On June 23rd, 2017 the Chicago Blackhawks and the Columbus Blue Jackets made a trade centered around Artemi Panarin and Brandon Saad. Panarin came to Columbus and Saad went back to Chicago. Now with a full season gone since the trade went down, it’s time to see who won the trade so far.
Winner of the Brandon Saad and Artemi Panarin trade a year later
Comparisons by Stats
Saad played 82 games and Panarin played 81 so the comparing stats is a very fair way to compare the two players. When it came to goal scoring Panarin was the clear winner. Having scored 27 goals this season, he added two more in the postseason for a total of 29 goals. Saad, on the other hand, had 18 goals which were his lowest season total in the past five years. Panarin also over doubled Saad’s assist numbers. 55 assist was a career-high for Panarin while Saad tied a career-low 17. When it comes to total points for the season Panarin finally broke the 80 point mark getting 82 and another 7 in the postseason. Saad’s 35 points are his lowest total since his rookie season 2012-2013.
When it came to possession number the Corsi percentage was similar 56.7 for Saad and 57.0 for Panarin. When it comes to the Relative Corsi number it was more skewed in favor of Panarin. Saad had a 5.7 Relative Corsi while Panarin had an 8.6 Relative Corsi number.
Each players expectations going into this season
When it comes to expectations for the season Panarin and Saad had two different ones. Panarin was expected to be the man in Columbus when he arrived. However, there was the question of will Panarin produce without Patrick Kane on his line. Panarin proved his doubters wrong from the beginning, with a three-assist night during an opening night win. Panarin continued his success throughout the season becoming the first Blue Jacket to have an 80 point season.
The power-play was another area where Panarin had an effect. 21 power-play points helped a Columbus team that really struggled with the man advantage. There was another reason Blue Jackets wanted to get Panarin on the team, to fill the need for an elite scorer. Panarin did exactly that he became the guy Columbus could go to when they needed a goal. Panarin notched his second career hat trick this season and had five game-winning goals.
Saad’s expectations coming into this season was not as drastic. Saad was expected to play the third fiddle behind Kane and Jonathan Toews trying to recreate what Chicago had a couple seasons ago. Saad didn’t live up to those expectations finishing fifth on the team in points with 35. He was also fifth on the team in goals and eighth on the team in assists. Saad started out the season strong netting a hat trick opening night. Continued his early success having six goals in the first six games and a total of eight points during that time. Saad’s production quickly dropped off but had a couple hot streaks throughout the season.
When the trade was made it came as a shock to a lot of people. Saad seemed like a player that was a young building block for the Blue Jackets. Panarin seemed to be an up and coming star for the Blackhawks. For this year the gamble seemed to have paid off for the Blue Jackets while not so much for the Blackhawks.
Panarin helped Columbus to advance to its 2nd straight Stanley Cup Playoffs, while Saad and Chicago failed to make the postseason. Saad will most likely have much better seasons than the one he had this season. However, it seems that Panarin will only continue to get better. As of this season, it is very clear that the Blue Jackets won this trade. Panarin’s contract is up after this upcoming season, the Blue Jackets have to re-sign him if they want to win this trade in the long run.
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