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coastal_caniac

The Official 2011-12 Off-Season Thread

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I like what Stillman brought last year, but not at the expense of Jokinen. Jussi was a big playoff performer in '09, a 30 goal scorer in '09-'10, and had a solid season this past year even with some injuries. I was hoping that if both would be back then that would mean we opted to go after a top pairing defenseman over a top line forward, but who knows what's going on. I like Dalpe a lot as well, but wouldn't be comfortable going into the season next year immediately counting on him to be a top 6 guy. We need to improve the defense and try to keep as much of last year's main offensive producers as we can. I like LaRose as well, but he doesn't produce for the type of money I feel he's going to ask for.

Personally I'd like our lines to be:

Staal/Stillman/Cole

Jokinen/Skinner/Ruutu

Sutter/Boychuk/Dalpe

Dwyer/Bodie/Samson

Gleason/FA signing

Corvo/Allen

Joslin/McBain

Harrison

Ward/FA Backup

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the rem-cullen love affair.. aww.. kidding with ya rem, i missed cully, yea, with the faceoffs , probaly win 4 more games, to take a guess maybe 5.. in the playoffs we would have been.. if jussi goes, thats going to screw up the lackluster powerplay even more.. Im not sure dalpe is ready for prime time, but someone that watches the checkers could help with that.. whos the FA defensemen.. hes gotta want to shoot [ok joni] and be physical.. if joni goes, which i think he might be offered more money elsewhere.. we do need bigger guys.. the tampa dman hedman>? could help lol, i can dream cant i?? Backup goalie.. so whos out there,, conklin... cant remember others.. minds ablank.. cole will get 2 years.. ronnie didnt have the personality for bench.. i want some fire.. hes kinna dullsville.. sorry to say, he was like that when i met him briefly in parking lot a few yrs back.. still love ya ronnie! but lighten up some dude :).. good to talk hockey.. cant wait till july 1st..hope everyone is doing well! dinzp.s whaler, are u being a good boy?? :) hows the bike riding?

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I don't mind LaRose on the third line. He can kill penalties, he brings energy and can jump up lines if needed for a shift or two. I think part of the problem last season was he played top six in the early going. LaRose is a role player and plays it well. Signing LaRose imo will have no impact on signing Jokinen. Jussi is a top six and if JR wants to add two Chex to the line up it would be difficult to do with both Jussi and Stillman. Not impossible but difficult.

I'm not sure Bodie, Tlusty or even Samson are long for this team. But right now I'm just guessing. If we don't sign Cole all previous scenarios change.

(I think there could be four spots open going into training camp)

Edited by OBXer

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I just had a chance to listen to JR's comments. Here's a few things that I took away from it.

On Ron Francis: How come since it was decided a long time ago that Francis would not stay behind the bench did he get behind the bench to begin with? Translation - "he sucked as a coach but we will never humiliate him in public by saying so. He's better and more valuable to the organization in the front office, and that's our story, and we are sticking to it."

I recall the word being (back in the pre-Francis-coach days) that he never wanted to be a coach. I also recall some folks here saying they hoped he'd try it anyway. Somehow he got talked into doing it - I can totally see him agreeing to give it a try even if that wasn't what he personally wanted - good soldier and all. It didn't work. I sure am not going to blame that on him. I am glad for him that he will now have a chance to do what all indications have pointed to him wanting to do in the first place.

It will be interesting to see what Brind'Amour does now. It sounds like he has a real talent of being able to strip away all the bs and get to the heart of things without creating hard feelings. He could go far. I hope it is here.

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I really really have no problem with LaRose on the 3rd line. I get a little chill when I look at that plus minus, but the guy put up 20 goals a couple of years ago, heart and soul and all that. Fine. The problem is where do you play your prospects? You have 9 spots in the top three lines. Injuries do happen, but not always for long stretches.

I happen to think that the likes of Tlusty, Bowman, Boychuk, and Dalpe should be getting serious top 9 time this year. If not, then the "rebuild" is Skinner and McBain. So it is a numbers thing even if Stillman is not resigned. As it stands here are guys who have a decent shot at the top 9 if Jussi signs (please), and Stillman does not.

1.Staal

2.Skinner

3.Cole

4.Jussi

5.Ruutu

6.Sutter

7.Tlusty

8.Boychuk

9.Dalpe

10. Bowman

Now which two do you leave out if LaRose is in there?

I still think Tlusty might end up scoring 20 goals per year, but it has been slow coming together, and I wonder if he is trade bait. Probably would only fetch someone else's "not living up to expectations" guy though.

JR's comments sure seem to suggest he is planning on keeping LaRose and Dwyer. If he sees LaRose on the 3rd line, he is probably going to have to make a trade.

It all matters less than signing Jussi.

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The problem is where do you play your prospects? You have 9 spots in the top three lines. Injuries do happen, but not always for long stretches.

I happen to think that the likes of Tlusty, Bowman, Boychuk, and Dalpe should be getting serious top 9 time this year. If not, then the "rebuild" is Skinner and McBain. So it is a numbers thing even if Stillman is not resigned. As it stands here are guys who have a decent shot at the top 9 if Jussi signs (please), and Stillman does not.

1.Staal

2.Skinner

3.Cole

4.Jussi

5.Ruutu

6.Sutter

7.Tlusty

8.Boychuk

9.Dalpe

10. Bowman

Now which two do you leave out if LaRose is in there?

Trying to figure it out is like reading tea leaves.

I think it could shake out like this. Just guessing of course because so much will depend who get resigned and who has a good training camp.

(Stillman or Jokinen) Staal Cole

Skinner Ruutu Dalpe

Bowman Sutter LaRose

Tlusty (FA center) Dwyer

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My problem with keeping Larose is he's not going to stay on the 3rd line, who are we kidding? Unless he leaves he'll be used on all 3 lines and he's proven for 2 seasons he's not a 1st line option and barely a 2nd line fill in for injuries.

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Maybe we should have Rosie just play the home games. If I'm not mistaken he was -23 on the road and +2 at home. Another approach would be to cut his pay by 1/2 as incentive to fix the road problem.

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Maybe we should have Rosie just play the home games. If I'm not mistaken he was -23 on the road and +2 at home. Another approach would be to cut his pay by 1/2 as incentive to fix the road problem.

:lol: Maybe the team just should play home games for the upcoming season.

Wonder if any of the Thrasher players are up for grabs. Say............Andrew Ladd? Yes, I know he's a UFA and anyone can make an offer for him but since he's the captain, I wonder if they're counting on him to make the move with the team. He'd fill that top line winger spot for Staal rather nicely but would likely blow our cap $ for a UFA defenseman. Wasn't Zack Bogosian unhappy at some point last season and wanting out too? There's an NHL ready top defenseman who hasn't reached his prime yet.

I heard yesterday the cap will be going up to $62 million, is that right? Like it or not JR has some spending to do to be at the cap floor. Anyone know what all the new numbers are or is it all still speculation and hasn't been officially announced yet?

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:lol: Maybe the team just should play home games for the upcoming season.

Wonder if any of the Thrasher players are up for grabs. Say............Andrew Ladd? Yes, I know he's a UFA and anyone can make an offer for him but since he's the captain, I wonder if they're counting on him to make the move with the team. He'd fill that top line winger spot for Staal rather nicely but would likely blow our cap $ for a UFA defenseman. Wasn't Zack Bogosian unhappy at some point last season and wanting out too? There's an NHL ready top defenseman who hasn't reached his prime yet.

I heard yesterday the cap will be going up to $62 million, is that right? Like it or not JR has some spending to do to be at the cap floor. Anyone know what all the new numbers are or is it all still speculation and hasn't been officially announced yet?

I don't think it's official yet but I've read several reputable reports suggesting the cap will most definitely increase from the current $59.4 million to $62.2 million next year. That would put the cap floor at $46.2 million. At this point its almost fruitless to attempt to figure out just where the Canes will be relative to the new cap floor. Currently, we only have a roster of 11 players under contract with a cap hit of $30 million. So, that leaves all the UFA's and RFA's who have yet to be signed (or let go) and potential new players coming on board (veteran goalie, 4th line center, replacement for Pits, etc.). And no, we shouldn't have to worry about staying under the cap, sigh.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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Thanks Coastal. Maybe when the ownership situation gets settled they'll be able to spend a little more, it sounds like it's close to being sorted out. Because of our market I think we'll always be a budget team but with a cap of $62.2 million, there's still a lot of spending that can be done and stay within a budget.

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I recall the word being (back in the pre-Francis-coach days) that he never wanted to be a coach. I also recall some folks here saying they hoped he'd try it anyway. Somehow he got talked into doing it - I can totally see him agreeing to give it a try even if that wasn't what he personally wanted - good soldier and all. It didn't work. I sure am not going to blame that on him. I am glad for him that he will now have a chance to do what all indications have pointed to him wanting to do in the first place.

It will be interesting to see what Brind'Amour does now. It sounds like he has a real talent of being able to strip away all the bs and get to the heart of things without creating hard feelings. He could go far. I hope it is here.

My point is I think it was a questionable decision putting him behind the bench to begin with, based upon direct statements from JR. If he was always slotted for front office duties, then why didn't he assume those responsibilities and leave coaching to coaches? The fact that it didn't work out (not even close) is all the more reason to question the decision. Anytime you have your HOF players behind the bench, you run the risk of getting a black eye over it.

Edited by coastal_caniac

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Thanks Coastal. Maybe when the ownership situation gets settled they'll be able to spend a little more, it sounds like it's close to being sorted out. Because of our market I think we'll always be a budget team but with a cap of $62.2 million, there's still a lot of spending that can be done and stay within a budget.

I'm hopeful for the same, and that the whole ownership situation will sort itself our sooner than later. However, I don't believe for a minute JR doesn't know what his operating budget is. Come on, it's almost June. With that said, I'm still a little concerned that we could continue to "transition" into an el-cheapo budget team. I understand how JR uses the media, but it will be interesting to see just how the UFA situation plays itself out. Then we can talk about el-cheapo vs. budget. :)

xx

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What is the point of a cap if it's 62 million?

That's what I'm thinking, the whole point of having the cap was to level the playing field so the haves and have-nots would be spending within the same range. No budget team is going to be able to even come close to that.

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Not only is no budget team going to match that but if Atlanta moves and Phoenix loses it would show the cap is a major bust for what they wanted to do.

Atlanta doesn't lack hockey fans, it lacks Charlie Sheen winning. Winning = hockey fans in seats.

Something that Ben Eager didn't bring them much of.

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Atlanta doesn't lack hockey fans, it lacks Charlie Sheen winning. Winning = hockey fans in seats.

Something that Ben Eager didn't bring them much of.

Give 'em a break, it's not his fault he doesn't have tiger blood or Adonis DNA...

I'm getting a feeling that the NHL is adapting an only the strong survive attitude with everything that's been going on in Atlanta (though Pheonix was/is the opposite for some reason). The small market teams may be getting trampled on before too much longer. I hope I'm wrong about that.

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What is the point of a cap if it's 62 million?

once the cap really started jumping years back we all could see the NHL would return to old state of high salaries and the differences in budgets becoming more apparent.

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I was just doing some research on possible 4th line centers.. some interesting names..

Scott Nichol (JR said he wanted a bigger guy, but this guy has played great in the postseason)

Ryan Carter (I would say no to this - I think new faces are important)

Andrew Murray

Zenon Konopka

Craig Adams (I think he mostly played wing here, but can handle the center position)

Ryan Craig (Has a little bit of a scoring touch)

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The Thrashers are primarily the victim of a crappy ownership group who thought they could come in and flip them quick, then started infighting and court battles, and could have cared less about the team. What more evidence is needed than keeping Don Waddell in charge there so long? I don't think it points to a larger trend, the NHL is fighting tooth and nail to keep Phoenix, and Florida is still battling it out.

If the cap goes up so does the revenue sharing, and I assume the Canes still qualify for that. Not every team is going to be profitable, and as has been proven time and again $$$ does not always equal success. The revenue sharing $$$ are supposed to help the lower budget teams compete and keep from from losing too much.

The cap is a cap, it's not intended to be a target all teams should spend to. Obviously it would be great if that happened, but with a 30 team league it's probably a long way off.

ETA: Can't wait for the end of June when things finally get interesting for the Canes again!

Edited by JLP

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Spector's Hockey is saying Joni could be Blue next season.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson

Joni Pitkanen would be a perfect fit with the Detroit Red Wings but they lack the cap space to sign him, leading Matheson to wonder if perhaps the Columbus Blue Jackets could afford him

I don't know. I really don't see Joni in Columbus.

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That's what I'm thinking, the whole point of having the cap was to level the playing field so the haves and have-nots would be spending within the same range. No budget team is going to be able to even come close to that.

???

My understanding of the Cap is the Collective Bargaining Agreement between the league and NHLPA determines the Min/Max. So if the Cap is going up, then each club's share of Revenue went up (even more).

The Max is $8MM above the per team share of league revenue required for Player Compensation, and the Min is $8MM below the amount. So if the Cap goes up, the per team share of Revenue went up even more.

Example:

Salary Cap of $62MM means the share per team required for Player Compensation is $54MM (62-8).

The required for Player Compensation is a % of the TOTAL Revenue per team (e.g., 57% of the total). So using $54MM and dividing by .57 means the per team total revenue share is $94.7MM (or league revenue of $2.8+ Billion, being $94.7MM per team x 30 teams).

Now there are lots of expenses to run a team, so if a club pays the Min of $46MM (54-8) to players, the remaining $48.7MM (94.7-46) covers all the other salaries and expenses (leases, equipment, coaches, staff, marketing, etc.). So gate receipts, concessions, parking, etc. matter.

Anyway, if the Cap goes up, so does the revenue per team, where 57% goes to players, and the rest keeps the lights on, etc.

Edited by Manwolf

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Spector's Hockey is saying Joni could be Blue next season.

Judging from the impression I got from his exit interview I'm sure Joni cares more about the green in his wallet than the color of the jersey.

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Judging from the impression I got from his exit interview I'm sure Joni cares more about the green in his wallet than the color of the jersey.

LOL, I was thinking the same thing as I wrote that. But I still don't see Joni in Columbus. I think Joni might want bright lights in his eyes and green in his pocket. I agree the color of the jersey won't matter.

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For the third highest paid player on the team. 4.5M after only Staal (7.5M) and Ward (5M), Pitkanen is 7th on the team in total points (but 14th in goals with 5, 5th in A with 30). -2 and only 66 hits. And while it's not on the score sheet, how many times have we heard "Turnover by Pitkanen" and/or "What was Joni thinking?" I'm not upset to see him go. He's a good player, but way too expensive for this franchise and IMHO not worth what we're paying him. Maybe Columbus is perfect for him.. Look what they paid Commodore. (I loved Commodore, but he did get grossly overpaid).

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