Burning question: do you think Derick Brassard ever bothered unpacking his bags when he – briefly – landed with the Florida Panthers?
The Panthers traded him “down the hallway” on Monday, sending Brassard to the Colorado Avalanche, their opponents tonight.
TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports the details as:
Avalanche receive: Brassard, conditional sixth-round pick in 2020.
Panthers get: 2020 third-round pick.
The Avs will lose that sixth-rounder if Brassard re-signs with Colorado.
Brassard bounces around
It’s staggering just how often the 31-year-old has been traded, especially lately.
- In 2013, Brassard was part of the Marian Gaborik trade, as Brassard was sent from the Blue Jackets to the Rangers. His Rangers days were the highlight of his career so far, when you combine individual play and team success.
- Before the 2016-17 season began, the Senators sent Mika Zibanejad to the Rangers for Brassard. That looked like a win for New York then (they even got a second-round pick for their troubles!) and only looks more lopsided now.
- Around last year’s trade deadline, the Penguins sent a package including their 2018 first-rounder to Ottawa for Brassard. That clearly didn’t work out for Pittsburgh …
- Because the Penguins traded Brassard, Riley Sheahan, a second-rounder, and two fourth-rounders for Nick Bjugstad and Jared McCann.
The trade to the Penguins technically included Brassard passing through the Vegas Golden Knights, so … yeah, Brassard’s piling up jerseys.
[Winners and losers of the 2019 NHL Trade Deadline]
Rough season for Brassard
Looking at Brassard’s 2018-19 season stats, they’ve been disappointing, with just 19 points in 50 games.
He’s been especially disastrous from a possession standpoint this season. Just look at how Brassard’s 2018-19 work compares to 2017-18, which has generally been more typical of his work. This SKATR comparison chart by Bill Comeau (from Corsica’s data) lays a lot of information out in a stark way.
On the bright side, things leveled out a bit for Brassard when he landed in Florida, as he pushed through the distractions to score four points in 10 games with the Panthers.
Avalanche make a modest investment that could pay dividends
This is ultimately a close-to-ideal scenario for Brassard, and potentially a nice situation for the Avalanche.
With the Senators’ 2019 first-rounder setting up the Avalanche for a big gain – maybe even Jack Hughes – and Colorado being in a tough battle for a playoff spot, it makes sense that GM Joe Sakic has his eyes on the future more than the present.
Still, there’s some potential in the present. The Avalanche only trail the Wild by one point for the West’s second wild-card spot (and Colorado has a game in hand), and after a tough stretch, Colorado’s now on a four-game winning streak.
The Avalanche rely heavily upon their top line of Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, and Gabriel Landeskog. The drop-off from there is steep, but maybe Brassard can stabilize the second or even the third line? Colorado badly needs depth scoring, and it’s perfectly reasonable to picture Brassard giving them a boost. He’s playing for his next contract, so the motivation would be there, even if Brassard’s got to be getting tired of all of this upheaval.
James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.