Today is the 2022 NHL Trade Deadline. Today is the last day for teams to register trades that will allow players to participate in the playoffs. In other words, it is effectively the last day for trades to be made during the season. All deals must be registered with the league’s offices by 3 PM ET. Some may get reported after 3 PM ET, but the deadline is with registering the deal with the league. That is the true deadline.
The Devils Situation
As with the last three seasons, the New Jersey Devils are expected to be sellers by the trade deadline. The Devils are mired near the bottom of the Metropolitan Division and Eastern Conference standings. Their playoff hopes were effectively done and dusted by the new year. Logic would suggest the Devils will move current players for future assets as they have done in past years. I would expect more of the same this year.
The Devils do not have a lot of pending unrestricted free agents this year. Their biggest one is P.K. Subban and his massive cap hit combined with an unimpressive season makes it a a challenge for him to be moved. Given that the Devils have a point percentage just below 40% in the standings, others are certainly moveable. Rumors have included the likes of Damon Severson and Pavel Zacha among others. We shall see how much of it ended up being a conversation and how much becomes an actual deal.
This early primer from a month ago should get you caught up to the current situation. To get a sense of how much value a Devil could yield, this trade value list for the 2021-22 squad should prepare you. As of today, the Devils have well over $33 million in current cap space, 46 player contracts out of a maximum of 50, and all of their own picks in the 2022 draft except for the fifth rounder - but the Devils also own Edmonton’s fourth rounder, the Islanders’ fourth rounder, and Columbus’ fifth rounder. The Devils can offer a lot of space and/or retained salary among the many cap-strapped teams in the league. With the team needing at least some kind of help in all three positions, there are a lot of directions General Manager Tom Fitzgerald can go in. He could just sell away and have the team limp until the end. He could look to add someone like Jonas Siegenthaler; a young-ish player who just needs a chance to play as to improve the roster for next season. He could even do nothing and prefer to be much more active in the Summer.
Also, do not be surprised if you see some “paper” moves. Those are transactions to place someone on the Utica Comets without the player actually going there. Players need to be on the AHL roster by 3 PM in order to be eligible for the Calder Cup Playoffs, which are a near-lock for the Comets this season. Dawson Mercer, Ty Smith, Nico Daws and Tyce Thompson are all eligible for being sent down without going through waivers. Will all of them actually happen? We shall see.
Lastly: Per CapFriendly, the Devils have 46 contracts on the books and just over $7.535 million in projected cap space - which means they can take up to $36.7 million in contracts. In other words, the Devils can add. They also have 23 players on their active roster, although that could become 22 soon.
Notable Pre-Deadline Day Moves & Waiver Wire Activity
There were some big ones made this weekend and the waiver actions on Sunday are notable.
First, the waivers. On Sunday, Elliotte Friedman reported that Riley Nash, Brad Richardson, Kyle Turris, Kyle Clifford, Petr Mrazek, Harri Sateri, Derrick Pouliot, and Christian Jaros were placed on waivers today. Jaros being waived is interesting. Colton White has cleared them earlier and there is not much of a material difference in my eyes between the two. The Devils feel otherwise, so if someone is coming back - Miles Wood? - or someone is being acquired today, then moving Jaros down to Utica would allow for that to happen.
The other interesting name here is Harri Säteri. Toronto signed the 32-year old goaltender out of Sibir Novosibirsk of the KHL. While Säteri’s time in North America was iffy at best, he has been a stud in the KHL. Especially in the last three seasons with Novosibirsk. He even backstopped Finland to a Gold Medal at the Beijing Olympics. Given Toronto’s goaltending woes, they opted to give the veteran a chance. All for the cost of a league minimum contract just for thee season. In order for him to come over, he has to clear waivers. Since the Devils may not be able to get a goaltender in a trade, I have a chaotic idea. The Devils should claim Säteri. They can then waive Jon Gillies. Depending on where he actually is, the Devils can even start Säteri on Wednesday night in Toronto for kicks. Is Säteri actually NHL-caliber? I do not know. We know Gillies really is not. Would you rather have Daws/Säteri or Daws/Gillies? I would choose the former. I would take that risk. Will it actually happen? We will find out by 2 PM ET today.
Now the deals made so far. Here is a quick run through of the meaningful ones and my quick takes on each.
- March 16 - Ben Chiarot (50% retained) to Florida. Montreal receives Tyler Smilanic, Florida’s 2023 1st round pick, and Rangers’ 2022 4th round pick. This is a hefty price for Ben Chiarot. I expect Florida to be real good next season, but throwing the 2023 first rounder is interesting. Both are conditional The Panthers were more shrewd in their other big deal in this past weekend.
- March 18 - Brandon Hagel, Chicago’s 2022 4th rounder, Chicago’s 2024 4th rounder to Tampa Bay. Chicago receives Tampa Bay’s 1st round picks in 2023 and 2024 along with Boris Katchouk and Taylor Raddysh. The firsts are top-ten protected. This is a lot for Hagel, but this is the kind of deal where Hagel could easily thrive in Tampa Bay and help push them over the top for a three-peat. If so, then who cares about moving firsts? Especially since Tampa Bay is not likely to crash and burn in the next two seasons.
- March 19 - Hampus Lindholm (50% retained) and Kodie Curran to Boston. Anaheim receives Boston’s 1st rounder in 2022, 2nd rounder in 2023, 2nd rounder in 2024, Urho Vaakanainen, and John Moore. This is a lot for Hampus Lindholm! And Boston followed up this deal with an eight-season $52 million extension! He’s good, but $6+ million good? I do not know. Between Ristolainen making an average of $5.1 million and Lindholm making an average of $6.5 million, Damon Severson has to be loving his future negotiations. Sort-of related: If Lindholm can command this, then Tom Fitzgerald really should consider selling high on Severson - who is having a career year, if you can put aside his memorable mistakes.
- March 19 - Claude Giroux (50% retained), Connor Bunnaman, German Rubtsov, and Philadelphia’s 5th rounder in 2025 to Florida. Philadelphia receives Owen Tippett, Florida’s 1st rounder in 2024, and Florida’s 3rd rounder in 2023. Given how Philly’s last home game was pretty much a Giroux send-off (and his 1,000th game), him getting dealt was expected. Giroux had a no-movement clause so he apparently wanted Florida. Even so, GM Chuck Fletcher managed to underwhelm here. Nothing for 2022? A bunch of lower prospects and Giroux? The first in 2024 is top-ten protected? Fletcher arguably traded more away to get Risto Ristolainen back on July 23, 2021; a first, a second, and Robert Hagg. Good on Florida for loading up. Philly, well, too bad.
- March 20 - Mark Giordano (50% retained) and Colin Blackwell to Toronto. Seattle receives Toronto’s 2022 2nd round pick, Toronto’s 2023 2nd round pick, and Toronto’s 2024 3rd round pick. This is more sensible for a rental. Are the Leafs better for it? Yes. Will this be enough to put Toronto over the hump and win a playoff series? Maybe. How much do Leafs fans hate that last answer? A lot.
- March 20 - Travis Hamonic to Ottawa. Vancouver receives Ottawa’s 2022 3rd round pick. Let me get this straight. Hamonic was placed on waivers earlier this season. He cleared waivers this season. He could have been claimed for something less than $4,000. For some reason, Ottawa felt months later that they needed to move an asset to get Hamonic. And Hamonic is signed for next season with a $3 million cap hit, a $1.25 million signing bonus, and a total salary of $3.25 million. This may be the most baffling trade this year. Why, Ottawa, why?
- March 20 - Nick Paul (44.5% retained) to Tampa Bay. Ottawa receives Mathieu Joseph and Tampa Bay’s 2024 4th round pick. This is not a major deal, but it is worth noting that teams are absolutely moving picks three drafts from now in more minor deals. It is also worth noting that Tampa Bay, like a lot of teams leaning on LTIR, have such little cap space that even a guy on a $1.35 million cap hit needed salary retention to make it work. Tampa Bay is pretty smart. Even if they resemble someone trying to jam a suitcase stuffed with clothes shut with a cinder block with respect to their cap. Julian BriseBois probably thinks, “Don’t worry about my cap.”
Of course, what Fitzgerald and the New Jersey Devils do now and in the near future will be based on what the rest of the league does. What the other 31 teams do will impact any potential return for a trade or even who draws interested for one. After all, you cannot make a trade without a willing partner. To account for all of the possible activity, this is an open post for you to discuss whatever happens today for the 2022 NHL Trade Deadline. What has happened, what is about to happen, and what shouldn’t happen in terms of trades and transactions. Please feel free to chat about what the New Jersey Devils should do, should not do, and what they have done so far. You can even talk up what other teams should, should not do, and what they have done so far.
Here is the annual reminder for this kind of post: Please do not post false rumors, “hot tips from sources” that nobody knows, and cite Twitter accounts that are not legitimate or real insiders. Nobody here has the time for riling people up over fake rumors and made up nonsense that would not even work in a videogame. Instead, please stick to following real people with real Verified marks - be sure to check for it, that it is not a ‘7’ - on Twitter accounts. Please follow real sources of news from known beat reporters to big companies (e.g. TSN’s Tradecentre) to credible hubs (e.g. SB Nation’s NHL Trade Rumor Hub) to even the team’s official website and/or social media accounts. As always: It’s better to be right than first. All other rules apply (no trolling, no swearing, no personal attacks etc.) to this post as well.
Thank you for reading and enjoy the activity of the 2022 NHL Trade Deadline.