It looked pretty weird seeing Dion Phaneuf and J.S. Giguere in Leafs practice gear today. Once the faces of the Flames and Ducks respectively, both were traded to Toronto on Sunday. A day later, Calgary sent Olli Jokinen to the Rangers. For those of you that haven’t heard yet, here’s how the trades shook down:
To Toronto: Dion Phaneuf, Fredrik Sjostrom and Keith Aulie
To Calgary: Matt Stajan, Niklas Hagman, Jamal Mayers and Ian White
Analysis: What are the Calgary Flames thinking here? Even if they wanted to get rid of Phaneuf because of poor play and problems in their dressing room, is this really the best they could do? Stajan and Hagman wouldn’t make the Canucks top two lines, while Mayers wouldn’t be able to crack their lineup. Ian White’s not a bad defenceman and he’s still young, but he could probably develop into a number three defenceman at best. To make matters worse, Stajan and Mayers are scheduled to be UFAs at the end of the season. Someone out there must have been able to put a better offer for a 24 year old Norris trophy finalist with the kinds of tools that Phaneuf has. Getting a bunch of spare parts for Phaneuf is eerily similar to the Joe Thornton trade a few years ago. And thanks to Ian White and Niklas Hagman, it’s also the best moustache trade since 1979 when Lanny McDonald and Joel Quenneville were both traded from Toronto to Colorado.
To Toronto: J.S. Giguere
To Anaheim: Vesa Toskala and Jason Blake
Analysis: This trade makes a lot of sense for both teams. Toronto takes a gamble that Giguere can regain his Conn Smythe Trophy winning form, taking on Giguere’s $6 million salary. Even though he’s overpaid and underperforming, it works for them because they shed the salaries of Toskala and Blake (they each make $4 million). This deal makes sense for Anaheim because they’re paying less for their backup goalie and add some scoring with Blake.
To Calgary: Ales Kotalik and Chris Higgins
To NY Rangers: Olli Jokinen and Brandon Prust
Analysis: Clearly Darryl Sutter felt like he had enough staches on the team with the acquisition of White and Hagman that he could let Olli Jokinen and his handlebar moustache go to the Rangers. Seriously though, what is he thinking? In this trade he gets more spare parts, overpaid spare parts at that! Higgins has 14 points and makes $2.25 million. Kotalik meanwhile makes $3 million and has 22 points. Jokinen hasn’t done what Calgary hoped, but he’s still a heck of a lot better than those guys.