Anthony Duclair Traded

Will A “Fresh” Start In Ottawa Help Anthony Duclair Find Consistent Time In The NHL?

Anthony Duclair was never a projected to be a top-talent in the NHL but he was expected to be better than he has currently panned out to be. Duclair was drafted in 2013, 3rd round 19th pick (80th overall) by the New York Rangers.

Duclair played 18 games in 2014-15 with the Rangers collecting 7 points, he was quickly sent to Arizona part of the Keith Yandle trade. With Arizona he played 172 games tallying 74 points (his longest tenure), then was sent to Chicago for Richard Panik. He played 23 games collecting 8 points. He was released by Chicago and quickly picked up by Columbus, playing 53 games for 19 points.

Now as we know he was sent to Ottawa in the Ryan Dzingel trade. Duclair will look for a fresh start in Ottawa as he begins to play with his fifth team in five years. His third team in two years.

John Tortorella has been very clear and up-front about Duclair’s struggles in Columbus. For a player that is 5″11 and 190+ lbs and has a very similar structure to his game like the Wild’s forward Jordan Greenway. Duclair has really struggled to stay consistent in the NHL. Duclair has the speed and size, he works hard in the offensive zone and works well along the boards but it seems from what Coach Tortorella said about Duclair is that he does not play both sides of the puck well nor is situationally aware and lacks the hockey IQ.

As John Tortella said four days ago about Duclair:

“I don’t think he knows how to play, I don’t,” Tortorella said. “It seems to me he’s like a player who feels he can get the puck because he’s tremendously skilled. He can skate. He has all those things you guys know. I just think he thinks he can go do whatever the hell he wants to do on the ice. You can’t do it in the National Hockey League.

“We have spent a lot of time trying to teach him, trying to teach him situational play, away from the puck. All the stuff we do with players. Sometimes, it looks like he is understanding. So to answer your question, I don’t know. I don’t know if he can’t comprehend it or if he’s just stubborn. But he is running out of time.”

Per The Athletic Tom Reed.

Will Ottawa be a good place for Duclair? Who knows, he grew up in Pointe-Claire Quebec so perhaps heading back “home” to Canada to play for a Canadian franchise could be good for Duclair. It worked for Max Domi and Jonathan Drouin but Duclair will not have much on his roster to help him really propel his game. Although with Ottawa basically a guaranteed first overall pick team right now and having not many to no super stars it may be good for Duclair. Duclair is only 23-years-old and has plenty of time to get an identity to his game and fix his weak areas but like Tortella said his time is definitely running slim.


NHL Free Agents 2018

Noteable Forward Free Agents: Yakupov, Smith-Pelly, Reider, Duclair

Tobias Reider: Reider was sent over to L.A. during the deadline from Arizona. Spending 3.5 years with Arizona before being sent to L.A., Reider posted 92 points in 234 games (43G, 49A) and in 20 games with LA he posted 6 points (4G, 2A). Reider is 25-years-old his best year being in 2016-17 posting 37 points in 82 games. Reider was drafted in 2011 in the 4th round by Edmonton. Reider is a bottom six forward that can be of service to many teams, the thing with Reider is also his services are cheap as he could be a 1 to 1.5 million AAV.

Anthony Duclair: The 22-year-old, 3rd round draft pick is set to free agency very soon. Duclair spent one season in New York after being sent over to Arizona in 2015 where he spent three seasons until he was sent to Chicago at the deadline this season. Duclair has played in 213 games scoring 37 goals and 52 assists. Duclair is a very young, speedy left winger that can be used on any team, for the sole reason that he is extremely young and has a ton of upside. Duclair has received some interest from the Penguins. Until free agency hits, Duclair will probably be receiving many calls from many teams around the league.

Nail Yakupov: Again we see the 24-year-old on the move. Yakupov the 1st round 1st overall pick is on the move again as free agency is set to begin soon. Yakupov spent four seasons in Edmonton playing 252 games with 111 points (50G, 61A). Being sent to St. Louis which he failed only playing in 40 games tallying 9 points. Spending his most recent season in Colorado getting off to an extremely hot start, to eventually cool down dramatically only tallying 16 points in 58 games. Yakupov is 24, with the 1st overall pressure still hanging over his head. Yakupov has said to be getting interest from Nashville but until we hear more Yakupov will be on the hunt for a new team yet again.

Devante Smith-Pelly: Smith Pelly is coming off a Stanley Cup win, scoring some clutch goals during the Capitals Stanley Cup run. Smith Pelly is a solid bottom-six forward that can be a very good fourth liner, and a borderline third liner. Smith Pelly has been all over the league, only being 26-year-old and being on four different teams tells us a lot about Smith Pelly. He is a journeyman, to say the least. Smith Pelly spending 4 years in Anaheim, 2 in Montreal, 2 in New Jersey and the 75 games in Washington and winning a cup. Smith Pelly is an experienced winger at just 26 years old. If he does not end back in Washington, he will land a spot somewhere in the NHL as he has proved his worth in the league now winning a cup and performing in the playoffs.