I never really thought about trade deadlines before. Growing up in Georgia, baseball and football were THE sports. Hockey existed only in faraway lands and during the winter Olympics.
Now that I'm an avid Hockey fan, I discovered something about trade deadlines that I never knew from my baseball days. The annual trade deadline is wonderful.
Why you ask? It is really quite simple. No where else, in such a short time, is the pure hockey fan allowed to test his prowess by studying all the facts and predicting the which star, semi-star, or utility player will have their career directions suddenly changed in the seach for Lord Stanley's cup.
The baseball deadline always filled me with dread because it was the death knell for most teams due to the extremely closed nature of the baseball playoff system. The openness of the NHL playoff system and the league salary cap make the deadline magical as one year moves, rent-a-players, returning ex-stars all become the fodder of debate and hope.
The result? Just look at any team page. The excitement is palpable! When the final push for the playoffs begins after the trade deadline on March 5, it will truly be a new season. One that was totally unpredicted, and yet arrives filled with excitement.