Flyers fans up in arms after team trades farm to Sabres for Rasmus Ristolainen
By the looks of it, Philadelphia Flyers fans are not thrilled with the franchise’s blockbuster trade with the Buffalo Sabres on Friday. Philly acquired defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen from Buffalo in exchange for the No. 13 pick in tonight’s 2021 NHL Draft, a second-round pick in 2023, and defensemen Robert Hagg.
🚨 TRADE ALERT! 🚨
We have acquired defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen from the Buffalo Sabres in exchange for our first round pick (13th overall) in the 2021 NHL Draft, a second round pick in the 2023 NHL Draft and defenseman Robert Hagg. Details: https://t.co/UOBqWNQCm6 pic.twitter.com/vCrkLgY0Mt
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) July 23, 2021
The Flyers were expected to address their issues on the blue line. Still, the price was steep.
The deal comes one day after Philadelphia traded defensemen Shayne Gostisbehere to the Arizona Coyotes for future considerations. Over 381 games, Gostisbehere amassed the fifth-most points by a defenseman (219) in franchise history.
Philly (58 points) finished sixth in the East division. They were not very good.
Not surprisingly, Flyers fans vented their outrage on Twitter at the team’s latest head-scratching move.
i’m still in utter disbelief that rasmus ristolainen was traded for a 1st and a 2nd
— dom at the athletic (@domluszczyszyn) July 23, 2021
[The Flyers, over the last two days]
2021 Pick 13
Baffling stuff in Philly.
— Mike Gould (@miketgould) July 23, 2021
Let's just take a moment here, together.
– Flyers pay assets to get rid of Ghostisbehere
– Flyers take space from said transaction and acquire *Rasmus Ristolainen*
– In said transaction, they forfeit the 13th overall pick pic.twitter.com/m8KLt6lcBm
— Jesse Marshall (@jmarshfof) July 23, 2021
Ristolainen, 26, was drafted No. 8 overall by the Sabres in 2013. He had 18 points in 49 games for Buffalo in 2020-21. (He missed seven games due to COVID-19.) Ristolainen ranked fourth in hockey in hits (193).
The righty defensemen is entering the final year of a six-year contract, worth 5.4 million in annual value.
The newest Philadelphia Flyer, ladies and gentlemen. pic.twitter.com/73gSOyWsnl
— Josh Lyons (@TheLyons_Den) July 23, 2021
The Sabres finished at the bottom of the league in points (37), though they beat Philadelphia three times. According to Broadstreet Hockey, Ristolainen was among the worst players in hockey in tough minutes.
At 6’4″, 215, Ristolainen could join the Flyers second line next to Travis Sanheim, if they re-sign Sanheim.
Hagg posted 47 points (13g-34a) in five seasons with the Flyers.
We’ll update you when Gritty provides his official response.