Flyers Acquire Nate Thomp-Er, Derek Grant From Anaheim
*Copies Nate Thompson*
The Philadelphia Flyers made their second minor move of the trade deadline. Less than an hour after acquiring Nate Thompson from the Montreal Canadiens, the Flyers dealt center Kyle Criscuolo and a 4th round pick to the Anaheim Ducks for another similar player, center Derek Grant (UPDATE: Anaheim will receive the higher of the Flyers two 4th round picks - either Philly's or Nashville's).
At 5-on-5, there isn't a lot to like about Grant. Per Natural Stat Trick, Grant has the seventh worst Corsi in the league (40.58%) and sixth worst Expected Goals For% (38.9%) for players with at least 300 minutes played. However, it's not all bad. Micah Blake McCurdy is one of the top advanced stats sources in the hockey world, and his models actually don't see Grant as negatively.
If you click on the Tweet, you can also see Grant's penalty kill results, which are also solid. Grant has a solid 20 points in 49 games for the Ducks this season, who aren't exactly a top offensive team. Those are solid offensive numbers. Whereas Thompson is strictly a fourth-liner, there's a chance that Grant could play higher in the lineup (although he probably shouldn't). The Flyers like Scott Laughton better on the wing and although he's been effective centering James van Riemsdyk and Tyler Pitlick, a little bit of help never hurts. But is Grant a boost for Laughts, or really just subtraction by addition?
Neither of the two moves the Flyers have made so far will make many headlines. In fact, they're probably the two smallest moves of the trade deadline. But as I mentioned in the Thompson article, everyone needs depth in the playoffs, and you never know who is going to help.
Grant won't move the needle very much on the Flyers chance of success, but he's another capable bottom-six forward. Considering the price - a fourth round pick and Criscuolo, a 27-year old with 24 points in 40 games with the Phantoms - Grant isn't the worst get. But he's not the best one, either. The Flyers are pretty close to being capped out (Grant carries a league-min $700,000 cap hit, leaving the Flyers with just over $300,000 in cap space, pending further moves), but we'll see if Chuck Fletcher has any more moves in store.