*Updated at 6:47 PM CST*
The Winnipeg Jets announced on Thursday morning that forward Bryan Little was shut down for the season, but team captain and leading scorer Andrew Ladd was never taken off the trade block.
With just hours until Winnipeg’s game, it seems probable that the move to send him out has been made – as the team healthy scratched the winger ahead of their game against the Dallas Stars.
Andrew Ladd a scratch tonight vs DAL.
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) February 26, 2016
The move to scratch Ladd – who boasts 17 goals and 34 points over 59 games – ahead of a game without Little in the lineup further suggests that a move is imminent, and TSN senior correspondent Gary Lawless suggests that it could be to the Chicago Blackhawks.
Within the hour, the deal had been confirmed – Andrew Ladd was sent to the Chicago Blackhawks.
He didn’t come cheap, either. The Blackhawks had to sent out their 2016 first round pick to the Winnipeg Jets along with one of the biggest pieces that they picked up in their trade of Brandon Saad, forward prospect Marko Dano. Per TSN’s Darren Dreger, there is a conditional pick involved in the deal as well, while the Jets send out both AHLers Matt Fraser and Jay Harrison while retaining 36% of Ladd’s salary.
Dano, drafted 27th overall in 2013 by the Columbus Blue Jackets, has just one goal and two points in 13 NHL games this year but offered four goals and 23 points in 34 games for the AHL’s Rockford Ice Hogs. Last season, Dano was a huge part of Columbus’ late season surge, posting 11 goals and 19 points in just 39 games.
The conditional pick sent to the Jets is a third round pick in 2018, if the Blackhawks win the 2016 Stanley Cup.