might be a win in itself.

It’s also significant that landing Meier takes him away from the Hurricanes, a divisional foe also reported to be a finalist in the sweepstakes.

What it means for the Sharks

The rebuild is in full swing, and the Sharks managed to bring in a decent haul for Meier, who they didn’t want to pay to keep around considering their competitive timeline.

Not only does San Jose potentially get two first-round picks — New Jersey will have to make the conference final in one of the next two seasons with Meier playing 50% of the games in order for the 2024 pick to turn into a first-rounder — but it also got a few prospects. That includes 21-year-old Russian defenseman Shakir Mukhamadullin, who was a first-round pick in 2020.

It's hard to fully judge the return without knowing where the Sharks will draft and what the prospects will become, but it doesn't seem like a terrible return for a rental (albeit one with some control). They added to a stockpile of future assets they’ve accrued for the sake of the rebuild. That being said, San Jose didn't necessarily HAVE to trade Meier, so this isn't exactly a slam-dunk return that was impossible to refuse.

Thursday, Feb. 23


Dec 13, 2022; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Washington Capitals defenseman Dmitry Orlov (9) skates against the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

The rich get richer. After scouring the market and being linked to several names, the top-ranked Bruins have made their move, acquiring Dmitry Orlov and Garnet Hathaway from the Capitals in a three-team trade that also involved the Wild.

Team Trade assets
Boston Bruins Dmitry Orlov (D), Garnet Hathaway (RW), Andrei Svetlakov (LW)
Washington Capitals Craig Smith (RW), 2023 first-round pick (BOS), 2025 second-round pick (BOS), 2024 third-round pick (BOS)
Minnesota Wild 2023 fifth-round pick (BOS)

What it means for the Bruins

The “win-now mode” button has been slammed, as to be expected. Boston was looking to reinforce its offensive and defensive depth in the days leading up to the trade deadline, and it has managed to do so with one move.

Orlov is a strong, versatile top-four, puck-moving defenseman who has a Stanley Cup on his resume. He will give the Bruins a major upgrade on the blue line regardless of what pairing he plays on, and he could slot in next to Charlie McAvoy on the top pairing or end up on the second or third pairing. Boston will use the second half of the season to figure out where he works best. In any case, Orlov is a much more significant add than Vladislav Gavrikov, the Blue Jackets defenseman who was heavily linked to the Bruins.

Boston also gets a bottom-six upgrade in Hathaway, a defensive-minded depth guy who plays with a snarl and will likely cause some chaos come playoff time. He is in, while Craig Smith, who had seen a diminishing role in Boston’s bottom six, is out. Svetlakov plays in the KHL, so his addition doesn’t mean anything for this year’s squad.

On the surface, giving up four draft picks and a roster player for Orlov and Hathaway may seem like a lot. However, the Bruins upgraded two positions, and their first-rounder is projecting to be no better than No. 28 overall. Also, they had to pay a little extra to have 75% of Orlov’s salary retained in the deal. (Washington keeps the maximum 50%, while Minnesota has an additional 25%.) That’s a reasonable exchange for a top team trying to capitalize on an immediate window.

What it means for the Capitals

Washington might be throwing in the towel a little bit. The Capitals have been coming undone recently and, while they’re still in the hunt for a playoff spot, they’ve chosen to cash in on some expiring assets. Maybe they turn around and use some of those assets to retool a bit in the coming week, but right now it looks like they’ve made an honest assessment of this season’s roster and are willing to surrender some ground for the greater good.

If that’s the case, it’s not an awful haul for two expiring contracts.

What it means for the Wild

Minnesota gets a fifth-round pick for a 26-year-old playing in Russia and a little bit of salary retention. Broker’s fee.

Sunday, Feb. 19


May 22, 2022; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers center Tyler Motte (64) celebrates his empty-net goal against the Carolina Hurricanes during the third period in game three of the second round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports

For a second straight season, the Rangers have acquired Tyler Motte around the trade deadline. Motte joined the Senators as a free agent last summer but returns via trade with Ottawa.

Team Trade assets
New York Rangers Tyler Motte (C)
Ottawa Senators Julien Gauthier (RW), 2023 conditional seventh-round pick

What it means for the Rangers

Time is a flat circle. The Rangers needed some help bolstering their depth last season, so they traded for Motte. Considering they traded a fourth-round pick for him last year and reacquired him for a replacement-level roster player and a late pick, that’s not bad.

Trading Gauthier for Motte gives the Rangers a two-way upgrade in the bottom six and helps the penalty kill. Motte has good speed and can buzz around in all three zones. It’s not the most sexy move for New York, but it’s a good one.

GM Chris Drury continues to do strong work to make this team better on the fly. He’s already upgraded the top six with Vladimir Tarasenko and addressed the need for defensive depth with Nikko Mikola. This is another move to elevate the Rangers down the stretch.

What it means for the Senators

Ottawa brought in Motte on a one-year deal because it thought he could be a nice depth piece on a team that was looking toward the playoffs, but the Senators have been a disappointment this season and aren’t playoff-bound. So they moved him to recoup some assets.

Gauthier doesn’t move the needle a whole lot, but he’s a sizable NHL player. And that conditional seventh-round pick becomes a sixth-rounder if the Rangers win a playoff round. Asset management.

Friday, Feb. 17


Feb 18, 2023; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Maple Leafs forward Ryan O'Reilly (90) warms up before playing the Montreal Canadiens at Scotiabank Arena. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

After trading Vladimir Tarasenko, the Blues unloaded another big star — veteran center Ryan O’Reilly, who is heading to the Maple Leafs in a three-team trade.

Team Trade assets
Toronto Maple Leafs Ryan O’Reilly (C), Noel Acciari (C), Josh Pillar (RW)
St. Louis Blues Mikhail Abramov (C), Adam Gaudette (C), 2023 first-round pick (TOR), 2023 third-round pick (OTT via TOR), 2024 second-round pick (TOR)
Minnesota Wild 2025 fourth-round pick (TOR)

What it means for the Maple Leafs

They’re going for it, and they don’t give a damn about their draft picks. Giving up a first, second, third and fourth for two possible rentals in Ryan O’Reilly and Noel Acciari may seem somewhat steep, but it’s the cost of doing business for a team that wants to win now, especially when you consider that Toronto had to pay a little extra so that 75% of O’Reilly’s contract could be retained in the deal.

In O’Reilly, the Leafs get one of the most respected two-way centers in the game. Although he may not be the player he once was and his production is down significantly while playing on a bad Blues team this season, he’s still an effective and responsible center that can match up against top talent and give them fits.

Oh, and he has a Selke, a Stanley Cup and a Conn Smythe on his resume. That’s a nice touch for a Toronto team that has routinely flamed out in the postseason, and he’ll help the Leafs be a more flexible and dangerous club as they look to finally make a deep playoff push.

Acciari is a sneaky nice move for Toronto’s depth, as he presents an upgrade at center on in the bottom six. The Maple Leafs could be moving into the postseason with a lineup that includes Auston Matthews, John Tavares, O’Reilly and Acciari down the middle — that’s pretty damn impressive. O’Reilly and Acciari also should really help a penalty kill that ranks in the middle of the league this season.

What it means for the Blues

We already knew they were selling, but they’re selling big ... and might not be done. Getting that package of picks (plus a prospect) for two expiring contracts is a solid return, especially with O’Reilly’s production taking as much of a hit as it has this season.

What it means for the Wild

They ate some money, gave up a guy who they drafted in the fourth round in 2021 (Josh Pillar) and got back a future fourth. That’s about it. Their involvement was necessary for the financials to work for Toronto.

Monday, Feb. 13


Jan 6, 2023; Chicago, Illinois, USA; Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun (6) skates against the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Sabau-USA TODAY Sports

Chychrun sweepstakes heating up

Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun has seemingly found a permanent place on the trade block over the past handful of years, so it’s fair to be skeptical about any rumors involving the 24-year-old defenseman. However, there’s been A LOT of smoke around Chychrun of late and it appears he may actually be moved in the near future.

The Coyotes healthy-scratched Chychrun for “trade-related reasons” ahead of Saturday’s game against the Blues, a development that threw a whole bunch of gasoline on the rumors. It later trickled out that several teams are making a strong push for the defenseman, but that the Kings were closing in on a deal.

Ultimately, no trade was made over the weekend because, according to Elliotte Friedman on his “32 Thoughts” podcast, trade negotiations between Los Angeles and Arizona hit “some kind of snag.” That mysterious snag has delayed a deal and possibly allowed other teams to re-enter the Chychrun sweepstakes.

It’s worth monitoring any movement on a potential trade as they continue to shop him around. On Monday, Coyotes coach André Tourigny said Chychrun will continue to sit “until something happens.”

Thursday, Feb. 9


Dec 16, 2022; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; St. Louis Blues right wing Vladimir Tarasenko (91) during the face off against the Calgary Flames during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports

After months of speculation that the Rangers would be in hot pursuit of Blackhawks winger Patrick Kane, they decided to make their big splash by targeting another star winger, Vladimir Tarasenko, weeks ahead of the deadline.

Team Trade assets
New York Rangers Vladimir Tarasenko (RW), Nikko Mikkola (D)
St. Louis Blues Sammy Blais (LW), Hunter Skinner (D), conditional 2023 first-round pick, conditional 2024 fourth-round pick

What it means for the Rangers

They get some much-needed scoring help in their top six as they try to make another deep playoff run this spring. At the time of the trade, New. York ranked 15th in offense, 22nd in expected goals, 24th in finishing and 18th in power play. The Rangers clearly needed some help with putting the puck in the back of the net, and Tarasenko, 31, is certainly capable of that.

While the Russian winger only has 10 goals and 29 points this season and is not the player he once was, he’s also only a year removed from a resurgence that saw him post 34 and 82, respectively. His drop-off in production can somewhat be explained away by the Blues’ offensive struggles (they rank 22nd in goals and 27th in expected goals). He should find himself in a much better position to succeed playing in New York, especially if he slots in opposite fellow Russian winger Artemi Panarin and beside Mika Zibanejad on the Rangers’ top line.

The playmaking abilities of Panarin and Zibanejad should provide Tarasenko with plenty of high-danger goal-scoring opportunities. It’s a great, natural fit, and the trade is a less-risky gamble than a deal for Kane, who has struggled with production and health this season.

A sneaky, important part of this trade could also be Mikkola, who isn’t much more than a third-pairing defenseman but is still a notable upgrade over what the Rangers have been deploying on the back end of their blue line. A significant upgrade at two positions without paying a massive price? That’s good work by Chris Drury in New York.

What it means for the Blues

The most notable takeaway is that this marks an end of an era. Tarasenko had spent each of his 11 seasons in St. Louis and became a major face of the franchise, helping the Blues win their first Stanley Cup title in 2019.

It also cements the team’s status as big sellers and increases the likelihood that it will trade Ryan O’Reilly, who, like Tarasenko, is an aging veteran on an expiring contract.

As for the value coming back, the primary piece is the first-round pick. (The condition on that pick is that it will be the latter of New York’s two first-rounders, their own and the Dallas Stars’.) No disrespect to Blais and Skinner, but they’re essentially just replacement-level depth that don’t move the needle much.

Essentially, St. Louis will get a late first-round pick for Tarasenko, and that is a pretty nice return considering his expiry status and downturn in production. The Blues did have to retain salary (50%) and throw in Mikkola, but it’s for a worthy cause as this team looks to begin building for the future.

Friday, Jan. 30


New York Islanders' Bo Horvat celebrates after scoring a goal against the Vancouver Canucks during the second period of an NHL hockey game Thursday, Feb. 9, 2023, in Elmont, N.Y. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

The biggest trade chip on the market is also the first big splash ahead of the NHL deadline, as Canucks center Bo Horvat was shipped to a surprise landing spot on Long Island.

Team Trade assets
New York Islanders Bo Horvat (C)
Vancouver Canucks Anthony Beauvillier (LW), Aatu Raty (C), 2023 first-round pick

What it means for the Islanders

First and foremost, they just got a strong top-six center in his prime, the type of player that doesn’t grow on trees. Horvat is in the midst of a career year and, at the time of the trade, had 31 goals and 54 points through 49 games on a struggling Vancouver team.

Slotting in Horvat at 1C allows the Islanders to pack more of an offensive punch and gives them some flexibility with their lineup options. Mat Barzal can move to the wing or slot down and push Brock Nelson elsewhere. Either way, this team is more dangerous than it was before the trade, and it’s the kind of move that Lou Lamoriello wanted to get done last offseason but struck out in trying to deliver.

That being said, the Islanders still might not be dangerous enough. They are probably more than one Bo Horvat away from fixing all of their problems this season. Their biggest issues come on the back end, where they’re giving up way too many high-danger chances and are far too often relying on Ilya Sorokin to bail them out with Vezina-quality play. (Luckily for them, he has been up to the task so far.) I’m not entirely sure that this move puts the Isles where they want to be down the stretch.

Then you also have to factor in the extension for Horvat. He gets $8.5 million over eight years, which is a big bet for a guy who is shooting almost 22% this season. Yes, he will probably still be a productive player who generates plenty of chances for several years based on his history, but regression is certainly coming. Islanders fans probably shouldn’t get used to these kinds of numbers.

As it stands, the Isles have over $76.5 million in cap commitments already next season, so they better hope this group figures it out and finds a way to elevate its game in a very competitive Metropolitan Division. This is pretty much what they’re stuck with.

What it means for the Canucks

They cash in on an expiring asset who picked the right time to have a career year, and they end up with a first-round pick, a top prospect and a roster player from a middling team. That sounds pretty decent, doesn’t it?

I’m sure it’s a bitter pill to swallow for Vancouver fans, who have to say goodbye to their captain and one of the more beloved players on the roster. There will be some bitterness that the organizational disarray led to Horvat’s departure in his prime, but we have to try to look at what they were able to do with the deal in a vacuum.

That first-round pick is top-12 protected this year and will turn into an unprotected first-rounder next year if the Islanders end up drafting in the lottery. At worst, it’ll probably be a mid-first this year, so Vancouver did a pretty good job of identifying a trade partner that could help maximize the value in the high-draft pick coming back for Horvat.

As for Raty, the Finnish center was NYI’s top prospect but has seen ebbs and flows in his production and projections. He’s far from a sure thing, but he has upside and fits Vancouver’s timeline. So it’ll be intriguing to monitor his development with the Canucks.

Beauvillier, 25, was a valuable middle-six piece for the Islanders but has seen his production fall off and carries a currently overpriced cap hit of $4.15 million this season and next. His inclusion in this deal helps make the financials work, but it also gives the Canucks a relatively young reclamation project who can either fit into their longer-term plans or provide them with a flippable asset.

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