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Drysdale Traded To Philadelphia
By Michael Walters
Today the Anaheim Ducks announced Jamie Drysdale and a 2025 second draft pick were traded to the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for the rights to Cutter Gauthier.
Drysdale played in just 10 games this season with Anaheim as he had some injury issues. He scored once and had four assists for a total of five points in those contests. He also had an on ice rating of -2. He recently returned to the team and seemed to be hitting his stride again. At the beginning of this season he signed a three year deal with a $2.3 mil AAV with Anaheim.
Gauthier is playing at Boston College this season. He currently has 23 points(13 goals + 10 assists) in 17 games, ranking 6th in goals in the NCAA. He also played in seven games for Team USA winning gold at the World Juniors. He was named the best forward at the 2024 World Juniors. He scored twice and had 10 assists for 12 points in the tournament. He was drafted fifth overall in the 2022 NHL entry draft by the Philadelphia Flyers.
Verbeek On Trade (Via Ducks Stream)
“Obviously, it was a difficult decision to trade Jamie Drysdale. He’s an up-and-coming young defenseman, but when I’ve been watching our team the last month or so, we’ve had difficulty scoring goals. This opportunity presented itself, and we really started diving into it. As time went on over the last month or so, we pushed to make the deal happen.”
“I want to thank Jamie for his hard work and dedication to the organization. He’s got a great future ahead of him. It wasn’t an easy decision, but in Cutter we’re getting a terrific player and a very versatile player. We’re excited to get him.”
This is a trade where both teams obtained what they were looking for in this deal. Anaheim has depth on defense especially with the young talent pool of players like Pavel Mintyukov, Jackson LaCombe, Olen Zellweger, and Tristan Luneau. Verbeek mentioned the young blue line depth and especially the emergence of Luneau helped make his decision to part ways with Drysdale a little easier. The Ducks also need more offense as they are currently averaging 2.46 goals per game, which is 29th in the league. They have lost many games by one goal margins.
Cutter Gauthier is a dynamic offensive player as he recently displayed in the World Juniors helping Team USA win gold. He brings size standing 6’3″ and weighing about 201 pounds. He has a heavy shot which he can deliver with a quick release. He is a play maker, who can line up as a center or winger, which Verbeek mentioned appealed to him during his interview today on Ducks Stream. Verbeek also likes his maturity as he discussed how Gauthier likes to lead by example as he will get in the gym early. Verbeek thinks he can make a jump to the next step very soon and the plan is to sign him at the end of Boston College’s season this year.
Gauthier immediately upgrades the Ducks top six forwards and should compliment players like Leo Carlsson, Mason McTavish, Troy Terry, and Trevor Zegras in the near future. He will likely finish this season at Boston College, though there is a small chance he could sign an entry-level contract(ELC)after the college season and play in Anaheim. Regardless he won’t have much of an impact with the team this season, but next year he could really make his mark in Anaheim unless he chooses to stay in BC another year.
The Flyers were looking to add a right handed defenseman with a solid two game and Drysdale fits the bill for Philadelphia. Another concern for the Flyers is Gauthier didn’t want to come to the team per numerous reports. GM Danny Briere spoke on what caused the situation and said “I don’t know. We never got an answer. So I don’t know much than that.” Maybe time will tell, but with Gauthier’s future very much in doubt in Philly, the GM had to do something to improve his team and still get value in drafting Gauthier before the situation got worse. He was able to achieve that by getting a high draft pick for 2025 and help on the blue line.
This is a win for both teams with a slight edge going to Anaheim. The Ducks got a slightly younger player, who could turn out to be a dominate top 6 forward for years to come. They did give up Drysdale, who has a bright future ahead of him as well, but injury concerns and the future depth on the Anaheim blue line give the Ducks an edge in this trade.
For the immediate reaction from Verbeek, please visit Ducks Stream for the brief interview.
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January 8th, 2023