Early Trade Deadlines Deals for Ducks: Fasth, Penner, Robidas

The trade deadline is not until Wednesday at noon Pacific time, but the Ducks decided not to wait around until the last minute to make some moves.

On Tuesday, GM Bob Murray traded goaltender, Viktor Fasth, to the Edmonton Oilers in exchange for a fifth-round selection in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft and a third-round selection in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

Fasth, 31, only appeared in five games this season due to injuries.   He finally had surgery on December 23 to repair a hole in his abdominal wall.  Fasth had recuperated and got back to game shape, including a conditioning stint in Norfolk, and was ready to be activated off the IR list.

That would have left a glut of goaltenders, as Frederik Andersen has stepped up notably in Fasth's absence.   (And John Gibson is also waiting in the wings for a net.)

"Viktor is a class act and a great guy," said Murray.  "He battled to get back. This year didn’t go the way I expected it to go.  You’ve watched Freddie Andersen play, so I don’t need to say anything else. That had to be cleaned up for the sake of the hockey team. Too many people around, too much uncertainty. I felt it had to be done. Viktor is going to be a No. 1 in Edmonton."

The Ducks also traded left wing Dustin Penner to the Washington Capitals for a fourth-round draft pick.

Penner, 31, was no his second stint in Anaheim and had 13 goals and 32 points.  His plus/minus was +22.  However, Penner also found himself a healthy scratch for Anaheim on numerous nights.

"Depth is great, but it was getting in the way," Murray commented.  "The opportunity came along.  It’s unfortunate for Dustin. He worked hard and played hard here. He got his weight down. I wish him nothing but the best, but it was the one that worked right now. I had a couple teams interested and he’s getting a great opportunity. I’m pretty sure I know what he’s going to get to play with over there. I hope he’s ready to go, and I hope he concentrates and gets the job done."

Read between the lines – "I hope he concentrates and gets the job done" can be interpreted as he did not concentrate and get the job done in Anaheim.    A common complaint in Edmonton and Los Angeles when Penner played there as well. 

There are plenty of other players who seemed to have stepped up above and beyond this year that will make Penner's loss barely noticeable at all.

The pick received from the Capitals was turned around and sent to the Dallas Stars in exchange for defenseman Stephane Robidas.

Robidas, 37, had a badly broken leg on November 29, 2013, and he is still on IR.  He began to skate and rehab in the middle of January.

"If I could get a right-handed shooting defenseman, a sort of shutdown-type of guy who plays hard, we were going to try to accomplish that," said Murray.  "That was one of our needs. Getting Stephane, who I’ve always liked for how hard he competes, how hard he plays, can do more than shut down. He actually played on the second power play at times. It was an opportunity, so we took it. He’s coming in on Thursday and he’s happy.  We’re going to make sure he’s ready. We’ve got good depth on defense now, so when he’s ready to play, he’s going to play."

Will the Ducks keep trading or is this it for Anaheim?

"There’s never a final move," Murray said noncommitally.  "You’re always trying to make your hockey team better. This makes our team more difficult to play against. Just go ask our forwards. They didn’t enjoy playing against (Robidas)."

The real answer will be found by noon tomorrow.  Stay tuned.  It's never dull at the deadline.

About Karen Francis

Just a diehard Ducks fan since 1995, when the team filled the hockey shaped vacuum in my heart.

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