2007 National Hockey League's Better Trades
The better trades this year were again made by teams trying to make a playoff push. Few superstars were moved along, but many promising up-and-comers found different homes through a better trade.
Calgary traded center Jamie Lundmark to Los Angeles for center Craig Conroy. Lundmark had been non-productive for the Kings after previous success with Calgary, Phoenix and the New York Rangers. Conroy, 36 at the time of the trade, had 145 goals and 277 assists in 739 games with the Kings, Flames, Blues and Canadiens.
The New York Rangers traded Jason Ward, Marc-Andre Cliché and Jan Marek to the Los Angeles Kings in exchange for Sean Avery and John Seymour. Avery was being actively pursued, despite his reputation for having a nasty personality. The forward had scored 10 goals and 18 assists, but had accumulated 116 penalty minutes. The Kings decided to make the better trade, since Avery was scheduled to be a free agent in the summer and was unlikely to re-sign with the Kings. The outspoken Avery had been fined many times for making derogatory comments about other players in the league and for claiming he was being singled out during a crackdown on diving.
Philadelphia traded start center Peter Forsberg to Nashville for Scottie Upshall, Ryan Parent and two draft choices. Nashville fans, disappointed over the team's early playoff exits, took the move as one of the better trades the organization had ever made. Forsberg had 11 goals and 29 assists in the 40 games he played with the Flyers and will be reunited with former teammate Paul Kariya; the two won a Stanley Cup together in Colorado. Forsberg normally would have commanded more in return, but there remained a question about his foot, which had caused him to miss 16 games.
Atlanta traded Glen Metropolit and four draft choices, including a first-rounder, to St. Louis for Keith Tkachuk. It was an effort by Atlanta to secure its first playoff berth by acquiring a veteran, dependable winger capable of scoring goals and adding leadership to the locker room. Tkachuk had 20 goals and 23 assists when traded with 20 games left in the season. The Blues were out of the playoff picture at the time and looking to build, which they can do with the draft picks and the help of Metropolit, who also had experience with Washington and Tampa Bay.
The Columbus Blue Jackets traded winger Joe Motzko and center Mark Hartigan to Anaheim for center Zenon Konopka, and winger Curtis Glencross. The two clubs also exchanged draft picks. This was a case of two teams trying to move some promising young players, as none of the participants had significant NHL experience when the better trade was made.