With the countdown underway for the ECHL Trade Deadline on Thursday, March 7 at 3 p.m. ET, we offer a primer guide to help follow events.

Important definitions:

Recall/Assignment Deadline: This deadline comes before the ECHL deadline for a fundamental reason. According to Dan Petrino, Director of Hockey Administration for the ECHL, since NHL/AHL contracted players are not the property of an ECHL club, those players cannot be traded.  However, If an NHL/AHL team wants to move one of their contracted players from one ECHL Member to another, they must do so by March 6 at 11:59 pm local time.

Future Considerations: That phrase is something you see used with most trades in the ECHL, but what does it exactly mean?  Petrino says future considerations refer to either a player or cash to be agreed upon at a later date. Those future considerations trades must be settled by June 13 at 3 pm Eastern Time.

Waivers: The waiver wire in the ECHL works similarly to the waiver wire in other major professional sports. The waiver order is set weekly in the ECHL and the team with the worst percentage has the highest waiver priority, while the team with the best percentage has the last waiver priority. If a team makes a successful waiver claim during the week, they move to the bottom of the waiver priority until it resets again.

What’s Happened So Far?

  • Our official trade tracking period started with a big trade involving the Allen Americans and Orlando Solar Bears. The ECHL rights of Olivier Archambault were traded to the Orlando Solar Bears in exchange for Etienne BoutetCurt Gogol and Sam Jardine (who was later flipped for Emerson Clark).
  • Maine head coach Riley Armstrong has been hard at work shoring up his roster as they look to secure a playoff berth in their first year in the ECHL. The Mariners acquired defensemen Blake KesselSean CampbellJosh Couturier; along with forwards Johnny McInnis and Taylor Cammarata.
  • The South Carolina Stingrays are clinging to the final playoff spot in the South Division and Spiros Anastas has been busy trying to find a way to solidify his defense, acquiring defenseman Steve Johnson from Reading in exchange for Vinny Muto and Matt Pohlkamp.
  • Finally, in the Central Division, the Indy Fuel scored a decent pickup on the backend, acquiring Travis Brown from the Wichita Thunder for Quentin Shore. Brown has collected 10 goals and nine assists, tallying at least one point in five of his last nine outings before receiving the call to San Antonio. The Fuel also acquired defensemen Eric Schurhamer and Reggie Tracccito; plus added to their forward corps with the addition of Zeb Knutson.

Be sure to keep up on all the moves from January 1 to current by checking out our ECHL Trade Tracker, live here: https://thesinbin.net/2018-19-echl-trade-tracker/

Will this Trade Deadline be Busy or Meh?

Last year’s deadline day was pretty pedestrian, with just seven deals being made across the league, mostly for depth players.

Looking ahead to this year’s deadline, the transaction volume has been lighter than last year’s, with the league recording at least one trade on 13 of the 28 days in February.

If history is to be our guide, next Thursday is likely to be a somewhat busy trade deadline day, with most teams looking to add depth, rather than make any major moves. Here is a look at how many trades have gone down on deadline days in the ECHL since 2011:

2011: 6 deadline day deals
2012: 7 deadline day deals
2013: 14 deadline day deals
2014: 6 deadline day deals
2015: 9 deadline day deals
2016: 5 deadline day deals
2017: 13 deadline day deals
2018: 7 deadline day deals

What will happen this trade deadline and how will it shape the playoff races going forward? Stay tuned. We have quite a story to tell you…