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Remembering some of the NHL’s most successful midseason trades

02

It’s that fun time of year when everyone is looking for a deal. That goes for everyone going bargain hunting at this week’s various Black Friday sales. And it also goes for more than a few NHL GMs, as the trade talk has heated up and the rumor mill is on fire.

This feels like as good a reason as any to build a roster. Let’s put together a 20-man team out of the very best midseason trades in NHL history.

Afterall, that’s what most fans are hoping for right now – the sort of midseason trade that can delivery a key piece. We’re told not to get our hopes up, because making a significant trade before the deadline is just too difficult for a beleaguered GM to pull off. Maybe it is, but some of the NHL’s most important trades have happened right around this time of year. A full roster’s worth? At least.

One thing: I’m going to get a little specific with my definition of “midseason” here, because I’m not going to count the trade deadline or the days leading up to it. Those deals are midseason too, technically, but the deadline has evolved into its own thing. Instead, we’re looking for guys who were traded during the first few months of a season, with bonus points for actual hockey trades over rebuilds and rentals. And they have to have played for both teams during the season to qualify, so apologies in advance to the holdouts, prospects, and healthy scratches.

We’re going by how good a player was during the year he was traded, not what they may have done in other years. You’re getting that season only. I'm also going to keep this to trades made in the 1980s and later, with one notable exception. But as it turns out, that still gives us more than a few excellent years to choose from, so let’s Remember Some Trades as we see just how good this team can get…

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