James Wisniewski’s rights have been traded to Columbus for a 7th-round draft pick, and quite frankly, I’m not sure what to think about this. Yes, Montreal seems to have a glut of defencemen now, but Wiz came in last year and I liked his style. He’s a fine, point-getting defenceman, a good skater and passer, a guy with a great shot, and one who can dish out solid checks.
Now he’s worth a 7th-round pick. (or 5th-rounder if he actually signs with Columbus).
But it’s life. Wiz was an unrestricted free agent, was looking for big bucks and security, and Montreal wasn’t willing to give him that.
When Wiz joined the Habs, he was a revelation. He garnered almost a point a game for the first half, although he slowed down considerably in that department later on. And who can forget when he decided to block a shot with his face in a game against Edmonton, and then played a few nights later in Calgary looking like he’d been run over by a bus.
In my book, Wiz was one of the key performers on the Canadiens last season, and I’ll miss him. Maybe he wasn’t really appreciated by some fans either. A friend of mine told me that he and his son saw the Habs in Vancouver last year and were by the team bus after the game. Throngs of autograph-seekers swarmed the players, but Wiz, for some reason, wasn’t approached by anyone and sat in a cab by himself while the others signed away. I thought it a little weird. He’d been contributing in a big way, and just about had his face taken off two games prior.
But no one was interested in his autograph.
Thanks James Wisniewski, for your nice contribution to the Montreal Canadiens, and good luck in the future. I enjoyed your play very much.