The Colorado Avalanche have traded Ryan Smyth to the Los Angeles Kings for Kyle Quincey, Tom Preissing and a fifth-round pick.
Fantasy Impact: This is a big one.
First, Los Angeles. Smyth’s arrival will push Teddy Purcell out of the top six and on the third line you can expect a point every three contests. However, when a top sixer gets injured, he will be the first to sub in – and “injured” just happens to be Justin Williams’ middle name. Smyth is also not exactly an iron man. So Purcell will still see his share of top six time.
Smyth himself is coming off a 59-point season. In Los Angeles, with the kind of cast he will now be playing with, you can bump that up two or three points.
On the back end, the Kings cleared away a couple of bodies (not that Preissing was playing much). This opens the door for Thomas Hickey and possibly Slava Voynov. Neither of them will make a fantasy impact as rookies, but it will be good to see them make the jump.
In Colorado, the absence of Smyth really opens things up. The Avs have a lot of natural centers in their system and not so many wingers. Up the middle: Paul Stastny, Matt Duchene, T.J. Hensick, Ryan Stoa and T.J. Galiardi (just to mention the ones with top-six potential). In the top six on the wing will be Milan Hejduk, Wojtek Wolski and Marek Svatos. The remaining spot will probably go to Chris Stewart, but also considered will be David Jones, Galiardi or Hensick. Either way, Smyth’s loss opens a spot for a kid. The youth movement is on!
As for Quincey and Preissing, they have a new lease on life. With Doughty’s responsibility growing, Jack Johnson healthy and Voynov on the way, Quincey was running out of room. In Colorado, he will be able to match last year’s numbers. Preissing will just be happy getting onto an NHL ice surface full time again – I am cautiously optimistic that he can get back to 30 points.