So the big trade of this pre-Draft week, thus far, was that of Scott Hartnell from the Philadelphia Flyers to the Columbus Blue Jackets... for R.J. Umberger. A player who the Blue Jackets discussed buying out earlier this week. The Flyers have obviously never heard the maxim about getting the best player in the deal. Or at least getting a player you can pretend is remotely close to being the best player. But hey, they got a player. And a pick! So I'm sure all of Philly is stoked.
As Scott Hartnell must be. As he himself said: "I'm 32 years old, I have a lot of money, but I want to win." And as Blue Jacket's GM Jarmo Kekalainen said: "He wanted to go to a team that he feels has a chance to win the Stanley Cup." And thus, Columbus here we come! *blink blink*
Somebody must know something about the Blue Jackets that I don't...
This is why we tune into NHL news this time of year though, right? I mean, besides that whole Draft thing. I'm just here for the 'say what?' transactions. Hartnell for Umberger? Excellent. Good start. The Sharks are planning a rebuild and might move Thornton and/or Marleau? *David grabs his popcorn* What's next?
The next few days are gonna be great.
* * *
The NHL Awards Show was last night. Lots of people won trophies, and most of them we could have predicted would win them yesterday afternoon. But maybe you still want to know who they were? Well, we live to serve. [SB Nation]
Good for Rich Peverley. He got to sit next to Alex Ovechkin at last night's awards. [RMNB]
And good for Mike Modano. Slightly overwhelmed at his recent induction to the Hockey Hall of Fame. [Sports Day DFW]
And as if we needed further validation of Jamie Benn's greatness, he goes and gets named to the NHL First All-Star Team. A pretty impressive honor, that no Dallas Stars player ever has accomplished. Well played Benn. [Sports Day DFW]
What? No Lady Byng for Tyler Seguin? Blame Mike Heika. [Sports Day DFW]
How to fix the Vancouver Canucks? Well, they need a reliable goaltender. And Ryan Kesler more than likely needs to be shipped out. Hmm... wait, no! Damn it, Josh! You've got me thinking of Kari Lehtonen trades now! [National Post]
Free agents reluctant to commit too soon, because you know, the difference between $5 million and $6 million is really going to affect their quality of life. [CBC]
NHL teams... and Game of Thrones. Two things that were bound to be mixed at some point. I don't get it, but then, I've never seen the show. Maybe a couple of y'all have? [On the Forecheck]
Jussi Jokinen as a potential free agent? Discuss. [Puck Daddy]
I don't know where you guys get your offseason primers from, but I'll take Down Goes Brown's all the way. [Grantland]
And lastly, Tyler Seguin at Dirk Nowitzki's Heroes Celebrity Baseball Game over the weekend: "I'm going to be really baseball right now. I have sunflower seeds ... in the dugout. And I'm also gonna be talking to myself. Oh yeah. Major League."