Business of Hockey

A Common Misconception

As a fan of the business of hockey, in particular when it comes to trades, I find myself perusing the HFBoards fairly regularly. I love reading trade offers thought up by people not in the “know”. Some are well thought out, but most are completely asinine. Regardless, it’s still fun for me to read through them.

One thing I have noticed is that everyone is under the impression that in order to dump a bad contract, you have to give up prospects and picks in return. I believe this notion was made popular by Brian Burke, who has stated that he will take on salary dumps if top picks/prospects are included. Last time I checked, Burke hasn’t made any salary dump acquisitions. As a matter of fact, I can’t remember any trades made that were clear salary dumps in which high draft picks were sent as well.

The one acquisition, that was a clear salary dump, that sticks out in my mind is the Scott Gomez trade. For those who need a refresher, the Rangers sent Gomez, Tom Pyatt and Michael Busto to Montreal for Christopher Higgins, Ryan McDonagh, Pavel Valentenko, and Doug Janik. The Rangers didn’t send one of their top 30 prospects over to Montreal, but yet acquired a 1st round pick and blue chip prospect in McDonagh. The Rangers held on to all of their draft picks for 2010 as well.

So if you think the Rangers will have to part with a top prospect to rid themselves of the Wade Redden or Michal Rozsival contracts, you are sadly mistaken. The same goes for Chris Drury. Of course, teams are going to have to actually want these players before a trade can be made.

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