NHL Slap Shots: trade deadline leads to big moves

Noah Southard

Sports Blogger

@noahsouthard056

 

NHL Trade Deadline

clyde/Flickr

The NHL trade deadline finished Monday. Most teams took advantage of the last day as they traded picks and players to either rebuild their programs or make a run into the postseason.

Before the deadline, the Boston Bruins acquired Rick Nash from the New York Rangers. Nash recorded 145 goals and 252 points in 375 games with the Rangers. He will set up alongside Bruins player David Krejci on the second line as a power forward. Boston paid a hefty price for Nash when it sent Matt Beleskey, Ryan Spooner, prospect Ryan Lindgren and a couple picks to New York for its rebuilding phase. Nash can become an unrestricted free agent this summer.

To continue reconstruction, the Rangers shook hands on a trade with the Tampa Bay Lightning. New York agreed to send its captain and top defenseman Ryan McDonagh and J.T. Miller, a versatile forward, to Tampa Bay. The Lightning decided to ship Vladislav Namestnikov, Libor Hajek, Brett Howden, one 2018 first-round draft pick and a conditional 2019 first-round pick. McDonagh began his career with the Rangers.  In his eight seasons, he tallied 516 games with 238 points and a plus-141 plus/minus rating. Namestnikov spent the season centering a line with the Lightning’s top players, Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov. He logged 44 points in 62 games.

Other NHL teams made trades, including the Buffalo Sabres when they dealt Evander Kane to the San Jose Sharks.  The Vegas Golden Knights received Tomas Tatar from Detroit to improve their hot offense and Philip Holm on the defensive side. The Winnipeg Jets showed their muscle through making a deal to bring in Paul Stastny from the St. Louis Blues. The Columbus Blue Jackets secured Thomas Vanek, Ian Cole, Mark Letestu and Ryan Kujawinski. The Pittsburgh Penguins received Derick Brassard from the Ottawa Senators as the Penguins look to win the Stanley Cup for the third year in a row.

2018 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series game

The Toronto Maple Leafs visit the Washington Capitals on Saturday outdoors. The Maple Leafs and Capitals will play this game in Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Maryland.

The NHL began the Stadium Series in January 2014 when the Anaheim Ducks traveled to Los Angeles to take on the Kings. The outdoor series is separate from the Winter Classic, the outdoor game played on New Year’s Day, and the Heritage Classic, an outdoor game played in Canada.

Toronto and Washington are favorites to make a deep run for the Stanley Cup as both are sitting pretty at number two in their respective divisions. Neither team has met outdoors, but they each have played two outdoor games. This will mark the third meeting this season between these teams. The Leafs won the first contest, and the Capitals took the second one. This clash of the titans will begin at 7 p.m. on NBC.

ozone@ocolly.com

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