Sports Outside the Beltway

Let the trading begin- Columbus sends Goalie Pascal Leclaire to Ottawa

The NHL trading deadline is four hours away. From CBC Sports-

The Ottawa Senators traded forward Antoine Vermette to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Wednesday.

In exchange, Ottawa receives goaltender Pascal LeClaire and a second-round pick in the 2009 NHL draft.

Vermette, 26, has nine goals and 19 assists in 62 games this season for the Senators.

He is signed through next season, when he will make $3 million, before he becomes eligible for unrestricted free agency in the summer of 2010.

Leclaire, 26, has played in 12 games for the Jackets this season, posting a 4-6-1 record with a 3.83 goals against average

Ottawa is essentially out of the playoff hunt for 2008-09. I’m doubtful Leclaire will help fill the goaltending void in Ottawa. He’s just another second stringer, and the Senators have two already in Alex Auld and Martin Gerber. Admittedly Gerber has been sent to the minors and may be destined for Europe. So he could be reasonably considered out of the picture. Still the move puzzles me.

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