Sports

Biscuits! Lozo and Down Goes Brown Labor Through a Painfully Dull Trade Deadline

Dave and Sean woke up early to exchange emails for six hours on a deadline that was one of the worst in years.
March 2, 2017, 5:00pm
Photo by Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

This article originally appeared on VICE Sports Canada.

_The following is from an email exchange between Dave Lozo and Sean McIndoe (Down Goes Brown). Each month they will talk some nonsense and debate the biggest topics in the NHL in our monthly review. You can _also check out the Biscuits podcast with Sean and Dave as they discuss the events of the week.__

10:30

Good morning Dave…

It's time for our monthly email exchange. And since this one happens to coincide with deadline day, we figured we'd mix it up a bit and spread it out over the course of the entire day. Hopefully, that means we'll be reacting in real time to a flood of major moves. It also could mean that this whole thing is just us getting increasingly annoyed and/or drunk while nothing happens. Either way, it should be interesting.

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Right now, it's still early and nothing has happened yet; history tells us that things don't really get going until closer to noon. So let's take some time to look back at the deals that have already happened. We've seen some big names moved—Ben Bishop, Martin Hanzal, and Kevin Shattenkirk being the main ones. What stands out from the action we've seen so far? Any obvious winners or losers?

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11:00

Lozo: It's pretty obvious the Avalanche are the big winners as they pulled off the blockbuster move of [rubs eyes, pulls phone closer to my face] Brendan Ranford for Joe Whitney. Sigh. The Avs are easily the most inept organization in the league.

It's funny that your Canadian networks have trade deadline shows from 8 AM until close. Every year, forever, it's the same thing. Big deals happen two days before, there's no one left and someone makes a joke about filling time during the show. When will you people learn? We don't need 14 people to break down Radim Vrbata for a third.

READ MORE: It's Stanley Cup or Bust for Capitals After Shattenkirk Trade

But I love the Shattenkirk deal, like the Hanzal deal, and hate the Bishop deal. The Caps are the best team in the league and added the best deadline guy we've seen in years. The Wild got deeper and better but not by much, and it was pricy. The Kings traded for the one thing they don't need. Goalies aren't pizza. You can't have two at the same time.

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11:30

DGB: Agreed on Shattenkirk—love the move for Washington. Hanzal was iffy, but the West is open so it makes sense for the Wild to go hard. I didn't mind the Kings' side of the Bishop deal only because they barely gave up anything. Really, I feel like last year's Vezina runner-up just got moved for next to nothing, and nobody mentions it because we all figure Steve Yzerman is playing 3D chess and we must be missing something.

The Capitals were winners by landing Shattenkirk, but was anyone else? Read on to find out! Photo by Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Right now we're about a half hour away from noon, which is when the action often starts. It sounds like a Thomas Vanek deal is close, and maybe Kyle Quincey, too. And apparently there's a bidding war for Radim Vrbata, which is kind of a sad sentence to type but makes you wonder what John Chayka can get in an auction situation. He may have had the best deadline so far of all the sellers.

As far as the Canadian networks having too much airtime and filling it with absolutely anything they can drag off the street, I have no idea what you mean.

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One big move we made on — Sportsnet (@Sportsnet)February 29, 2016

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11:45

Lozo: Sean, right after you sent this, Joe Sakic got right back to work at remodeling his team and he's showing he's not afraid to move big pieces. Cody Corbett for Joe Cannata. We never thought we'd see another 1-for-1 trade like Shea Weber for PK Subban, but here we are. Joltin' Joe Sakic has no fear. He's like Jeff Bridges in that movie about having no fear—Fearless. Kudos, Joe.

Jarome Iginla to Los Angeles is a thing being talked about and makes a lot of sense. The Kings are slow. Iginla is slow. Maybe if the Kings slow down enough, they can go backward in time and land in 2012 or 2014.

There is just NOTHING out there. Kyle Quincey is terrible. I just scrolled Twitter and now the big news is the Canucks will NOT trade Ryan Miller. Now not trading average players is big news. Since announcing what you're not doing is news, I would like to announce that I have NOT decided on my lunch and I am NOT wearing pants as I type this.

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11:50

DGB: Breaking: We have our first significant deal of the day. Thomas Vanek to the Panthers for a third and Dylan McIlrath. That's… technically a trade, I guess. Thought Detroit would do better on that, but Vanek hasn't had playoff success and he's European so it actually gets held against him.

That's about as enthusiastic as Lozo looked all day. Photo by Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

I like the idea of Iginla to the Kings, if it happens. Remember, Darryl Sutter was his coach in Calgary when they won the Stanley Cup in 2004 and then it didn't count because the NHL hates Canada. Maybe Sutter can get him going.

Any thoughts on Ottawa loading up? Fans here are surprisingly furious over the deal that sent a good prospect in Jonathan Dahlen to Vancouver for Alex Burrows.

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12:00

Lozo: I like Vanek. He's not peak Buffalo years Vanek, but I thought he got a bad rap during his time with Montreal. He was playing hurt and had a dipshit coach. This may be my favorite non-Shattenkirk deal so far.

I got real sad at the idea of Alex Burrows and Viktor Stalberg as "loading up." I don't know why Stalberg didn't demand a five-year extension in exchange for reporting to Ottawa. If I'm a Senators fan, I'm terrified of missing the playoffs still. I'd be praying the Islanders and Bruins don't do anything to get better today so they're not as likely to chase the Senators down. The Panthers' one move is better than both Senators moves.

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12:30

DGB: Speaking of Ottawa, I really can't wait for this Curtis Lazar for a first rounder deal to go down. If you have a shot at picking up a guy who's four years removed from his draft year and has one single point, you do it.

READ MORE: Are the Ottawa Senators the New Maple Leafs?

Seriously, the Senators have been putting out "We have a second on the table but think we can get more" message all week. It should be fun when they don't trade him at all and then act like they just changed their mind. I love trade deadline psychological games.

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1:00

Lozo: I'm honestly bored. Isn't Lazar the guy who ate the hamburger off the ice? [Note from Sean: Yes.] I don't want to impugn a guy's entire career off one incident but I'm never trading a first rounder for a guy who ate literal garbage.

Marc Bergevin, man. Just when I think that guy has it figured out (Radulov, Julien) after some obviously bad moves (Weber, Shaw) he's blowtorching his team's very decent Cup chances by adding grit and toughness at the deadline like it's 2002. Julien fell in his lap and his reaction has been to throw up on Julien.

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1:40

DGB: So the Iginla deal is official. He goes to L.A. in exchange for, what else, a conditional pick. I think every draft pick traded so far this year has been conditional. It's hard to really say whether it's a good deal since we don't know what the pick will end up as, but at the very least it's nice to see the Avs do something. Coming out of the deadline with Iginla would have been a disaster.

At least Iginla's a name, right? Guys? Photo by Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

By the way, a big thanks to the league for never telling us what the conditions are, since obviously that's not important at all. The NHL is like that friend of yours who won't tell you something without first saying "Guess what?" and then actually making you guess three or four times until you lose interest.

Who's left that hasn't done anything significant? Among sellers, you've got the Devils, Sabres, Flyers, maybe the Jets. Buyers, you've got the Blue Jackets, Predators, and maybe the Oilers, unless you think David Desharnais counts. Any of those stand out as teams that absolutely have to do something soon?

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2:00

Lozo: What about conditioner picks? If Iginla reaches the conference finals, it's Suave. Anything short of that and the Avs get a bottle of Head & Shoulders. This is dumb but there's nothing to talk about and it's 2 PM.

I'm surprised the Devils haven't sold anyone yet. The Flyers are locking up a goalie with an .887 save percentage for two years so I can't predict what a front office that dropped acid will do in the next hour.

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I'm surprised the Preds haven't made a big move. The West is wide open.

Just toss me a trade with a top-six forward or top-four D to make this day worth it for everyone. James Duthie abandoned his family to spend an entire day with Pierre McGuire. Trade Duchene. Don't let James' sacrifice be for nothing.

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2:20

DGB: Just over half an hour to go, which means we're now at that time of day when we'll be reminded every few seconds that "trades can still trickle in after the deadline." I still want to know why every deadline day trade apparently needs a three-hour conference call with league headquarters, but teams at the entry draft can make trades and Gary Bettman just runs up to the podium to announce them seconds later.

The Devils just sent Kyle Quincey to the Blue Jackets, which takes care of two of the teams we hadn't heard from yet. It sure looks like the Metro is going to be the Capitals going hard, and all the other contenders just kind of tinkering. No move ever guarantees anything, but if you're a Caps fan this really couldn't have gone any better so far.

Here's a picture of Kyle Quincey because he got traded. Photo by Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports

We're still waiting on Vrbata. John Chayka has done well so far, so it will be interesting to see what he can get. There's no way he gets another first here, right?

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2:40

Lozo: Hey, just an FYI, trades can still trickle in after the 3 PM deadline. Not sure if you were aware of that.

Mark Streit for Valtteri Filppula! That's a decent trade! Sure, it's between two teams that probably aren't going to the playoffs, but hey! When you haven't eaten all day and the waiter brings the warm bread, that can be incredibly satisfying. Plus ESPN's Craig Custance just said the Predators may be "up to something" so that could be a big trade or they're plotting to haunt an amusement park on Scooby Doo.

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I just re-read that paragraph and I'm way too excited about the Flyers-Tampa trade. I'm sorry.

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2:45

DGB: If you're the Flyers and you're about to miss the playoffs and haven't won a round since 2012, I think you have to go into the deadline thinking "How can we add a 33-year-old player who's owed $5 million next year?" Nice to see them get it done.

Fifteen minutes to go. We've only had 11 deals on the day, and that's counting two from last night that came in after midnight. That's slow, even by recent standards, which suggests that there's still plenty to go.

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Lozo: Deals can still trickle in after 3 PM.

I get the Lightning have a bunch of forwards and needed to shed one before the expansion draft, but getting Streit is interesting because maybe they think they're not done? Like, they could make the playoffs still? They could. I guess.

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2:50

DGB: I think it's more about freeing up dollars for next year. Between dumping contracts and freeing up room this year to eat some bonuses that won't have to roll over now, Yzerman has trimmed a decent chunk off of next season's cap. He'll now use that to sign good young players to below-market contracts, because that's just how he rolls.

Is Boston really going to just not do anything?

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Lozo: Are the Islanders really going to just not do anything? I gotta tell you. When you look at where the Islanders are in the standings and how they've disappointed this year, a team like that must have a GM with a 10-year contract to feel so secure in his job that he wouldn't do anything.

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2:55

DGB: That sounds like quite the scoop. You'd think somebody would have reported that.

So the Predators just picked up P.A. Parenteau on the cheap. Not sure how much that moves the needle, but I guess every little bit helps. Meanwhile, nothing from St. Louis other than Shattenkirk.

Sportsnet is now saying a Lazar deal may have happened with Calgary, and they got a second and Jyrki Jokipakka. That's not bad at all. Got to give Ottawa credit for pulling it off.

Five minutes until the deadline, after which I don't believe trades are allowed to trickle in.

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3:00

Lozo: Actually trades could trickle in after 3 PM.

How about after all these years, Shane Doan finally says he'll accept a trade. But it has to be to the defending Cup champs. Who are built on speed. And don't need a forward. And have no cap room. Surprised the Penguins didn't jump on that.

Is this the worst trade deadline of our adult lives? I know the thing to do today is profess the thing we just saw or experienced as the best/worst, but man is this a bad day that just keeps getting worse every year.

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3:10

DGB: Go easy on Shane Doan. Based on his reaction to the Hanzal trade, he only just realized the Coyotes have been bad for a decade in the last few days.

Elliotte Friedman just reported that the Coyotes aren't trading Vrbata after all. That's… weird, right? It seems weird. Even if a guy wants to stick around, he's 35 and you're rebuilding. That doesn't make any sense. You'd have to think that maybe somebody bailed on a deal at the very last second.

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Meanwhile, the Avalanche are done. They traded Iginla and kept everyone else. They can always move a Duchene or Landeskog in the summer. "They" being whoever the Avs GM is—I'm not convinced it's definitely going to be Sakic.

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3:15

Lozo: I'm convinced ownership was happy to let Sakic deal Iginla but want to entrust the franchise-shifting moves to the next GM in the summer. It's the only explanation. It's fair, too, because good lord is Sakic not cut out for this. What Wayne Gretzky was as a coach with the Coyotes, Sakic is as a GM with the Avs.

See ya Joe. Photo by Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Someone on Twitter pointed out that teams may have been scared off by Vrbata's bonuses in his contract. I'm still not entirely sure John Chayka knows what he's doing.

Well, that's it. We spent about six hours emailing back and forth. This should be great for fans of last season's Game of Thrones, because we gave you six straight hours where practically nothing happened.

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3:30

DGB: Wait, more trades have trickled in. Who knew?

The Jets trade Drew Stafford to the Bruins for a pick. No word on what they got back, but I bet it's a conditional pick.

Also, the Penguins added Streit even though they have no cap room. I love how 90 percent of the NHL cries constantly about the salary cap, while the Penguins, Blackhawks, and Kings just add whoever they want even though we're always told they're capped out.

I think that probably does it. Any last thoughts? Biggest winners or losers?

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3:40

Lozo: Biggest winners—anyone in the media that got paid extra for working this day.

Biggest losers—literally everyone else involved with this day.