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Author Topic: (Un)official NHL season thread  (Read 105354 times)
Super_Nintendo_Chalmers
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« Reply #30 on: January 31, 2010, 06:24:48 pm »
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Great deals made by the Leafs. They should probably try to acquire another forward before the deadline though. There defense should be great for years to come though. Too bad they don't have the pieces required to get Kovalchuk, although Burke probably wouldn't want a Russian ruining his "North American brand of Hockey".

Kovalchuk actually said recently he would consider signing with 3 teams when he becomes a UFA this offseason: Toronto, LA, and NYR. I'll have to find a link but I definitely read it somewhere. Naturally, the latter two seem like much more enticing options, but Toronto has the most money to give out of the 3...it depends where Kovalchuk's head is at, if he's a money man or a guy who wants to make the playoffs and such. That being said, adding him to the Leafs with Gustavsson having more experience, Phaneuf, Kessel, and Kaberle as other core players could greatly improve them.

I think a defenceman such as Exelby or Van Ryn will be dealt for a forward of sorts, nobody all too good but someone reliable enough if the young guys like Bozak and Stalberg don't work out. The team is going to be painfully bad for the last 25 games this year, but I finally feel confident that we have a GM who has a good plan in place.

I've been saying for 2 years that the Leafs will end up with Nash or Kovalchuk. When Nash signed a long term deal, he eliminated himself as a candidate. I think Kovalchuk will be a Leaf. If they have the most money to spend then it would be his best choice. How much are they under the cap as it stands? Also, what notable FA's do they have coming off the books?
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ballers101
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« Reply #31 on: January 31, 2010, 06:27:11 pm »
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Great deals made by the Leafs. They should probably try to acquire another forward before the deadline though. There defense should be great for years to come though. Too bad they don't have the pieces required to get Kovalchuk, although Burke probably wouldn't want a Russian ruining his "North American brand of Hockey".

Kovalchuk actually said recently he would consider signing with 3 teams when he becomes a UFA this offseason: Toronto, LA, and NYR. I'll have to find a link but I definitely read it somewhere. Naturally, the latter two seem like much more enticing options, but Toronto has the most money to give out of the 3...it depends where Kovalchuk's head is at, if he's a money man or a guy who wants to make the playoffs and such. That being said, adding him to the Leafs with Gustavsson having more experience, Phaneuf, Kessel, and Kaberle as other core players could greatly improve them.

I think a defenceman such as Exelby or Van Ryn will be dealt for a forward of sorts, nobody all too good but someone reliable enough if the young guys like Bozak and Stalberg don't work out. The team is going to be painfully bad for the last 25 games this year, but I finally feel confident that we have a GM who has a good plan in place.

I've been saying for 2 years that the Leafs will end up with Nash or Kovalchuk. When Nash signed a long term deal, he eliminated himself as a candidate. I think Kovalchuk will be a Leaf. If they have the most money to spend then it would be his best choice. How much are they under the cap as it stands? Also, what notable FA's do they have coming off the books?
I agree, we should try to get Kovalchuk and have a good shot at him. We need a star playmaker at the centre position, and another good wing, tied in with the growth of our young players to start making that push from crap to good. The trades today were to get players in the offseason and have a solid young defensive core.
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cselby
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« Reply #32 on: January 31, 2010, 06:39:38 pm »
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They really need a competent offensive centre to put next to Kessel, a guy who's more of a playmaker but can still chip in with goals...a better version of Stajan, really, is what they need.

Adding Kovalchuk, though, would be quite something. Personally, I'd stick him on the first line with whoever, because he can create for himself, and move Kessel to the second line. Not many teams can boast to have a player of Kessels calibre skating on there second line, save for the truly elite teams.

The Leafs cap space took a small hit today, as though they dumped Blake's contract, they took on a tiny bit more in Giguere. Notable free agents include

Ponikarovsky - might be dealt for a draft pick soon, if not, worth re-signing. he's streaky, but he can put the puck in the net. won't cost much.

Stempniak - see ya later

Kulemin - will be re-signed. he's a good penalty killer and defensive forward. won't cost much at all.

So, with all this being said, they should probably have around 14-15 million to spend on free agents (Right now, it stands at 17.5 give or take, but depending on the size of contracts they give to the players I just mentioned, if they even decide too). This is quite obviously more than enough to lure a player like Kovalchuk and still have some change leftover to pick up another forward. There defense is more than set for years to come, so all should be focused on scoring forwards now and perhaps a veteran goalie a little better than J.S Giguere if Gustavsson doesn't work out.
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cselby
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« Reply #33 on: January 31, 2010, 06:53:28 pm »
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Oh I forgot about there biggest contract coming off, Mike Van Ryn is a UFA with I believe 3-4 million coming off the books. He, for obvious reasons, will not be back.
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Super_Nintendo_Chalmers
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« Reply #34 on: January 31, 2010, 07:16:37 pm »
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Damn, looks like the Leafs will be in a great position this off-season. Much like the Habs were last off-season, but more likely to actually capitalize on this situation.
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cselby
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« Reply #35 on: January 31, 2010, 07:19:54 pm »
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Having been too lazy to look it up, more names are coming to me. Exelby and Primeau are also free agents, neither will likely return.

The Habs did indeed make terrible use of there offseason money, and its looking even worse now that Cammalleri, the only one living up to his salary, has just suffered a terrible injury.
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ballers101
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« Reply #36 on: January 31, 2010, 10:38:01 pm »
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Here are the notable offensive UFA:

Kovalchuk, Frolov, Tanguay, Hedjuk, Pisani, Svatos, Marleau, Jokinin, Lombardi, Higgins, Comrie, Koivu, Cullen, Plekanic

RFA:

Chipchura, Lucic, Wolski, Sam Gagner, Upshall, Kesler, Semin, Backstrom

Bold are guys I think we should go after
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cselby
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« Reply #37 on: February 01, 2010, 10:00:44 am »
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I'd aim high as possible and go for Kovalchuk. If not, try and shoot for Marleau, clearly the second best option there. After signing one of these two star players, I'd sign a secondary player such as Plekanec or Koivu (is that Mikko or Saku? if it's Mikko DEFINITELY go after him).

Keep Jokinen away from here. The guy is absolute fools gold.

Semin or Backstrom would be great but I see no reason the Caps wouldn't take them back.
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Super_Nintendo_Chalmers
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« Reply #38 on: February 01, 2010, 01:17:40 pm »
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A rebuilding team like the Leafs should go after Frolov if they don't get Kovalchuk. Marleu is already 29. Plekanec should be your next option, but the Habs would likely be willing to pay him more than other teams to retain his services. The Koivu he listed is most likely Saku, way too old for the Leafs plans.
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Super_Nintendo_Chalmers
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« Reply #39 on: February 01, 2010, 01:19:43 pm »
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Anybody aware of any current FA's out there that could be signed this season? I see the Leafs making some more moves and look to use some of their cap space on one year deals to help them compete this season. I know they're done for, but I don't think they want to give Boston a top 5 pick that easy.
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cselby
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« Reply #40 on: February 01, 2010, 02:22:40 pm »
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A rebuilding team like the Leafs should go after Frolov if they don't get Kovalchuk. Marleu is already 29. Plekanec should be your next option, but the Habs would likely be willing to pay him more than other teams to retain his services. The Koivu he listed is most likely Saku, way too old for the Leafs plans.

I'm not thrilled about Frolov. He's a player I'd add after adding a star-calibre winger, more as a secondary thought. He's mistake prone and very inconsistent, but I get your general point about them going after younger players. Plekanec is a great playmaker and would absolutely help Kessel but I assume the Habs really like him like you said.

Not too sure about who's out there right now but I don't think Burke is done making moves.
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Super_Nintendo_Chalmers
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« Reply #41 on: February 01, 2010, 02:42:40 pm »
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A rebuilding team like the Leafs should go after Frolov if they don't get Kovalchuk. Marleu is already 29. Plekanec should be your next option, but the Habs would likely be willing to pay him more than other teams to retain his services. The Koivu he listed is most likely Saku, way too old for the Leafs plans.

I'm not thrilled about Frolov. He's a player I'd add after adding a star-calibre winger, more as a secondary thought. He's mistake prone and very inconsistent, but I get your general point about them going after younger players. Plekanec is a great playmaker and would absolutely help Kessel but I assume the Habs really like him like you said.

Not too sure about who's out there right now but I don't think Burke is done making moves.

Yeah, I don't get to see LA games due to the time zone differences, so all I know of Frolov are his point totals. If put in the Leafs shoes though, and Kovalchuk was gone, I'd still consider adding him because with the investment in the blue-line, you'd hope they'd cover his potential mistakes and what he could add on offense might be worth it. However, I'm not sure to what extent he makes these mistakes, because as I said, I've never watched. I find myself taking s strange interest in the Leafs rebuilding efforts because I know the Habs are stuck with their mediocre core for another few years. *sigh*
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cselby
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« Reply #42 on: February 01, 2010, 02:50:47 pm »
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I get NHL league pass so I've seen a good deal of LA games this year. Frolov reminds me a lot of Alex Kovalev, in that he's immensely talented (though not many players of the past 10 or 15 years possessed as many God-given gifts as Kovalev) but a ridiculously low motor, a penchant for lazy backchecking and trying to go 1-on-5. I think he's worst case Grabovski, but his best case scenario is hard to pinpoint just yet. All this being said, not a bad, and probably a relatively cheap grab for a rebuilding team.

I am completely enamoured with the thought of Kovalchuk though. His attitude seems suspect at times, but he is sublimely talented. Watching him play, when he takes the puck back in his own zone and starts skating up ice, stickhandling at a ridiculous speed and making deft, subtle strides, all 5 opposing players are skating backwards and watching him, and only him. The Leafs would greatly benefit from someone like this because Kessel has a hard time creating offense for himself, especially when his linemates are Nik Kulemin and John Mitchell. Someone who can take the attention off Kessel and create for themselves helps them immenseley.

I'm glad you're taking some interest in the Leafs plight Rowan because I could sit here and talk about them all day, and I'd start to look foolish if no one was replying Cheesy
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Dynasty
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« Reply #43 on: February 01, 2010, 03:25:50 pm »
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So correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Atlanta have a ton of young talent and aren't they in the hunt for the playoffs right now?  Why would Kovalchuk want to leave Atlanta with the potential that the team there has?
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cselby
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« Reply #44 on: February 01, 2010, 03:33:19 pm »
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So correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't Atlanta have a ton of young talent and aren't they in the hunt for the playoffs right now?  Why would Kovalchuk want to leave Atlanta with the potential that the team there has?

Eh, they have a few young players with some potential, one of them being a goaltender, but they've kind of been in NHL purgatory ever since they drafted him. They haven't made the playoffs since drafting him, and although they have a shot this year, they don't exactly have a roster that screams "we're going places." Also, he apparently has issues with the GM, and the fanbase in Atlanta isn't exactly consistent or big. Kovalchuk is still relatively young himself and he wants a fresh start somewhere with a big market (hence New York, Toronto) or actually legitimate young talent (Los Angeles). Last but not least, Atlanta can barely offer him a fraction of what other teams can this offseason.

On the subject of Kovalchuk, this little blurb that someone obviously recently added on his Wiki entry had me laughing pretty hard:

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On February 1, 2010 Kovalchuk was traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Phil Kessel and Toronto's first and second round picks in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2020. When asked to comment by local media outlets Brian Burke was quoted as saying, "The movie 2012 scared the crap out of me. With the world coming to an end our draft picks from 2012 onwards will be useless anyways."
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