On my drive to work this morning, I heard Pete Weber the Preds' PXP man talk with Mike Ross of Hockey This Morning on NHL Home Ice on XM.
They chatted about the woes of the Calgary Flames, and Weber speculated that, at some point, Jarome Iginla might receive the "Ray Bourque" treatment and leave Calgary is his quest for the Stanley Cup. Weber went on to point out that Iginla's contract runs through the 2011-2012 season, the same contract length the Avs assumed when they received Bourque from the Bruins.
So I started to think about Iginla coming to the Capitals. He's a RW, which would fit nicely with Ovechkin and Backstrom, putting Semin back on the 2nd line. When I had a gap at work, I went back to look at the Bourque trade, so see if we might repeat something similar.
To refresh your collective memories:
On March 2, 2000, Boston traded Ray Bourque to Colorado with Dave Andreychuk for Brian Rolston, Martin Grenier, Sammy Pahlsson and New Jersey's 1st round choice (previously acquired, Boston selected Martin Samuelsson) in 2000 Entry Draft.
- Bourque was 39 and had been with Boston for 20 seasons, having started full-time in the NHL as a 19-year-old. He ended up playing out his contract with the Av's, winning the Stanley Cup in his second season in Colorado.
- Andreychuk was a 36-year-old center and was set to become a free agent at the end of the 2000 season. At that point in his career he was roughly a 20G, 20A player. At the end of the season, Andreychuk did in fact leave Colorado, signing with Buffalo.
- Rolston was a 26-year-old center, destined to become a 30G, 30A player with several teams. His is still in the league, currently fighting through injuries with New Jersey.
- Grenier was a 20-year-old minor league defenseman. He is a big man - 6;5" and 245 pounds. He was a 2nd round pick of the Avs in 1999. In his last full QMJHL season, 1999-2000 with the Quebec Remperts, Grenier racked up 302 PIMs in 67 games. He ended up playing a total of 8 NHL games in his career, for three teams, although none with Boston.
- Pahlsson was then a 22-year-old center in the minors. He was a 7th round pick. He is still playing, now with Columbus, having a bit of a non-descript career, with only one season above 10 G.
- The pick ended-up being the 27th overall. (FWIW - Samuelson played 14 games for the B's and is now out of hockey).
So - a standout, but aging D and a burly 2C for an up-and-coming center, a massive PIM-collector of a D, a serviceable center and a low first round pick.
If the Caps made a similar run at Iginla, the trade could look something like this:
The biggest hurdle would be salary today. Iginla = $7M annual salary. Fehr + Erskine = $3.45M annual salary. Assuming Holtby and Fahey go back to Hershey, this trade would leave the Caps barely under the salary cap. The ability to acquire other players this season would almost certainly disappear. GMGM doesn't like to tie his hands like that. Salary cap reasons prevent me from throwing in a center such as Brendan Morrison, Olie Jokinen or Craig Conroy to truly mimic the B's-Av's deal.
(I am not a salary cap expert, so the above could be dead wrong.)
The next hurdle would be salary 2011-2012. Assuming Iginla's $7M in 2011 would almost certainly spell the end of Alexander Semin's career in D.C.
The more I stare at the trade, the more I think I would do it, if I were the Caps. I doubt, however, that the Flames would take just this. They would likely ask for one of our two young goalies.
Nonetheless, it's intriguing to consider.