Immediate, gutcheck reaction to including Järnkrok in this trade: "oh noezzz! he was our #1 ranked prospect last year! Someone called him the next Zetterberg! WE GAVE UP ZETTERBERG FOR LEGWAND!"
Now, take a deep breath and look at the trade from a 1000 ft view.
Eaves is an obvious throwaway. I wish him well. The draft pick stings a bit, especially since it seems like we've been really starting to hit on our early round picks lately.
As for Järnkrok, let's state what he does well first. He's clearly a talented player whom many peg to make it in the NHL. He's struggled in his first season in North America, but he's been playing really well the past few weeks. He's an above average skater and good passer. He's responsible defensively. He's got upside, obviously. By all accounts, he's a hard worker who wants to keep getting better.
With that said, the Next Zetterberg hype is clearly overblown. Calle has 99 shots in 57 games - an indication of an extremely tentative shooter. Detroit has enough of those already. I've watched a few Griffins games and I've listened to more in-tuned Griffins fans talk about him, and he's clearly not been showing any signs of one who can take things into his own hands and try to score a goal when the time comes - the exact opposite of Zetterberg, who loves to shoot. Could this skill develop within him eventually? Sure. But that's wishful thinking, and I'm sure if Holland, Blashill and co. saw that potential in him, they wouldn't have traded him for a guy who may not be on our roster next season.
He's listed at around 5'10 185, and while that's not unlike the specs of Zeta and Dats, he's still got a ways to go, strength-wise. A guy with okay speed and a slender frame needs to develop some seriously unique skills to stick in the NHL (think Hudler, who showed he had NHL goal-scoring prowess). Going by the tape, those skills simply are not there or still a ways from being there. And if you're not showing those skills in your age-22 season, you're starting to value hope way more than reality at this stage in a prospects career.
Overall, the guy is clearly a talent. He's not unlike Filppula or Weiss in the sense that he projects as a 2nd-line guy with good passing skills and responsible defense. He's also not unlike them in the sense that he can't score worth a lick. We've had enough guys in this mold come through the Wings system, and the results have always been good - just never great. Things are changing for the Wings, though, with guys like Mantha and Jurco violently assaulting the twine as they've progressed. Hell, I wouldn't be surprised if Pulkkinen was valued more than Calle by the organization due to his shooting skills.
Bottom line: It is what it is. The Red Wings are in an extremely desperate situation at center, and getting Legwand helps tremendously to ease some of those concerns. If you think Järnkrok is the real deal, yeah, this trade kind of sucks. However, I think you may be slightly reaching on what the hype is all about with him. He's going to be a good pro, but I don't think he'll be making us regret moving David Legwand for him.
That's enough from me. Sorry for rambling.
Edited by Huss, 05 March 2014 - 05:41 PM.