The Blues and Avalanche Swap Young Stars

Jeff Angus

2011-02-19

Johnson

 

Fantasy Impact: Colorado traded rugged winger Chris Stewart, prized young defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk, and a 2nd round draft pick to St. Louis in exchange for former 1st overall pick Erik Johnson, shutdown center Jay McClement, and a conditional 1st round pick. One of the most surprising (and interesting) trades in recent memory.

 

The Avalanche get: A defenseman with the upside to be dominant at both ends of the ice. Johnson has all the tools necessary to be a franchise defenseman – smarts, size, speed, and a nice blend of offensive and defensive talent. McClement is one of the best defensive centers in the game, and he immediately boosts Colorado's PK in a big way. Johnson is far and away the key part of this deal, but McClement will be welcomed site to both Brian Elliott and Peter Budaj. The 1st round pick is dependent on one thing – the Blues can defer it to 2012 if it ends up being somewhere in the top 10. This condition may end up working for Colorado, as the 2012 draft is shaping up to be a very strong one.

 

The Blues get: One of the best young power forwards in the game in Stewart, and a budding offensive star in Shattenkirk. Stewart, like most other Avs, has been struggling for the past month or so. He has the potential to be a 40-goal scorer with an intimidating physical streak. Shattenkirk is a fluid skater who reads the ice very well as a rookie. His upside from an offensive standpoint is just as high as Johnson's (if not higher).

 

Fantasy Players Impacted:

 

Essentially every player on either team is affected by this deal. Every player in the trade will see an immediate boost in value because they will want to prove themselves to their new clubs. Stewart bumps a few forwards down the depth chart in St. Louis. This deal was able to happen for a few reasons. The Blues felt comfortable building around Alex Pietrangelo going forward, and Colorado felt Shattenkirk was expendable because of their immense depth in terms of offensively talented defensemen in the pipeline. Giving up Stewart hurts but Johnson (and a potentially good draft pick) is a pretty nice return.

 

This deal is a precursor to another move for at least one of these teams. Colorado will probably move John-Michael Liles, and they may try to snag a winger in return. The Blues have a wealth of depth at forward and Stewart only adds to the logjam. I would expect Brad Boyes to be on the move.

 

St. Louis fans should get excited at the potential for a Shattenkirk-Pietrangelo duo on the power play for the next decade. The Blues now have the luxury of putting a punishing, talented forward on each line with Stewart and David Backes. Few – if any – teams can claim to have two 30+ goal scorers who can fight and hit with regularity. TJ Oshie, Patrik Berglund, Stewart, Backes, Alex Steen, and David Perron is an impressive young core of forwards to build around. Don't forget the prospects or Andy McDonald, either.

 

Colorado now has a franchise defenseman to add to a franchise forward (Matt Duchene). Look for Johnson to be revita