The Contrarian – the Good, the Bad, and the Canucklehead

Dobber Sports


Martin Erat PHX

Is whomever acquired Martin Erat the trade deadlines biggest loser? Not so fast…

So the NHL trade deadline has come and gone. Most likely your fantasy pool trade deadline has passed as well. I hope you did well for yourselves?


There is an article written by Rory Boylen, from The Hockey News' Post to Post blog, called “Five winners and five losers of the 2014 NHL trade deadline” where he evaluates which NHL teams came out better or worse from the deadline.

In another article called “GMs praise moves by Blues, Habs, Wild” written by ESPN's Pierre LeBrun, he talks with all the NHL GM's and gets their opinions as to who won.


I will also reference a TSN video “TradeCentre: A Good Situation in Net” with Gino Reda and Jamie McLennan. Be aware that the video was produced on March 4, 2014 soon after the Viktor Fasth deal but hours before the Roberto Luongo trade.


Both Rory Boylen and Pierre LeBrun list the Montreal Canadiens as winners. "Acquiring Tomas Vanek for Sebastien Collberg and a conditional second-rounder gives the Canadiens the big scoring winger they so desperately needed without having to meet the Islanders' original asking price of at least a first-rounder", says Rory. Pierre gets a quote from a GM indicating "Bergevin did a really good job on Vanek."


For those that don't know, the deal was Vanek and a conditional fifth round pick for Sebastian Collberg and a conditional second round pick. If the Canadiens fall out of the playoff picture the conditional picks are cancelled, leaving it Vanek for Collberg.


As everyone has pointed out, the Canadiens paid far less for Vanek than did the Islanders and when you frame it in that light it no one will argue that they were not a winner.

My question though is, does this deal really help the Canadiens especially since Vanek is a rental player? Does it get them past the first round of the playoffs?


Last year they got knocked around by Ottawa and two seasons before that they pushed Boston to seven games but physically lost the series. Jamie McLennan suggested that they need a big physical forward.


We should also not forget that during the Olympics, Vanek was the captain of the Austrian team that partied till 6am before their qualifying round game loss to Slovenia. Montreal has had their share of players partying (see Kostitsyn's). If he wasn't motivated to act as a professional at the Olympics, what is it to say that he will be any better as a rental for the Canadiens.


Rory Boylen identifies the Phoenix Coyotes as losers for picking up Martin Erat and letting David Rundblad go.


The David Rundblad deal included prospect Matthieu Brisebois going to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for a second round pick. Rory's critique is that Rundblad was the key piece in the Turris deal and now it has turned into a second round pick. What are the other alternatives? Keep him and if he doesn't improve don't sign him once his contract expires or demote him to the AHL? Getting a second round pick is a good alternative.

Regarding Erat he writes, "The Czech was a massive disappointment in Washington and the infamous Filip Forsberg trade from a year ago, scoring j