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Once again, the details: The Ottawa Senators traded Dany Heatley and a fifth-round pick to the San Jose Sharks for Jonathan Cheechoo, Milan Michalek and a second-round pick.

I've never been a huge fan of post-trade analysis -- I find it to be predictable and boring. Furthermore, there's only one person I like to hear post-trade thoughts from: You might know him as TSN's Hedgehog (and he's far more concise/accurate than any blogger).

That being said, I thought I'd take a page from the blog's title and offer you some thoughts on what I don't expect to happen due to this trade. These opinions stemmed from the swap itself, and some of the reactions I've read thus far.

1) I don't see Cheechoo on the first line. Seeing some of the imaginary lines being drawn up by fans are killing me. One in particular, Cheechoo-Spezza-Alfredsson, has me in stitches. Guess what, kids? Cheechoo is a RW. But that hasn't stopped some fans from engaging in pipe-dream trios:

"I'm sure Cheechoo would rather learn LW than be relegated to a 3rd/4th line role again. There's no way he moves Alfie or Kovalev out of position."

Let me get this straight: You're desperately hoping that Cheechoo -- an injury-prone player and recent underachiever -- will not only pick up the offensive slack lost with Heatley's departure, but will also be able to play effectively at LW? Good times, Ottawa! Oh, and that extra bit about not having the ability to move Alfredsson or Kovalev? Sincerely, Marcus Allen -- CBS Sports.

2) I don't believe this trade will change Jason Spezza's game. I was reading Twitter yesterday as analysis of the trade began to fall out -- one of the takes that left me flabbergasted was the idea that Spezza could have a breakout year, and become a two-way player. Shhh...listen. Do you hear that? It's the sound of Jacques Martin laughing his ass off. Jason Spezza, barring a miracle, has peaked as an NHL player. He's a playmaker, and an immature one at that. The argument that he could turn out to be a late bloomer like Steve Yzerman needs to be left by the wayside. If that's what fans are expecting, they better not hold their breath. Bank on it.

3) I'm not expecting Milan Michalek to blossom into an offensive powerhouse. To be sure, I feel better about the addition of Michalek than I ever could about Cheechoo. However, Cory Clouston seems insistent about returning the Senators to a more responsible game (which is obviously a good thing). Anyone expecting some version of firewagon hockey in the nation's capital will be sorely disappointed. In short, I expect Michalek to serve as a secondary scoring boost -- not a primary scoring replacement.

4) I don't know how Alexei Kovalev is going to handle the pressure. When he signed as a Senator, Kovalev was viewed as a strong boost to secondary scoring that the Senators desperately needed. The only problem is, Ottawa now is deficient in primary offense, and Alexei will likely be expected to pick up some of the slack. Depending on his state of mind at the time, this could either work out well, or end up as a monumental disaster.

5) I don't see this move as being make-or-break for Bryan Murray. I wish I did, but the GM will likely skate again if the trade blows up in his face. Sens owner Eugene Melnyk thinks that Murray can do no wrong, and if the move goes sour, it will be blamed on Heatley's decision to force Murray's hand into a trade he wasn't completely satisfied with.

As for Dany Heatley, that's that. He arrived with much promise, and departed as a total disappointment. Meanwhile, the Senators' drama level drops, but for how long? This club lacks the ability to avoid it for any extended period.

More later.

7 responses to "Heatley: The Final Chapter"

  1. Lord knows I hate disagreeing with you TUC (mostly because I'm usually wrong), but I think the only way this doesn't blow up in Murray's face is if Cheech goes to the top line. We need 25-30 goals from him to make this work, and the only way that happens if he has 19 feeding him the puck.

    Drop 11 to the second line, and move 27 to the LW on the first line if you have to. But Giggles and Cheech together must happen.

    Senators Lost Cojones

  2. I expect it to be tried once for S & G (wouldn't be surprised if it showed up in a training camp scrimmage to truly get a feel for his skill level), but the idea of it becoming even a semi-permanent fixture (assuming that Cheechoo remains the same player he's been over the past two seasons -- and I think he will), is absolute lunacy. I guess this means Kovalev goes to the third line? You really want to encourage him to be miserable and score less than 20 goals? Oh, well then, if it's not him, it's gotta be Alfredsson. I know he's slowed down a step, but sheesh.

    You know I don't like debating with you like this, SLC. At least not without alcohol.

    The Universal Cynic

  3. P.S.: Kovalev to the LW + Cheechoo on 1st line, all to justify picking up a body that Bryan Murray never wanted in the first place? You're asking too much of the wrong people.

    The Universal Cynic

  4. I refuse to believe that 56 goals was a fluke, if only to keep myself sane. And, um...yeah. That's pretty much what I'm asking.

    You know I don't like debating with you like this, SLC. At least not without alcohol.

    Waddya mean "without alcohol"?? It's Opening Day!! I've been drinking since Berman started yelling at me ten hours ago!

    p.s.: The Neckbeard won't get that lucky every week... ;)

    Senators Lost Cojones

  5. Did you see the way he celebrating after that billionth tipped ball was magically carried to the end zone by Stokley? I had more to do with that win than he did!

    The Universal Cynic

  6. Oh, and maybe 56 wasn't a fluke (ha), but bank says he'll get injured before we get a chance to find out the truth.

    The Universal Cynic

  7. I cannot believe that Bryan Murray allowed the Sharks to foist Cheechoo`s contract on us. What, was Pat Falloon unavailable? Brutal. San Jose has cap problems? Tough - let them bury Cheechoo in the minors to save the cap space. The Sens would have been far better off to simply bank that cap space instead of inheriting someone else`s bad contract. This is a brutal trade, one clearly won by Doug Wilson. He stuck to his guns, and in the end Bryan Murray was forced to all but give Heatley away, just as Wilson thought he would. We just shipped them a 50 goal scorer - was it too much to ask that they keep their own leftovers? ARRRGGGHHHHH!

    Dennis Prouse