GWMHL

Which Deadline Pickups Made the Biggest Impact After 24 Games?

In DEN, NAS, SCA, Special Features, STL, VAN on June 12, 2013 at 9:42 pm

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It was the most active trade deadline in recent memory. 24 games later, most of the players who found new homes have had a chance to show what they’ve got. But which teams’ acquisitions made the biggest difference?

1) Saint Louis Blues (17-6-1 since deadline)

The Blues were a good team before the deadline, but that didn’t deter them from making bold moves – and it paid off. Daniel Alfredsson (9 goals in 24 games) and Alex Steen (13 points in 12 games) were notable producers, but the real impact was on overall team depth. They’ve never been harder to defend.

2) Nashville Knights (14-7-3 since deadline)

Daniel Sedin (11 points in 15 games) played as well as expected, but the Knights already had good depth up front. The acquisition who was a real difference maker? Mark Streit (5 goals, 13 assists in 24 games), who keyed the offense from the blueline en route to a huge quarter for Nashville.

3) Denver Spurs (14-8-2 since deadline)

What? The Spurs made one trade, sending Chris Thorburn and a 4th to El Dorado for Andrei Kostitsyn. It seemed like a nothing move at the time, but Kostitsyn has been dynamite in limited action since joining his new team, with 8 goals and 5 assists in 24 games. On a team starved for winger depth, he’s been a boon.

4) South Carolina Fire Ants (12-12-0 since deadline)

The Fire Ants didn’t improve much in the standings (12-12-0 on the quarter after going 18-19-3 prior) but without Brad Richards’ four game-winning goals, things would have looked a lot more dire. Sergei Gonchar (2-10-12) and Matt Greene (2-5-7) both performed okay, but Richards looks to have been the real difference-maker.

5) Vancouver Night Train (13-10-1 since deadline)

The Night Train’s key acquisitions, Johan Franzen and Michal Handzus, both played well. In fact, Franzen (17 points in 24 games) elevated the play of Tomas Plekanec and was especially helpful when Jonathan Toews was out with injury. But the numbers don’t lie – 29-11-0 at the half, the Night Train slid to 13-10-1 in Q3.

What About the Rest?

The acquisitions by Baltimore, Boston, Pittsburgh, and especially Ice Harbor were aimed at next season or beyond. The Storm got little production from its new players and Ondrej Pavelec’s .887 save percentage is ugly, until you compare it to teammates J-S Giguere (.876) and Jonathan Bernier (.833). Sergei Bobrovsky didn’t get much done for Baltimore, but Kyle Okposo (8 goals, 11 assists) performed well in the absence of Burrows and Sedin – and led all players with a +19 on the quarter.

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