The NHL-leading Washington Capitals acquired defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk from the St. Louis Blues on Monday in exchange for Zach Sanford, a 2017 first-round pick, and a conditional 2019 second-round pick. (Initial reports said the conditional second-round pick was for 2018, but the Capitals had already traded that pick for the Montreal Canadiens’ Lars Eller.)
Shattenkirk, 28, is among the top five defenseman in the league in scoring this season, with 11 goals and 31 assists. And as the Capitals’ best players get older—Alex Ovechkin, 31; Niklas Backstrom, 29; T.J. Oshie, 30—the addition of Shattenkirk might represent the team’s best, and most desperate, effort to win a Stanley Cup, as the trade will deplete the Capitals of their ability to draft young players the coming seasons.
The conditions for the second-round pick, though, are wildly stringent:
The Blues will also reportedly retain 39 percent of Shattenkirk’s salary.
Shattenkirk’s St. Louis teammates seemed to be taking the trade in stride; Scottie Upshall wished him success on the ice ... and in debilitating Ovechkin.