Dan Hamhuis traded to Philadelphia for Ryan Parent…

The Nashville Predators have placed a phone call to “Nashville East” once again.

And once again they’ve unloaded an impending free agent for something in return.

The Predators have announced that they’ve sent defenseman Dan Hamhuis and a conditional draft pick to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for former Predators draft pick Ryan Parent.

The conditional pick, by the way, is a seventh round choice in 2011 if the Flyers are unable to sign Hamhuis.

Back in 2007, just days before the Entry Draft, General Manager David Poile was able to send the negotiating rights of impending free agents Scott Hartnell and Kimmo Timonen to Philadelphia in exchange for a first round pick. That pick (Jonathan Blum) just might be the one replacing Hamhuis after a similiar trade three years later.

The most curious part of this trade isn’t even the re-acquisition of Parent (who becomes an RFA on July 1, by the way), but more so that there’s no 2010 draft choice involved. The Preds, who don’t have a second or a fourth round pick in this years draft, are looking to add a selection or two in the opening few rounds and, it was thought, Hamhuis’ exclusive negotiating rights would demand just that.

But I guess not.

Just two days ago Nashville announced the re-signing of Francis Bouillon and we suggested that that transaction was the latest domino to fall regarding Hamhuis’ future in Music City. We don’t say that to toot our own horns, but rather to amend what we said about the Preds having the undisputed best defense corps in the NHL. With the acquisition of Hamhuis, the Flyers would appear to own that monikor now. With Chris Pronger, Timonen, 2006 Hobey Baker Award winner Matt Carle and now Hamhuis, the Flyers top four are stacked. That’s not even factoring in Braydon Coburn if they can get him re-signed.

So where does this move leave the Predators? After all, the main goal in dealing Hamhuis was to get at least a draft pick in return. Since they didn’t, at this point, it’s status-quo as far as this year’s draft choices. Nashville will pick 18th overall in the first round, then wait until the third round (at 78th overall) to pick again and then have to wait 48 more picks to choose again in the 5th round before they return to the norm of picking at least once every round.

As far as the blueline for the 2010-11 season goes, it appears the pairings will be Shea Weber and Ryan Suter, per usual, Bouillon and Cody Franson or Kevin Klein on the next line and then a total crap shoot.

Parent has only 102 games of NHL experience and, based on this blog by Broadstreet Hockey, the Flyers faithful are glad to see him go. Not exactly a good sign. Then comes the young guys. Is Blum ready? How about 2009 first round pick and two-time Memorial Cup Champion Ryan Ellis? Will his shot on the powerplay be too tempting for the Preds to ignore? And what about Teemu Laakso? Or German Olympian Alexander Sulzer? Or even recently signed Swiss-phenom Roman Josi? Where do they all fit and will they all be content playing in Milwuakee as opposed to fighting for a roster spot in Nashville?

Also, unless they part with someone else (*ah-hem* *Klein* *ah-hem*), it doesn’t appear as though Denis Grebeshkov, who was a beast in the six games he wore a Preds sweater, will be back.

There are a lot of question marks surrounding Nashville’s bottom defensive pairing and only time will tell how it’s going to shape out.

One thing is certain, however: “Operation #split28″ has come to an end.

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To read what Hamhuis had to say about the trade, read the article on philadelphiaflyers.com.

One Comment

  1. Johnny B

    June 21, 2010 at 12:27 pm

    The Hammer was always fun to watch from the stands – Good Luck in the City of Brotherly Love … This years training camp is gonna be a fun one … I really can’t wait to see what the team roster is going to look like this Fall …