Stop the Music…. The Marty Party is over.
As the NHL trade deadline expired, it appeared that Preds GM David Poile had chosen to keep the roster almost entirely in tact, only trading D Scott Hannan to the SJ Sharks for a 7th round conditional draft pick in 2013. In the minutes just after the deadline, the NHL Network announced there was a trade involving the Washington Capitals that was being finalized. At the same time, word started creeping around Twitter that the media had yet to be allowed into the Predators scheduled press conference. It was then announced that Nashville had traded F Martin Erat & F Michael Latta to the Caps for 2012 1st round pick (11th Overall) Filip Forsberg.
This sent shock waves through the Preds fan base, as Erat had a No Movement Clause & had not been subject to many serious rumors this season. We learned once the trade was made official that Erat waived his NMC & cleared a handful of teams for Poile to work with. Erat was the 2nd longest tenured Pred behind only David Legwand after being drafted in the 7th round of the 1999 Entry Draft (191st overall) & played in 723 games over 11 seasons. He scored 163 Goals, 318 Assists (481 points) & is 2nd all time in franchise history in each of these categories.
It will be difficult to see the team at first without Erat, but the lone surviving member of the “Vowel Line” should prosper as it is being reported he will play on a line with Alex Ovechkin in an attempt to make it to the playoffs in the South East Division. As for Forsberg, he is said to be an elite prospect with dynamic offensive upside currently playing in Europe. He is not expected to appear at the NHL level this year, but should be given a chance to make the team in training camp for the 2013-14 season.