Well, it’s D-day + 1. The trade deadline has past and we are left with the aftermath. Expectations for Tambellini to be able to pull it off were quite low, but hope was quite high. As such, I think a lot of people were disappointed by his efforts.
I’m going to play devil’s advocate on this one, however (which I know won’t gain popular support). I thought he did a relatively good job with what he has to work with. I do think that trading Grebeshkov over Gilbert was a poor decision, if that was the choice. However it wasn’t either or here… it was both. Gilbert was set to go to the Rangers (not sure for who though) and that fell through. It’s hard to say whether we got full value for Grebeshkov, however. I would have liked to have seen a reclamation project or an unknown prospect come our way. However, that was a step in the right direction; it shedded salary, and it added a pick. Effort was also shown in trying to move the likes of Moreau and Souray. However, Souray proved to be unmovable due to his injuring taking a worse turn (he is now officially out for the season).
Next, let’s take a look at trading Cody Wild for Matt Marquardt. Cody Wild is a guy who’s a bit of an enigma based on how he’s gained favor with fans here. He has a pretty steady following from several bloggers out there. This is a guy a few have felt has had his development ruined by being in the Oilers system. I’m not so sure of that at all. He’s had a couple of trips to the ECHL under different coaches. And Rob Daum (the guy that everyone loves) also had alluded earlier when comparing he and Chorney, that a lot of fans are stats reading when they talk highly of Wild. Clearly he wasn’t the prospect several thought he was. In Marquardt, we get a guy whose last name is significantly harder to spell, for one. We also get a big body (these Bruins sure love their big kids) with him being 6’3″ and 229 lbs. Size has been an issue here, and it will help to have a guy we can call up if Stone or Jacques or someone with size gets hurt. Also of note is Marquardt is 22 years old.
Next in the timeline we have the Ryan Jones waiver claim. Ryan Jones is a 26-year old left winger who weighs in at 200 even, and is 6’0″ tall. I don’t know really much at all about him yet, but it looks like he does bring a good physical/energy game. Here’s the scouting report on him:
Plays with an all-out hustle that gets him noticed by his coaching staff. Can play either wing position. Has good size and decent offensive ability.
Isn’t great in the defensive zone. Needs to perform with greater consistency at the highest level. Must be more disciplined and not take bad penalties.
Next deal up, we have Ryan Whitney and a 6th rounder in exchange for Lubomir Visnovsky. Wow… this is a tough one to judge. I think we’ll have to give it some time, but I have a bad feeling this will bite us in the ass later. It is a step in the right direction in a way though. The idea was good. Take a veteran, high-paid defenceman and flip him for a younger player. It obviously was a salary dump. This deal saved us $1.6 Million in cap money. On the other hand, however, did we not learn from trading Pronger to the Ducks how badly it sucks trading these big name players within our conference? It could bite us in the ass for that reason alone. But it’s hard to know what deals were out there. Ryan Whitney is a gamble. A former 5th overall pick of the Penguins, his best numbers he put up would have been on a team with Crosby and Malkin on it – a highly offensive-laden team. Since being traded to the Ducks, the numbers haven’t been the same, but they haven’t been bad either. I kind of have to wonder if we’re getting another Tom Gilbert here. I’ll reserve judgement until I’ve seen him here for a while. This could be a good deal, but it has potential to be ugly. But it was a good “re-build” move in that we dropped salary and got much younger. 50/50 here.
Lastly, we have Staios to Calgary for a 3rd rounder and Aaron Johnson. Wow, I love this deal. Steve-O likes to mock me for my mancrush on Staios, however there is nothing bad about this one at all. We take an aging, declining defenseman and ship him off to the city we hate… more salary their way. Not only do we get a good pick out of it (hey, 3rd rounder isn’t bad at all), but we also get a guy who can be in the lineup. We’re not talking top-4 here (at least I’m not), but he could help the team out. Yes, our defense is now in shambles right now. But this will help seal the draft pick, makes us younger, and frees up $2.7M, plus gives us yet another pick. Not bad at all. I’m glad Steady Steve is looking forward to playing in Calgary too. It’ll suck having to play against him, but it will (possibly) only be for next year that we have to face him.
So all in all, I know there is more to be done. But these recent deals shaved off near $7.5M in cap money (to put towards RFA re-signings), helped the youth movement, and gave us a bit more size to work with. I have to admit, the Staios deal is what clinched it for me though.
So I won’t duplicate work that has been already done. Steve-O brought it to my attention earlier that Lowetide has done a write up on estimated caps for players next year – looks pretty reasonable and his numbers sit around $57.2M (just under the max) with our current crop including potential tradees Moreau and Souray. You should take a look here if you’re interested in the numbers he suggested. With some certainty, we can say that Moreau will be gone (I could be out to lunch here though). One would also suspect that Souray could be moved at the draft also. So that will free up loads of cash if that happens. The other part is that Lowetide figured the new draftee in our lineup (Seguin by his guess), for one, and figured him to be making $3.75M with bonuses. I’m not sure I agree with that, but it is not an unreasonable thought at all on his part (by that I mean, I’m not so sure we have our top pick in our lineup next year.. but who knows).
Anyways, there are positives to this deadline. The re-build has begun. We moved a guy (that I did really like) that was not living up to his salary, and was due to make at least his salary on July 1st (Grebeshkov). We freed up some good salary for the future. Now what I’d like to see between now and the start of next year by Tambellini is moving Moreau and Souray (potentially – I’d be fine with him here still). I’d also like to see him move one of Nilsson and O’Sullivan (or both) to help make room for the new crop we’ll be bringing in. As far as additions, we still need some blue line help, but this is a whole other matter to discuss and not overly urgent yet.