The Washington Capitals have acquired highly-rated NHL defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk from the St Louis Blues.
With less than a week to the trade deadline, Capitals general manager Brian MacLellan insisted the NHL-leading roster he has assembled required only a tweak here and there, if any.
Four days later, Shattenkirk - the highly coveted Blues defenseman who played in the 2015 All-Star game - is headed to Washington in a trade that might prove to be the biggest splash made before Wednesday's deadline.
The deal, announced on Monday, includes a healthy bounty of picks and a top prospect going to the Blues: a first-round draft selection in 2017, a conditional second-rounder in 2019 and promising rookie forward Zach Sanford. The clubs also exchanged minor leaguers, with forward Brad Malone headed to the Blues and goalie Pheonix Copley returning to the Capitals, who dealt him last year for T.J. Oshie.
St Louis will retain 39 percent of what remains on Shattenkirk's $5.2million salary.
"We are excited to welcome Kevin to our organization," said MacLellan. "We felt it was important to acquire another defenseman to strengthen and add depth to our blueline.
"Kevin is a skilled, puck moving defenseman who we think will help our team at even strength and on the power play. In addition, we are also pleased to welcome Pheonix back to the organization. We feel his addition solidifies our goaltending tandem in Hershey."
The clock is officially ticking as Shattenkirk will become an unrestricted free agent this summer, barring a contract extension.
The 28-year-old is one of the best puck-moving defensemen in the NHL enjoying a career-best season by offensive production standards. The right-handed shot is fourth among blue-liners with 42 points in 61 games; his 11 goals are second to the 27 scored by Brent Burns, who's having an MVP-calibre year.
Recent injury scares to defensemen Matt Niskanen and Brooks Orpik exposed a potential chink in Washington's armour. The team acquired Tom Gilbert from the Los Angeles Kings last week to play on the right side as veteran insurance, but Shattenkirk is an all-in move.
That he joins the Capitals, whose offense ranks second in the league in goals per game (3.31), and will dish one-timers to star Alex Ovechkin on the power play, might seem unfair, especially to Metropolitan Division rivals who lost out on his services.
19. März 2018
|Martial agent will not guarantee Manchester United stay|
|Del Potro and Djokovic on early collision course at Miami Open|
|Siemian swaps Broncos for Vikings|
|Broad chomping at the bit to bowl at Black Caps´ Taylor|
|Ronaldo slams ´fake news´ amid latest tax case claims|
|Van Dijk and Gundogan expect tough City-Liverpool tie|
|VAR to be introduced in Eredivisie|
|Di Biagio sees bright Italy future with Cutrone and Chiesa|
|Koeman won´t rule out Van Persie Netherlands return|
|I ate badly for years – how Messi solved his vomiting problem|
|England and Bath´s Watson out for the season|
|McLaren issues ´have been addressed´ ahead of F1 season opener|
|Tuchel feels he would still be at Dortmund without bomb attack|
|Pogba shows off new haircut as Ben Yedder trolls Man United star|
|Pogba cannot be happy but must focus on France, says Deschamps|
|Samuels slogs Windies closer to World Cup qualification|
|Having Rabada in third Test massive - Elgar|
|Cavs coach Lue steps away from job due to health reasons|
|Debuchy disappointed to be left out of latest France squad|
|Barton rejects England´s World Cup chances|
|Hamilton can become greatest F1 driver in history - Kovalainen|
|Sevilla coach Montella interested in Italy job|
|Football brain lacking, poor attitude and fourth choice – The Mourinho-Shaw saga at Manchester Unite|
|I´ve had enough - Pietersen confirms retirement|
|UEFA charges Marseille and Lyon for Europa League trouble|
|Broad ready to do damage in New Zealand series|
|Injured Chiellini out of Italy squad|
|Toulon-bound Webb out for rest of season|
|Buffon cites Astori among reasons for Italy return|
|Welbeck faces no action over alleged dive against Milan|
|Charnley switches back to league to join Warrington|
|Barcelona? I´m staying with PSG, insists Marco Verratti|
|Bastian Schweinsteiger & Ana Ivanovic announce birth of son|
|The numbers behind Cristiano Ronaldo´s 50 hat-tricks|
|Woods relishing end to frustrating Augusta absence|
|Consistency the only thing stopping me from being the best, claims Depay|
|Guardiola second to none tactially, says Man City midfielder Gundogan|
|McIlroy: Bay Hill win a huge confidence boost for Masters|
|F1 2018 Pre-Season Report: Mercedes|
|F1 2018: The best Opta facts ahead of the new season|
|Liverpool captain Henderson ponders Salah and Suarez comparison|
|Messi worried by the uncertainty retirement brings|
|F1 2018 Pre-Season Report: Ferrari|
|Hunt handed ban and fine but cleared to return|
|Rants, criticism a familiar story – Is Mourinho set for Man United exit?|
|Guptill added to Black Caps squad|
|Thunder end Raptors´ streak, Davis stars|
|Stars goalie Bishop expected to miss at least two weeks|
|Messi desperate for World Cup success|
|Federer frustrated by Indian Wells final defeat|
|Del Potro: I can´t believe I won Indian Wells|
|Napoli causing Juventus problems as Sarri revels in crucial win|
|Balbirnie happy to boost Ireland chances|
|The better Ronaldo is, the better Madrid will be – Vazquez lauds four-goal hero|
|Ireland inspired by retired team-mates – Sexton|
|Indian Wells crown surreal for Osaka|
|F1 2018: Everything you need to know|
|Salah ´unstoppable´ like Messi, says Watford boss Gracia|
|Demanding Mourinho is still special, insists Matic|
|Truex Jr sweeps stages and wins first race of 2018|
|Woods pleased with progress at Bay Hill|
|McIlroy cruises to victory at Bay Hill, where Tiger impresses|
|Dallas 3 Seattle Sounders 0: Dempsey sees red after VAR|
|Ronaldo ´from another galaxy´, says Zidane|
|Del Potro saves match points to stun Federer for Indian Wells title|
18. März 2018
|Eusebio Sack-ristan: Real Sociedad part company with head coach|
|Fassone ready for Gattuso talks after Milan resurgence|
|Napoli 1 Genoa 0: Albiol goal maintains pressure on Juve|
|Real Madrid 6 Girona 3: Four-goal Ronaldo continues hot streak with 50th career hat-trick|
|USA boss Sarachan calls up Weah for Paraguay friendly|