Tuesday, June 28, 2011

the second class of UFA's

Steve Montador- The one time Flames prospect, now has been lighting it up with the Buffalo Sabres. 26 points last season to go along with 138 blocked shots; holy macro! 86 hits isn't too shabby either. His hometown is Vancouver and because the Canucks let Ehrhoff walk they are looking for a new defenseman. Sure Ballard could go immediately into the top 4, but we need to let Ballard earn it and Vigneault and company will try and do this by having a solid top 5 for some healthy competition, not to mention injury relief. Montador may be willing to take a paycut to play in Vancouver, unlike Ehrhoff. Currently Montador is making 1.5 million, and is due for a payraise. A hometown discount for the Canucks could be anywhere around 3 million dollars. It is pretty clear he is not going to stay in buffalo, given they have a solid top 4 now with Regher, Myers, Gragani, Leopold with Mike Weber and Shaone Morrisson rounding out the top 6.

SOB (Shane O'brien) - another defenseman making 1.5 million. He likely will be re-upped by Nashville because he likes the organization. At the same time, if there is another team out there willing to offer him consistent top 4 minutes he might think about moving. It would be fun to see SOB play for the Flames, just because SOB hates the Canucks so much, and Nux fans would get to see him 6 times a season on HNIC. Wouldn't be surprised to see him go to a party city like New York, especially after the death of Boogard and their need for an enforcer.

Bryan McCabe- talk about the washed up bums of washed up bums. Signed multi-year with the leafs for nearly 6 million per in what will go down as one of John ferguson Junior's worst moves. Traded for Mike (Diddly Squat) Van Ryn who has amassed 27 games in three seasons of hockey. Somebody will be stupid enough to take a run at McCabe. Maybe he could still get 4 million per on a 2 year contract. Anyone that needs a big booming shot of a defenseman and a first power play anchor on a weak squad could go for McCabe.

Ed Jovanoski- highly prized offensive defenseman Jovanoski is likely on the move this season as the Yotes have to resign Keith Yandle. Jovocop will not go the Canucks even though the green men actually tried to convince him when they saw him in Vancouver in the Stanley Cup Finals. Canucks are not really looking for veteran presence on the blue line. I think they are looking for a younger, smart defensively but offensively capable late 20's player that has some leadership qualities but is not immediately looking for the "A". Not really sure where Jovocop will end up it is kind of a crap shoot. Possibly Detroit if they are unable to sign Ehrhoff.

Sean Bergenheim- Easily the most coveted of all the second tier forwards. Bergenheim should take a long hard look at what organization he wants to play for over the next few days. The cash strapped Lightning will end up resigning Stamkos and Bergenheim could be the odd man out this summer. He should expect a significant pay increase from the current $700,000 he is making. Much Like Joel Ward mentioned in the first post, Sean Bergenheim is a playoff warrior. He only had 14 goals in the regular season but managed to score 9 in 16 games in the playoffs. A former first round pick is Bergenheim, and he'll likely command a 4 year deal with an annual cap hit of 3 million dollars. Canucks could take a serious run at Bergenheim to possibly play with Kesler or on the third line with Hansen. But I think they will end up going with someone with a little more powerplay experience to play on the second unit.

Rick Rypien- tough as nails but will anyone want to take a run at him now that the canucks have let him walk? Could end up being a perenial AHLer after this season and that might be a perfect situation for him, more out of the media spot light.

Ville Leino- 19 goals and 34 assists with the Flyers last season. Nothing special about his hits or blocked shots however he does have 5 PPG and 6 Power play assists and could be that dependable second line power play player the canucks have been looking for. To go along with Burrows and maybe Hodgson, Malhotra or Lapierre (Lap Dog).

James Wisnewiski- The wizard of Nooski is a UFA. Instead of paying money to a young, reliable defenseman in Wiz-Noose, they decided to throw a multi-year nearly 6 million dollar contract at Andre Markov, after Markov only played 7 games last season. What are you thinking Montreal? You are so dumb, you don't throw big money at an injury prone defenseman when you have PK Subban. In contrast Bieksa took 4.6 million. That would have been a much more important figure for Markov. Either way, in a few years when the Wizard of Nooski is lighting it up somewhere else, the Habs will regret being stuck with Markov's fat contract. The Wizard of Nooski is probably looking at a multi-year 4.5 million dollar deal.

Honorable Mention

Chuck Kobasew- Cant say enough good things about this guy. Signed a picture for Hal and took the time to mail it back. He was never really a Sutter guy and got traded less than 2 seasons after Sutter arrived. Maybe Feaster will think about bringing him back, especially if the big guy Jarome asks for it.


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