The Ottawa Senators have been a good team over the past few years, built upon a base of some very talented players. The likes of Daniel Alfredson, Wade Redden, Zdeno Chara, Jason Spezza and Marian Hossa have played a signinficant role in their success. But the team must now align itself in the new salary cap environment where it realized it wouldn't be able to hang onto all its good young players. So after avoiding arbitration by signing Marian Hossa to a 3 year $18 million deal yesterday morning, they traded him to the Atlanta Thrashers for Dany Heatley later that afternoon. The trade will also see the Thrashers pick up defenseman Greg De Vries and his $2+ million per year salary.
The 24 year old Heatly wanted a fresh start after a tragic accident
in the fall of 2003 that killed his good friend and Thrashers teammate Dan Snyder and left Heatley with serious injuries. He is only 24 years old and has scored 181 points in 190 career NHL games. After his poor showing in the last World Cup, some people have wondered if he will ever be back to his original self. This change could help him put his career back on track. Heatley has also signed a 3 year contract with the Senators that is rumoured to be in the $13 million range. This move should allow Ottawa to re-sign Redden or Chara (or both) next year. The Thrashers may have taken on some extra salary but they also get the best player in the deal. Marian Hossa is 26 years old and has turned into a dominating player. He has scored 390 points in 467 career NHL games and should do well with Ilya Kovulchuk. The only rap against him has been his subpar showing during the playoffs.