Nine-year NHL veteran Marian Hossa trades his Thrashers jersey today for one of the Penguins.
Dave Sandford, Getty Images
Canadiens general manager Bob Gainey had hoped to pull the trigger on a deal he expected – and all Habs fans had prayed – would help carry the team into a deep playoff run.
Presumably, trading goalie Cristobal Huet wasn’t that deal.
The Pittsburgh Penguins today acquired the highly sought Atlanta Thrashers forward Marian Hossa and winger Pascal Dupuis, dealing Angelo Esposito, Colby Armstrong and Erik Christiansen, plus a first-round draft pick, in return.
Montreal was thought to be ready to offer Michael Ryder, Maxim Lapierre and Mikhail Grabovski to the Thrashers for Hossa, who now brings this season’s 26 goals and 30 assists and 296 NHL career goals to a greatly improved Penguins roster. (Malkin and Crosby and Hossa, oh my.)
It’s been no secret that the Canadiens had coveted Hossa as today’s trade deadline approached, and Gainey knew he’d have to give up a good deal to get him. That the Thrashers are in Montreal for a Bell Centre game tonight has only added to the melodrama of a deal.
The deal was announced almost at the stroke of the 3 p.m. deadline, three hours following the Canadiens’ surprise trade of goaltender Huet to Washington for a 2009 second-round draft pick. Here’s a short clip of Hossa speaking to TSN’s James Duthie a half-hour after the trade was announced.
More to come at Inside/Out. See Hossa’s career statistics below.
Marian Hossa’s biography and statistics at NHLPA.com: