Thrashers prospect Angelo Esposito, the Penguins' first-round pick in 2007, will miss the rest of the season due to a torn ACL in his right knee. Currently a member of the Thrashers' AHL affiliate in Chicago, Esposito suffered a season-ending injury in 2008-09 when he tore his ACL in the same knee while with playing in the QMJHL.
The Penguins dealt Esposito to the Thrashers along with forwards Colby Armstrong, Erik Christensen and a first-round pick in 2008 that was used to take forward Daultan Leveille in exchange for forwards Marian Hossa and Pascal Dupuis. The trade propelled the Penguins to the 2008 Stanley Cup final while the Thrashers have failed to make the postseason since 2007.
EN Says: We hate to dig up a controversial trade that happened three seasons ago, but this development really makes the deal -- which few can question now -- look even more one-sided. Esposito was the biggest asset in the deal in terms of what the Thrashers received. And now his career in doubt.
Armstrong is still a viable second- or third-line center, but so is Dupuis. That part of the deal is a push. Hossa's gone, but we all knew he was here as a mercenary. That leaves Esposito and Leveille as the biggest x-factors. And Esposito's career has stalled out. Leveille could turn out to be an all-star, but he's still at least two years away from reaching the NHL.
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