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Why Your Trade was(n’t) Stupid: it set the price for depth defenders

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WYTS is back, but the only trade was smart for both teams.

NHL: Toronto Maple Leafs at Carolina Hurricanes James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Ron Hainsey is a dependable, unexciting third pairing defender who is never going to surprise anyone with his play. And the Hurricanes got a second round pick for him. They also got a good AHL player who is having a bad year, so perhaps he’ll help the farm team too.

This is good for the Penguins who have major injury troubles on defence. They did last year too and it clearly hurt them a lot. It also sets the price for a third pair defender.

That is a valid point, but the value of draft picks outside the top few—defined however you like—is in volume.

Okay, so Carolina has that well in hand. What they do with those picks—use them in what everyone thinks is a weak draft, or trade them for something interesting—they are in a very good position.

This trade is good for Hainsey too! No one loses here. At 35, he’s never played a single playoff game in the NHL, so good luck to him.

Meanwhile, the thoughts of many a general manager have to be turning to the value of their own surplus depth defenders.

The Leafs have a few more than the minimum of six. Should they try to winnow that down? What if they just traded one?