The Tampa Bay Lightning have acquired forward Blake Coleman from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for forward Nolan Foote and a 2020 1st round pick from Vancouver.
The price for Coleman may seem high at first, and that's because it is. Coleman is a good player, but that's essentially two first round picks given up for him. Foote was Tampa Bay's first round pick in this past draft. On the bright side for Tampa Bay, Coleman has one more year under contract, and at $1.8 million he has a very low cap hit. Plus, if he is playing with better players like Steven Stamkos and Nikita Kucherov, he could see an increase in scoring. He already is one goal away from tying the career high he set last year. Coleman does not get many assists, though. He has 20 less assists than goals in his career, uncommon for a forward with less than 100 career points. Coleman can play center and wing. He also can kill penalties. For the Devils this year, Coleman has averaged 2:47 minutes a game short handed. He is very underrated and can blossom even more in Tampa Bay, but it still is a really good trade for a Devils team without hope this year. The team is in the hunt for the first overall pick again, and probably next year too. Coleman, at 28, does not have much value for them. Foote will be a key part of the team when they start to be competitive again. It is not good to see the Lightning give up on Foote this early into his Lightning career, nearly eight months after he was drafted. Also, the first round pick is based off of where the Canucks finish, which is not good for the Lightning. It is better to bet on yourself and trade your own pick than trade someone else's pick. However, if the pick is high, the team will feel better than if their own pick was a high pick.
Coleman, 28, has 21 goals with 10 assists for 31 points in 57 games this year. In his NHL career, all for the Devils, Coleman has scored 57 goals with 37 assists for 94 points in 237 games.
Foote, 19, has scored 15 goals with 18 assists for 33 points in 26 games for the WHL's Kelowna Rockets this year. In his four year career for Kelowna, Foote has scored 83 goals with 88 assists for 171 points in 194 games.