Rishaug: Manning and McDavid won't let history dictate future
Brandon Manning is headed to the Edmonton Oilers.
The team acquired the 28-year-old defenceman and blueliner Robin Norell from the Chicago Blackhawks on Sunday in exchange for forward Drake Caggiula and defenceman Jason Garrison.
A native of Prince George, BC, Manning has appeared in 27 games for the Blackhawks this season, scoring a goal and adding two assists. He averaged 15:28 of ice-time a night with the team.
Manning signed a two-year, $4.5 million deal with the Blackhawks in the summer.
Undrafted out of the Western Hockey League’s Chilliwack Bruins, Manning signed with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2011 and spent the past six seasons with the club.
In 234 career games, Manning has 12 goals and 34 assists.
Manning already has history with the Oilers, despite never having played for them.
On November 3, 2015 Manning hit Connor McDavid, breaking the then-rookie’s collar bone and sidelining him for 37 games. When Manning’s Flyers met the Oilers in December of 2016, McDavid alleges that Manning told him he intentionally tried to hurt him the prior season.
"I did all I could defending him last year in the media," McDavid said after the game. "Everyone wanted to make a big deal saying he did it on purpose, and he wanted to say some comments today about what went on last year. I thought it was one of the (most) classless things I've ever seen on the ice.”
Manning denied the allegations.
"I think anybody who knows me or who has played with or against me along the road here, knows that I am not that kind of player,” Manning said in response. “I am not out there intentionally trying to hurt people. I'm a guy who plays the game hard and I take pride in that. I think going back to last year, it was a total accident, I mean, there were three players involved and there was never any intention on hurting anyone."
During the team’s next meeting in February of 2017, Manning fought then-Oilers forward Patrick Maroon, seemingly settling the matter between the player and the Oilers.
“Connor didn’t say a word on the ice [during the game],” Manning said following the fight. “Even their guys, Patrick said ‘good job’ afterward. We would do the same thing if one our superstars got hurt. I understand it.”
Going the other way, Caggiula, 24, is in his third pro season, having signed with the Oilers in 2016 out of North Dakota after a standout NCAA career including leading the Fighting Hawks to the 2016 Frozen Four title in which he was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. He is scheduled to make $1.5 million this year.
The native of Pickering, Ont. has seven goals and four assists in 29 games this season. He missed time earlier this month on injured reserve with a hand injury.
In 156 career games, Caggiula has 27 goals and 22 assists.
Garrison has one goal in 17 games so far this year for the Oilers. He is owed $650,000 this season.This was the second trade of the day for the Oilers, who traded Chris Wideman and a third-round pick to the Florida Panthers for Alex Petrovic earlier on Sunday.