I haven't had enough time to really decide on the Lubomir Visnovsky deal. At first blush it doesn't look good but there are some things that might make it work. It'll take some time for me to decide on. But trading Steve Staios? Great trade! So what did we get? Believe it or not we got something of actual value, no salary dumps, no toxic contracts, no picks from us going to Calgary for the trouble. Instead we picked up Aaron Johnson and a 3rd round pick. More analysis after the jump.
Now, don't get too excited. It's not like the return is actually good in a helping you play hockey kind of way. It's just good for Steve Staios and his atrocious contract. The third round pick? It's either in 2010 or 2011 (Calgary's option) but it's nothing special, probably something like a 6-8% chance that the player we draft turns into something really useful. The player? Aaron Johnson is instantly the third best healthy defender on this team. So he kind of sucks. He's played over 200 NHL games and he's a career +19. And hey, that's pretty good. He's had a hard time staying in the lineup in Calgary this year - he's played in 22 games - and when he has played it's been against easy competition and with the advantage of more draws in the offensive than defensive zone. But his Corsi numbers are okay and have never hit rock bottom like our good friend Jason Strudwick. He's probably not as good as Staios but he's also an unrestricted free agent at the end of the year and his current deal has him being paid less than Zack Stortini.
I also wanted to note that Johnson's agent, Allan Walsh, is the guy who broke that RFA offer sheet fiasco that took place in Chicago this summer. If ever there was a guy who might publicly mock the Oilers with inside information, it's him. We can only hope.
But never mind that. Good job Steve Tambellini! This one's a slam-dunk winner and no will disagree!
As for the other perspectives, Steve Staios seems thrilled, as he should be. This is what he said to TSN: "It's a thrill to be going to a team that's going to be playing some big games down the stretch... I'm thrilled to be part of the group in Calgary." Good for Steve! As for the Flames, well, have fun finishing in ninth! I'm sure Staios will help.