Sometimes fate has a cruel sense of humor. Drafted by the Wild, and thought to be one of the better prospects, Patrick O`Sullivan tore up the AHL. In an effort to appease the Glass Slovak, the Wild traded a first round pick and O`Sullivan to the Kings for Pavel Demitra at the draft. The move was not met well:
The look at HWSRN's face is priceless. As for how the trade worked out, Demitra played well with Gaborik, when the two of them were actually on the ice together. The first year, Demo missed 11 games, while Gaby missed his customary 34. The last year Demitra was here, he and Gaborik furthered their chemistry, but Demitra missed 14 games due to injury.
That trade sent O'Sullivan on a tour of the NHL, and now, he returns to the nest. Make the jump and let's find out who he has become while he was gone.
#8 / Center / Minnesota Wild
Feb 01, 1985
|2010 - Patrick O`Sullivan||10||1||0||1||-1||2||0||0||0||13|
One goal in ten games, a -1 rating, and just 13 SOG. I wonder why the waived him? Now, to be fair, he was in the doghouse out east, and getting limited minutes on the fourth line. Averaging just 7:41 TOI /G, and likely with less than offensive minded line mates, O`Sullivan was being used in a shutdown role he was not cut out for.
Drafted with the talent and promise to be a top six forward, a center nonetheless, O'Sullivan scored 47 goals and added 46 assists with the Aeros in his first year. Imagine again trading him, in what looked to be the beginning of a very promising career, AND a first round pick that year (2006), for Pavol Demitra. Telling the whole story, the 17th pick was a second first rounder the Wild had. Remember, this was the year the Wild landed future ATV riding star James Sheppard. The 17th pick become Trevor Lewis, who has struggled to find his way to the NHL.
What has O'Sullivan done since he has been gone? Courtesy of HockeyDB.com:
The biggest missing stat in that table is the -35 rating he landed with the Oilers last year that led to him being acquired by the Phoenix Coyotes for the sole purpose of buying out his contract, before being signed by the Hurricanes.
O'Sullivan has some issues with his attitude, including a lack of work ethic, and some fairly powerful delusions of grandeur. He lit up the AHL, and became a mediocre forward in the NHL. If he can renew his resolve and add a season of 20+ goals and 30+ assists as he did in 2007-08, then this pick up is a success. If he can't, then the Wild put him back on waivers and let someone else take him, or let him go to Houston.
Low risk is the way Russo described it, and it is the best way to describe it. if he pans out, great. If not, he can be shipped off to his next stop on his tour.
Where will he play?
A natural center, Russo reported that O'Sullivan is going to see top six minutes and time on the power play. If that is the case, he will clearly be move to wing, likely on the second line with Matt Cullen and Cal Clutterbuck. With his set-up abilities, Clutterbuck's quick shot, and Cullen's ability to be where the puck is, this could turn out to be a very good line.
Not overly excited by the move, but also not upset about it at all. If Sully can bring a spark to an offense that is just flat out bad, then he is more than welcome. If he is going to bring attitude, he can keep his bags packed.
Other Reports on O'Sullivan: