More thoughts on some of the deadline deals...
To Portland: Luca Sbisa, D; 2010 1st Rd (Import Draft); 2011 5th Rd.
To Lethbridge: Daniel Johnston, D; Jacob Berglund, F; 2010 1st Rd (Import Draft)
**Whenever an import is traded, another is generally involved. In this case, Sbisa joins countryman Nino Neiderreiter, becoming the first all-Swiss pair to skate together with a WHL team. Sbisa played his best hockey in the WHL during the 2008 season with a loaded Hurricanes group that included the likes of Zach Boychuk. (Click here for a feature I wrote on Sbisa and Boychuk while covering the 2008 Top Prospects Game in Edmonton.) Time will tell if Sbisa recovers well enough physically from an abdominal injury suffered at the WJC. Assuming he plays an important role for Switzerland at the Olympics, and then arrives healthy in Portland with energy and motivation, this trade could surely serve to earn the 'Hawks an extra round of playoff success. For the 'Canes, the organization has been busy all season moving players in and out of Lethbridge. Johnston, 17, is a good young defenceman, one of many in Portland this season where the 'Hawks could afford to get a little older in the short-term. Both he and Berglund, 18, should play regularly for the Hurricanes during the second half of the season. Whether or not Berglund remains in North America for next season will probably depend on how Lethbridge can sell him its plans for success for the 2010-2011 season. The teams also switched their Import Draft positions. Based on the likely order of finish in the standings this season, Lethbridge has moved up in the Import Draft and Portland has moved down.
To Prince George: Kyle Jahraus, G.
To Seattle: Robbie Ciolfi, F.
**The Cougars have had terrible luck between the pipes this season, with at least eight different players strapping on the pads. Jahraus, 19, will be the ninth. Injuries and a retirement among the goaltenders have given general manager Dallas Thompson fits. PG simply needs a warm body for the remainder of the season to spell #1 keeper Hudson Stremmel, who is sidelined with a concussion. Jahraus will probably have to be phenomenal to remain in the picture next season. In Ciolfi, the Thunderbirds get a kid who played 25 games this season before some off-ice adventures in Prince George became his undoing. He had been waiting at home in Lethbridge for a few weeks while the Cats tried to arrange a deal to move his rights. PG probably wins this one because they got what they needed immediately in return for a player who had no hope of returning to the Cougars' lineup. Ciolfi, 18, who has also played for the Prince Albert Raiders, has a new lease on his WHL life. His hockey future is most certainly now in his hands.