In the wake of tonight's 4-3 shootout loss to the Islanders, Bryan Murray has dealt center Chris Kelly to the Boston Bruins for a second round pick. According to Bob McKenzie's Twitter (@TSNBobMcKenzie), Boston dealt their own 2011 second round pick.
News of the trade is somewhat shocking to me. Mind you, I'm not saying that this is a bad thing. Far from it. I just never would have imagined a week ago that the Senators would move Chris Kelly or Mike Fisher, let alone both. I just never foresaw moves of this magnitude being made in the rebuilding effort.
The new cliche in Ottawa these days is that these moves are tough but necessary hockey decisions. In the greater scheme of things, Chris Kelly was a highly paid third line center on a bad team. At his age and with his value relatively high, it was a great time to capitalize on Kelly's high market value. Considering alternatives on this summer's free agent market and the glut of projected third and fourth line players that are currently in the system, he is replaceable.
Sure, some people may bitch and bellyache about how the lost leadership and hockey smarts of a guy like Kelly will hamper the growth and development of some of the younger players. But as Dustin Parkes once pointed out, you can’t quantify leadership and how no one has any idea how individual players will respond to any given personality. It's not like the leadership within the dressing room has been a rallying point or has helped the Senators out-perform their regression in talent over the past three to four years.
From a financial standpoint, Kelly was in the second last year of a contract that paid him $2.125-million per year (real dollars matched the cap hit). When you add Fisher's cap hit and remaining term to that, we're talking savings of $6.325-million cap dollars and $9.125-million real dollars. Miraculously, Bryan Murray managed to accrue five of this year's top 65-70 picks without taking back any salary.
Considering the amount of salary that will still come off of the books in the next few weeks and months, I'll give credit where it's due: Bryan Murray, good job.
Good Job Bryan Murray? I keep hearing mention of how much salary is being dropped off who is Bryan Murray going to bring in? I wouldn't say good job just yet when he has only done 50% of the job. If anyone mentions picking up a Penguin I might puke, I cant take another one of those. Besides seeing Lehner knock down an unsuspecting goalie between periods I haven't been impressed. The first thing about Murray was what I really wanted to say the last 2 statements are just random thoughts.
Another character guy gone, but wish him the best in Boston.
Dime a dozen. If the Sens can't find a replacement for Chris Kelly then we're in more trouble than anyone thought. It's not like we're losing Jordan Staal. Let Regin or Smith rot on the 3rd line. Our best players should be able to kill penalties, so I expect to see Cowen or Rundbland step up on the PK. My gut tells me Phillips gets traded but comes back in the summer for 1.5 per.
I think what's most intersting about about the two trades made so far is that they have not been the names people have generally been talking about. Both guys have at least a year left on their contracts and were fan favourites. This really shows a commitment to blowing this thing up and starting over. These are some ballsy moves the club is making and I like it.
As for 2nd round picks, Murray has drafted promising players Wiercoch and Silfverberg and "goalie-of-the-future" Lehner in that position, so there is some reason for optimism.
A question to the bloggers: what player now has the highest hokcey IQ on our team?
I don't like this trade. I suppose I didn't see the year being a complete and total gutting, so this is more shocking than anyhing. Still, I really feel like this could cause problems down the road. I have to assume that Phillips will get traded which means our PK unit is essentially gone now. We are down two veteran centremen now with no real prospects ready to step in and fill that void in the next year. Yes we unloaded 2 million in cap space so we will have our pick of the free agents, but it is hardly brimming this year. The 2nd round (realistically it will be a high 3rd round unless Boston chokes again in the playoffs) doesn't seem like a fair return to me. The Fisher trade was fine because it should see a return in the next few years, but trading away proven depth guys in exchange for crap shoot draft picks that we won't see for another 4 years seems daft. I would really like to see some young bodies come back our way before the deadline. On a side note, I pity the real loser here: the Baby Sens. They're running out of players!
@Nichols6thSens As long as he doesn't flop around in the crease like a fish or give up gift-wrapped rebounds he's immediately better than Elliott.
@cdave From the reports I've seen on television and read out of Colorado, Anderson has been bad this season.
@Nichols6thSens Fair cop. I will wait until the draft to complain (if he keeps that second though... watch out). I hope we don't sign Talbot. He bugs me. Loves to get in people's faces but turtles when they get angry.
The only free agent I really want signed is Craig Anderson. Ever since he out-duelled Auld two years ago when we played Florida I have loved him.
@cdave It's easy to complain about it in the interim because there's no certainty with the pick right now. We can only remain patient and wait to see what is done with it.
For all we know, the organization could easily parlay this quanity into quality and flip Nashville's first with a 2nd rounder (or both) to move up in the first round. They could also sign a veteran free agent center (ie. Max Talbot) to fill the third line center spot, if there are no capable in-house alternatives.
The Senators are having a fire sale.
Tough pill to swallow, but you're right. Does this nullify any chance of Murray and Chiarelli working something else out, or a sign of things to come?