Hours after the Ottawa Senators' fans were in mourning over the loss of team captain Daniel Alfredsson, general manager Bryan Murray reached back into his old organization, the Anaheim Mighty Ducks, and plucked out a key player from their top six, forward Bobby Ryan.
The Ducks sacrificed Ryan for a player, Jakob Silfverberg, prospect Stefan Noesen and a 2014 first-round draft choice because they needed the salary-cap space after signing Ryan Getzlaf and Corey Perry to massive contract extensions.
Ryan had been the subject of much trade speculation for going on three years, and had practically been traded – in cyberspace anyway – to the Philadelphia Flyers any number of times. Instead, the Senators grabbed him. At 26, he is coming off a down season – just 11 goals in 46 games – but scored 30 goals or more in each of his previous four seasons.
Silfverberg was a 19-point scorer for Ottawa in his rookie season and figures to play behind Perry on the team's depth chart.
Ryan sounded excited by the move, tweeting: Ottawa ... I'm coming in hot.
Ryan has two years remaining on a five-year, $25.5-million contract that carries an annual salary-cap hit of $5.1-million, but will pay him $5.562,500 over the next two years. It was too heavy a financial burden for the Ducks to carry, considering that the new contracts for Getzlaf and Perry kick in next year that will cost the team almost $16.85-million in cap charges. Silfverberg, by contrast, is a comparative bargain, and will earn just $900,000 next year before becoming a restricted free agent.
Noesen's presence in the deal will also help add organizational depth to the Ducks, as will the first-round choice in what is expected to be a deep 2014 draft.
More to come