Whenever a trade is made in the NHL, every fan fears the announcement of who or what will no longer be affiliated with their team.
After the official closing of what seemed like a slow trade deadline day a flurry of trades surfaced, including the Anaheim Ducks revealing they had acquired James Wisniewski from the Columbus Blue Jackets for a package including William Karlsson, Rene Bourque and a draft pick.
This trade hit the news sandwiched between a seemingly more minor trade involving Mat Clark to Colorado and the trade that brought Simon Despres to Anaheim and sent Ben Lovejoy back to Pittsburgh. I can safely say that my head was somewhat spinning just trying to keep tabs on who was going where for what. Then when you sit down and actually look into the trades, there's a lot to sift through and a lot to digest.
I know I am not alone in remembering a hodgepodge of emotions regarding this trade in particular. It's overwhelming just remembering the relief that Bourque would no longer play for the Ducks, the despair at losing such a promising prospect in Karlsson, the concern with Wisniewski's larger contract, and what lingers of the bitter taste from how Wiz last left the Ducks (he almost took the team to arbitration court).
I remember vividly trying to emotionally rationalize Karlsson's departure by forcing myself to believe that this was a better move for the youngster, but still don't know how fully I'm committed to that idea. As much as the Ducks have an absurd amount of depth in terms of young forwards working through their system, I hate feeling like we sent one of the most promising prospects to Columbus.
On October 13, 2014, in just his second career NHL game, Karlsson tallied two goals on six shots on goal when the Anaheim Ducks defeated the Buffalo Sabres 5-1.
William Karlsson has an impressive maturity to make his quickness, agility, and two-way game that much more threatening to opponents. He is everything that any NHL team could really ask for out of a young prospect. At just 22 years old, "Wild Bill" has a strong hockey sense and seemingly limitless potential.
Karlsson continued to strengthen up and work to improve many aspects of his game, including his faceoff skills, during his time with Anaheim.
|Season||Team||League||Games Played||Goals||Assists||Points||Penalty Minutes||+/-|
|2014-15||Columbus Blue Jackets
Karlsson may not have contributed immensely on the statistical side of the game, however he brought a youthful energy and impressive depth to the team's lineup of centers.
The young Swede shows serious promise for his future potential, and unfortunately that won't have any direct impact on the Ducks organization. However, Karlsson's potential is what helped bring Wisniewski back to Anaheim, which could have made a large impact in the post-season had Despres not stepped up, pushing Wiz out of the lineup.