My Take on the Matt Duchene Trade

The Trade

Team Receives Gives Up
Ottawa ·       C Matt Duchene
·       F Shane Bowers
·       G Andrew Hammond
·       2018 Protected 1st RD Pick
·       2019 3rd RD Pick

 

Nashville
·       C Kyle Turris – Agrees to a 6 year, $36 million extension
·       D Samuel Girard

·       LW Vladislav Kamenev

·       2018 2nd RD Pick

Colorado
·       F Shane Bowers
·       G Andrew Hammond
·       D Samuel Girard
·       LW Vladislav Kamenev
·       2018 Protected 1st RD Pick
·       2018 2nd RD Pick
·       2019 3rd RD Pick
·       C Matt Duchene

 

From Ottawa’s Angle:

  • At the time of writing this (on the afternoon of November 7) the Senators are tied for third place in the Atlantic Division with 17 points. They have struggled down the middle all season and have sent Logan Brown and Colin White down to the minors. They are a budget hockey team and with Mark Stone, Fredrik Claesson, and Cody Ceci all needing new deals this offseason, it became clear that re-signing Kyle Turris was going to be unlikely. Getting Matt Duchene helps with this because he has another year left on his deal after this season and buys the organization some time to figure out their long-term plan. Their top four centers this season – Turris, Derick Brassard, Jean-Gabriel Pageau, and Nate Thompson had just 35 points between them – and none of them are a true number one center. Duchene should help this – he already had 10 points on this season, a pace well above his scoring total from last season (41 points in 77 games). He is good in his own zone, strong on faceoffs, and is as dynamic of a playmaker as one will find in the NHL. Duchene is a proven scorer, consistently finding the back of the net at least 20 times each season, but hasn’t put up the point totals expected of him for several seasons. Regardless, he should bring an immediate boost down the middle and if he fully commits to Guy Boucher’s system, he will be successful.
  • The Senators gave up a pretty decent group of players in this deal. Kyle Turris is certainly the most well-known player and has been Ottawa’s best center for several years now. He was set to be a free agent after this season, a potential problem for the team as it was looking unlikely that they’d be able to extend or re-sign him when he was due a raise above his current $3.5 million cap hit. They also gave up talented prospect, Shane Bowers, Ottawa’s first round selection from this year’s draft. Bowers is a center currently playing for Boston University in the NCAA and was nearly a point-per-game player last season with the Waterloo Blacks Hawks of the USHL. The last player sent by the Senators was goaltender Andrew Hammond, who had played the entirety of the season thus far in the AHL and has struggled in recent seasons. Including him in this deal was clearly a salary shedding move. Finally, the Senators sent two draft picks to the Avalanche – a protected 2018 1st round pick that moves to 2019 if this year’s pick is a top ten selection and a 2019 3rd rounder. This was a very large price to pay for Duchene, someone who likely won’t be in Ottawa after next season.

From Nashville’s Angle:

  • For all of the successes that the Predators have had in recent years they still struggle with center depth. Acquiring Ryan Johansen two seasons ago was thought of as a solution to this issue and to an extent he was a solution but the depth behind him has been a problem this season. Acquiring a good center that could either slot in below Johansen or even play on their first line and bump Johansen down has been a priority so far this season. Kyle Turris helps Nashville with this. He isn’t a typical first line center, and Johansen may not be either, but he is well above the typical second line center and gives the Predators an excellent one-two punch down the middle. He allows Nick Bonino to play on the third line where he is better suited and gives Nashville a great group of forwards that can go up against any team’s group. Playing in Nashville will present Turris with the best group of wings that he has ever had and seeing him play in Peter Laviolette’s system that allows for fast-pace scoring should be fun. There is a very good chance that he sets career highs with the Predators. The best part of this trade from Nashville’s perspective is that they were able to extend him for six years after this season for an AAV of just $6 million. That is a very team friendly and reasonable cap hit for a player with Turris’ scoring capabilities.
  • The Predators gave up highly touted defense prospect Samuel Girard who was already having success in the NHL just a year after being drafted. Giving up Girard is a big price to pay but it does mean that they didn’t have to let one of their top four defensemen or Dante Fabbro go. The other prospect going away in this trade is left wing Vladislav Kamenev, an intriguing prospect who has been stellar in the AHL but there hasn’t been room for him at the NHL level in Nashville’s system. The last piece that Nashville included was a 2018 2nd round pick.

From Colorado’s Angle:

  • Rumors regarding Matt Duchene’s departure out of Colorado have been swirling since he requested a trade last season. He has been linked to nearly every team in the NHL but it was thought that perhaps Avalanche GM Joe Sakic’s asking price was too high and from one team, it likely was too high. Colorado is in the midst of yet another rebuild and with Duchene becoming a free agent after next season, trading him was necessary. Losing a top six center isn’t that big of a loss for Colorado as they still have Nathan MacKinnon and Alex Kerfoot and are likely to have a lottery pick in next year’s draft.
  • The Avalanche got a great haul from this trade by adding a third team to this deal. They got three good draft picks and three good prospects in return. They got the defense prospect they wanted and needed in Samuel Girard, who could anchor their blueline for years to come, they got a potential top six center in Shane Bowers, and a good scoring wing with potential in Vladislav Kamenev. They needed young players who can be impacts in the near future and they got three of them with the chance to draft more with the picks they received.

Who won this trade?

  • From a sheer volume standpoint, it has to be Colorado. They got a better return for Matt Duchene than anyone could have realistically expected by acquiring three talented prospects. They didn’t get that one franchise-altering prospect but they did get top tier prospects in volume.
  • From an impact standpoint, I think it is Nashville. The Predators needing center depth and Kyle Turris gives them exactly that. Duchene may be the better of the two, but Turris’ extension gives Nashville even better salary flexibility than they already had.

*All stats came from Hockey-Reference and Hockeydb

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