After weeks of speculation, the wait is finally over as the Ottawa Senators traded Matt Duchene to the Columbus Blue Jackets.
As part of the trade, the Blue Jackets not only receive Duchene but Julius Bergman as well. The Senators receive Vitali Abramov, Jonathan Davidsson, a 2019 1st round pick, and a conditional 1st round pick.
NHL Trade Alert: Matt Duchene Traded to Columbus
However, there are provisions to these draft picks. As part of the Duchene deal, the 2019 first round pick is lottery protected only if it’s a top 3 pick. Otherwise, the Senators will receive Columbus’ 2020 first round pick instead. If Duchene signs a 2019-20 contract to stay in Columbus, Ottawa will receive a 2020 first round pick. What makes things even interesting is if the 2019 pick moves to 2020 as a result of the lottery and Duchene signs with Columbus, 2020 conditional pick would then move to 2021.
The trade of Duchene should not surprise anyone. Ottawa has made it clear they were looking to move him. Ottawa held Duchene out of the lineup the past two games for precautionary reasons. Interestingly enough, the Senators were making a push to sign Mark Stone. However, the team and the player could not agree on terms. That does not mean it cannot happen down the line. Stone and Ryan Dzingel were also out of the lineup for precautionary reasons against New Jersey.
If all of these players move on from Ottawa, they will join a long list of players the team could not keep. Depending on how far you want to go back in history, the Senators have lost Zdeno Chara, Marian Hossa, Dany Heatley, Daniel Alfredsson, Jason Spezza, Kyle Turris, and Erik Karlsson.
On the other hand, the Blue Jackets appear to be going all in this season to win. All season long the Blue Jackets were playing a wait and see game with Artemi Panarin and Sergei Bobrovsky. Both players seem to be leaving Columbus. However, the general manager has stated he will not trade those players unless the deal is right. As we have learned from last year, teams should not make a move unless the GM gets the return he expects.
With all these rentals on the team, the Blue Jackets have a good chance of making a deep run. If Columbus wants to keep these players, they must go to the conference final or further. Anything less these players will move on.
Columbus will wait no time with Duchene, as he will be in the lineup for Columbus tonight against Ottawa.