NHL Trade Deadline

February 27, 2018 - 1:00 pm
I know it's been a minute since I've talked hockey, but yesterday needs to be discussed. Because the NHL Trade Deadline went down and it was absolutely nuts. 18 trades. 37 players. A whole lotta lumber shipping out. New sweaters stitched up. And a handful of teams shoving all their chips into the middle. Because the best teams in the league just got a helluva lot better. And as we get closer to drawing the brackets and playing for Lord Stanley’s Cup -- just about everybody with a chance at hoisting the greatest trophy in sports did some serious work. Boston grabbed Rick Nash a couple days ago. The two-time defending champs brought in centerman Derick Brassard. Nashville got Ryan Hartman. Winnipeg added Paul Stastny to maybe the best front line in hockey. But if you're looking for big swings, you're not going to find bigger moves than what went down in Tampa and Vegas yesterday. Because Steve Yzerman shoved his chips in the middle and made his move. And Vegas, a team one year into existence that was literally just supposed to be figuring out how all this works, added another scorer to the best offense in the West. Let me start in Tampa. Stevie Y walked into Madison Square Garden and walked out with their captain. Ryan McDonagh heads to a Lightning blue line that's already rock solid. And he brings JT Miller with him, a trade that LITERALLY went down at 2:59 p.m, just a minute before the deadline. McDonagh is a work horse and was the best defenseman actually on the market. Miller is a 24-year-old who can play a two-way game and give you 20-goals. And while the Lightning gave up some assets to get these guys, Yzerman -- a 3-time Cup winner and Hall of Famer -- knows better than just about anybody what he had to do. Now Vegas might not have been able to land Erik Karlsson but they did bring in Thomas Tatar from Detroit. And they paid a huge price for him -- a 1st, a 2nd, and a 3rd, spread out over three years. But no place understands the rules of a hot streak better than Sin City. Because you don't walk away from the table when you're on a heater. And while the Golden Knights are just getting started, they pushed a barrel of dry powder into the fire to see just how explosive the best team out west could get. All those draft picks George McPhee fleeced out of teams before the expansion draft are getting put to good use now, and the best story in all of hockey might actually do the impossible -- 1 season, 1 Cup. Less than 20 games before the best playoffs in all of sports get started. An absolute war. And I could make an argument for maybe a dozen teams making a run at the Cup. Cant. Freaking. Wait.