Early on June 23rd, 2014, the Philadelphia Flyers traded Scott Hartnell to the Columbus Blue Jackets for R.J. Umberger and a fourth round pick. The two players have close to the same salaries, though Hartnell is signed for two fewer years. The problem for Philadelphia though, is that Hartnell is still a very good player, and Umberger isn't.
At best, Umberger is a third liner, while depending on the team, Hartnell can play first line minutes. He also made Claude Giroux significantly better, as Giroux has just a 48.7% Corsi for in the last three seasons without Hartnell, and a very strong 54.9% with Hartnell.
What's going on?
The Flyers' new GM is Ron Hextall. You may remember him from that time he tried to murder every other player in the NHL every game he ever played. Hextall, is ****ing crazy.
This is a situation the Canadiens can take advantage of. The Flyers just made themselves worse while making a divisional opponent better. A team they will be fighting tooth and nail with for a playoff spot next spring. Imagine how bad a trade they would be willing to make outside their own division!
Hey Mr. Bergevin, if you'e listening, I did some of the work for you. Here are some deals you can offer Hextall to improve the Habs. You might want to lowball him a bit more just in case though.
Alexei Emelin for Braydon Coburn
Selling point: Both guys are big and also defensemen, and Emelin is $400K cheaper per season! Also Emelin is younger and locked up for an extra two years at that reasonable, reasonable dollar. Also he hits a bunch, and that's very Flyery.
Rene Bourque for Wayne Simmonds
Selling point: Like Emelin, Bourque is slightly cheaper than his Flyers alternative. He's also signed to a shorter deal, and coming off a huge playoffs! The Habs are basically doing you a favour here, Hexy.
David Desharnais for Jakub Voracek
Selling point: I know what you're thinking, doesn't make much sense to trade a winger for a center. But look at the savings! Not only does Desharnais make $750K less per year than Voracek, he's also signed an extra year, and we all know Voracek is going to want more money next time. They always do.
So what do you think, Hexy? Bergy? I think with the cap space the Habs have, they can afford to do the Flyers this solid. While the Flyers saved a whopping $100K in cap space by dealing Hartnell, these three deals would save nearly $1.8M per year against the cap! That's 18 times the savings! Woah!
Let's get this done, thank me later.