Paul Stastny waiving his no-trade clause to go to Winnipeg this afternoon is a perk for the Blues. If the forward wasn’t going to consider re-signing with St. Louis, the options were either to trade for assets or to let him walk for free. Obviously, the former is preferable to the latter for Doug Armstrong, and the Blues got decent assets (especially Erik Foley) in exchange for a rental.
Stastny was interviewed by the Blues’ website about the trade and the motivation for waiving the no-trade clause, and the only way that you can miss reading what’s between the lines here is if your name is Helen Keller.
“I’m excited to go somewhere that, looking at them on paper, playing against them, I know what quality of a team they have.”
“Maybe be that piece to... play more hockey for me, that’s a big factor, and it made the decision a little easier.”
He goes on to mention that the Blues’ latest losing streak was probably a motivating factor in why the team asked him to waive his NTC.
The best portion starts about 1:52 when the interviewer asks him if there was surprise considering the Blues are “on the cusp of a wild card spot” and Stastny’s response is “you can’t be naive to the situation.”
I’m not knocking Stastny for his motivations to waive the NTC. It benefited the Blues far more than riding out his deal here, which is considerate. Hockey is also his job and his career, and if he knows that there’s an opportunity for success elsewhere then he needs to take it. It’s the admission that, after watching the team slide downhill over the month of February, the grass is greener on Winnipeg’s side that’s hard to take.