Wings Deal Namestnikov to Stars

The Detroit Red Wings traded forward Vladislav Namestnikov to the Dallas Stars for a fourth-round draft pick in 2024 on Monday, just as the NHL’s trade deadline approached.

Namestnikov was the third pending free agent shipped out by the Red Wings in advance of the deadline, following defensemen Troy Stecher and Nick Leddy.

While a higher return could have been hoped for, Namestnikov’s value had kind of been set by previous trades.  In October of 2019, he was traded by the New York Rangers to the Ottawa Senators for a fourth-round pick.  Almost five months later, the Senators moved him to the Colorado Avalanche for a fourth-rounder again.  Namestnikov played well for Detroit over the last two seasons but not well enough to change his perceived value.  I referred to it on Twitter as the Standard Namestnikov Return.

As useful as he’s been in Detroit, I don’t think Namestnikov was a long-term piece of the puzzle, so I’m not worried about losing him.  The Wings also have a ton of forward depth to ride out the rest of the season, so it’s not like his departure leaves a hole in the lineup.

This is what a rebuilding team should do.  Shipping out pending free agents for draft picks is part of the process.  It’s just that the Wings haven’t had many pending UFAs that other teams have actually wanted in awhile.

Red Wings Trade Leddy, Witkowski to St. Louis

The Detroit Red Wings made an expected move in the lead-up to Monday’s NHL trade deadline, sending veteran defenseman Nick Leddy to the St. Louis Blues for Oscar Sundqvist, Jake Walman, and a second-round pick.

Luke Witkowski, currently with the Grand Rapids Griffins, also goes to St. Louis as part of the deal.

Leddy had been a healthy scratch in games against the Vancouver Canucks and Seattle Kraken last week to prevent him from being injured before a trade could be worked out.

Leddy was acquired by the Red Wings for a second-round draft pick last summer.  With Sundqvist, Walman, and Witkowski all depth pieces, the core of the deal is essentially Leddy for a second-rounder, meaning that the cost of Detroit renting Leddy for most of this season was punting a second-round pick from 2021 to 2023.

Sundqvist is a fourth-line forward with one year left on his contract after this one, carrying a salary cap hit of $2.75 million.  Walman, a defenseman, will be a restricted free agent this summer.

I like the deal.  I was beginning to think there was no way Leddy would bring back a second-rounder and I’m glad to see that.  The rest is a big “meh” from me but it doesn’t matter with that second included.

Red Wings Deal Stecher to Kings

In what The Athletic’s Max Bultman referred to as the “first domino of of the deadline”, the Detroit Red Wings traded defenseman Troy Stecher to the Los Angeles Kings for a seventh-round draft pick on Sunday.

The pick is an underwhelming return for Stecher, who was a steadying influence on the Detroit blue line last season and starred for Canada at the World Championships.  This season, however, Stecher has been limited to just sixteen games between injuries and fighting for a roster spot with Gustav Lindstrom.

I was a little surprised that Stecher even played last night in Seattle, with Lindstrom sitting, as I thought that he might be kept out in advance of a trade.

My concern with Stecher only bringing in a seventh is that now we’re going to see Nick Leddy only be worth a fourth or something like that.

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