As the 3pm trade deadline came and went, the Washington Capitals stood pat, adding only Avs defenseman Cody Corbett to the Hershey Bears.
While the NHL’s annual moratorium on deals can be unnerving for almost every player, fourth-line forward Daniel Winnik and wife Taylor were especially anxious the last few days. Winnik has played for seven different organizations and been traded four different times (three before the trade deadline) during his nine-year NHL career. Winnik has never spent more than three consecutive seasons with the same club.
When Daniel and Taylor learned that they would spend the rest of the season in Washington — a team, a fanbase, and an area in which they deeply love — they both published celebratory tweets.
…. Smell ya later trade deadline!!
— Daniel Winnik (@Danwinnik34) March 2, 2017
The array of emotions I felt during this trade deadline
— Taylor Winnik (@TaylorWinnik) March 2, 2017
“When we first heard the Caps were getting Kevin Shattenkirk, we knew the team potentially had to dump a contract to be able to fit him under the cap,” Taylor said Wednesday night. “We fit the bill. That was the only moment I thought it could be real that we were leaving.”
After waiting 90 minutes for all the trade details to surface Monday night, the Winniks learned they were safe. The St. Louis Blues coveted prospect Zach Sanford and retained 39% of Shattenkirk’s $4.25 million salary, making it unnecessary for the Caps to flip a veteran to get under the cap.
“Even after I knew it wasn’t us, I was already in a full-fledged anxiety assault,” Taylor said. “It took me until the next day to get it mostly out of my system.”
So far this season, Daniel Winnik has become an indispensable part of the Caps checking line, along with Jay Beagle and Tom Wilson. Winnik has scored eight goals – the most he’s scored in a single season with the same team since the 2010-11 season (11).
While the Capitals’ record is slightly worse than last year’s President’s Trophy-winning team, this year’s roster is deeper. The team is inarguably better built for a long playoff run, marking Winnik’s best opportunity to win the Stanley Cup in his career.
“I’ve never wanted to stick with a team more than this one,” Taylor said. “I feel like we’ve really made a wonderful home here.”
Rinkside Update | Daniel Winnik comments on the Caps' trade moves and his own trade deadline experiences #CapsDevils pic.twitter.com/Bh0yzVZtUM
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) March 2, 2017
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