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.

Patrick Storto
http://twitter.com/PatStorto

17 Comments

Patrick Storto's picture

this trade is ridiculous, Greg Sherman is going to have some explaining to do IMO.

George Prax's picture
Patrick Storto wrote:

this trade is ridiculous, Greg Sherman is going to have some explaining to do IMO.

Quinn Mell-Cobb's picture

Noticed this deal before TSN even broke it on NHL.com while looking at game stats, I glance at the sidebar quickly and see "Blues trade Johnson to Colorado", needless to say, I was stunned (and then as Mike noted I messaged him to see if he knew haha).

As for my opinion on this deal, I would pretty much just be echoing each of your sentiments. Not a big fan of the trade AT ALL from Colorado's perspective. Stewart is a bona fide, star power forward in the making and Shattenkirk has arguably been better than Johnson has this season. Add in the questionable Anderson for Elliott trade with Ottawa earlier, and you can't help but wonder what Greg Sherman is doing. What's next, Matt Duchene on the move? lol

George Prax's picture

I'll leave the Avs side of things to Russ for the most part but I kind of get paying a premium for a big name defenseman... I'm worried about what this does to the market considering how many teams are pretty desperate for D-men now though. But even if you're getting Johnson, I don't see how that justified giving up two promising young forwards with 1st line potential. Completely insane trade.

And keep in mind these teams are in the west so it was more like midnight, not 2AM.

Russell Dornisch's picture

George, you made my point for me! You said two promising young forwards with 1st line potential. Shattenkirk's a defensemen that thinks he is a forward and plays like one from the back. The Avs have way too many Offensive d-men who can't play D to save their life. We needed a guy who was going to be a stay at home guy, and that is what we will do with EJ. Shatenkirk is a -8 in the last two games for the Avs, when he is not scoring, he is worthless.

As for Stewart, there is promise there because of what he did at the beginning of the year, but his choice to fight and break his hand has been one of the biggest differences to our season. Since his hand injury he has gone back to laziness that most people thought made him a bust. Really this trade was EJ for Stewart, which I feel is a wash, and Shatty and a second for McC and a 1st.

George Prax's picture
Russell Dornisch wrote:

George, you made my point for me! You said two promising young forwards with 1st line potential. Shattenkirk's a defensemen that thinks he is a forward and plays like one from the back. The Avs have way too many Offensive d-men who can't play D to save their life. We needed a guy who was going to be a stay at home guy, and that is what we will do with EJ. Shatenkirk is a -8 in the last two games for the Avs, when he is not scoring, he is worthless.

As for Stewart, there is promise there because of what he did at the beginning of the year, but his choice to fight and break his hand has been one of the biggest differences to our season. Since his hand injury he has gone back to laziness that most people thought made him a bust. Really this trade was EJ for Stewart, which I feel is a wash, and Shatty and a second for McC and a 1st.

and here I was trying to leave the analysis to you Wink

Patrick Storto's picture

That 1st round pick is top 10 protected, so Shattenkirk and a 2nd for McClement and a 1st is a disaster even if you are splitting up the deal like that.

And like I said, the Avs are trading the players who are having success for one who isn't. Huge risk there.

Russell Dornisch's picture
Patrick Storto wrote:

That 1st round pick is top 10 protected, so Shattenkirk and a 2nd for McClement and a 1st is a disaster even if you are splitting up the deal like that.

And like I said, the Avs are trading the players who are having success for one who isn't. Huge risk there.

They both aren't having success... both are inconsistent, and Shatty is a terrible D, -8 in the last two games...

Plus it is the Blues choice. If it's a top 10, they can still send it our way, and honestly I hope its for next year. This year people are saying is going to be a bad draft anyway.

Patrick Storto's picture

why would they send the pick your way if it's top 10?

I think you're ignoring that part where Shattenkirk is a rookie and Chris Stewart had a significant injury. He was consistently scoring goals before breaking his hand.

Russell Dornisch's picture

Thanks for proving my point, EJ was a 40 point defensemen before his knee injury...

They would send this years because it is a bad draft... but my point is I am fine with it being for 2012. The draft is supposed to be better, and there is a high chance the Blues are bad again... how often are they not.

I am fine with loosing a rookie 22 year old defensemen for a 22 year old defensmen... LOL

Patrick Storto's picture
Russell Dornisch wrote:

Thanks for proving my point, EJ was a 40 point defensemen before his knee injury...

They would send this years because it is a bad draft... but my point is I am fine with it being for 2012. The draft is supposed to be better, and there is a high chance the Blues are bad again... how often are they not.

I am fine with loosing a rookie 22 year old defensemen for a 22 year old defensmen... LOL

Johnson had 39 points last year, the year after his knee injury, so it's pretty clear that injury is not a factor.

I'm not saying Johnson is a bad player by any stretch of the imagination, only that Stewart and Shattenkirk will be better.

Russell Dornisch's picture

No way! You can't compare a defensemen to a forward, but this deal is Stewart for Johnson. Shattenkirk will not be better than Johnson, no way!

We have too many puck moving D on the roster now, and we have 6 in the system that will be just as good as Shattenkirk.

I have been watching Shattenkirk play, and unless you have I am assuming you are going off of stats. Trust me, Shattenkirk will bring offense, but he is a huge defensive liability.

Patrick Storto's picture

how is this deal Stewart for Johnson? It's Stewart AND Shattenkirk + 2nd for Johnson + 1st, I don't know why you keep eliminating players from the deal in your arguments. The only throw in is McClement.

Shattenkirk is a rookie, doesn't matter if they are the same age, the fact is that he is a rookie, rookies make more mistakes.

I'm not saying that Shattenkirk will be better than Johnson, only that the combo that St. Louis received will be better than the combo that Colorado received.

empireamodeo's picture

What an interesting trade. I saw it on my fantasy team news since I have Stewy before it was announced. I saw it too in a "side note" and then tried to find it on a bonafide website at about 11:30 west coast time. I am not a fan of either team really but I have to think that both teams made out pretty good. You cant argue with the potential that EJ has. He was drafted 1st overall and the freak knee injury yes made him miss a full season but he came back and made improvements in the folowing year having 10 goals, 29 helpers and was on the good side of the plus minus. I dont see any reason why he still cant be a franchise Dman like he was widely projected to be. He is only 22 yrs old! Seems perhaps that EJ and Stewy both need a change of scenery and it could be huge for both teams. I dont see this being a fleece job by any means. I personally hope that St Loo rolls a Stewart - Oshie - Backes line. I need Stewy to keep my dynasty keeper league team in first place!