Official: Flames Trade Olli Jokinen, Brandon Prust To Rangers For Ales Kotalik, Chris Higgins

After 24 hours of uncertainty, Olli Jokinen and Ales Kotalik are the center pieces of a major four-player trade between New York and Calgary.

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Officially Official: Flames Trade Olli Jokinen, Brandon Prust to Rangers for Ales Kotalik, Chris Higgins

After 24 hours of unknown circumstances and wild speculation, the Calgary Flames and New York Rangers have finally completed a major trade that will send Olli Jokinen and Brandon Prust to the Rangers for Ales Kotalik and Chris Higgins.

From Darren Dreger of TSN:

One of the most bizarre trades I have ever covered. Jokinen+Prust for Higgins and Kotalik. Good night.

Bizarre is right. Most of the hockey world is simply relieved to have this deal over and done with. So ultimately, what was the hold up?

It appears that the Flames simply wanted to keep Jokinen in the lineup to face the Philadelphia Flyers at home on Monday night. He was largely invisible in that contest and the Flames lost 3-0. But the decision to keep Jokinen (and therefore Prust) in Calgary red for just one more game had interesting implications on Flames practice Monday morning.

Eric Duhatschek of The Globe and Mail:

As of noon today, Jokinen and Prust were still on the team and were on the ice earlier in the morning, preparing to play in Monday's game against the Philadelphia Flyers. Still, the tension in the air was palpable whenever you turned. Neither Jokinen nor Prust spoke in the dressing room following the morning skate; and when Jokinen came off the ice, he looked decidedly unhappy.

It has to be awkward lacing up the skates for a team that you know is actively shopping your services. In this case, in fact, it seems Jokinen was all but gone. Dreger's 'bizarre' description is really the only word that describes this whole thing.

In Calgary, fans are just downright upset with the deal. Cue Kent Wilson from SBN's Matchsticks and Gasoline:

Kotalik is terrible. His contract is terrible. If Sutter doesn’t flip him for something else (be it another player or basket of fruit) it’s an absolutely brutal acquisition.

Higgins was once a good player who may or may not be recoverable. He’s probably a step up from Nystrom et al.

Rangers fans at SBN's Blueshirt Banter likely echo those same thoughts, which means they're obviously happy the deal is now done. Some fan comments:

PARTY AT MY PLACE

WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

dear god! the apocalypse!!! it’s happening!!

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Report: Deal 'Not Likely' On Monday

It appears that any trade between the New York Rangers and the Calgary Flames will have to wait at least another day.

According to TSN’s Bob McKenzie
:

Jokinen/Prust for Higgins/Kotalik not expected to happen today and may not happen at all tho still possible this deal is done after game.

He also mentions that Olli Jokinen, one of the centerpieces in the deal, is expected to be in the lineup against Philadelphia on Monday evening. That simple fact alone could be what’s holding up the deal.

McKenzie again:

Sources tell TSN that while the Rangers thought they had the deal basically agreed to on Sunday night, the Flames weren’t ready to pull the trigger, in part, because they felt they needed Jokinen in the lineup tonight against Philadelphia in Calgary. There are reports that Kotalik isn’t prepared to waive his no-trade clause to go to Calgary but the indication is the Rangers were fully able and prepared to do this deal, but Calgary backed away at the last moment.

There are a few questions here. First off, how awkward is it playing for a team that you know is actively trying to trade you? And how awkward is it if the only thing holding a trade back is that your old team just wants you around as a weapon for one more game?

The other question that fans on both sides of the puck are asking this morning is just how Ales Kotalik managed to get a no-movement clause out of Rangers general manager Glen Sather.

As always, stick with SBNation.com, our Rangers blog Blueshirt Banter, and our Flames blog Matchsticks and Gasoline for the latest information and reaction.

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Hold The Phones: Rangers-Flames Swap May Not Be Final Just Yet

While it’s apparently close to complete, it appears that the pending trade between the New York Rangers and the Calgary Flames is being held up by one of the teams.

Speculation is rampant that more players may be involved or that another team may be involved as well, but for now all we know is that the deal sending Ales Kotalik and Chris Higgins from New York to Calgary in exchange for Olli Jokinen and Brandon Prust is ‘not likely’ to be finalized tonight.

From TSN’s Darren Dreger on Twitter:

Trade call is unlikely tonight. Sounds like the Flames are holding this deal up.

Head on over to SBN’s Blueshirt Banter and Matchsticks and Gasoline to join the discussion throughout the night as developments occur.

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Report: Calgary Sends Olli Jokinen to Rangers for Ales Kotalik and Chris Higgins

Darren Dreger of TSN is reporting on Twitter that the Calgary Flames will be sending Olli Jokinen to the New York Rangers in exchange for Ales Kotalik and Chris Higgins. Brandon Prust is also reportedly on his way to New York.

The Flames have been extremely busy bolstering their offense today, adding several pieces in a trade with the Maple Leafs earlier in the day and now, apparently, adding a few more pieces here. Jokinen hasn't performed exceptionally well in Calgary this season, his first full year there after being traded by Phoenix at the trade deadline a year ago.

It's essentially a lateral move salary wise, as Jokinen has a salary cap hit of $5.25 million, while Kotalik and Higgins have a combined cap hit of that same price. Prust has a menial cap hit of just $500k.

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