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What a Detroit Red Wings Trade for Bo Horvat Would Have Been

The Vancouver Canucks shipped center Bo Horvat to the New York Islanders for Aatu Raty, Anthony Beauvillier, and a conditional 2023 first-round pick. Many Detroit Red Wings fans were left disappointed with the missed opportunity. Rumours had been surfacing that Yzerman was in on Horvat, and the potential of having two top-line centers was exciting. Before we jump to a conclusion that the Red Wings should have offered more to acquire the Canucks captain, let’s analyze what Detroit would have to give up in return.

How a Red Wings Trade for Bo Horvat Would Have Looked

The Player, Anthony Beauvillier

The first, and arguably smallest piece of the trade for Horvat is Anthony Beauvillier. A 25-year-old winger in his seventh year in the NHL, Beauvillier is continuing a downward trend. After two seasons averaging over half a point per game, he has only had 54 points in his last 124 games.

It is worth noting, Beauvillier has never been an offensive star. Islanders fans love him for his two-way presence on the ice, which has also suffered the past two seasons. His career average of Corsi For % (CF%) is 49.9%, which is 3.1% better than his teammates throughout his career. This season, his CF% is 52.9%, 5.1% better than his teammates. This shows that Beauvillier has stepped up his control of play this season.

Red Wing’s Player Comparables

The Red Wings have a couple of players who are comparable to Beauvillier in a trade. There is Tyler Bertuzzi, who is older and has more offensive flair yet is not quite as strong defensively. Dominik Kubalik also has a similar impact, again more on the offensive than the defensive side. Yet one player in Detroit had already been rumoured to be of interest to the Canucks, so we will focus on Michael Rasmussen.

Younger than Beauvillier at 23, and more cost controlled with a $1.46M AAV contract, Rasmussen provides more value as a trade asset. On top of that, it seems Rasmussen is breaking out this season, currently scoring at a 43-point pace. Beauvillier has never reached 40 points in an NHL season.

Defensively, Rasmussen lacks. He does not drive play the way Beauvillier does, averaging a CF% of 46.1% over his first four seasons. That is 0.9% worse relative to his teammates in that time frame. Still, his age, contract, and offensive upside should balance out his lower play-driving ability.

The Prospect, Aatu Raty

Aatu Raty was the big faller in the 2021 draft, going 52nd overall after being touted as the possible first pick in his draft minus one season. He had a rough season in Finland and ultimately fell in the draft. Even so, he still looks like a very strong prospect. Last season, after being loaned from Kärpät to Jukurit, Raty went from 1 point in 6 games to 40 points in 41 games. This season, he has been good, but not great in the AHL.

Overall Aatu Raty looks like an NHL player and has the potential to play in the top six on a contender. Most likely, he will either be a second-line winger, or a third-line center.

Red Wings Prospect Comparables

There are several prospects in the system for the Red Wings to trade. The most comparable to Aatu Raty has to be Carter Mazur. The star at the University of Denver is currently tied for the third most goals in the NCAA ahead of stars like Jimmy Snuggerud and Adam Fantilli.

Mazur plays a big game. He gets to the dirty areas close to the net, while also having a knack for finding the twine from distance. Red Wings fans will liken his style of play to Tyler Bertuzzi, who has been a unique player providing scoring, grit, and energy for the squad.

Raty has a higher profile, but scouts see a lot more in Mazur. Corey Pronman of The Athletic ranks Mazur at number 69 out of all U23 NHL prospects, while Raty falls in at number 96. Even though Mazur was taken 18 picks after Raty, he is the better prospect.

The Pick

The centrepiece of this trade was the 2023 first-round pick. The top-12 protection puts a damper on its value. If the pick does move to an unprotected 2024 first-rounder, there is no guarantee that the New York Islanders are not in the lottery.

The Red Wings 2023 first would be more valuable in a trade, as they currently sit in the 12th worst spot by points percentage. The Islanders are 13th, just ahead of the Wings, but clearly expect to rise in the standings. The Wings have a tough road ahead and look poised to fall even more with the strength of their schedule to come.

So the Wings would offer a 2024 first-round pick, as they need their first pick this year. Any lottery protection would virtually guarantee that the pick moves to 2024 anyway, even with the addition of Horvat.

The Final Trade

In summary, we have Michael Rasmussen, Carter Mazur, and a 2024 first-round pick going to the Canucks in exchange for UFA Bo Horvat. This Red Wings trade should make you pause for a second, but any trade with any feet in reality should. If you feel great about the trade, one side is getting fleeced.

That being said, the wings are right to hold off on this one. Mazur is a fantastic prospect. Rasmussen is on the rise and could potentially be a key piece to this rebuilding team. At 27 years old, and being unsigned, Horvat is a risky addition at that price.

Stats via, Hockey-Reference, and Elite Prospects

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