It looks like Bryan Murray has started the party. With the NHL trade deadline fast approaching on February 26th, this deal could start others as teams try to fill needs heading towards the playoffs.
Corvo and Eaves for Stillman and Commodore. Ottawa gets the big physical defenseman to play with Wade Redden they have been looking for since the final last year against Anaheim. That’s when the Senators really found out that size matters. If you remember back to that series Tom Preissing and Joe Corvo played very little in the final few games because they just could not handle the big Duck forwards. Stillman gives Ottawa that 2nd line forward they have been looking for and really it’s the first time since Magnus Arvedsson they have had a guy who can play regularly on the 2nd line's left side and produce. Peter Schaefer was supposed to be that guy, Antoine Vermette was given every chance and others along the way have never really laid claim to that spot. Stillman also can play centre and the point on the powerplay. What both Stillman and Commodore also have are Stanley Cup rings and that experience is key.
Joe Corvo gives the Canes something they need badly right now and that is a big right shot on the point and a guy who can play the powerplay. Carolina has one of the lowest point producing back ends in the NHL and Corvo will definitely help. It’s probably a good move for him personally. He has admitted that he’s had a tough time playing under the microscope which is just the way it is in a Canadian NHL city. Patrick Eaves is a guy that everyone will be very sad to see leave. Patrick is a wonderful young man who is a solid citizen and a player who will do whatever a coach asks. The Senators did not want to give him up, but sometimes you have to make decisions to make a deal.
All in all I am surprised that Murray was able to make a deal like this in the current NHL. Its not often you take care of 2 major needs and reduce the cap hit at the same time. Now all that is left to see is if the 2 newest Senators can mesh with their new team mates. It looks very good on paper, now we have to see if it looks as good on the ice.
Next up? Who knows? Bryan Murray says he may be able to swing another deal or two before the deadline. After closing this kind of deal, I can’t imagine what the encore will be.
See you at the rink.