The Washington Capitals were Smart Trading Filip Forsberg for Martin Erat

The Washington Capitals were smart trading Filip Forsberg to the Nashville Predators for Martin Erat back in 2013 prior to the trade deadline. There I said it.

You call me crazy right? Well hear me out Washington Capitals fans. Back in 2013 the team traded highly touted prospect Filip Forsberg to the Nashville Predators for Martin Erat and Michael Latta. This upset many Capitals fans and rightfully so but I’m here to say that maybe this was actually a good thing for the Capitals.

For one, they got a future hall of famer in Martin Erat. At the time, he was killing it for the Predators. He led the team with 17 assists and was tied for first on the team with 21 points.

He was also a Predators legend who at the time of his departure ranked second in team history with 163 career goals and 318 assists in 723 games. Even though the Predators made the playoffs in seven of their last eight seasons there was no chance he was going to win a Cup with them. Coming to a team like the Capitals, who are favored to win the Stanley Cup almost every season, seemed to be the perfect fit for him.

The Erat addition almost worked. The Capitals rallied from winning two of their first 11 games to clinching a Southeast Division title to make the playoffs once again. Erat and the Capitals almost beat the New York Rangers and pushed them to the brink before they rallied to win Games 6 and 7 to end Washington’s season early yet again.

Erat and the Capitals were so devastated and embarrassed from losing that series that they decided it would be best to miss the playoffs altogether the next season. After all, you can’t have playoff heartbreak if you don’t get in the playoffs!

But let’s not forget about the other the other acquisition which had an even greater impact on the Capitals long term. Michal Latta was brought on to help nurture a young Tom Wilson. His assignment was to be roommates with him but the two soon turned out to be inseparable bros. Even though Latta is no longer on the team, he left a lasting impact on Wilson which is one of the reasons why he’s tied for fourth on the team with goals.

Another sign the Capitals won the trade can be traced from simply looking at the results of the last two Stanley Cup Finals. The Predators lost in 2017 to the Pittsburgh Penguins while the Capitals won it all in 2018. Washington clearly did something right with this trade.

It is these reasons and one more why the Capitals were smart in trading Filip Forsberg. The last reason is April Fools! Of course that was a dumb trade and probably the reason why this whole championship drought ordeal took longer than it should have. It’s all good though. The Capitals are Stanley Cup champions and will look to defend the crown this spring.