Bye, David Hale.
I’m bummed to see him go. He was a large, stay at home defenseman, not a playmaker or a points-scorer but the kind of guy who could muscle a Crosby or Ovechkin out of the slot when needed. Rumors of his imminent trade have been swirling since his sustained benching a few weeks ago, culminating in today’s 11th-hour trade to Calgary.
For a draft pick.
True, Rafalski has picked up his play tremendously on the point, Paul Martin plays nothing like his real-world image (blond, skinny and glasses) and Lukowich and White are playing well (and healthy), and Oduya is the frosh surprise this year. But I likedDavid Hale, because he was quiet and hard-working, even when he wasn’t getting ice time; he was another fine product of the University of North Dakota (along with current fan fave Zach Parise); and I have a pile of his rookie hockey cards sitting in an album.
I’ve whined before about seemingly lopsided value trades made before, notably when Lou exchanged Suglobov for snowman Ken Klee late last season. Suglobov is in the AHL, Klee was waived and is now making snow angels in Colorado, and once again Lou demonstrated how he can win the GM chess game using a pawn, a knight and bottle cap.
Here’s hoping Hale puts a burr under the seats in the Saddledome. He’ll be missed by his Jersey fans.