Anaheim Ducks Justin Pogge and a Conditional Fourth-Round Pick to Carolina for Aaron Ward

March 04, 2010

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Jeff Ponder

Anaheim Ducks Justin Pogge and a Conditional Fourth-Round Pick to Carolina for Aaron Ward

Pogge could have counted how many days he lived in Anaheim before being traded again.

After being acquired over the summer from Toronto, Pogge did not even see action with the Ducks before being dealt at the deadline.  It was pretty clear that the Ducks would want Pogge for next season to battle for the backup job with prospect Timo Pielmeier after trading J.S. Giguere to Toronto just a few weeks ago.  Vesa Toskala was acquired in the trade, but his contract will be up at the end of the season and was unlikely to re-sign with Anaheim.  Pogge's .920 save percentage with the San Antonio Rampage of the AHL this season shows how impressive he truly can be.

The veteran Ward has spent five of the past nine seasons with the Hurricanes, but has been shown the door.  The Carolina team sits in second to last place in the Eastern Conference and is looking to unload some of the veterans.  Ward's -17 this season ranked him just ahead of teammate Rod Brind'Amour for the team's last place spot.  But he has proven in the past (especially in Carolina's 2006 Stanley Cup run when playing against the top lines), that he can play hard against any opponent.

It is hard to pick a clear-cut winner of this trade, but the slight edge will have to go to Carolina.  While Ward will help the Ducks' push to the playoffs this season, Pogge will be a restricted free-agent at the end of the season and may be able to be signed for a relatively cheap contract.  With backup Manny Legace on the way out of Carolina, Pogge may be the backup that starter Cam Ward has been looking for.

Keywords: aaron ward, cam ward, carolina hurricanes, justin pogge, manny legace, rod brind'amour, Timo Pielmeier

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