The Washington Capitals and Columbus Blue Jackets officially make a deal in which Columbus sends solid left wing Jason Chimera in exchange for depth defenseman Milan Jurcina and surprisingly team captain Chris Clark
The Capitals receive probably the best player of the bunch in Chimera, who last year would have posted career highs had he stayed healthy. The 30-year-old veteran carries a reasonable 1.875 cap hit, a fair price for a grinding wing who shows the ability to put up points.
Clark, now the former captain of the Caps, admits to being shocked he was traded. This trade may mark the first time a first-place team traded away their captain, however it was the smart move. The 33-year-old sported a hefty 2.633 million cap hit this year and next, something a contending team simply should not pay for considering he posted two less points than Chimera.
In Jurcina the Jackets get a warm body on the blue line, something they needed since Rostislav Klesla went down at the beginning of the month. More importantly the Blue Jackets shake the team up, as they promised they would do. Used mainly as a depth defenseman, Jurcina posted four helpers in 27 games while carrying a 1.375 cap hit.
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Tom Reed of The Columbus Dispatch recently reported that Blue Jackets GM Scott Howson will shake things up soon in an attempt to send a message to his team. Considered a strong team with room for improvement following their first playoff berth, the young team struggled and currently sit in 14th in the Western Conference, just one point above cellar dweller the Edmonton Oilers.
The difference between the Oilers and Blue Jackets however are injuries. The Oilers lost their number one goalie and arguably their number one scorer, if not for the breakout year of Dustin Penner and admirable job by Jeff Deslauriers thinks could be even worse in the province of Alberta.
The Blue Jackets’ problems prove not as simple. A sophomore slump from Derick Brassard and Steve Mason severely hurt their chances, as well as the deportation of Nikita Filatov. Couple those problems with the injury to top defenseman Rostislav Klesla and the Jackets lost key components to last year’s playoff team.
Nevertheless, Howson stayed the course admitting he would not make any panic moves. At this point a move seems too late. Recent rumblings around Twitter point to Karl Alzner moving to Columbus.
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This thread will be updated all day, so keep refreshing it as the day goes along. Here are your wounded bodies for tonight:
- Shaone Morrisonn skated but will not play, Karl Alzner play in his place. [In the Room]
- Joni Pitkanen will play tonight. [Canes Now]
- Scott Walker is doubtful for tonight. Cory LaRose did not practice while Cam Ward practiced with goalie coach Tom Barasso. [Canes Country]
New York Rangers
- Paul Gaustad will not play. [Sabres.com]
- Still awaiting word on the status of Craig Rivet.
Toronto Maple Leafs
- Mike Komisarek expected back when the Leafs face the Sabres. [TSN]
St. Louis Blues
Columbus Blue Jackets
- Mike Methot out two games with an upper body injury. [Tom Reed]
- Andrew Murray could return Thursday. [Tom Reed]
- Derek Dorsett out at least three more games. [Tom Reed]
Detroit Red Wings
- Patrick Eaves likely out tonight with Kirk Maltby replacing him. [Mlive.com]
- Valtteri Filppula should be back on the ice. [Free Press]
- T.J. Galiardi questionable, Milan Hejduk out for the night. [All Things Avs]
Tampa Bay Lightning
- Both Cory Sarich and Rene Bourque remain out indefinitely with undisclosed injuries. [Calgary Sun]
- Bourque could play Thursday at Phoenix. [Flames Insider]
Around the League
- Daniel Briere still down with the flu, but should be close to 100 percent for Thursday’s game. Simon Gagne could return in three weeks, while Darroll Powe and Blair Betts are out until January. [Broad Street Bull]
New Jersey Devils
- Jay Pandolfo and Rob Niedermayer practiced today. [Fire & Ice]
- Johnny Oduya set to practice with the team tomorrow. [Tom Gulitti]
- Martin Havlat and Antti Miettinen practicing with the Wild. [Wild Now]
New York Islanders
- Matt D’Agostini and Scott Gomez expected to play tomorrow. [Habs Inside/Out]
Los Angeles Kings
- Rob Scuderi questionable while Ryan Smyth took part in a “fairly intensive workout.” [LA Kings Insider]
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