"Give me a break," said TheStreet's Jim Cramer, co-manager of the Action Alerts PLUS portfolio.
On CNBC's "Mad Dash" segment, Cramer said he was nonplussed by suggestions that TransCanada (TRP) only struck a deal to buy Columbia Pipeline (CPGX) because the Keystone Pipeline it wanted to build through the U.S. wasn't approved by President Obama.
TransCanada is paying Columbia Pipeline for $25.50 per share, or roughly $13 billion. TransCanada's shares are currently down 1.6%.
It's not Keystone, Cramer asserted.
Instead, Cramer said, this deal involves one of TransCanada's very important assets -- a pipeline that runs from Alberta, Canada, to the eastern U.S. With the natural gas boom in Ohio and Pennsylvania, buyers no longer need to have natural gas shipped in from western Canada.
TransCanada management knew Keystone was "dead" a long time ago, Cramer said.
This acquisition boosts TransCanada's presence in the U.S., increasing its total coverage to around 57,000 miles of pipeline in North America. The deal is expected to close during the second half of the year.
"TransCanada had to buy Columbia in order to be able to protect its flank, because they don't have anything cooking anymore," Cramer explained.
This was a strategic move by a company positioned in a natural gas market that's in "flux" now that there's so much supply, he concluded.