The Columbus Blue Jackets, struggling in the cellar of the NHL and with seemingly no hope of moving from that spot, have finally made a move. It's not the one you were expecting.
Forward Mark Letestu has been traded across the state line to Columbus from the Pittsburgh Penguins in exchange for a fourth round pick in the 2012 NHL Draft. Surely, this will solve all the Blue Jackets' problems.
In all seriousness, that pick coming back to Pittsburgh will almost certainly be a valuable one. The Pens now hold eight picks in the draft including Columbus' fourth-rounder, and considering the Blue Jackets' position in the standings, that could be a very early fourth round pick.
For that reason, Columbus seems like a good team to make a trade with when you're just trying to clear a roster spot -- say for the return of Sidney Crosby. The Penguins will never say as much, but they need to make some sort of move in order to clear a roster spot for Crosby's return, which could apparently come as soon as this upcoming weekend. This is certainly speculation, but well, it's pretty justified speculation.
Trading away Letestu, who just happens to play the same center position as Crosby, makes total sense in that regard. The 26-year-old has just one point in 11 games this season, and he scored 27 points in 64 games a year ago. He's kind of an expendable piece for the Penguins, and the Blue Jackets can use all the help they can get.
For more on the trade from the Columbus perspective, check in with Blue Jackets blog The Cannon. For more from the other site of things, check in with SB Nation Pittsburgh and Penguins blog Pensburgh.