June 27, 2009
MONTREAL -- The Chris Pronger(notes) trade to the Philadelphia Flyers yesterday guaranteed that Jay Bouwmeester(notes) wouldn't have to face the spotlight in Philly, which might be the best thing for both parties. This morning, as Day 2 of the draft began, the rights to the soon-to-be-unrestricted free agent were traded to a much more amenable team for the mild-manned Jay-Bouw: The Calgary Flames.
Bouwmeester moves for fellow pending UFA defenseman Jordan Leopold(notes) and the Flames' third-round pick, which is less than what the Panthers were asking for and less than what they would have gotten had Jacques Martin traded Bouwmeester at the deadline. But that's in the rearview, much like Martin is now.
Alberta guy goes to Alberta. It works. It's a great move for Calgary, too, assuming they don't blow out their salary cap situation to sign the guy. Like the Pronger deal for the Flyers, the Bouwmeester deal gives the Flames to elite defensemen on two different pairings.
George Richards of the Miami Herald has previously reported that Calgary was a good dance partner for the Panthers because they were one of the team with a legitimate shot at signing Bouwmeester. But he's also reported that the Jay-Bouw camp isn't looking to make a decision until he hits the open market.