Saturday, 23 March, 2019

Senators trade centre Matt Duchene to Columbus for prospects, pick

The Ottawa Senators Matt Duchene traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets Senators trade centre Matt Duchene to Columbus for prospects, pick
Jennie Wade | 28 February, 2019, 07:58

The Blue Jackets led 1-0 through 40 minutes, but the main reason for that was the play of Craig Anderson, who kept the game from turning into a blowout. This trade assumes a different kind of risk from the Duchene one, as the Blue Jackets - whose 2019 second-round pick was already traded to the Golden Knights (who then traded it to the Canadiens for Max Pacioretty) - are giving up second-rounders for three straight years.

That leaves Columbus with only a third-round pick and a seventh-round pick (acquired in the trade for Dzingel) in the 2019 draft, and potentially no picks in the first three rounds of the 2020 draft.

The first major domino to fall was the Ottawa Senators trading Matt Duchene to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday. Kekalainen said there were no serious trade offers for those players, and he acknowledged his preference to keep them, anyway, even though both have refused to sign contract extensions with the team. In return for the players who were going to be free agents after this season, it collected five draft picks and 24-year old defenceman Connor Carrick. However, it's shocking to see the Blue Jackets acquire another Senators forward.

He was selected by Los Angeles in the third round of the 2010 draft, and has 20 goals and 24 assists for 44 points in 153 career National Hockey League games.

Duchene scored in his first game.

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The Blue Jackets have just a third and seventh-round pick in this summer's draft; but despite all the question marks surrounding the impending unrestricted free agents and limited draft capital, Kekalainen still believes his squad is set up for long-term success.

"He got put in a hard situation with two of his real high-end players that weren't willing to commit to re-sign", Washington Capitals GM Brian MacLellan said.

Duchene says he's feeling good about joining a team with a realistic shot at the playoffs after playing for a franchise with its focus on a rebuild rather than winning. "I think the guys in here and me appreciate that, and so do the fans".

Coach John Tortorella appeared to be in an (uncharacteristically) ebullient mood on Monday, and that was before the McQuaid trade was announced.

The Blue Jackets have won seven of 10 and jumped into third place of the Metropolitan Division, a point ahead of Pittsburgh, which is now ninth and out of the playoff picture. "I'm glad Panarin and [Bobrovsky] are still here, gives us a chance to compete".

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