After letting yesterdays flurry of activity sink in for twenty-four hours, I must say I'm absolutely blown away with the magic that Oiler brass were able to create yesterday. If someone would have posted on a hockey chat bored, or called into a radio show suggesting the Oil could turn Cole into O'Sullivan AND Kotalik…. They would have been torn to shreds (and rightfully so).
With UFA's bringing in far less then they did the last two to three years, Lowbillini really hit a home run with this trade, killing two deadline birds with one stone.
Typically one of two things happens at the deadline:
You trade vets for youth/picks, in other words you give up on this season in hopes of being stronger in the future.
You trade youth/picks for vets, sacrificing the future for the now trying to increase your chances of doing some damage this year.
Bringing back the younger, signed O'Sullivan gives them ample skill to stay competitive this year as well as an asset for the future. Tacking Kotalik on top makes this a better team today, and tomorrow.
That said, O'Sullivan is a repeat asset on this team, and even though I am beyond impressed with the return that we scored for a UFA, over the longer term this trade looks a lot like the Visnosky for Stoll/Greene trade (meaning we won on paper, but we end up giving up scarce asserts (size and grit ie Cole) for youthful undersized skill). So I applaud the team for getting the best they can (and far more then I expected), my overall conclusion of the trade is an A+ in value, but a C+ in fit… leading me to believe that this may be a set up trade for later in the Summer.
With the addition of O'Sullivan, both Cogliano and Gagner become more redundant… and from our perspective, more tradable. In my mind “Cogs and Gags” would be almost untouchable, save for a trade for a true superstar, now I would be willing to put either in play, knowing O'Sullivan is available (and signed) to fill their rolls. Without getting to far ahead of ourselves here:
This team clearly lacks skilled size in their top, both Jordan Stall and Jason Spezza have been rumored to be on the outs with their current teams, but teams could use an injection of young, (cheap) skilled youth, something the Oilers now have in abundance.
Patrick O'Sullivan would be a dynamic winger to play along side of Crosby or Malkin for years to come.
Gagner + Gilbert would be an excellent start to a “re-load” in Ottawa with Spezza on the return.
Hmmmm, lots of options. But with the past trading success in Oil country bodes well for another big summer.
About the Author
Written by Scott Brown