Remember the guy who the Caps ended up with as a result of two ill-advised straight up trades during the 03-04 season? Sure you do. I've written about this many times before. Jaromir Jagr was traded from Washington to the Rangers straight up for Anson Carter. Six weeks later, Carter was traded to the Kings straight up for Jared Aulin. Aulin never suited up for the Caps, but notched 39 points (11/28) in 61 games with the AHL Hershey Bears.
Last summer, Caps owner Ted Leonsis tried to justify the trading of name brand players like Sergei Gonchar and Jaro Jagr by saying something tantamount to "two birds in the bush are worth one in the hand". He'd rather have prospects and late round draft picks than bona fide stars. He didn't want to have to sell his yacht or his Ferarri in order to be able to afford Jagr. Instead, he authorized a series of incredibly stupid trades, and then triumphantly declared in an August 2005 letter to the fans
"We now have Jared Aulin in the organization as a result of the Jagr trade".
The joke is now on Leonsis, as Aulin has not been tendered a qualifying offer, and the Caps now have zero return on the Jagr trade. This season, Jagr won the Lester B. Person award, finished second in the balloting for the Hart Trophy, and was second in both total scoring (123) and goals (54). Aulin didn't play in the NHL.
To make it even more interesting, Anson Carter had a very good season, playing on the Sedin line in Vancouver, scoring 55 points (33/22). He is an UFA, and will probably be somewhat of a commodity.
What will happen when Ovechkin's rookie contract expires after the 07-08 season? Surely Leonsis won't be able to afford him then. I wonder what kind of trade will take place.
In other Caps news, Jeff Halpern is now a Star. Who will be the Captain?