In A Perfect World…
The Sens will pick up where they left off.
With the Olympic break nearing an end, and the return of all but Ruutu from the Olympic games, the Sens are looking forward to re-starting the 09/10 NHL season.
I’ve purposely avoided posting on the Olympics because, frankly, when it comes to hockey, the two do not mix. I do not believe in professionals playing in the Olympic games, and I do not like one and out tournaments, particularly when they get used as a medium for political propaganda.
But, having said that, a huge tip of the hat to all of Canada’s amateur athletes, and particularly our female athletes. Thier success is a credit to both them, and honestly, us, as a nation. Most notably is Clara Hughes. Clara is the epitome of an Olympian, athlete, citizen, woman, and human being. I find it astounding how much recognition goes towards Canada’s extremely well paid, and well covered hockey athletes while a person who has devoted her entire life to athletics, for virtually no monetary gain, is given a cursory glad handing routine every two years. I’d like to see Clara where she belongs, front and centre in regards to national athletics in Canada.
But I digress.
The Sens are no doubt looking to make a deal and all indications are Lee will be involved. Though no deals can be officially consummated until the end of the Olympic break trade freeze, deals can be made in principle, and that is exactly what is rumoured to be the case vis a vis Brian Lee.
No doubt Murray will need to land a legitimate Dman, or two, should Lee be traded, as the recent departure of Picard and injury to Campoli will leave this team almost entirely devoid of defensive depth should Lee be shipped out as well.
Don’t be surprised to see Lee in a Florida uniform soon…as in 12:01 a.m. March 1st, and one or both of Seidenberg and Leopold sporting crisp new Sens sweaters.
One source indicated Murray may well be targeting a few players off of FLA, who have made no bones about the fact they want to make sweeping changes to their roster. Reportedly available are Horton, Vokoun, Leopold and Seidenberg.
Florida desperately needs to shed salary, and what many would consider a lopsided trade, from a skill perspective, would, if the money was right, be considered a win by Panthers ownership.
A prospect or 2 and a pick could land you a top six forward and a top 4 dman, if you have the salary space to accommodate the incoming salary.
Want to talk BLOCKBUSTER?
Leclaire, Kuba, Foligno, Shannon, Lee, 2010 1st
Vokoun, Horton, Leopold, Seidenberg.
This is not out of the picture…not saying it is even being discussed, but to think FLA wouldn’t entertain that deal would be to ignore the obvious…$$$.
Horton has an impending NTC (July 1st) Florida is loathe to swallow considering their roller-coaster on again, off again relationship with the big forward. No doubt an RFA Foligno looks better than an impending 3 yr/14M NMC Horton.
Leclair represents a big decrease in salary commitment over Vokoun, but from a talent perspective, considering FLA has no Stanley Cup illusions, not a big drop off in skill.
Shannon is probably not on the Sens roster next season anyhow, and currently plays as the reserve forward, but would easily fill a legitimate NHL roster spot in FLA for the remainder of the season.
Lee…we all know his status vis a vis this roster.
Kuba? Yeah, it would be a loss, but his salary could be better spent divided between Volchy and Cowen next season. FLA would take him as he’s a known commodity in Florida, and would fill the role vacated by Seidenberg.
The first rounder makes up for the obvious skill deficiency on the ice.
Mich – Spezza – Horton
Kelly – Fisher – Alfredsson
Cullen – Regin – Kovalev
Ruutu – Winchester – Neil
Phillips – Volchenkov
Leopold – Karlsson
Seidenberg – Carkner
That line-up is an instant Cup contender, and from a “chemistry” point of view, it cost you Shannon and Kuba, neither of these are leadership guys.
Oh, and for a great look at the defensmen on the radar for Ottawa, check out SilverSevens blog.