The Marian Gaborik era is over. When Gaborik was acquired last season, it was a bold move for the Jackets, a move that gave them a shot in the arm for their run to the playoffs. The Jackets fell just short, and Gaborik was looked to for offensive and veteran leadership this season, as the Jackets looked to make another run.
Unfortunately, this has been a season to forget for Gaborik due to injury, and his tenure with the Jackets will be looked at as unsuccessful. Given his unrestricted free agent status at year's end, it was wise for the Jackets to gain something for him instead of simply losing him to free agency. It was clear that he was not a right fit for the Jackets going forward.
The reported return for Gaborik is forward Matt Frattin, a second round pick, and a conditional third rounder. The picks are the core of this deal. Frattin is more or less a warm body, as he is a restricted free agent at season's end. The second round pick was originally Leafs property, while the third round pick will be included in the deal if the Kings either re-sign Gaborik or win a first round series.
The Jackets retained about 50% of Gaborik's contract, but with only weeks left in the season Columbus isn't on the hook for much.
This was a classic salary dump, and it was good for JD and Jarmo to pick up potentially two picks in the process. And who knows, maybe Frattin will surprise.