When teams make big trades, the trades where you give up valuable players for other players, teams quite often look to the other conference to trade with in order to not have that player come back to haunt them. That’s why you rarely see trades between the Edmonton Oilers and the Calgary Flames, but we have seen a few significant trades between the Vancouver Canucks and the Florida Panthers. Geographically, these two teams are the furthest apart in the NHL so perhaps it’s no surprise that these teams look for each other when they want to ship players out. Here’s a list of five significant trades these two teams have made.
5. David Booth, Steven Reinprecht for Mikael Samuelsson and Marco Sturm
We’ll start with the most recent trade that has Booth being the main player. Florida felt the former 30 goal scorer was expendable with a 4mil/year contract, but at 27 years old he should be entering the prime years of his career despite coming off a nasty concussion a few years ago. The common thinking here was that Panther GM Dale Tallon acquired Samuelsson and Sturm to gain some experience for a young team trying to make the playoffs, so we’ll have to wait and see what happens then to determine who the winner of this trade is.
4. Chris Higgins for Evan Oberg and a 3rd Rounder
A trade made at the deadline last year was kind of a gamble for Mike Gillis, but the price wasn’t that high with Oberg a minor prospect, and a 3rd rounder for a player that gelled with Kesler on the Canucks second line that advanced all the way to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final.
3. Keith Ballard and Victor Oreskovich for Steve Bernier, Michael Grabner, and Quinton Howden
Another risky trade by Gillis has turned out to be almost a total bust for Florida. Ballard struggled last year coming off a knee injury and Oreskovich did get some playing time during their playoff run. Meanwhile Grabner was immediately put on waivers where he’s started to blossom on the Islanders, and Bernier is out of the organization too. So it all rests on Howden for the Panthers to win this one, but until Ballard finds his game we’ll have to go with another team for the winner.
2. Ed Jovanovski, Dave Gagner, Mike Brown, Kevin Weekes, Nathan Smith For Pavel Bure, Bret Hedican, Brad Ference and Robert Fried
The original big trade between the two teams featured Pavel Bure who had been sitting out demanding a trade. This would be the beginning of the end of the late 90’s dark era for the Canucks as Jovanovski instantly becoming a leader on their strong teams of the early 2000’s. Bure had two good seasons with the Panthers, but it was mostly marred by injuries, and the Panthers were never able to have any success as a team. Hedican did go on later to win a Stanley Cup with the Carolina Hurricanes but it’s Jovanovski who’s been the best player overall.
1. Roberto Luongo, Lukas Krajicek, Sergei Shirokov for Todd Bertuzzi, Bryan Allen, Alex Auld
If the Bure/Jovanovski was the original big trade between these two teams, this was the original fleecing. Bertuzzi desperately needed to go someplace far away after the Steve Moore incident and found a home in Florida where the Panthers sent Luongo, who’s only been nominated once for the Hart Trophy and the Vezina trophy three times. Despite all the hullabaloo this year about Luongo’s slow start, this trade has long been a blowout win for Vancouver.