The Saturday Slate is a weekly discussion or platform where members of Win Column Sports provide their respective opinions and thoughts on an event that took place in the prior week. Additionally, there is also a running pool amongst the contributors based on our picks for Saturday’s match-ups. This week, the Win Column panel discusses the NHL action on February 23rd.

The Story:

It’s one of the best times of year to be a hockey fan.

The NHL Trade Deadline takes place this Monday as teams look to make their final moves before the playoffs. This year, Ottawa has already moved on from star forward Matt Duchene, with a number of other major names rumoured to be on the move on February 25th. Unfortunately, every trade deadline sees it’s fair share of bad trades. Whether it be an overpayment in assets or a player not panning out as expected, not every move works out as desired. In this week’s edition of the NHL Saturday Slate, the WCSN panel reviews some of the worst deadline deals in history. Who will be the team to do it this year?

Ben Ferguson

One fleecing that comes to mind is the extreme overpayment for the Penguins’ Alex Goligoski by the Dallas Stars in 2011. Looking at it from today’s perspective it’s downright ugly, even though Goligoski played some of his best hockey in Dallas. Don’t get me wrong – Goligoski is a solid defenseman but giving up two talented players in James Neal and Matt Niskanen is a severe overpayment. Granted, hindsight is 20/20, but both Neal and Niskanen went on to make impacts for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Neal went on to post a 40-goal season the following year as well as garner a healthy return in Nick Spaling and Patric Hornqvist once the Pens dealt him to Nashville. Niskanen, too, was effective in his time in Pittsburgh, becoming a key contributor for the Pens and registering his best year in the 13/14 season. It’s not an indictment of Goligoski’s play in Dallas that makes this one of the worst deadline deals ever; it’s the return for the Penguins was far too sweet.

Spencer Love

No matter which way you slice it, Martin Erat’s tenure in Washington may go down as one of not only the worst trade deadline deals ever, but worst trades of all time. Acquired by the Capitals on April 3, 2013, along with defenceman Michael Latta, Erat was expected to add scoring depth and veteran leadership to a Washington squad looking to secure their first Stanley Cup at the time. Throughout his time in Nashville, Erat has scored no less than 49 points and played a key role for the organization. However, not only did that not turn out to be the case but as history would prove, the Capitals gave up far, far more than they acquired.

While he hadn’t yet played for Washington, Filip Forsberg was one of the most highly-touted prospects in the NHL at the time of the trade. Selected 11th overall in the previous years’ entry draft, Forsberg was in the midst of a nearly point-per-game season in Sweden and looked poised to be an impact player for the Caps as soon as the next season. However, he never suited up for the Capitals and would become a perennial 60-point player in the Music City. Erat, conversely, scored a grand total of two goals in his time in the Nation’s capital while collecting exactly zero points in that season’s first-round loss to the New York Rangers. While the Capitals eventually won their Stanley Cup last season, it’s hard not to wonder if it would have been done earlier with Forsberg in the lineup.

Arik Krause

As a Washington Capitals fan, mine is fairly easy. Unfortunately, we’ve had two historic mess ups in the past decade, however, one of them has already been touched on by my colleague. The other I’ll mention. Washington acquired Kevin Shattenkirk at the 2017 deadline, the Capitals who were already Stanley Cup favourites at the deadline added the best rental player, at a price. Washington shipped highly-touted prospect Zach Ranford along with Brad Malone to the Blues for Shattenkirk, as well as a 1st-round pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft and a conditional pick. Shattenkirk, by all means, didn’t play horribly. He had 1 goal and 5 points in the postseason but was -4 in a very forgettable Capitals playoff run.

The Flyers would acquire the Capitals pick from St. Louis and eventually draft Morgan Frost, a very talented young forward who will be a career NHLer. Shattenkirk played less than 40 games for the Capitals franchise.

Caleb Haverko

In February of 1996, Teemu Selanne was traded with Marc Chouinard and a 4th round pick to the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim in exchange for Chad Kilger, Oleg Tverdovsky and a 3rd round pick. The next season Winnipeg would become the Pheonix Coyotes.

Kilger would play a total of 63 games with the Jets/Coyotes scoring only 13 points. Tverdovsky had a longer tenure, playing 241 games with the organization and scoring 107 points. The 3rd round pick, who turned out to be Anton Lundstrom, would never play a game in the NHL.

In his 23-year career, Selanne would play 15 seasons with the Ducks. He played a total of 966 games in Anaheim, scoring 988 points. He won the Rocket Richard Trophy in the 98/99 season, the Bill Masterton Trophy in the 05/06 season and he won the Stanley Cup in 2007.
Kilger and Tverdovsky were write-offs for the Jets/Coyotes who essentially threw away what would have been the best player to ever play for them.

WinColumnSport’s Saturday Picks
Capitals @ SabresCapitalsCapitalsCapitalsCapitals
Devils @ RangersRangersRangersDevilsDevils
Bruins @ BluesBruinsBruinsBluesBlues
Kings @ PanthersPanthersPanthersPanthersPanthers
Hurricanes @ StarsStarsHurricanesHurricanesStars
Sharks @ Blue JacketsSharksSharksSharksSharks
Avalanche @ PredatorsPredatorsAvalanchePredatorsPredators
Canadiens @ Maple LeafsMaple LeafsMaple LeafsMaple LeafsCanadiens
Penguins @ FlyersPenguinsFlyersPenguinsPenguins
Ducks @ OilersOilersOilersDucksOilers
Islanders @ CanucksIslandersIslandersIslandersCanucks
Records Thus Far:
  1. Ben: (99-81), Last Week: (6-5), Winning Percentage: (55%)
  2. Carl: (69-58), Last Week: (6-7), Winning Percentage (54%)
  3. Spencer: (92-89), Last Week: (7-5), Winning Percentage: (51%)
  4. Arik: (92-89), Last Week: (8-4), Winning Percentage: (51%)
  5. Caleb: (0-0), Last Week: (0-0), Winning Percentage: (0%)
Latest NHL Content:
NHL Saturday Slate: News and Predictions for February 23rd’s NHL Action

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