The Winnipeg Jets have landed their defensive upgrade right at the deadline, acquiring Jordie Benn from the Vancouver Canucks according to Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet. Darren Dreger of TSN reports that the Jets will send a 2021 sixth-round pick to Vancouver.
The quality of the player and the timing of the deal point in one direction: GM Kevin Cheveldayoff ran out of time and options. There was perhaps no team in the NHL with a more identifiable need than the Jets and their blue line. The team has needed another defenseman all season and was expected to be in the running for the best available names. The team even signaled that a trade was on the way by moving Nathan Beaulieu to Long-Term Injured Reserve to open up more cap space.
Instead, they leave cap room to spare and leave their fans wanting more with the addition of Benn. In fairness, the respected veteran is having a good offensive season by his standards and brings experience and leadership to the fold. However, he has only been playing bottom-pair minutes in Vancouver this season and has been regularly exposed on defense. Benn is simply a depth addition for Winnipeg, not the game-changing presence that was hoped for.