On March 7, 1989, the Washington Capitals made two of the most significant trades in franchise history. The Caps traded away all-time leading scorer Mike Gartner, offensive defenseman Larry Murphy, and goaltender Clint Malarchuk. The two separate swaps brought feisty forward Dino Ciccarelli and promising young blueliner Calle Johansson to DC.
Washington general manager David Poile sent Gartner and Murphy to Minnesota in exchange for Ciccarelli and defenseman Bob Rouse. Gartner was in his 10th season with the Caps and held franchise records with 397 goals, 392 assists, 789 points and 758 games played. Murphy remains the only Capital defenseman to lead the club in scoring (81 points in 1986-87).
Ciccarelli spent three-plus seasons in Washington, scoring 112 goals and 209 points in 223 regular season games. He added 21 goals and 35 points in just 32 playoff games. Rouse's stint as a Capital lasted less than two years. He played in 130 games and totaled nine goals and 42 points before he was shuffled to Toronto as part of the package that brought Al Iafrate to DC.
Johansson came to the Caps from Buffalo along with a second round draft pick in 1989 in exchange for defenseman Grant Ledyard, goaltender Clint Malarchuk and a sixth round selection in the 1991 Entry Draft.
Buffalo used its sixth round choice to select center Brian Holzinger while the Capitals tabbed netminder Byron Dafoe with the second rounder from the Sabres.
Malarchuk's Sabre career spanned 102 games over which he was a .500 goaltender. Ledyard spent more than four years with the Sabres, performing serviceably on the Buffalo backline.
Johansson has played more games with the Capitals than any other defenseman in team history and trails only forward Kelly Miller on the team's all-time list. Johansson has registered 106 goals and 452 points in 875 games in a Capitals sweater.