Blues and Avalanche Make A Massive Trade
So here I am in bed, when I happen to notice the red light flashing on my blackberry. I noticed it was a text, so I read it quickly.
This is the message at 2:33 AM ET:
"TSN.ca ALERT: Blues trade Erik Johnson, Jay McClement and con. pick to Avs for Chris Stewart, Kevin Shattenkrik and con. pick."
Dazed and confused, I had to read it again, then again and again. I'm both shocked and confused. This is easily the biggest trade of the season, perhaps the biggest trade in a while. What's even more amazing is that no one saw this coming. Then on top of that, you have this deal randomly going down at roughly 2am ET?
My initial and current reaction is complete shock as to what GM Greg Sherman and the Colorado Avalanche have done here. Yes Erik Johnson is a former 1st overall pick, but Shattenkirk and Stewart were also 1st round picks.
Both Shattenkirk and Stewart have actually looked more promising in their brief time in the NHL compared to Erik Johnson. In this his 3rd NHL season, Erik Johnson is probably having his most disappointing season thus far, with only 18 points in 54 games.
On the other hand, Shattenkirk who is in his rookie season is having a stellar year. His offensive output has tailed off recently, but inconsistency is expected from a rookie. Had Shattenkirk started the season in the NHL, he easily would have been in the Calder race. He has posted 26 points in 46 games, which would have had him on pace for 46 points in 82 games had he played the full season. Not bad for a rookie defenseman.
In addition to Shattenkirk, the Avalanche gave up Chris Stewart. Stewart is easily a future 30-goal if not 40-goal scorer. The former 18th overall pick scored 28 goals in his second season last year for the Avalanche. He was on pace to eclipse that total this year, as he had 11 goals in his first 23 games. Unfortunately, Stewart then suffered a broken hand and has only had 2 goals in the 13 games since he has returned. Nonetheless, there's nothing to suggest that once Stewart is fully recovered that he won't be able to regain his scoring touch.
Again, the Avalanche have given up a great deal of talent here. They're giving up two young players who are having success for the young player that is currently disappointing.
As per Bob Mackenzie,
Lost in this deal is that the Avalanche will receive a conditional 1st round pick from the Blues. The pick is top-ten protected for 2011 and so if it lands in that range, the Avalanche will receive St. Louis' 2012 1st round pick.
Colorado sends a conditional 2nd round pick to St. Louis as well. The condition is that the Blues will receive this pick in the draft that the Avalanche receive the 1st round pick.