Dustin Penner will play his first game in Anaheim on Tuesday since being traded to the Washington Capitals prior to the NHL's trade deadline, and he appears to be somewhat surprised by the fact that he was dealt after signing a one-year, $2-million deal with the Ducks this past offseason.
According to Lance Pugmire of the Los Angeles Times, Penner agreed that "cold" is a good description for the trade, describing it as "an "eye-opener for a lot of guys and the fans." He added: "They look for reasons in some cases for a guy to provide loyalty. It's obviously not reciprocated."
Penner scored scored 13 goals and added 19 assists for the Ducks while playing alongside Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf, and said while there are "many ways" to look at the move, he's trying to see it as one wherein he was being embraced by a new team rather than slighted by the old.
"It's the same cliche," Penner said. "I have a lot of friends on that team, won a Cup here [in 2007], blah, blah, blah.… [Being traded] is part of the job, a tough underbelly most don't see."
Ducks head coach Bruce Boudreau acknowledged several Ducks were surprised by the news, adding Penner was "well liked" while offering this assessment of his play: "When he's moving his legs, he's real good. ... There were times when he was standing around."
Penner has registered one assist in seven games with the Capitals, and said Tuesday's game will be "a big step" in the transition to Washington, temporary as it may be considering his status as an impending unrestricted free agent. As such, he'll no doubt be hoping to net his first goal with his new team on the ice at the Honda Center.