Thome & Cash for Rowand & Prospects

Thome & Cash for Rowand & Prospects

Thome & approximately $22 million to Chicago for Aaron Rowand and two solid prospects.  Details:

The
deal, first reported by ESPN The Magazine's Buster Olney, is subject to
the players passing physicals, the Phillies and White Sox said. Because
of the cash involved, it also
must be approved by the commissioner's office. The Phillies are
giving the White Sox $22 million as part of the deal, a baseball
official speaking on condition of anonymity told The Associated Press.

A
source told ESPN Insider's Jerry Crasnick that the Phillies will also
receive two minor-league left-handed pitchers, Daniel Haigwood and Gio
Gonzalez
, a supplemental first-round pick (38th overall) for the White
Sox in the 2004 draft.

It seems like this deal has made both cities very happy.  Beerleaguer does an in depth break down from the Phillies point of view:

Final verdict
Considering the quality of the
pitching prospects involved, in addition to the significant defensive
upgrade in Rowand, this is a very good deal for the Phils, who are
beginning to lay a younger, more dynamic foundation for 2006.

The opinions coming out of Chicago are also very positive per South Side Sox:

The universal reaction to the Thome trade in Chicago has overwhelming positive. It appears that Kenny Williams is now the unquestioned god of baseball GMs, or at least he is to Chicago's baseball scribes.

My take:
Jim Thome was the face of the Phillies organization coming into last season; he was a fan favorite and nothing but a class guy.  Age, injury, and a young stud waiting in his footsteps were all it took for the Phillies to have to move him.  I'm sad to see Thome put on another uniform, but it was a necessary step to move the Phillies in the right direction.  The trade is encouraging in many ways.  Not only do the Phillies get a legit CF and two young pitching prospects, but it also shows the Pat Gillick is ready and willing to pull the trigger.

There was also some interesting talk on the Phillies message boards regarding the Yankees interest in Rowand with the Phillies perhaps flipping Rowand and going with Victornio/JMike in center.

Ben Simmons, Robert Covington react to Ersan Ilyasova trade

Ben Simmons, Robert Covington react to Ersan Ilyasova trade

On Wednesday, the Sixers traded Ersan Ilyasova to the Hawks in exchange for Tiago Splitter and a 2017 second-round pick, as well as the option to swap 2017 second-round selections (see story).

"I want to thank Ersan Ilyasova for his positive contributions to this organization both on and off the basketball court," president of basketball operations Bryan Colangelo said in a statement. "Ersan is a true professional whose daily examples of hard work, focus and consistency have helped facilitate the ongoing growth of our program and culture."

The Sixers took to Instagram to express their appreciation for Ilyasova’s leadership. Ilyasova quickly embraced the role of a veteran go-to when he was traded to the Sixers in early November. Both posts below exemplify his team-first mentality.

✊🏼 A true Pro @ersanilyasova7

A post shared by Ben Simmons (@bensimmons) on

Thanks for being a great teammate @ersanilyasova7. Wishing you the best in ATL

A post shared by Rob Covington (@atf_33) on

Best of NHL: Rickard Rakell, Ducks snap Bruins' win streak at 4

Best of NHL: Rickard Rakell, Ducks snap Bruins' win streak at 4

ANAHEIM, Calif. -- Rickard Rakell broke a tie with his second goal with 2:34 to play, and the Anaheim Ducks snapped Boston's four-game winning streak under new coach Bruce Cassidy with a 5-3 victory over the Bruins on Wednesday night.

Rakell also scored in the second period for the Ducks and has 24 goals in his outstanding season. Ondrej Kase, Josh Manson and Andrew Cogliano also scored for Anaheim, and Jonathan Bernier made 26 saves in his first victory since Jan. 23.

Frank Vatrano scored the tying goal in the third period for the Bruins, who hadn't lost since Cassidy replaced Claude Julien on Feb. 7. Defensemen Brandon Carlo and Zdeno Chara scored early goals, and Tuukka Rask stopped 20 shots.

Anaheim beat Boston for the seventh straight time (see full recap).

Rare goal from Russell lifts Oilers over Panthers
SUNRISE, Fla. -- Kris Russell's goal with 7:58 left was his first in more than a year and lifted the Edmonton Oilers over Florida 4-3 on Wednesday night to snap the Panthers' five-game winning streak.

Russell's goal was his first since Feb. 11, 2016, when he played for Calgary. He went goalless in his first 48 games with the Oilers.

Fellow defenseman Oscar Klefbom also scored for Edmonton, as did forwards Zack Kassian and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Connor McDavid, who came into the night leading the NHL scoring race, had an assist on Russell's goal.

Aleksander Barkov, Colton Sceviour and Jonathan Marchessault scored for Florida. Keith Yandle had two assists for the Panthers, giving him 400 points for his career.

Cam Talbot stopped 31 shots for the Oilers, who have won their last eight games at Florida -- last losing on the Panthers' ice in 2002. James Reimer made 31 saves for the Panthers, who just completed a 5-0-0 road trip (see full recap).