By JD Lagrange – What is likely the first of several substantial trades to come was consumed today as the Tampa Bay Lightning, in desperate need to shed salary cap, sent veteran defenseman Ryan McDonagh and his $6.75 million contract packing to Nashville. In return, Tampa receives 23 year-old left winger Grant Mismash and cap dump defenseman Phillippe Myers.
Many believe that Myers will be bought out by the Lightning, which will provide a savings of $616,667 the first year and only account for $633,333 in year two on their salary cap. Mismash, a Preds’ second round pick (61st) in 2017, just completed his first year pro for the Milwaukee Admirals where he tallied six goals and six assists in 57 games this season.
Immediately, Habs’ fans have jumped on the value obtained by the Lightning and started questioning the value of Jeff Petry, whom the Canadiens are also trying to trade. Fortunately, the situations are completely different and so is the value of those players. And here’s why…
For one, McDonagh is a left-handed defenseman, a position that is saturated on the market right now. Petry, on the other hand, is right-handed, a rare commodity and something several teams are looking for a veteran right-handed defenseman. So in a market, supply and demand is what dictates value and the balance is heavily tipped on Kent Hughes’ side.
Then, there’s the players. While if you’re looking at last season, those two seem pretty close in just about every category, we can all agree that it was Petry’s worst season since joining the Canadiens.
|$6.75M until 2025-26||CAP HIT||$6.25 until 2024-25|
Now keep in mind… Petry had a horrible start of the season. In fact, let’s look at how he started (under Dominique Ducharme) and how he finished after the coaching change (under Martin St-Louis):
The Canadiens and NHL GMs have rediscovered the true Jeff Petry, who was greatly affected by several factors, but three predominant ones:
- Due to COVID restrictions in Montreal and in Canada, his family was residing in Detroit, so that his wife Julie could get help with the kids.
- In the past, Shea Weber was getting the toughest minutes and opposition while Petry was on the second pairing. This year, without Weber, it was all on Petry.
- His defense partner, Joel Edmundson, with whom he had had the best season of his career last year, missed all but the last 24 games of the season.
To finish the comparison with McDonagh, let’s look at their past three seasons:
Petry is also making half a million dollar per season less than McDonagh and has one fewer year remaining to his contract, both important factors.
So folks, do yourself a favour and don’t go comparing McDonagh’s value in a trade and Petry’s. NHL Insiders keep saying that several teams are trying to get Petry. The demand is there, the supply is low for players of his caliber, so the return should be more than what the Lightning got for McDonagh.