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2019 NHL trade deadline winners and losers: Analyzing best, worst deals of crazy day

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2019 NHL trade deadline winners and losers: Analyzing best, worst deals of crazy day

The 2019 NHL trade deadline passed Monday afternoon and there was no shortage of deals.

Many of the best players rumored to be available — including Mark Stone, Kevin Hayes and Wayne Simmonds — found new teams, while most of the top contenders for the Stanley Cup made at least one trade to bolster their chances of playoff success.

Here are the winners and losers of the 2019 NHL trade deadline.

WINNERS
Winnipeg Jets
The Jets are one of the best teams in the league and still sit atop the Central Division, but they have struggled of late with a 3-5-2 record in their last 10 games. The addition of Kevin Hayes from the New York Rangers is a great move for Winnipeg. It gives the Jets a versatile forward who can score goals and create opportunities for teammates at both center and the wing, and he provides excellent size (6-foot-5, 216 pounds) down the middle of the ice. The cost — Brendan Lemieux, a 2019 first rounder and conditional fourth-round pick — wasn't a ton to give up, either. Winnipeg also acquired veteran forward Matt Hendricks for additional toughness and playoff experience.

The Jets added to their already strong depth and still kept valuable trade assets — that's a win-win deadline.

Detroit Red Wings
The Red Wings are in a rebuild and entered the deadline in second-to-last place in the Atlantic Division. Detroit traded two upcoming UFAs in forward Gustav Nyquist and defenseman Nick Jensen. Red Wings general manager Ken Holland did well to acquire a second-round draft pick and a conditional third-rounder for Nyquist, as well as a good young defenseman in Madison Bowey and a 2020 second-rounder from the Washington Capitals in exchange for Jensen. Detroit could have as many as 10 picks in the 2019 NHL Draft. 

Vegas Golden Knights
The Golden Knights swung for the fences by trading for the best player rumored to be available at the deadline: Senators right winger Mark Stone. Vegas entered Monday ranked 19th in goals scored per game and 23rd in power-play percentage, so upgrading its offense was a huge priority at the deadline. Stone was having a remarkable season for Ottawa with 62 points (28 goals, 34 assists) in 59 games, and he should significantly bolster the Knights' top-six forward group. Vegas had to make a substantial move to have a realistic chance of returning to the Stanley Cup Final, and this trade could be the catalyst the franchise needs to rediscover last year's magic. The Golden Knights gave up top prospect Erik Brannstrom to make the Stone trade, but that departure stings a lot less after Stone said Monday on TSN that he has agreed to terms on a contract extension with Vegas.

Nashville Predators
The Preds have a genuine chance to win the Western Conference and addressed their offensive weaknesses with two bold deadline day trades. Nashville acquired power forward Wayne Simmonds from the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for Ryan Hartman and a conditional fourth-round draft pick — not a steep price at all. The Predators also dealt forward Kevin Fiala to the Minnesota Wild for forward Mikael Granlund. The additions of Simmonds and Granlund improve the Predators' toughness and playmaking skill, and should bolster a power play that ranks dead last in the league with a 12.2 percent success rate.

Columbus Blue Jackets
The Blue Jackets easily could have been sellers at the trade deadline and dealt upcoming UFAs Artemi Panarin and goalie Sergei Bobrovsky. Not only did Columbus keep both players, it swung a huge trade to acquire star center Matt Duchene from the Ottawa Senators, then traded for his teammate and Sens center Ryan Dzingel soon after. The Blue Jackets also acquired veteran defenseman Adam McQuaid from the New York Rangers, and he'll add toughness, depth and plenty of playoff experience to Columbus' blue line.

The Blue Jackets are barely holding on to third place in the Metropolitan, and they aren't likely to win the Stanley Cup this season. That said, going all-in still is a good strategy for them. They need to show their own free agents and players around the league that the franchise is serious about winning. And with no Metropolitan team looking invincible in the first two rounds of the playoffs, Columbus might as well swing for the fences and continue to build its fan base with postseason hockey excitement. Remember, CBJ is still looking for its first ever playoff series win.

LOSERS
Pittsburgh Penguins
The Penguins are on the outside looking in at the playoff race entering Monday, and they didn't make any big trades to bolster their chances of reaching the postseason. Meanwhile, some of the teams competing for a playoff berth in the Metropolitan Division and wild card races, including the Columbus Blue Jackets and Carolina Hurricanes, all made upgrades with deadline trades. The only deals Pittsburgh made were to acquire defensemen Erik Gudbranson and Chris Wideman, but these players likely are just third-pairing pieces.

The Penguins have a ton of frontline talent and a quality coaching staff, but they lack depth, and that could come back to bite them at the end of the regular season. 

Boston Bruins
The Bruins traded for Minnesota Wild center Charlie Coyle and gave up forward Ryan Donato and a fifth-round pick last week. On Monday, the B's acquired New Jersey Devils winger Marcus Johansson for two draft picks. These moves improve the Bruins' scoring depth a little bit, but they don't give Boston the additional top-six forward needed to compete with the first-place Tampa Bay Lightning in a potential playoff series. The Bruins have won six of their last seven games and look like a real Stanley Cup contender, so it made sense to be bold at this deadline and capitalize on the veteran core (Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, Tuukka Rask, Zdeno Chara, etc.) still being really good. Instead, B's general manager Don Sweeney made a couple small moves that aren't likely to shift the balance of power in the Atlantic. 

Calgary Flames
The Flames own the Western Conference's best record at 39-16-7, but their only move was adding depth defenseman Oscar Fantenberg in trade with the Los Angeles Kings. The Jets, Predators, Sharks, Golden Knights and Stars all made more impactful trades for the playoff push. Calgary has a well-balanced roster and didn't need a major shakeup, but acquiring a second- or third-line winger would've been helpful for the playoffs. 

Henrik Lundqvist
The New York Rangers goaltender teared up when asked about Mats Zuccarello leaving the Blueshirts and going to the Dallas Stars via trade. Lundqvist and Zuccarello clearly were close, so it was a difficult goodbye after a decade of being teammates. The legendary netminder hasn't won a Stanley Cup in his storied career, and he certainly won't win one with the Rangers this season. It's going to be a long post-deadline stretch for Lundqvist in New York.

Columbus Blue Jackets' scouting department
The 2019 NHL Draft is in Vancouver, and the Blue Jackets' scouting staff might have a lot of free time to spend in one of Canada's best cities as a result of the team's barren chest of draft picks.

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Talking Points from the Bruins' 7-3 win over the Panthers

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Talking Points from the Bruins' 7-3 win over the Panthers

GOLD STAR: What a night for Zdeno Chara. He collected the 200th goal of his NHL career when he was able to step into a Danton Heinen drop-back pass in the second period, had a couple of points to go along with a plus-4 rating and had seven shot attempts while being really active in the offensive zone during his 25 plus minutes of ice time. He is one of only 22 defensemen in the history of the NHL to score 200 goals in their career and that is absolutely rarified air among NHL career leaders. All of this comes for a 42-year-old Bruins captain that also signed a one-year, $2 million contract extension with the Bruins today that could also have another $1.75 million in incentives when everything is said and done as well.  

BLACK EYE: Henrik Borgstrom certainly didn’t have a very good night for the Panthers as he finished a minus-3 in just 9:32 of ice time. He also went 1-for-6 in the face-off circle. He also didn’t land a single shot on net or really do anything at all that landed any kind of positive impact on the game for Florida. Borgstrom certainly wasn’t alone among players on the Panthers on this night as they allowed seven goals and had things really fall apart after the first period, but he was among the most ineffectual for a Panthers team just playing out the string at this point.

TURNING POINT: The Bruins only held a modest 1-0 lead after the first period even if they’d played pretty well, but that all changed in the second period. The B’s exploded for five goals while outshooting the Panthers by a 13-11 margin and poked holes all over the Florida coverage in the defensive zone. Once the dust had settled in the middle 20 minutes the Bruins were up on the scoreboard 6-2 with the game well in hand, and it just came down to garbage time in the third period where the B’s clinched their playoff spot. It was impressive to see the B’s truly spin things in their direction, but it was also indicative of a Panthers team that’s not going to fight very hard at this point in the season before breaking down.

HONORABLE MENTION: Noel Acciari scored his second goal of the road trip for the Bruins as he continues to look like a decent fit as the center for the third line, particularly if it’s in a pinch for the Boston Bruins as it is right now. Perhaps it’s benefiting the straight-ahead Acciari to be playing on a line with David Backes, who helped feed him for the goal scored in the first period that got things rolling for the Black and Gold. Then in the second period Acciari dropped the gloves with Florida Panthers forward McKenzie Weeger for an energetic bout that ended with Acciari surprising Weeger with a flurry of left-handed punches that eventually knocked the Panthers skater to the ground. Acciari finished with four shot attempts and a hit in 12:15 of ice time, but unfortunately finished the game without the assist for the Gordie Howe hat trick.

BY THE NUMBERS: 10 – the number of times over the last 12 seasons that the Bruins have made the Stanley Cup playoffs, and the third straight season that Bruce Cassidy has led Boston to the postseason since taking over behind the bench.  

QUOTE TO NOTE: “He’s our backbone. He’s such an incredible leader on and off the ice, and he’s a guy that brings it every day. We’re fortunate to have him next year and it couldn’t be more fitting for him to get that 200th [goal].” –Brad Marchand, on Bruins captain Zdeno Chara signing an extension for next season and scoring his career 200th NHL goal during the win.

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Watch Bruins' Noel Acciari light up MacKenzie Weegar in awesome fight

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Watch Bruins' Noel Acciari light up MacKenzie Weegar in awesome fight

MacKenzie Weegar might want to steer clear of Noel Acciari for a little while.

With Boston enjoying a three-goal lead over Florida in the second period at BB&T Center on Saturday night, Weegar tried to breathe some life back into the Panthers by dropping the gloves with Bruins winger Noel Acciari.

Here's how that went:

Is there a record for most punches thrown in a span of 10 seconds? (We counted 14 left hooks from Acciari in this six-second clip alone.)

This isn't the first time the 5-foot-10, 205-pound Acciari has had his way with the 6-foot, 200-pound Weegar. The two squared off nearly a year ago on March 31, 2018, with Acciari landing a flurry of punches before Weegar finally wrestled him down.

 

The Bruins and Panthers will meet again next Saturday at TD Garden. Here's your fair warning, MacKenzie.

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