The Coyotes have traded Brandon Gormley to the Avalanche for defensemen Stefan Elliott.
That's right, Elliott.
All due respect to Elliott, this is the kind of trade that reminds you that the Coyotes have recently added Claude Loiselle to the management team.
Stefen Elliott is a puck moving, offensive defensemen with good possession numbers, albeit in only 63 career games. Exactly the kind of player I'd usually endorse getting. The fact that he played 2/3s of those games four years ago and has been in the AHL for most of the time since is a pretty big red flag, although perhaps Colorado has been slow to identify the value in this kind of player and maybe that isn't a huge deal.
There is upside to Elliott and I don't hate that they got him, because he's the kind of player any team should take a chance on, but Brandon Gormley was too good to give up on.
Also, trading Brandon Gormley for a player you could have had on waivers less than a year ago is incompetent. Although, this trade is bad, waivers or not. You're telling me that for a 23 year old defensemen with the potential of Gormley - whose lack of development is about lack of opportunity and injury and nothing else - the only player in the entire NHL they could get is a guy who is a year older and has far less potential?
Also here is something dumb: Elliott is a right shooting defenseman, which would normally be a good thing because they are somewhat rare. The only problem is that the Coyotes already have Stone and Murphy and they just signed Michalek, all of whom are right shooting defensemen who will almost certainly not be usurped by Elliott on the roster.
After OEL, their other two left defenseman are Nick Grossmann and Klaus Dahlbeck, so they could probably have used a left shooting defenseman, which Gormley is.
So the Coyotes gave up on a player whose biggest fault was trying to make a team already giving regular minutes to three defenseman under 24, on a team with a coach not known for trusting young players.
This trade is terrible. I can't believe for a second that another team wouldn't have offered up a better player, or at least one that plays a position the Coyotes are weak at in order to take a chance on the player Gormley might be. At least get an assett back for him, a draft pick or a guy who at least isn't already 24.
Trading for a 24 year old and signing him to a one year contract is such a waste of the asset that was Gormley. Odds are, Elliott spends the year up and down to the AHL and in and out of the lineup, occasionally and inexplicably taking minutes away from Connor Murphy. (Who I bet any money the Coyotes play Michalek behind). In the end, he'll be a UFA next year and will likely sign somewhere else.
But then again, this is the team that signed John Scott and brought back Antoine Vermette. The team that has people casually ceding a SECOND pairing job to Nick Grossmann and which signed like nine superfluous player this summer, ostensibly to show Lucas Lessio, Henrik Samuelsson, Christian Dvorak, Laurent Duaphin or Ryan MacInnis that they have no business even thinking they could make the NHL.
I don't even know what to say about this trade, except I guess it's pretty cool they didn't trade Gormley for Tyler Bozak? Maloney to Benning and Sweeney: Your move boys.