June 23, 2011
Jeff Carter(notes) makes $5,272,727 annually against the salary cap, and will continue to do so until 2022. The Philadelphia Flyers needed cap space in order to sign goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov(notes) and make other improvements this summer to a team that's within reasonable reach of the Stanley Cup.
So despite previous displays of dedication to a player perennially on the trading block, they finally shipped out Carter to the Columbus Blue Jackets on the eve of the NHL draft.
According to TSN, Carter has been told he's been traded to the Blue Jackets for Jakub Voracek(notes), plus first- and third-round draft picks. The Blue Jackets held the No. 8 pick in the 2011 NHL entry draft, the first round of which is scheduled for Friday night. Voracek is a restricted free agent.
So the Blue Jackets get the natural, borderline elite center that's been missing for the totality of Rick Nash's(notes) NHL career. Carter has 181 goals and 162 assists in his career, and has posted goal totals of 46, 33 and 36 in his last three seasons. He's also a power-play performer, which should help a unit that converted at a pathetic 14 percent clip last season.
But the Flyers? The Flyers basically get a cheaper, younger, potentially dynamic winger in Voracek; the No. 8 pick in the draft, which could mean center Mika Zibanejad or defenseman Ryan Murphy(notes); and a high third-rounder; and the space to sign what they believe will be the No. 1 goaltender they've sought for years in Bryzgalov.
They also get out from under a contract that runs until 2022.
In the end, the trade could help both teams. But we could look back at this as a big win for the Flyers. You know, by 2022.
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