And finally we come to the NHL bad trades. I’ll be honest, while doing the research for this one, I was shocked by how many there actually were. I’ll cover a few here, but if you want to dig further, it’s a highly enjoyable read to do a search on it.
In 2001, the Pittsburgh Penguins decided it was time to part ways with Jaromir Jagr. A deal was worked out with the Washington Capitals and he was traded for Kris Beech, Ross Lupaschuk, and Michal Sivek. Those three went on to score a grand total of 13 goals. Jagr continued to be Jagr.
Roberto Luongo was playing hockey in Florida in 2006, not exactly every boy’s dream growing up. But, that year, Florida decided to trade him to Vancouver for journeyman Todd Bertuzzi. Luongo went on to prove to be one of the best goalies in the NHL. Meanwhile, Bertuzzi hopped around between 5 teams.
The Edmonton Oilers won 5 Stanley Cups with Messier, 4 of them with Gretzky by his side. And then they decided to dismantle the team. With Gretzky gone to LA, Messier was sent to the New York Rangers in exchange for Bernie Nicholls, Steven Rice, and Louie DeBrusk. Messier went on to score 107 points and win the Hart Trophy. Two years later he won his 6th Cup with the Rangers.
In 1975, Marcel Dionne was not happy in Detroit. The Red Wings sent the disgruntled Dionne to the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for Terry Harper, Dan Maloney, and a 2nd round pick. Marcel Dionne went on to enjoy a Hall of Fame career while becoming the Kings’ all-time leading scorer. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1992. Harper and Maloney were not.
Like I said at the top, there are so many other trades that went wrong for one team, splendid for another. This search was very interesting and educational. And you may be wondering why I haven’t mentioned the Gretzky trade yet. Any time you trade the greatest player in the sport, you have to consider it a bad deal, right? But the Edmonton Oilers went on to win another Stanley Cup without him. That doesn’t necessarily make it not a bad trade, but the Oilers didn’t fall off the face of the earth because of it either.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading these last few blogs. I’ve enjoyed the research and the writing of them. All sports will continue to make deals that won’t make sense to us. They will shape the future of the franchises involved, for better or worse. We will merely sit back and watch it all unfold.