Last year, Caps fans raved about George McPhee's deadline masterpieces: trading Ted Ruth to Columbus for future Hall-of-Famer Sergei Fedorov, moving a second-round pick (acquired from another team) to Montreal for Cristobal Huet, and swapping agitators with Vancouver, sending Matt Pettinger away for Matt Cooke.
With the Capitals on pace to break 100 points and leading the Southeast by a landslide; many thought McPhee would once again pull rabbits from a hat, acquiring the tools necessary for a deep playoff run.
The Capitals stayed dormant instead, not even trading draft picks or swapping for AHL depth players. Now we are left to wonder if McPhee’s latest magic trick of a deadline is a shrewd move or a bone-headed mistake.
We won’t be able to grade McPhee’s deadline inaction until we see how the team plays in April, but don’t be so quick to jump on the “McPhee was terrible” bandwagon.
The logic is simple. Making trades just because is like spending money on things you don’t need. It’s wasteful, and while it may provide cheap thrills now, you’ll be cursing yourself for it later.
Luxury players such as Chris Pronger and Derek Morris would have required blockbuster trades featuring many of the Caps' young prospects. Would you rather have Chris Pronger for one postseason or Karl Alzner and John Carlson for multiple seasons?
McPhee’s deadline dud may be disappointing but sometimes the best deal is no deal.