Photo credit: Jeff Gross
Wednesday’s trade deadline was pretty tame for the Washington Capitals until a few minutes after 3 PM, when we heard Mike Vogel that the team had “something brewing.”
Then… about two hours of speculating and waiting. The Capitals were “incredibly mum” according to Bob McKenzie. The Caps Report video special with Alan May, Mike Vogel, and John Walton went into extra innings– vamping to fill time until the news broke. George McPhee declined to name the trade until all involved players were named.
Those players turned out to be Martin Erat, a 31-year old RW lefty from Nashville, and Caps prospect Filip Forsberg. Nashville threw in Michael Latta as well.
Erat takes big minutes for Nashville and drives play, but has had a rough season with the Predators this year. Erat makes $4.5M each year with two years left on his contract. That’s a hefty price tag for a top-6 player, and under a constricting salary cap it raises some quandaries for the Caps next season.
McPhee and Leonsis both recently called Forsberg the future of the franchise, a talented young forward from Sweden expected to join Hershey this month.
This is a bad trade.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – April 3, 2013
Capitals Acquire Martin Erat and Michael Latta from Nashville
The Czech Republic native ranks second in Predators history in career points, goals, assists and games played
ARLINGTON, Va. – The Washington Capitals have acquired forwards Martin Erat (mahr-TIHN EE-rat) and Michael Latta (MIGH-kuhl LA-tuh) from the Nashville Predators in exchange for forward Filip Forsberg, vice president and general manager George McPhee announced today.
Erat, 31, has recorded 21 points (four goals, 17 assists) and 26 penalty minutes in 36 games with Nashville this season. He ranked tied for first on Nashville in points and led the team in assists at the time of the trade. Erat ranked second among Nashville forwards in time on ice per game (18:55) and tied for second among Nashville forwards in power-play time on ice per game (2:41). He was named an alternate captain for Nashville this season.
The native of Trebic, Czech Republic, currently ranks second in Nashville franchise history in career points (481), goals (163), assists (318), games played (723), game-winning goals (26) and ranks third in power-play goals (42). He recorded a career-high 58 points (19 goals, 39 assists) last season for Nashville and has eclipsed the 50-point plateau in five of the last six seasons. The three-time 20-goal scorer has represented the Czech Republic in the World Championships (three times), World Junior Championships (twice) and the Winter Olympic Games in 2006 and 2010.
The 6’, 196-pound forward has registered 23 points (eight goals, 15 assists) in 46 career playoff games with Nashville, ranking second in playoff scoring, games played, assists and fourth in goals in Nashville postseason history.
Erat was drafted by Nashville in the seventh round (191st overall) in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. He has played all 723 of his career NHL games with Nashville.
Latta, 21, ranks second on the Milwaukee Admirals (AHL) in points (34) and first in assists (26) among active players. He compiled a plus-9 rating and 184 penalty minutes (led the team) in 67 games played this season. In 122 career AHL games with Milwaukee, the St. Clements, Ontario, native has recorded 23 goals, 41 assists and 286 penalty minutes.
The 6’, 215-pound center was drafted by Nashville in the third round (72nd overall) of the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. He will report to Hershey.