Now we’ve looked at it from both sides, as well as what this means for the long-term future of Derek Stepan the player, let’s now attempt to give this trade a final grade.
We will do this by giving it two overall grades, one for the Ottawa Senators and one for the Arizona Coyotes.
We’ll start off with the Senators who get a much-needed veteran and natural leader for that young locker room, in addition to a player in Derek Stepan who can be a productive top-six forward for them while playing in all situations.
However, giving up a 2021 Second Round pick for a 30-year-old center who has seen his production drop in each of the last two seasons is a bit of a puzzling one, especially for a team in the midst of a deep and long rebuild.
Therefore, it is hard to give anything but a low grade to the Ottawa Senators for this deal given that they could have selected another young stud with high upside with that pick so, with that in mind, we have no choice but to do this:
As for the Arizona Coyotes, well new General Manager Bill Armstrong managed to accomplish a couple of goals by moving Derek Stepan.
Not only did he somehow acquire a Second Round pick for an expiring contract for a team that desperately needs draft selections and assets, he also cleared Stepan’s $6.5 million cap hit off the books and didn’t have to give up anything else with it in order to get it done.
Plus, by moving an aging 30-year-old center who has been in decline, there is now a spot open on the second line for the likes of Barrett Hayton or perhaps another young prospect in the farm system to rise up and make it their own.
But, overall, clearing an expiring contract and getting a valuable Second Round pick back in return is a home run of a deal for Armstrong, who has a lot of work to do when it comes to making this Coyotes team a consistent Playoff team, let alone anything else.
So, there you have it, a complete breakdown of the Derek Stepan trade which certainly raised more than a few eyebrows when it went down on Saturday.
It is an instant win for the Arizona Coyotes who needed some draft capital, while we will see how this risky transaction pans out for the rebuilding Ottawa Senators over the course of the 2020-21 NHL season, but they are already well up against it given the hefty price they paid.