Trade Rumors: Christensen in, Valiquette Out

St. Louis Blues v Anaheim Ducks

The New York Rangers claimed center Erik Christensen off waivers while putting backup goalie Steve Valiquette on, says Newsday’s Steve Zipay.  Christensen found himself on waivers earlier in the year and went unclaimed, probably due to his meager showing of zero points with a minus three rating in nine games.  Clearly Ducks management felt Chipchura was a better alternative down the middle.

Andrew Gross of The Bergen Record spoke with John Tortorella on the issue, and found out adding Christensen is a result of an undisclosed injury to Donald Brashear.  However, Torts also said the move should motivate Brian Boyle to step up his game when the team is healthy.  Boyle may find himself on the block if his play does not improve in the coach’s eyes.

No stranger to the Atlantic Division, Christensen played parts of three season with the Pittsburgh Penguins before getting shipped to Atlanta as part of the Marian Hossa deal.  In the 2006-2007 season, the 25-year-old posted career highs in practically every category finishing the year with 18 goals and 33 points.

The larger question could be, why do the Rangers need a better backup goalie? Vally sports a 2-3-0 record with one shutout, a 3.74 GAA and .852 SV% in six games, below average marks in every category.  The necessity for a better backup could have something to do with star goaltender not remotely playing as well as his career marks.  For now Chad “Ocho Cinco” Johnson fills in for the journeyman as he tries to regain his form in Hartford.

Do you think Lundqvist should be traded?

I certainly do not and with his value lower than usual I cannot see GM Glen Sather getting adequate compensation for the Swede.

Trade Rumors: Chipchura to the Ducks

Ottawa Senators v Montreal Canadiens

Mike Boone of Habs Inside/Out reports Kyle Chipchura moving to Anaheim for a 4th round pick.  The second young Hab to be moved in the last two weeks, the former 1st round pick has mostly been a disappointment in the NHL.

Drafted from the Prince Albert Raiders of the WHL in 2004, the Canadiens saw him as a rugged western Canadian player with offensive upside.  This upside, similar to Benoit Pouliot never translated to the NHL or even the AHL level.  The 23-year-old has zero points in his 18 games, leading fans to feel he is not even the third line center they hoped he could be.

Perhaps being reunited with former captain Saku Koivu gets this kid going.  The once promising top-prospect will now have to work even harder just to stay in the league.  Is it too early to call the kid a first-round bust? I would say five years is enough of an indicator.

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-Alexander Monaghan
NHLHS Founder