With the Andrei Kostitsyn trade in exchange for a 2013 2nd-round draft pick (and the conditional pick which was part of the Hal Gill trade), the Nashville Predators have added another piece to what they hope will be a highly effective "scoring by committee" approach.
#46 / Left Wing / Nashville Predators
Feb 03, 1985
Contract: $3.25 million, UFA this summer
|2011 - Andrei Kostitsyn||53||12||12||24||-8||16||3||0||3||93||12.9|
Follow after the jump for a look at what AK46 brings to Smashville...
The Scouting Report
*sniff* You had me at that first sentence, Andrei.
Dave Staples at the Edmonton Journal argued recently that Kostitsyn ranks among the NHL's most underrated snipers, but as a guy who has produced at a 40-50 point pace for most of his career, he'll fit right in with the rest of Nashville's forwards. I just like the fact that he's consistently averaged 2-2.5 shots per game over the years, and seems to have a bit more of a nose for the net than his younger brother Sergei.
Impact on the lineup
Kostitsyn should add some pop on the left side that will give the team 20-goal-caliber wingers on each side of their top 3 lines. Do the Preds play him with his brother and break up what has been an effective line with Fisher and Erat? Or do they perhaps put him alongside David Legwand and Patric Hornqvist, leaving the Fisher line and the Wilson-Spaling-Tootoo trio together? It's entirely possible that with the playoffs looming, rookie Craig Smith could be relegated to a lesser role.
Another option would be to give Smith an audition as the team's 3rd offensive center, moving Spaling down to the 4th as more of a checking/PK specialist with Matt Halischuk and the grinder of your choice.
Thoughts From the OTF Staff
Sam: Wow great deal. Preds get a guy with not-long-lost 60 point potential without giving up any main trade assets. Sergei gets his brother back and I get a sweet "S. Kostitsyn" jersey. Would love to see the Preds grab Grabovski now and reunite Belarus' top line.
Marc: Love it. The Preds still have their 2012 first to work with and didn't give up a roster player. Yes, there are attitude questions, but if there's a coach who can make that work, it's Trotz.
Chris: Love the deal. Considering the low likelihood that a late second round pick will turn into a serviceable player, the rewards far outweigh the risk here. Andrei needed a change of scenery, and you have to think that he and Sergei could work magic given the right opportunity. AK is the big bodied shooter, SK the shifty playmaker. Like a cheap version of the Sedins. Well, not really, but I still like the deal.
All in all, this is a low-risk maneuver by David Poile, bolstering the team's forward lines without having to give up anything off the current roster. The question now is whether one of the depth forwards like Gabriel Bourque, Matt Halischuk, or Brandon Yip get pushed to the press box, or perhaps even out the door via another trade in a numbers game.
By all accounts, the much talked-about scandals involving he and his younger brother Sergei in Montreal have been wildly overblown, and perhaps with a bit more age and experience for the both of them (and a playoff run on the horizon), they can take a business-like approach to the weeks ahead.
We just want to make sure that together, they don't turn out to be a pair of boobs.
Please use this thread to discuss the AK46 trade, and keep the general Deadline Open Thread for general NHL talk (just to keep things clear).