Trading Derick Brassard for Mika Zibanejad was a very, very good move. It’s a trade you always make if you’re the New York Rangers; after all, not only is Zibanejad six years younger, but he only has eight fewer points than Brassard in almost half of the games played.
That’s the hockey element, which takes precedence here. But there’s also the human element; namely, Brassard and Mats Zuccarello are best friends.
And while he doesn’t explicitly name Zuccarello by name, you can kiiiiinda guess who he’s talking about here:
Of course, Brassard could be talking about just about anybody - he did spend four years in New York, after all - but come on. They spent Christmas together. The friendship is strong, and it is still good.