While the number of quality players moved on this year's trade deadline was rather disappointing, there were still a number of movements made. Below I'll take a look at the moves made in the Eastern Conference on the actual deadline day, as well as a handful of others that happened within the week or so leading up to the deadline. Along with the actual trades being listed, I will also take a look at the fantasy impact (or potential impact) for each team that made a move.
Boston Bruins – The Bruins acquired Greg Zanon (for Steve Kampfer) and Brian Rolston and Mike Mottau (for Riendeau and Cantin). Boston was definitely trying to bolster their blue line before the playoffs so as to best defend their Stanley Cup title and they did so by giving up next to nothing. Zanon, who adds decent value in hits and blocked shots, has primarily been paired with Joe Corvo thus far, while Mottau is being reserved as a healthy scratch. Not that the Boston goaltenders needed much help anyway, but they definitely got more through the end of this season and into the postseason.
Rolston is a veteran with a ton of experience who can be used in a top-six role quite effectively. Early on, he has at times taken Tyler Seguin's place on the Bergeron-Marchand line, but not to worry – Rolston is averaging only 12:14 ice time thus far. He also has a cannon from the point, where he is currently seeing time on the 2nd PP unit, and with one assist (power-play assist) in three games thus far, he may be a decent depth addition if he heats up.
Buffalo Sabres – The Sabres added Cody Hodgson and Alexander Sulzer (for Zack Kassian and Marc-Andre Gragnani) and a first round pick (for Paul Gaustad and a 4th round pick). The Sabres were involved in what was likely the biggest trade of the deadline, bringing in the very skilled and promising youngster in Hodgson and added some defensive depth in Sulzer. Since the trade Hodgson, who was averaging 12:44 of ice time in Vancouver, is already averaging over 17 minutes per game in Buffalo. He has been primarily paired with Ennis and Stafford, two players with a ton of skill. The Sabres gave up two big pieces of their prospect system to get him, so fantasy owners can rest assured that Hodgson will get plenty of opportunity to blossom quickly.
Sulzer, a once promising offensive defenseman, has struggled to find his offensive game at the NHL level and is now skating for his fourth team in two seasons. In his first game for Buffalo (Saturday), he was paired with Ehrhoff and skated just 12:57. He was plus-one in that game though and is plus-seven on the season (in 13 games). The hope is that Sulzer will be more responsible in his own end, which should in turn help the performance of Ryan Miller, which has been rocky at times this season.
Florida Panthers – The Panthers acquired Wojtek Wolski (for Mike Vernace and a 2013 3rd round pick) and Jerred Smithson (for a 2012 6th round pick). Wolski has struggled to find a home in this league, and his season in New York was almost over before it started. There were rumors of a contract buyout over the summer and combined with various injuries, Wolski was in need of a new home. With the new-look Panthers, Wolski may have finally found his groove. He has seen time with either S