Josh’s Take: Ottawa Senators trade Zack Smith

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA - JUNE 22: General manager Pierre Dorion of the Ottawa Senators talks on the phone on the draft floor during Rounds 2-7 of the 2019 NHL Draft at Rogers Arena on June 22, 2019 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images)
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA - JUNE 22: General manager Pierre Dorion of the Ottawa Senators talks on the phone on the draft floor during Rounds 2-7 of the 2019 NHL Draft at Rogers Arena on June 22, 2019 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Jeff Vinnick/NHLI via Getty Images) /
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The trade of Zack Smith by the Ottawa Senators garnered a lot of reaction from the fans in the nation’s capital.

This might leave some fans wondering if there was enough room in the organization for two Smiths!

Pierre Dorion and the Ottawa Senators surprised many fans yesterday when they announced they had traded Zack Smith to the Chicago Blackhawks in exchange for Artem Anisimov.

There are multiple angles this trade can be examined under, but the one that has prevailed throughout most of the fanbase is that this trade saves the Senators money over the next two years.

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So was this a purely financial move for the Senators?

Considering that most people should be able to agree that Artem Anisimov brings more skill to the table than Zack Smith did, maybe there are other reasons the Senators agreed to this trade.

If we take a quick look at both players’ stats over the past three years, this is how they averaged out:

  • Zack Smith
    • 2016-17: 16 goals & 16 assists for 23 points
    • 2017-18: 5 goals & 14 assists for 19 points
    • 2018-19: 9 goals & 19 assists for 28 points
  • Artem Anisimov
    • 2016-17: 22 goals & 23 assists for 45 points
    • 2017-18: 20 goals & 11 assists for 31 points
    • 2018-19: 14 goals & 22 assists for 37 points

Clearly, Anisimov has brought more offensive numbers throughout his career than Zack Smith did and fans should expect Anisimov to have a more active role on the team’s powerplay units.

He should also be used by DJ Smith and the coaching staff on the penalty kill, which would help replace the loss of Zack Smith in that role.

To put it bluntly, the Senators probably ended up trading a third-line winger for a third-line centre that has more offensive upside.

With that being said, the monetary implications of this trade should not go unnoticed. It did not take long for fans to turn to Twitter to voice their opinions on this trade. It also did not take long for tweets like this one to come along.

If fans haven’t done so already, they should accept the reality that this team factors financials in every decision they make.

That is not necessarily a bad thing, every team does this in one way or another. With that being said, it seems as though almost every (if not every) decision made by this organization is made with the goal to keep more money in Eugene Melnyk’s pockets. I think it would be fair to say that this is where many fans take issue.

When this organization saves money in player transactions fans should be able to expect those savings to be redistributed throughout the organization, whether by spending it on players or adding to the hockey operations department.

The unfortunate reality for this fanbase is that this team seems to very rarely reinvest that money in the hockey operations department or spend it on the on-ice talent.

Every dollar saved seems to go to helping Eugene Melnyk hold on to his dream of owning an NHL team for as long as possible.

Now I don’t want all this financial talk to take away from the fact that the Ottawa Senators and Pierre Dorion made what seems to be a good trade for this hockey club.

It is clear that Anisimov is an upgrade over Zack Smith, and he is going to be more versatile for the club compared to Smith.

Next. Ottawa Senators trade Zack Smith. dark

What do you think of the trade, Sens fans? Do you like the job done by Pierre Dorion and his staff regarding this move? Are you upset to see Smith traded? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!