Duchene was held pointless.
The Blue Jackets' general manager pulled off a slew of trades to improve his team in the hopes of making a deep playoff run this spring. San Jose to me is the better team here and we are getting them cheap as Columbus will be traveling home and will still be getting used to their new lineup. All things told, this trade is the riskiest of the bunch, but if Duchene re-signs long-term the Blue Jackets could be hoping it has far-reaching effects - specifically on Duchene's fellow first-liner Panarin if they mesh well down the stretch.
General manager Jarmo Kekalainen also stood pat with elite forward Artemi Panarin and two-time Vézina Trophy-winning goalie Sergei Bobrovsky, both of whom likely will leave for big free-agent paydays after the season.
The Stars, according to a Sportsnet report, sent two conditional draft picks to the Rangers: a conditional second-round pick that would become a first-round selection if Dallas wins two playoff rounds, and a third-round pick that becomes a first-round pick if Zuccarello stays in Dallas next season. He then struck two more big deals prior to Monday's trade deadline.
On top of the injuries, Pittsburgh is coming off two straight gut-check losses that left the team on the outside of the playoff picture entering trade deadline day, which enhanced the trade speculation.
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When Blue Jackets' riverboat gambler Jarmo Kekalainen finished his work at Monday's National Hockey League trade deadline, the debate began to rage among fans.
The Blue Jackets have just a third and seventh-round pick in this summer's draft; but despite all the question marks surrounding the impending unrestricted free agents and limited draft capital, Kekalainen still believes his squad is set up for long-term success.
"You look at what could be and the depth that we have now, it excites guys", captain Nick Foligno said. In a wide-open Metropolitan Division, just six points separate the division-leading Islanders from the Penguins in the wild-card spot.
Ottawa receives prospects Vitaly Abramov and Jonathan Davidsson, a first-round pick and another first-rounder if Duchene re-signs in Columbus. "I think you've got to give him a lot of credit for going all in on it and seeing what happens". But it's not going to be a situation where we rush anyone back.
The additions come at a time the Blue Jackets have won seven of 10 and jumped into third place of the Metropolitan Division standings, a point ahead of Pittsburgh, which is now out of the playoff picture.