Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Trade deadline day madness

So at 4:07 p.m., more than an hour past the NHL trade deadline, the burning question for me was -- WHAT THE DEVIL IS GOING ON IN ROOM SIX?

You see, unlike five of my Blog Box brethren, I had to follow the deadline day doings from work while they got to spend the day at the Coliseum, rubbing elbows with the likes of Newsday's Jim Baumbach as they monitored the day's events. So like a good little Blog Boxer I kept tabs on all their blogs, as well as ESPN.com, TSN.ca, SI.com.

So on Baumbach's blog and on The Tiger Track, right around 3:30 they say that everyone was called into Room 6. Was it to talk to Ted Nolan or Garth Snow about the trades involving Marc-Andre Bergeron, Chris Simon and Rob Davison? Was there bigger news coming?

I had no clue and it was KILLING ME ... until Baumbach posted an update at 4:15 that they talked with Snow about the deals, and how he said there was one big deal he tried to do that fell through that involved a player that ended up not getting traded anywhere. Bryan McCabe? The return of Olli Jokinen? Perhaps we will never know.

So, as to the trades that DID happen -- no surprises. A couple of small deals, all solid. Bergeron has been expendable almost from day one this season and has been a defensive liability. The fans' reaction to Chris Simon sealed his fate but he also had no role on this team any more. Getting a third-round and sixth-round pick for the two of them in a deep draft is good business. Dealing a seventh-round pick for Davison to add needed blue line depth was also a no-brainer.

The biggest news was the signing of Mike Comrie to a one-year deal, which took him off the table. Comrie brings plenty to the club, is the team's leading scorer and is a Nolan favorite. He's been essential in the team's recent resurgence and I'm glad he's staying.

Fedotenko, Vasicek and Satan were all rumored to be available but they're not going anywhere now, so this is your team heading into the final stretch. It's a team that will be without Sillinger for the rest of the way, and that hurts, but I've always liked this group of players and we'll see how they respond now that the deadline is passed.

The biggest deal of the day came at the deadline, with Marian Hossa going to the Pens, who are tonight's opponent. So the trade deadline could help the Isles in the very short term, as the Pens will be shorthanded without the three guys they dealt, no Hossa (unless he's on a flight RIGHT NOW) and Sid the Kid still hurt.

It would be great to see the Isles come out blazing at home tonight and grab two points against Pittsburgh for their seventh win in eight games. Faceoff in 2 hours and 30 minutes and counting...

And to the Blog Boxers who toiled all day -- great job, and thanks for helping me keep tabs on all the action. You lucky stiffs.

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