Sports

Kessel-for-Seguin trade highlights boisterous NHL Fantasy Draft

By Bruce Garrioch, Ottawa Sun

Phil Kessel skates hard at the NHL's All-Star Skills Competition in Ottawa three years ago. (Tony Caldwell/QMI Agency/Files)

Phil Kessel skates hard at the NHL's All-Star Skills Competition in Ottawa three years ago. (Tony Caldwell/QMI Agency/Files)

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COLUMBUS - 

The good news is Phil Kessel wasn’t the last man standing.

Then, Kessel, who has been at the centre of trade rumours, was dealt for Tyler Seguin -- again.

After being selected No. 2 overall by Team Jonathan Toews in Friday’s NHL Fantasy Draft for Sunday’s NHL All-Star game, Kessel hadn’t even settled into his jersey when he was dealt to Team Nick Foligno in exchange for Seguin.

“It’s worked out before,” said Foligno, the Columbus Blue Jackets winger, with a smile.

In 2009, the Leafs dealt two first-round picks and a second-rounder to Boston for Kessel. The Bruins used the 2010 first to select Seguin with the No. 2 pick. This one was straight up.

The trade came less than an hour after Toews indicated Kessel was one of the key pieces to the team he was building.

So, why did Toews go with Kessel? Did he feel sorry for him having to sit around in Ottawa in 2012 waiting to be selected?

“It’s a little bit of everything,” Toews said. “We know Phil had a tough one a couple of years ago. We know he deserves to be at the top end of the draft. The three of us were just talking that he’s one of the most coachable players out there so...”

Kessel has been called a lot of things lately and “coachable” wasn’t one description used by former coach Ron Wilson. This time, Kessel was able to smile and have the last laugh.

“I got traded again,” said a laughing Kessel. “It’s happened before, hasn’t it? It’s all in fun. The fans enjoyed the night and I’m happy to be on Team Foligno.”

Foligno made the deal in the 12th round.

“I’ve always wanted to do this: We’ve got a trade to announce,” said Foligno.

And, just like that Kessel and Seguin were linked again.

Still, all eyes were on who would go last.

Ottawa winger Bobby Ryan spent the day trying to make sure he wasn’t that player.

“I’m just pretty much a politician today. I’m calling in favours, talking to guys and I even made some threats to our friendship for (Ryan) Getzlaf,” said Ryan, who was selected by Foligno in Round 13.

Washington winger Alex Ovechkin wouldn’t have been upset or embarrassed by sitting around and waiting to get the keys to the 2015 Honda Accord.

“I want to be last,” Ovechkin said. “I need a car.”

Foligno wouldn’t give him his wish.

“Just pick him, it’ll piss him off,” Foligno said.

Drew Doughty told Ovechkin: “Just buy a car.”

Tampa centre Steven Stamkos, selected fourth overall by Foligno, insisted anybody who said they wanted the wheels was fibbing.

“Everyone says they want the car but they don’t really want the car and I’m glad I don’t have a chance at the car,” said Stamkos.

The fans selected Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to go to Team Foligno which meant Nashville’s Filip Forsberg landed with Toews. Both got the keys to cars.

“The six-hour drive back to Nasvhille will be nice in the new car. The coaching staff is here so we might have to squeeze them in the back,” said Forsberg.

Chicago’s Corey Crawford was the first goalie selected by Team Toews while Montreal’s Carey Price went to Foligno.

Stopping pucks in the all-star game is not an easy task.

“Stopping the puck is not something that’s easy to do when there’s so much talent on the ice,” said Florida goalie Roberto Luongo, who was happy to go No. 6 overall to Toews.

The night was all in good fun.

ROSTERS
Team Nick Foligno (coached by Darryl Sutter, Los Angeles Kings)
F Nick Foligno, Columbus Blue Jackets (captain)
D Drew Doughty, Los Angeles Kings (alternate captain)
F Patrick Kane, Chicago Blackhawks (alternate captain)
F Ryan Johansen, Columbus Blue Jackets
D Duncan Keith, Chicago Blackhawks
F Anze Kopitar, Los Angeles Kings
F Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning
F Phil Kessel, Toronto Maple Leafs (second overall pick traded for Tyler Seguin)
G Carey Price, Montreal Canadiens
F Claude Giroux, Philadelphia Flyers
D Dustin Byfuglien, Winnipeg Jets
G Marc-Andre Fleury, Pittsburgh Penguins
G Brian Elliott, St. Louis Blues
D Brent Burns, San Jose Sharks
D Kevin Shattenkirk, St. Louis Blues
F Bobby Ryan, Ottawa Senators
F Radim Vrbata, Vancouver Canucks
D Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Arizona Coyotes
F Zemgus Girgensons, Buffalo Sabres
F Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
F Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Edmonton Oilers
F Jiri Sekac, Montreal Canadiens x
F Jonathan Drouin, Tampa Bay Lightning x

Team Jonathan Toews (coached by Peter Laviolette, Nashville Predators)
F Jonathan Toews, Chicago Blackhkaws (captain)
F Ryan Getzlaf, Anaheim Ducks (alternate captain)
F Rick Nash, New York Rangers (alternate captain)
F Tyler Seguin, Dallas Stars (traded for Phil Kessel)
D Shea Weber, Nashville Preators
F Jake Voracek, Philadelphia Flyers
G Corey Crawford, Chicago Blackhawks
F John Tavares, New York Islanders
G Roberto Luongo, Florida Panthers
F Brent Seabrook, Chicago Blackhawks
F Vladimir Tarasenko, St. Louis Blues
F Patrice Bergeron, Boston Bruins
G Jaroslav Halak, New York Islanders
D Aaron Ekblad, Florida Panthers
F Patrik Elias, New Jersey Devils
D Ryan Suter, Minnesota Wild
D Mark Giordano, Calgary Flames
D Justin Faulk, Carolina Hurricanes
F Tyler Johnson, Tampa Bay Lightning
F Filip Forsberg, Nashville Predators
F Johnny Gaudreau, Calgary Flames x
F Mike Hoffman, Ottawa Senators x
x – rookies participating only in the NHL All-Star Skills Competition


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