With the news breaking that the Edmonton Oilers have fired Peter Chiarelli, let’s take a look back at an unforgettable meeting when he was General Manager of the Boston Bruins:
Not to kick a guy when he’s down, but wow. Tough to watch, really. Remember back in 2010 when the hockey world was wondering who should go 1st overall, Tyler Seguin or Taylor Hall? Peter Chiarelli managed to trade both of them in awful deals. Let’s dive into the specifics of the Tyler Seguin situation being discussed in the video:
Boston’s first reason for shopping Seguin: The first part of the video shows Boston wanting to re-sign Nathan Horton. Seguin was an option to be traded in part to clear cap space for that potential move. Seguin’s 6 year contract with an annual cap hit of $5.75M was set to kick in at the start of the approaching season. Nathan Horton had been a key member of the Bruins for several years. He had struggled with injuries, but in their run to the Cup Final that postseason, he scored 19 points in 22 games.
Boston’s second reason for shopping Seguin: Once word got back to Chiarelli that Horton would not be returning, the Seguin discussion continued. This time, as shown in the video, the Bruins front office questioned him for a number of reasons- his off-ice issues, his lack of production in the Stanley Cup run, his lack of toughness, and not playing “Bruin-style hockey.”
The Trade: On July 4th, 2014, Boston traded Tyler Seguin, Rich Peverley and Ryan Button to the Dallas Stars for Loui Eriksson, Reilly Smith, Joe Morrow and Matt Fraser.
Loui Eriksson: A 28 year old point-producing winger. He had 3 straight seasons of 71, 73 and 71 points, but his production had slipped in the lockout shortened season to 29 points in 48 games.
Reilly Smith: A solid prospect who was just beginning his NHL career. The year prior, in his first year of pro hockey, the 21 year old winger scored 35 points in 45 AHL games. In NHL action that season, he scored 9 points in 37 games.
Joe Morrow: Morrow was a former 1st round pick who had just been traded from Pittsburgh to Dallas a couple months earlier as part of the Brenden Morrow deal. The 20 year old defenseman had just finished his first season of pro hockey, scoring 21 points in 74 total games.
Matt Fraser: The undrafted 23 year old winger spent most of the previous season in the AHL, scoring 33 goals and 46 points in 62 games.
The Result: At the time of the trade, most people viewed it as a win for Dallas- they were bringing in a 20 year old potential #1 center who, as a 19/20 year old, led Boston with 29 goals and 67 points in 82 games. Eriksson was a solid point-getting winger, and Smith had upside of a 2nd line forward, but that paled in comparison to the potential and skill of Seguin. For Chiarelli not to receive a top-end prospect and/or a 1st round pick was shocking. Boston was in win-now mode, but giving up Seguin so quickly into his NHL career looked bad at the time, and even worse now.
Current Day Thoughts: Tyler Seguin became the player a lot of people thought he would- he’s an all-star caliber forward with 191 goals and 429 points in 436 games with Dallas. Eriksson spent 3 years as a Bruin. His best year was his last when he scored 30 goals and 63 points. Smith looked good early on for Boston with 51 points in his first year, but he struggled the next season and was then traded to Florida for Jimmy Hayes. Morrow played just 65 games over 3 years with Boston, and Fraser played just 38 games over 2 years. In the end, this was a horrible trade for Boston. In the 5 years following the trade, they missed the playoffs twice, and won just 2 total playoff series’.
Given how bad this trade worked out, plus the Hall for Larsson swap, and countless other questionable choices by Chiarelli over the years with Boston and Edmonton, it should come of no surprise that he has been fired. What would be shocking is if he landed another GM job anytime soon. So long Mr. Chiarelli.