Monday, February 25, 2019

NHL trade review: Avs acquire Brassard

From Getty

              The Colorado Avalanche have acquired forward Derick Brassard and a 2020 sixth round pick from the Florida Panthers in exchange for a 2020 3rd round pick.

               I like this trade for Colorado. Brassard is a player with a good history, but has been having a rough season. His past says that a third round pick is a light return, especially since the Avs get a sixth back as well. Brassard will improve their depth.

                Brassard, 31, has scored 10 goals with nine assists for 19 points in 50 games for the Panthers and Pittsburgh Penguins this season. The best year of his career came in 2015-16, when he scored 27 goals with 31 assists for 58 points in 80 games. In his NHL career for the Panthers, Penguins, New York Rangers, Ottawa Senators and Columbus Blue Jackets, Brassard has scored 172 goals with 275 assists for 447 points in 766 games.

                 For the Panthers, Brassard was recently acquired in a trade with the Penguins to shed salary, and since he is an upcoming UFA, it made sense to trade him. The one thing is that they didn't get much for him, but at least it's better than nothing.

NHL Trade Review: Bruins acquire Johansson

From Getty

            The Boston Bruins have acquired winger Marcus Johansson from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for a 2019 2nd round pick and a 2020 4th. New Jersey also retains 40% of Johansson's contract.

             Johansson is what every contender should go after: scoring. Johansson hasn't worked out well in New Jersey, but has a good history in Washington. He will improve the Bruins top six. The cost isn't too bad, which is good for a team scared away from Mark Stone's price.

             Johansson, 28, has scored 12 goals with 15 assists for 27 points in 48 games for the Devils this season. The best year of his career came in 2016-17, when he scored 24 goals with 34 assists for 58 points in 82 games. In his career for the Devils and Washington Capitals, Johansson has scored 119 goals with 212 assists for 331 points in 578 games.

             For he Devils, they have been struggling this season, and already traded Ben Lovejoy and Keith Kinkaid. A Johansson trade seemed obvious since he's a pending UFA. For a player that has struggled like Johansson, a second and a 4th round pick isn't a terrible return.

NHL Trade Review: Predators get Simmonds

From NBC

             The Nashville Predators have acquired winger Wayne Simmonds from the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for forward Ryan Hartman and a 4th round pick.

              The Predators are one of the top teams in the NHL, but if they want to beat out the Winnipeg Jets and win the Central Division, they needed to upgrade at the trade deadline, and they did. They get Simmonds, a player who will help their abysmal power play, and improve their top-six. They give up just Hartman, who isn't nearly as good as Simmonds.

              Simmonds, 30, has scored 16 goals with 11 assists for 27 points in 62 games for the Flyers this season. The best year of his career came in 2015-16, when he scored 32 goals with 28 assists for 60 points in 81 games. In his NHL career for the Flyers and Los Angeles Kings, Simmonds has scored 242 goals and 229 assists for 471 points in 824 games.

               The Flyers aren't contending for a playoff spot, and since Simmonds is a pending UFA, it makes sense to trade him, though the return was underwhelming. Hartman is a bottom-six player who Nashville acquired last deadline for a first round pick, which was a big reach.

                Hartman, 24, has scored 10 goals with 10 assists for 20 points in 64 games for the Preds this year. In his NHL career for Nashville and the Chicago Blackhawks, Hartman has scored 40 goals with 43 assists for 83 points in 226 games.

NHL Trade Review: Preds, Wild swap Grandlund and Fiala

from SBNation

           The Nashville Predators have acquired center Mikael Granlund from the Minnesota Wild in exchange for forward Kevin Fiala.

            This was an unexpected trade. Granlund is coming off back-to-back seasons in the high 60 point range. And he isn't having too bad of a year right now. The Preds were able to land him for not that much. Fiala is younger, but isn't having as good as a season as Granlund is. This is a big add for Nashville.

             Granlund, who turns 27 tomorrow, has scored 15 goals with 34 assists for 49 points in 63 games for the Wild this year. His best career season was in 2016-17, when he scored 26 goals with 43 assists for 69 points in 81 games. In his NHL career, all for the Wild, Granlund has scored 93 goals with 224 assists for 317 points in 461 games.

             I really don't get this trade for the Wild. Granlund recently signed a three year deal that will take him through next season. Fiala is younger, but hasn't had production near Granlund's rate in his career.

             Fiala, 22, has scored 10 goals with 22 assists for 32 points in 64 games for the Predators this season. In his NHL career, all in Nashville, Fiala has scored 45 goals with 52 assists for 97 points in 204 games.


NHL trade review: Knights acquire Stone

From Sportsnet

             The Vegas Golden Knights have acquired winger Mark Stone and forward Tobias Lindberg from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for defenseman Erik Brannstrom, forward Oscar Lindberg and a 2019 second round pick. Stone has reportedly also agreed to an eight year extension worth $9.5 million a season with Vegas.

             This is a huge trade. Stone, the biggest name traded on deadline day, was an upcoming free agent, and with Ottawa being a very bad team, they were smart and decided to trade him. Stone is a top-line player that will now be under contract for Vegas for the next eight and a half seasons. They made a splash at the deadline last year, acquiring Tomas Tatar, but this year was much bigger. Stone will be an immediate impact player for the Knights.

               Stone, 26, has scored 28 goals with 34 assists for 62 points in 59 games for the Sens this year. In his NHL career, all in Ottawa, Stone has scored 123 goals with 188 assists for 311 points in 366 games.

                Lindberg, 23, has scored 5 goals with seven assists for 12 points in 44 games for the Belleville Senators and Cranton/Wilkes-Barre Penguins of the AHL this year. In 2015-16, he got his only taste of NHL action, when he scored two points, both assists, in six games for the Toronto Maple Leafs.

               Like I mentioned before, Ottawa is a terrible team, and had already dealt Matt Duchene and Ryan Dzingel to Columbus. Trading Stone if they couldn't sign him to an extension seemed obvious. In return, they get Brannstrom, a top prospect for Vegas, Lindberg, a bottom six player, and a second round pick.

               Brannstrom, 19, has scored seven goals with 21 assists for 28 points in 41 games for the AHL's Chicago Wolves this season.

               Lindberg, 27, has scored four goals with eight assists for 12 points in 35 games for the Golden Knights this year. In his NHL career for the Knights and New York Rangers, Lindberg has scored 34 goals with 37 assists for 71 points in 232 games.

NHL Trade Review: Jets get Hayes

From Newsday

             The Winnipeg Jets have acquired forward Kevin Hayes from the New York Rangers in exchange for forward Brendan Lemieux, a 2019 first round pick, and a 2022 4th round pick.

              For the Jets, it was just a matter of time when they were going to get Hayes. They seemed like the team most likely to land him, and when the offer for Mark Stone was too high, they settled for Hayes. Hayes is a top-six forward that can play center and wing, and boost the Jets' lineup.

               Hayes, 26, has scored 14 goals and 28 assists for 42 points in 51 games for the Rangers this season. In his NHL career, all in New York, Hayes has scored 87 goals with 129 assists for 216 points in 361 games.

                The Rangers are rebuilding, and since Hayes is an upcoming UFA, it made perfect sense to trade him. They acquire a first round pick, which is always a good starting point, a 4th, and Lemieux, a young forward with NHL experience who can develop into a top-9 forward for them.

                 Lemieux, 22, has scored nine goals with two assists for 11 points in 44 games for the Jets this season. In his NHL career, all in Winnipeg, Lemieux has scored 10 goals and two assists for 12 points in 53 games.

NHL Trade Review: Sharks acquire Nyqvist


               The San Jose Sharks have acquired winger Gustav Nyqvist from the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for a 2019 second round pick and a 2020 conditional third round pick. If the Sharks make the Stanley Cup finals, the third becomes a second. The Wings also retain 30% of Nyqvist's contract.

                I really like this trade for the Sharks. While teams like the Blue Jackets are paying high, the Sharks get a steal. I'd rather have Nyqvist than Mats Zuccarello, but the Stars potentially paid more for Zuccarello than the Sharks did for Nyqvist. Nyqvist is a top-six winger that will add to the Sharks' potent offense. He is a UFA at the end of this season.

                 Nyqvist, 29, has scored 16 goals and 33 assists for 49 points in 62 games this year. The best year of his career came in 2014-15, when he scored 27 goals with 27 assists for 54 points in 82 games. In his career, all in Detroit, Nyqvist has scored 125 goals and 170 assists for 295 points in 481 games.

                 The Red Wings are rebuilding. Nyqvist is a UFA at the end of the season, so it makes sense to trade him. But, compared to other players that have been traded, the Wings sold low on Nyqvist. Potentially, they could only get two second round picks. That is less than the Senators got for Ryan Dzingel and what the Rangers got for Mats Zuccarello. They could have made it where they automatically get two seconds, not based off conditions.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

NHL Trade Review: Sabres acquire Montour

From Yahoo! Sports

              The Buffalo Sabres have acquired defenseman Brandon Montour from the Anaheim Ducks in exchange for defenseman Brendan Guhle and a 2019 first round pick. The pick is from San Jose, which was acquired by Buffalo last year for Evander Kane.

              With trade rumors swirling that Rasmus Ristolainen could get traded, get his replacement. Montour is a young, puck-moving defenseman, and is a righty shot, which teams are always lining up for. The price, a first round pick plus a prospect, is steep, but can pay off if Montour plays better than he has this year, playing nearly 23 minutes a game on a terrible Ducks team.

                 Montour, 24, has scored five goals with 20 assists for 25 points in 62 games, while averaging 22:40 a game. Last year, his career season, he scored nine goals with 23 assists for 32 points in 80 games, and was a +16. In his career, all for the Ducks, Montour has scored 16 goals with 47 assists for 63 points in 169 games.

                  For the Ducks, they are rebuilders now, while they are in the midst of a terrible season. Montour is an RFA at the end of the season, and when they could get a good return for him, it is worth it to trade him. The first will likely be at the end of the first round, as it comes from the really good Sharks, and Guhle, a middle level prospect playing in the AHL.

                  Guhle, 21, has no points in two games for the Sabres this year. In parts of three seasons for them, Guhle has scored five points, all assists, in 23 games. He has scored five goals with 22 assists for 27 points in 50 games for the AHL's Rochester Americans this year.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

NHL Trade Review: Rangers trade Zuccarello to Stars

From NYPost

              The Dallas Stars have acquired forward Mats Zuccarello from the New York Rangers in exchange for a conditional 2019 2nd round pick and a conditional 2020 third round pick. If the Stars win two rounds in the playoffs this year, the 2nd becomes a first. If Zuccarello re-signs in Dallas, the 3rd becomes a first. Also, New York retains 30% of Zuccarello's contract.

               Zuccarello is a small, speedy winger who can put up points and improve the Stars' top six. Zuccarello also plays on the powerplay, and has a good track record. The price is either very light or very steep, depending on if the conditions kick in. If they do, Dallas gets fleeced.

               Zuccarello, 31, has scored 11 goals and 26 assists for 37 points in 46 games for the Rangers this year. The best year of his career came in 2015-16, when he scored 26 goals with 35 assists for 61 points in 81 games. In his career, all for New York, Zuccarello has scored 113 goals and 239 assists for 352 points in 509 games.

                Like I mentioned before, this trade all depends on whether the conditions kick in. This is an amazing trade for the Rangers if they do. If they don't it's still average, but pales in comparison to trades made recently with the boosted trade market. Now the Rangers will focus on trading Adam McQuaid, and more importantly, Kevin Hayes.

NHL Trade Review: Jackets get Dzingel


               The Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired forward Ryan Dzingel and a 2019 7th round pick from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for forward Anthony Duclair, plus a second round pick in both 2020 and 2021.

                 Columbus recently made another big trade with Ottawa, acquiring Matt Duchene, and now they get Dzingel. They are all-in, and really risking it with Duchene, Dzingel, plus their best two players Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky all upcoming UFAs. They don't have their first round pick this year, for Duchene, possibly in 2020 from the same year, and their second in 2020 and 2021. Dzingel adds to their top six forwards.

                   Dzingel, 26, has scored 22 goals with 22 assists for 44 points in 57 games for the Sens this year, the best of his career. In his four years with Ottawa, Dzingel has scored 62 goals with 64 assists for 126 points in 247 games.

                   The Senators are still in a rebuild, and with Duchene out of the way, Dzingel and Mark Stone are the next to go. They trade Dzingel to they same team as Duchene, and get two second round picks and Duclair, a young forward, but he's already on his fifth team and has been traded three times now. It is still a solid return for Dzingel.

                    Duclair, 23, has scored 11 goals with eight assists for 19 points in 52 games with the Jackets this year. The best year of his career was in 2015-16 with the Arizona Coyotes, when he scored 20 goals with 24 assists for 44 points in 81 games. In his NHL career for the Jackets, Coyotes, Chicago Blackhawks and New York Rangers, Duclair has scored 48 goals with 60 assists for 108 points in 265 games.


NHL trade review: Stars acquire Lovejoy

From Sports Illustrated

              The Dallas Stars have acquired defenseman Ben Lovejoy from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for defenseman Connor Carrick and a 2019 third round draft pick.

               For the Stars, Lovejoy is a bottom pairing defenseman who blocks shots and hits. For a team looking to make their way into the playoffs, Lovejoy is a good fit. He is also a veteran with playoff experience.

                Lovejoy, 35, has scored two goals and five assists for seven points in 51 games for the Devils this year, with 77 blocked shots and 59 hits as well. The best season of his career came in 2013-14 with the Anaheim Ducks, when he scored five goals with 13 assists for 18 points in 78 games, averaging 19:24 minutes a game, with 150 blocked shots and 210 hits. In his NHL career for the Devils, Ducks and Pittsburgh Penguins, Lovejoy has scored 20 goals and 79 assists for 99 points in 524 games, with 825 blocked shots and 929 hits.

                 For the Devils, they are way out of  playoff spot this year, and have been rumored to be shopping their rentals, Lovejoy and Marcus Johansson. In this trade, they get Carrick, a younger defenseman who will play in the NHL and take Lovejoy's spot, and a third round pick, a decent haul for Lovejoy.

                  Carrick, 24, has scored one goal and three assists for four points in 14 games for the Stars this season. His best year came with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2017-18, when he scored four goals with eight assists for 12 points in 47 games. In his career for the Stars, Maple Leafs and Washington Capitals, Carrick has scored 10 goals with 24 assists for 34 points in 181 games.

Friday, February 22, 2019

MLB news: Twins sign Marwin

From CBS

           The Minnesota Twins have signed U Marwin Gonzalez to a two year, $21 million deal.

            Gonzalez is a player that can play every position but pitcher and catcher, and hang around average defensively. Plus, he is a good hitter. Primarily, he played left field and everywhere around the infield with Houston last year. Well, CJ Cron and Jonathan Schoop are staying at first and second, respectively, and Eddie Rosario is in left, so Gonzalez could be the opening day shortstop, and play third, if Jorge Polanco and Miguel Sano continue on from their horrid 2018s. Obviously, Gonzalez can play backup at 1B, 2B and LF, but I'd expect to see him primarily at the left side of the infield.

            Gonzalez gets a multi-year deal, a success, and the money per year, $10.5 million, is decent. He can cash in after 2020 if he keeps up his numbers at the plate in 2017, not his bad 2018 numbers.

            Gonzalez, who will be 30 by Opening Day, had a .247 batting average, with 16 home runs, 68 RBIs and two stolen bases in 552 Plate Appearances for the Houston Astros in 2018. The best year of his career came in 2017, when he had a batting average of .303, with 23 home runs, 90 RBIs and eight stolen bases in 515 Plate Appearances. In his MLB career, all in Houston, Gonzalez has a batting average of .264, with 76 home runs, 292 RBIs and 37 stolen bases in 2706 Plate Appearances.

NHL trade review: Caps acquire Jensen

From SBNation

                 The Washington Capitals have acquired defenseman Nick Jensen and a 2019 5th round pick (from Buffalo) from the Detroit Red Wings in exchange for defenseman Madison Bowey and a 2020 2nd round pick.

                  This is an over payment for the Capitals. Sure, Jensen could end up like Michal Kempy for them last year and be the perfect fit they need to win the Cup, but they give up a lot. Jensen is having a good season for Detroit, put is probably worth either just Bowey or just the 2nd. Not both. At least they do get a pick back. But, since they do get him, he is an improvement to their bottom two defensive pairings, and still is one of the best right handed shot defenseman rentals available, sweetening his value.

                  Jensen, 28, has scored two goals and 13 assists for 15 points in 60 games for the Wings this year. In his NHL career, all in Detroit, Jensen has scored six goals and 37 assists for 43 points in 190 games.

                   For the Wings, this is a good sell for Jensen. He was their third best rental, behind Gustav Nyqvist and Jimmy Howard, and it's good for them to get him out of the way so they can decide whether or not to trade Howard by Monday's deadline. They get Bowey, a young defenseman who has NHL experience, and a future 2nd round pick. Giving up a spare 5th doesn't matter.

                   Bowey, 23, has scored one goal and five assists for six points in 33 games for the Caps this year. In his NHL career, all in D.C., Bowey has scored one goal and 17 assists for 18 points in 84 games.

MLB news: Padres sign Machado

From Padres Twitter

                 The San Diego Padres have signed SS/3B Manny Machado to a 10 year, $300 million deal. (I know I'm a day late, sorry about that)

                 This signing changes the whole MLB, as what we all expected once Manny finally signed, but more importantly, changes the Padres organization's focus for the next couple of years. Machado is a generational player, signed until he's 36, and he's just 26 now, entering his prime. The Padres infield now includes Machado, Eric Hosmer, who is looking to bounce back after a disappointing first year of his new 7 year contract with the team, and eventually top prospects Fernando Tatis Jr. and Luis Urias. If Urias and Tatis realize their full potential, that could be the Padres' infield until either a new star comes around, or Hosmer's contract ends or he's traded years down the line.

                  For Machado, he gets the biggest free agent contract in North American sports history. He also will receive the second most money in MLB history, second to the 13 year, $325 million Giancarlo Stanton got in an extension with the Marlins. He will likely not play on a contender in year one, but the team with already the league's best farm system will now build around him.

                   Machado, 26, had a .297 batting average, with 37 home runs, 107 RBIs and 14 stolen bases in 709 Plate Appearances (over all 162 games) for the Los Angeles Dodgers and Baltimore Orioles in 2018, his best career season. Over his career for those two teams, Machado has a  batting average of .282, with 175 home runs, 513 RBIs and 53 stolen bases in 4074 Plate Appearances.

NHL trade review: Blue Jackets acquire Duchene

From TSN

               The Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired center Matt Duchene and defenseman Julius Bergman from the Ottawa Senators in exchange for forwards Vitaly Abramov and Jonathan Davidsson, plus conditional first round picks in 2019 and 2020. The 2019 pick is top-3 lottery protected, while the 2020 pick goes to Ottawa if Duchene re-signs in Columbus this offseason.

                 The Blue Jackets were stuck in limbo this trade deadline with both their two best players, forward Artemi Panarin and goalie Sergei Bobrovsky free agents at the season's conclusion, and both have expressed disinterest in re-signing. Panarin is the best pending UFA in the league, but in this trade, the team acquires the 2nd best UFA in Duchene. They also get Bergman, an AHL defenseman. If Columbus doesn't win the Stanley Cup, then they'll be in danger of losing their best three players AND not having a first round pick in a span of a week.

                   Duchene, 28, has scored 27 goals and 31 assists for 58 points in 50 games in 2018-19, which is shaping up to be his best career season. But besides this year, his best year was with the Colorado Avalanche in 2013-14, when he scored 23 goals with 47 assists for 70 points in 71 games. In his career for the Sens and Avalanche, Duchene has scored 228 goals and 307 assists for 535 points in 704 games.

                   Bergman, 23, has six points, all assists, in 33 games for the AHL's Belleville Senators this year. Over the two prior seasons for the San Jose Barracuda, Bergman has scored 13 goals and 37 assists for 50 points in 129 games.

                    After acquiring Duchene from Colorado early last season, costing them top six center Kyle Turris, the year before's first round pick in Shane Bowers and more, including their first round pick this year, that could be the 1st overall pick, the Sens fell to the bottom of the league. Now, they are scrambling to acquire assets for their big three rentals. Duchene is the biggest, supplemented by Mark Stone and Ryan Dzingel. Defenseman Cody Ceci could go too. In this trade, they get back a first for this year, possibly a first for next year, and two prospects. Abramov is the better one, and younger, plus he's playing in the AHL. Davidsson is currently overseas. They give up their best player, and Bergman, an AHL prospect who they acquired this offseason for Mike Hoffman.

                      Abramov, 20, has scored 12 goals and 10 assists for 22 points in 52 games for the AHL's Cleveland Monsters this year, his first full AHL season. Last year, for the QMJHL's Victoriaville Tigres, Abramov scored 33 goals and 45 assists for 78 points in 40 games. In parts of three seasons for the QMJHL's Gatineau Olympiques, Abramov scored 96 goals and 127 assists for 223 points in 145 games.

                      Davidsson, 21, has scored 10 goals and 10 assists for 20 points in 35 games for Djurgardens IF in the SweHL this year. Last year, he scored 10 goals and 21 assists for 31 points in 52 games for the club.


Thursday, February 21, 2019

NHL trade review: Kings flip Hagelin to Caps

From LA Times

           The Washington Capitals have acquired winger Carl Hagelin from the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for a 2019 third round pick and a conditional 6th round pick. The condition on the draft pick is that if Hagelin plays in 50 percent of the games in any two playoff rounds, assuming the Caps play in two rounds, the Kings get a 6th.

            For the Capitals, Hagelin is a former division rival with the Rangers and Penguins who is a UFA at the end of the season. He was a vital part on the third line for the Penguins when they won two Stanley Cups from 2016-17. The Caps will put him in their bottom six, but now he is in the midst of his worst career season. But, the price isn't much to pay.

             Hagelin, 30, has scored two goals and six assists for eight points in 38 games for the Kings and Pittsburgh Penguins this year. The best year of his NHL career came in 2013-14 with the New York Rangers, when he scored 17 goals and 16 assists for 33 points in 72 games. In his NHL career for the Kings, Penguins, Rangers and Anaheim Ducks, Hagelin has scored 90 goals and 140 assists for 230 points in 526 games.

              For the Kings, they acquired Hagelin earlier this season for Tanner Pearson, a trade that now doesn't look so good since at the time, they could have gotten more than a third round pick for Pearson. Hagelin is an upcoming UFA, and since the Kings are a bad team, they had to trade him. With Hagelin's struggles this year, the return is decent.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

NHL trade review: Bruins acquire Coyle

From The Athletic

                 The Boston Bruins have acquired center/right wing Charlie Coyle from the Minnesota Wild in exchange for forward Ryan Donato and a 5th round draft pick, per Bob McKenzie of TSN.

                  For the Bruins, they make their first buyer move this trade deadline, getting Coyle, a Massachusetts native, and a player out there relatively cheap and he isn't a rental. The 5th round pick doesn't matter, but it is a surprise they gave up on Donato, who is 22 and showed promise last year at both the Olympics and the NHL. Coyle, unlike other players that are trade bait, is a free agent after 2019-20, not 2018-19. But like Donato, he is having a down season.

                  Coyle, 26, has scored 10 goals with 18 assists for 28 points in 60 games for the Wild this season. The best year of his career came in 2016-17, when he scored 18 goals with 38 assists and 56 points (the latter two career highs) in 82 games. In his NHL career, all for the Wild, Coyle has scored 91 goals and 151 assists for 242 points in 479 games.

                   The Wild are currently in a playoff spot, but since the Western Conference has so many teams just out of a playoff spot, and the Wild aren't exactly playing great hockey, they opted to go with the Blues' strategy the last two years: to trade talent but still look to make the playoffs. Coyle will help the Bruins more than the Wild, and Donato could revamp his NHL career in Minny.

                    Donato, 22, has scored six goals with three assists for nine points in 34 games this year. In his NHL career, so far all with Boston, Donato has scored 11 goals and seven assists for 18 points in 46 games.

Saturday, February 16, 2019

NHL trade review: Flyers acquire Talbot

              The Philadelphia Flyers have acquired goalie Cam Talbot from the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for goalie Anthony Stolarz.

               For the Flyers,Talbot is an immediate boost in goaltending, but because of how good rookie Carter Hart has been, he will likely serve as either a 1Ba or backup starter. They give up Stolarz, a younger, more unproven goalie who was currently Hart's backup.

               Talbot, 31, has a 3.36 GAA and a Sv% of .893 in 31 games for the Oilers this year. The best year of his career came in 2016-17, when he had a 2.39 GAA and a .919 Sv% in 73 games. In his NHL career for the Oilers and New York Rangers, Talbot has a GAA of 2.59, with a .915 Sv%.

                For the Oilers, they free up cap space in this trade, and get a young goalie to play backup. It seemed likely that Talbot would go when the team signed backup Mikko Koskinen to a three year, $4.5 million deal.

                Stolarz, 25, has a .902 Sv% and a 3.33 GAA in 12 games for the Flyers this year. In his NHL career, all in Philly, Stolarz has a .911 Sv% with a GAA of 2.86.

Friday, February 8, 2019

Best player from every NHL market

              With 31 teams all around the U.S. and Canada, the NHL has inspired many kids to play hockey, and some of those kids have made it to the big leagues. Every market has its own players, and today, we'll be looking a every market's best. Unfortunately for international players, there won't be any on this list because there isn't any NHL teams outside of North America. Also, if a team is the only one in its state/province, then I'm counting the whole state or province. If not, it will need to be broken down into city or area.

              Anaheim: Jason Zucker
Anaheim isn't a major hockey market, and has just two NHL players hailing from it. One is Rocoo Grimaldi, and the other is Ian McCoshen.While both aren't great picks, but are both directly from Anaheim, Zucker is from Newport Beach. While Newport Beach is 20 miles from the next closes NHL team, the Ducks. Zucker has 28 points this year, and is coming off a year in which he scored 33 goals and 64 points.

             Arizona: Auston Matthews
The easiest pick on this list and the one who inspired this article, Matthews is the NHL's best ever player from the desert. Well, not quite. Matthews was actually born in San Ramon, California, but his family moved to Scottsdale, Arizona when he was a toddler, and learned to play hockey in Arizona. So, that counts. Matthews has become a superstar, from first overall pick in 2016 to scoring 47 points in his first 39 games this year. Sean Couterior and the second generation Tkachuks are also from Arizona.

              Boston: Jack Eichel
Anaheim and Arizona have new NHL teams in small hockey markets. Boston is a big market with an original six team, and has raised past stars like Jeremy Roenick and Keith Tkachuk. Currently, there is Keith Yandle, John Carlson and Chris Kreider, but they all fall short of Eichel. In his first four seasons, Eichel has consistently racked up 55+ point seasons, and is currently on pace for a new career high.

               Buffalo: Patrick Kane
Another easy one. The next closest players from Buffalo are the Foligno brothers: Nick and Marcus, and Miles Wood. Since being picked first overall in 2007, Kane has scored well over a point per game, with 907 points in 876 games. In just 54 games this year, Kane already has 32 goals and 79 points. He has never dropped below 21 goals and 55 points in a season. The former was in his age 19 season, and the latter was during the shortened season.

              Calgary: Taylor Hall
This one was close between Hall and Brayden Point, with William Nylander coming in third (he was born in Calgary but plays in Sweden internationally). While Point is currently having a great season with Hall injured, Hall has racked up 37 points in 33 games, and is the reigning MVP. His great year last year, and his good numbers in limited time this year puts him at the top of the Calgary market.

               Carolina: Ryan Hartman
I counted both Carolinas for this, and they have had just four combined players ever. Logan Brown, Ben Smith and Jared Boll for the North, and just Hartman for the South. Well, Hartman is the only one to play in an NHL game this year, making him the easy choice. Hartman is a decent player, scoring 18 points in 56 games this year, and a career 81 in 218. All he had to do was play one game this year to get the honors.

              Chicago: Ryan Dzingel
Dzingel was actually born in Wheaton, Illinois, but counts for Chicago. For an original six team, Chicago doesn't really have too many good NHL players. Yes, they've had retired players like Chris Chelios, Eddie Olczyk and Tony Granato, but it's current players aren't too great. Craig Anderson has fallen off, and John Moore and Josh Manson are probably the next best options after Dzingel. Anyways, Dzingel has a breakout year right before he's due for a new contract, with already 20 goals and 20 more assists in 52 games. Both will likely soon be career highs.

               Colorado: Ben Bishop
The state of Colorado has only ever had 15 NHL players, and none are Hall-of-Famers. Its all time point leader is Mike Eaves, and its games leader is B.J. Crombeen. Only three notable current players are out there, with defenseman Brandon Carlo and Jaccob Slavin supporting Bishop. Bishop has a career .919 Sv%, with a 2.35 GAA. This year, he has a .924 Sv% and 2.30 GAA. In 2015-16, he lead the league with a 2.06 GAA.

               Columbus: JT Miller
Columbus actually has just two NHL players ever in Kiefer Sherwood and Jack Roslovic. But, since Cleveland and Cincinnati don't have any NHL teams, Columbus gets all rights to Ohio. Miller, a Dublin native, has 28 points in 48 games this year, and has averaged 57 points over the last two seasons. He has 218 points in 408 career games. Helps when there isn't really anyone else in your state.

               Dallas: Seth Jones
There isn't any players from Dallas, but the Stars get all of Texas. That includes Jones, who is from Arlington. Blake Coleman and Stefan Noeson are from Plano and Tyler Myers is from Houston. Jones is the only all-star, and he has scored 33 points in 46 games this year as a defenseman. This comes after a 16 goal/57 point season in 2017-18.

              Detroit: Dylan Larkin
Michigan had a lot more players than I expected. It was close between a bunch of players. Larkin, Kyle Connor, Connor Hellebuyck, Alex DeBrincat and Zach Werenski are on the long list of Michigan born NHL players. I chose Larkin because I think he is the best, and well, he gets a bonus point for playing for his hometown team. Larkin currently has 53 points in 55 games, and is the player the Red Wings are building around. He's the only franchise player from Michigan.

              Edmonton: Brendan Gallagher
There is a lot of players from Edmonton. Like, a lot. But surprisingly, there isn't any current all-stars. All the good players from Alberta are from Calgary. Gallagher might be Edmonton's best. Gallagher has scored 21 goals and 35 points in 55 games this year. His goal total is currently the third best of his career. He had 31 last year. He is solid, but I didn't expect him to top a big market.

               Florida: Shayne Gostisbehere
There has been 10 players from Florida ever, and only two current players. Since both Gostisbehere and Jakub Chychrun are from the Miami side, I'll give the Tampa Bay side the rights to Georgia. Gostisbehere already is Florida's all-time point leader with 172, and while he has just 22 so far this year, he had 65 in 78 games last year, and in 2015-16, was second in Calder voting, but mainly because Connor McDavid missed half the season, and stormed back to just third

                Los Angeles: Matt Nieto
With Kevan Miller the best player actually from L.A., Nieto is my pick. He is from Long Beach, which is just a mile closer to Los Angeles than Anaheim. For three NHL teams, California doesn't really have many NHL players, as its best player is by far Matthews, who really is from Arizona. Nieto has 16 points in 50 games this year, and 123 career points in 388 games.

               Minnesota: Blake Wheeler
The state of hockey is arguably America's deepest hockey state, with stars like Wheeler, Dustin Byfuglien, Nick Leddy, Anders Lee, Brock Boeser, Zach Parise, Kyle Okposo, Brady Skjei and many others. But the Plymouth native, Wheeler, is the best. Wheeler has 65 points in 54 games this year, and had a 91 point season in 2017-18. The two seasons before that, he had over 70 points.

                Montreal: Patrice Bergeron
The second biggest province, Quebec is home to many stars. Jon Marchessault, Paul Stastny, Jonathan Huberdeau, Kris Letang, Marc-Edouard Vlasic and Thomas Chabot are all native to Quebec. Bergeron is perhaps the best. He currently has 47 points in just 38 games, and over his 13 year career, Bergeron has racked up 781 points in 1001 games.

               Nashville/Alabama: Nic Dowd
Well, I couldn't find any current NHL players from Tennessee. Blake Geoffrin, the grandson of hall-of-famer Bernie Geoffrin and the great-grandson of another player in the hall, Howie Morenz, is the only NHL player raised in Tennesse, but he hasn't played since 2012. So, I granted them the rights of the closest unoccupied state to Tennessee. Since Missouri has the Blues and I gave Georgia to the Lightning, then the Preds get Alabama. Alabama is home to just one NHL player, Huntsville native Nic Dowd. Dowd is a fourth liner with 40 career points in 171 games.

                 New Jersey: Johnny Gaudreau
Though New Jersey has much less players than New York, Jersey has some stars. They have Bobby Ryan, the van Riemsdyks, and most importantly, Gaudreau. Gaudreau has a whopping 74 points in just 54 games this year, and is nearly a point per game player in his career. He has 362 points in 366 games, He is much better than Nashville's representative.

                 New York (Long Island): Kyle Palmieri
Charlie McAvoy is close, but hasn't even played 100 career games, so I went with Palmieri. Palmieri, a Smithtown native, has scored 40 points in 53 games this year, earning his first all-star appearance.  In his four years with the Devils, Palmieri has averaged 25.75 goals a season. Overall, he has 283 points, 146 of them goals, in 475 games.

                 New York (city): Kevin Shattenkirk
Shattenkirk is from New Rochelle, which is closer to where the Rangers play to the Islanders. Dustin Brown and Jimmy Howard are also from upstate New York, which would qualify them in this category. Shattenkirk has scored just 14 points this year, but has 335 in 581 career games as a defenseman.

                 Ottawa: Claude Giroux
Surprisingly, there aren't many good NHL players from Ottawa. Giroux is from Hearst, but moved to Ottawa when he was 14. While he didn't really grow up there, he was a Senators fan, and I'm counting him from Ottawa. Giroux currently has 58 points in 54 games, and had 106 points last year. In total, Giroux has scored 735 points in 792 games, making him Ottawa's best.

                 Philadelphia: Bobby Ryan
There actually is no current NHL players from Philadelphia. All the NHL players from Pennsylvania are from the Pittsburgh area. Remember when I mentioned Bobby Ryan for New Jersey? He is from the state of New Jersey, specifically Cherry Hill. But, Cherry Hill is just 17 minutes away from Philadelphia, making it the perfect fit. Ryan has 32 points in 51 games this year, and 537 points in 782 career games.

                  Pittsburgh: John Gibson
Pittsburgh has three players, all stars. It's Gibson, Vincent Trocheck and Brandon Saad. Due to a bad Ducks team in front of him, Gibson has struggled this year, with a .914 Sv% and a 2.93 GAA. But in his career, Gibson has a 2.42 GAA and a .921 Sv%. He's a good goalie, and just leads Trocheck has Pittsbrugh's best NHL player.

                   San Jose: Brooks Orpik
Orpik, a San Fransisco native, is the only player in the San Jose area. He is the definition of a defensive defenseman. While he has two goals in 26 games this year, his career high is just three. He has 190 career points, just 18 of them are goals, in 1008 games. He is by no means a scorer, but teams are giving him a job, so he has to be doing something right.

                   St. Louis: Clayton Keller
St. Louis is home to Keller, Patrick Maroon and Adam Lowry, but most notably Keller. The second runner up for the Calder last year, Keller has scored 37 points in 54 games this year, after 65 points in his rookie season. He has 104 points in 139 games.

                   Tampa Bay/Georgia/Lousiana/Virginia: Scott Darling (very confusing and bad marketing)
So like I mentioned earlier, Florida's only two NHL players, Jakub Chychrun and Shayne Gostisbehere, are both from the Miami side of Florida, leaving no one for Tampa Bay. So, I give them the rights to Atlanta, since they don't have a team. Well, it would turn out that there is no NHL players from Georgia. So, on to Louisiana. This is because the Blues have Missouri and I already gave Nashville Alabama. Well, no players also hail from Louisiana. So, the next closest unclaimed state is Virginia. And luckily, Virginia has one player. It is goalie Scott Darling. Darling has a career .908 Sv% and a 2.72 GAA. I found it really sad how bad of a market the league's best team plays in.

                     Toronto: Connor McDavid
From hockey's worst market to the best, McDavid is from Richmond Hill, a 33 minute drive from Toronto. McDavid is hockey's best player, and is from a market that has Steven Stamkos, Joe Thornton, Brent Burns, Aaron Ekblad, Mark Scheifele, Tyler Seguin and some guy that plays on the Leafs whose last name starts with a t or something. McDavid already has 80 points in 53 games this year, and has 336 points in just 262 career games. He by far the NHL's best player.

                      Vancouver: Jamie Benn
Another big, Canadian market, Vancouver has stars like Benn and Carey Price, plus reigning Calder trophy winner Mat Barzal (his team is first in the Metro), Ryan Johansen and Evander Kane and more. Benn might be the best, and even though he is having a bad year with just 37 points in 53 games, he has 633 points in 720 games.

                       Las Vegas (team name is just Vegas so it is down here)/Seattle: TJ Oshie
There isn't any NHL players from Nevada, which isn't a surprise, since this is just the second year of Las Vegas having a team, so I gave them the Seattle players. The best of them is TJ Oshie. Oshie has 31 points in 43 games this year, with 495 points in 708 career games.

                       Washington DC/Maryland/Connecticut: Jonathan Quick
Of course we still have a player-less team. There is no current NHL players from the Maryland/DC team, which is a surprise since they've had a team since '74, but since Virginia was the solution to the goose hunt of Tampa Bay, I went to Connecticut, the home of Quick and Cam Atkinson. Though Quick has struggled this year on a bad Kings team, with a .904 Sv% and a 2.92 GAA, he has a career .916 Sv% and a 2.31 GAA.

                         Winnipeg: Jonathan Toews
Luckily for me, Manitoba was easy. It was between Toews and Mark Stone, and the right pick is Toews. Toews has scored 54 points in 55 games this year, and in his career, has scored 728 points in 846 games. Good to have an easy one to end off.

 Other NA markets:

Nova Scotia: Sidney Crosby

Saskatchewan: Ryan Getzlaf

New Brunswick: Jake Allen

New Hampshire: Ben Lovejoy

Indiana: Jack Johnson

Wisconsin: Phil Kessel

Nebraska: Jake Guentzal

Oklahoma: Jon Merril

Thursday, February 7, 2019

MLB trade review: Phillies (finally) acquire Realmuto


              The Philadelphia Phillies have acquired catcher JT Realmuto from the Miami Marlins in exchange for C Jorge Alfaro, RHP Sixto Sanchez, LHP Will Stewart and international signing pool money.

               This is a huge trade. The Phillies are favorites to land star OF Bryce Harper, and to get him on board, they added the league's best catcher, to go along with SS Jean Segura and OF Andrew McCutchen. Realmuto will instantly give them an advantage behind the plate, and help make them more of a contender. They give up their catcher of the future, Alfaro, after one year, and their top prospect in Sanchez, which is a steep price, but that's expected after the Marlins undersold on Christian Yelich and Giancarlo Stanton last offseason.

                 Realmuto, 27, had a batting average of .277, with 21 home runs and 74 RBIs in 531 Plate Appearances. 2018 was the best year of his career. In his career, all with the Marlins, Realmuto has a .279 batting average, with 59 home runs and 243 RBIs, plus 31 stolen bases in 2152 Plate Appearances.

                 For the Marlins, they are still in a big rebuild, and now they trade their final star left. In return, they get Alfaro, a young, MLB ready catcher, Sanchez, a 20 year old prospect who is top 30 prospect in baseball, and another prospect in Stewart. Plus, they get money to sign international free agents.

                  Alfaro, 25, had a .262 batting average, with 10 home runs and 37 RBIs in 377 Plate Appearances for the Phillies in 2018. In his MLB career, all with the same team, Alfaro has a .270 batting average, with 15 home runs and 51 RBIs in 508 Plate Appearances.

                    Sanchez, 20, had a 2.51 ERA, with a 1.07 WHIP and 45 strikeouts in 46.2 innings for High-A Clearwater in 2018.

                    Stewart, 21, had a 2.06 ERA, .098 WHIP and 90 strikeouts in 113.2 innings for Single-A Lakewood in 2018.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

NHL trade review: Preds acquire Boyle


          The Nashville Predators have acquired center Brian Boyle from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for a 2019 second round pick.

           For the Predators, they acquire center depth in Boyle, who can score goals, but most importantly, brings a defensive and tough game. For a bottom six center who is a UFA after the season, the price tag was pretty rough, but it could end up being a bargain if Boyle re-signs.

           Boyle, 34, has scored 13 goals with six assists for 19 points in 47 games for the Devils this season. The best year of his NHL career came in 2010-11 with the New York Rangers, when he scored 21 goals and 14 assists for 35 points in 82 games. In his NHL career for the Devils, Rangers, Tampa Bay Lightning, Los Angeles Kings and Toronto Maple Leafs, Boyle has scored 119 goals and 92 assists for 211 points in 740 games.

            For the Devils, after making the playoffs in Boyle's first year with the team, they have struggled this year and are at the bottom of the Metropolitan Division. That means trading your pending UFAs, which for them included Boyle. They get what will probably be a late second round pick, which could be an NHLer if you scout and draft well.

Monday, February 4, 2019

MLB trade review: Indians acquire Wittgren, Marlins get Milbrath, and claim Brice

              The Cleveland Indians have acquired RHP Nick Wittgren from the Miami Marlins in exchange for RHP Jordan Milbrath. The Marlins also claimed RHP Austin Brice off waivers from Baltimore.

              For the Indians, they once again acquire a cast off reliever, hoping for success. It has worked for them with Tyler Olsen, Oliver Perez and Nick Goody, and now they are attempting to do it with Wittgren, who out of the four mentioned, was coming off the best season when acquired by the Tribe. All they give up is a minor league pitcher.

              Wittgren, 27, had a 2.94 ERA, with a FIP of 3.13 and 31 strikeouts in 33.2 innings for the Marlins in 2018. In his MLB career, all in Miami, Wittgren has had an ERA of 3.60, with a 3.50 FIP and 116 strikeouts in 127.2 innings.

                The Marlins recently DFA'd Wittgren in a surprise move to open a spot for the signing of INF Neil Walker, so it isn't a surprise to see him traded now. Wittgren was arguably Miami's 2nd best reliever in 2018, and is just 27, so it doesn't make sense to see him go. They get a prospect in Milbrath, and claim Brice, a pitcher with MLB experience who has had teams play hot potato with him this offseason. Brice also was drafted by the Marlins and started out his MLB career with them.

                 Milbrath, 27, had a 3.96 ERA, 1.44 WHIP and 61 strikeouts in 63.2 innings for AA Akron and AAA Columbus in 2018.

                Brice, 26, had a 5.79 ERA, 5.87 FIP and 32 strikeouts in 37.1 innings for the Cincinnati Reds in 2018. In his MLB career for the Reds and Marlins, Brice has an ERA of 5.68, with a 5.25 FIP and 72 strikeouts in 84 innings.

Friday, February 1, 2019

NHL trade review: Penguins acquire Bjugstad, McCann, for Brassard

From NHL

              The Pittsburgh Penguins have acquired forwards Nick Bjugstad and Jared McCann from the Florida Panthers in exchange for centers Derrick Brassard and Riley Sheahan, plus a 2019 2nd round pick and two 2019 4th round picks.

              For the Penguins, they once again re-stock and acquire younger players with more years left on their contract. Both Bjugstad and McCann can play center and wing, the positions Brassard and Sheahan play. Also, both players they gave up are free agents at the end of the year. It is an overall good trade for their upcoming playoff run.

              Bjugstad, 26, has scored five goals with seven assists for 12 points in 32 games for the Panthers this year. In his NHL career, all in Florida, Bjugstad has scored 87 goals and 101 assists for 191 points in 394 games. In 82 games in 2017-18, Bjugstad scored 19 goals, with 230 shots.

             McCann, 22, has scored eights goals and 10 assists for 18 points in 46 games this year. He will likely set a career high in goals. In his NHL career for the Panthers and Vancouver Canucks, McCann has scored 27 goals and 44 assists for 71 points in 212 games.

            For the Panthers, they get a couple of picks in the deal. Plus, they get two veterans they can flip for more picks. They also save cap space for this upcoming free agency, where they could make a run at Blue Jackets' stars Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky.

           Brassard, 31, has scored nine goals and six assists for 15 points in 40 games for the Penguins this year. In his NHL career for the Penguins, Ottawa Senators, New York Rangers and Columbus Blue Jackets, Brassard has scored 171 goals and 272 assists for 443 points in 756 games.

           Sheahan, 27, has scored seven goals and two assists for nine points in 49 games for the Penguins. In his NHL career for the Penguins and Detroit Red Wings, Sheahan has scored 56 goals and 83 assists for 139 points in 414 games.