Wednesday, June 20, 2007
We have no idea what is going to happen in the next two weeks but when it is over the face of the league will have changed.
The draft will be over and the UFA frenzy will be in full swing with most big names likely snatched up for completely outrageous contracts that will handcuff teams long after the GMS who signed them are long gone.
The draft is an interesting one. For all the talk of it being a weak draft the truth is that a lot of NHLers are going to come out of it, as in every draft. There will be high picks who bust and low picks who surprise. Colorado and Jersey and Detroit will mine someone in the lower rounds.
The Oilers have three picks and word presently is that they plan to at least use the first two and good on them - I think there will be quality at that 15th pick. They just have to get the right guy. With talk of Oilogosphere favourite Voracek very possibly dropping to sixth, giving everyone from Newfoundland to Whyte Avenue to Atlanta a raging boner, this draft could make a huge difference for the Oilers as they build toward ... 2010 and 2011.
I'm more of an optimist then most but my guess is unless they pick up someone to replace Smyth via trade and someone to play top 2 on the back end and someone else (Hejda?) to play top four then it may be a long year again. And Lowe has to do this without giving up one of the few real players he has - Roloson, Smith, Staios, Horcoff, Pisani, Moreau, Stoll, Hemsky and Torres.
It is possible. I know we have to get over to Lowetide's to talk him off that ledge but I believe (rhymes with naive) that there are teams looking to move salary for prospects and that some of that salary will include quality for whatever reason. Teams in financial trouble or teams looking to buy big UFAs or teams close to the cap have to move somebody. Holmgren is already talking about moving someone to make room. If Pitkanen is the man to go then he's not looking for any salary back - he's trying to save 2M, remember. So, if Lowe gets the opportunity he might, might, be able to make this team into a playoff team (first round and out mind you) for the short term.
Not likely but for all the stuff that is rumoured - Redden, Pitkanen etc - there are probably fifty things on the table we have no idea about. Remember 29 teams did not win the Cup last year. They're going to be looking to do something. Who knows who is on the block?
Anyhow I will be at a reunion in Goulais and if you know where that is, you win a prize because you would be the only one. I will be close to a TV Saturday around noon and I may be able to post a shortie but for the most part I will be incommunicado. My ancestors were either loners (unlikely because they tended to father children by the bushel), misanthropes (again unlikely based on what I see and know) or they just liked to live in the middle of nowhere because that way nobody from the government would interfere with their stills and poaching. That's likely it, I'd say.
At my wedding my dad got up and started his speech by saying, "We McLeans are a quiet, peace loving bunch."
Like his son, the old man is a liar.
Enjoy the craziness of the next few days. The Ducks may be short their captain, Selanne and Giguere in just over ten days from now. Who says the offseason isn't fun?
Posted by Black Dog at 9:28 PM