The Florida Panthers have been the most active team in the NHL since the trade deadline last year and that continued today with a potentially significant trade with the Vancouver Canucks. Florida deal forward David Booth, center Steve Reinprecht and a 2013 third round pick to the Canucks for forwards Mikael Samuelsson and Marco Sturm.
The new-look Panthers have been solid to start the season which makes the selling low of former cornerstone Booth even more surprising. Booth has yet to fully return to the promising form he had before suffering a major concussion in October 2009 when Mike Richards hit him in the head. However, in Florida Booth was counted on to play on the top line with inferior talent around him, which certainly wont be the case in Vancouver where he will likely play with Ryan Kesler on the second line.
A team like Florida that clearly is not a contender dealing for aging veterans like Samuelsson and Strum makes it even more puzzling of a move. Vancouver appears to be a clear winner on the surface of this deal unless Booth never returns to form, which would make the four-year, $18 mil left on his contract a gamble to take on.