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Wolski and Mueller fitting in with new teams

It’s always interesting when two players traded for each other face off against their former teams, but when it happens just days after that trade goes down I pay attention even more closely. Maybe it’s just the human drama behind trades that I’m fascinated with, the psyche behind going against ex-teammates you were just sitting next to on the bench. Do you hold up on the big hit, or do you put some extra oomph into it to show that you’ve moved on and this is your new team now? Does it feel good to score on your old team, almost like a jab at the team that that traded you away? Of course, some moves are made purely for business, while other can be a bit more personal so each situation is different. It’s still fascinating.

Which brings us to the Wojtek Wolski and Peter Mueller swap between the Avalanche and Coyotes. Both players were a bit of a headache on their respective teams, and new starts with a new team could be good for both the players and the teams themselves. The potential and talent level is comparable, so it will be interesting to see how each ultimately fares with their new team.

On Wednesday night, the same day he was traded for, Mueller scored a goal for the Avalanche and impressed his teammates with his skill and hard work. Thursday night, Colorado traveled to Phoenix to take on the Coyotes in an arena where the fans are finally starting to come alive. Mueller was booed everytime he touched the puck (I guess his outspokenness didn’t sit well with fans), but it was Wolski who got big welcome.

With 23 seconds remaining in regulation in a tie game, Wolski scored the game winning goal with a nifty one-timer from the slot. I doubt Mueller was given a big welcome by his former team, but Wolski made it a point to stick around after the game to shake the hand of his former teammates. But his immediate desire to become a leader on the Coyotes that’s most impressive.

“I think we got a lot of chances, and I think it’s only gonna get better each game,” Wolski said. “We’re all excited about playing with each other.

"(Friday) we’re gonna address some (power play) stuff and try and work on some plays, and I think that’s the biggest thing. When you know where guys are going, it’s much easier.”

Comparing Wolski and Mueller for the rest of their careers with their new teams isn’t very fair, but that’s just the nature of when two similar players are exchanged. But for now, the two are already fitting in with their new teams and have moved on from the trade that swapped them.

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