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Who Would We Acquire for the Stretch Run?

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The standings don't exactly show it but I think we are better off roster wise at this point than we were last season. I know alot of people don't like Grahame but I think our goaltending is solid at worst with he and Cam. The Canes forwards, with all being healthy, are one of the best groups in the league. The first two lines are a threat to score each shift. The third line is also potent and also pesky with Walker, Letowski, and Belanger. The fourth line works hard as always along with producing an occasional goal. I don't see any reason to acquire a forward.

As for the defense. Assuming Kaberle is back in action by March this crew will resemble our Cup winning defense. No big names but solid pairings that work well together. At times this season I've wished for a Nic Wallin clone. A stay at home defenseman who makes responsible plays in his own zone and cleans up loose pucks and opponents from in front of the net. Gleason has done this the past two games and if he continues to play at a high level the "D" should be no worse than last season heading into the playoffs.

I see only two reasons to venture into the trade or rental business before the deadline:

1. Injuries

2. To change the chemistry if the team as a whole slips back into a mode of inconsistent play from game to game

I think this Canes roster has a great chance of winning the Southeast and making a very deep run in the playoffs.

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Tkachuk could be available. Give another old Blue a chance at Cup.

But more seriously, I still believe we could use another big defenseman, something Frank is not. Eric Brewer (yet another Blue)? Aaron Miller?

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Kimmo Timonen....you guys need a defensman and in my opinion he's being underpriced right now.
He's Nashville's captain and they are most likely going to make the playoffs. Why would they trade him?

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I'd go after Aaron Ward if we could. He may not be the best d-man in the NHL, but we know that the chemistry will be there and exactly what we can expect from him-something that no other d-man can give us.

That is, unless JFJ goes off the deep end and offers us Tomas Kaberle. I'd take T. Kabs over Aaron Ward.

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I dont think your gonna see our GM make any major deadline deals this time. There was something about last years teams that make him open up his purse. Alot of you guys are forgetting hes a smart money pincher and hes not gonna just bring in who ever unless its a steal.

I'l be surprised if we get past the 2nd round this year we just dont look that great this year.

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I'l be surprised if we get past the 2nd round this year we just dont look that great this year.

This is December. We are four games above .500 after a brutal three month schedule. This team has the capability of having a very good second half of the season.

As for the playoffs, how far we get will depend a lot on our seeding and who are matchups would be. It is way too early to be predicting an early playoff exit for this team.

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I think it's a bit too early assuming automatically that we will make the playoffs. There is a huge logjam between 5th and 13th place right now in the Conference with teams being only seperated by 6 points. I guess who might be available will largely depend on what the other teams think their chances are to make the POs or who (ie, UFAs next summer) a team might want to dump and at least get something for them.

Personally I think we are sitting ok for the time being barring unexpected injuries, especially with Frankie expected to come back before the POs. I just hope that JR won't get into the habit of using up all our 1st and 2d draft picks because sooner or later the cap space could bite us in the you know what.

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This is December. We are four games above .500 after a brutal three month schedule.

Last check says this is still a .500 team. Legend is correct, the team is what the record shows. Without a stud D-man, the outlook is not favorable.

Record at this time last year, 21-9-2, still battling with TB for the Division lead.

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Last check says this is still a .500 team.
We have 40 points in 36 games. That is above .500.
Legend is correct, the team is what the record shows. Without a stud D-man, the outlook is not favorable.
What "stud d-man" did we have last year?
Record at this time last year, 21-9-2, still battling with TB for the Division lead.
We had an easier schedule at this point last year. We've played 21 on the road and 15 at home and have had more injuries and, more significantly, injuries to more important players. (BTW, we were 23-10-3 through 36 games last year.)

And are we not still battling with Atlanta for the division lead? They are a whopping 6 points ahead.

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My thought would be to bolster the D. I feel we have the weopons up front when everyone is healthy. It might not hurt to have one more addition to the blue-line. Even after K comes back, I personally would like someone who is a little more physical than what we currently have.

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Let's not forget that last season's numbers got a huge boost from the pair of 9-game win streaks, one of which had happened by this point last year. No one expected to keep up with last year's pace, especially early on. This year's numbers are also hurt by all the scheduling oddities in the first half of the season. We have 48 games left and 40 points in the bank. That puts us on pace for 96, but with the schedule becoming easier and guys coming back from injury, we should pick up points at a better pace the second half of the year barring more major injuries. Making it to 112 points again is unlikely, but notching between 100 and 105 is a reasonable expectation and enough to get a midrange playoff berth. At the rate Atlanta's going, we'll need a record about as good as last year's to finish ahead of them, so don't hold your breath for a top 3 spot unless they start to tank.

With that in mind, I'm not sure we're going to bring in anybody unless we really take a dive. Although if JR knows of somebody on the trading block who could bring some consistency to this team without overpaying for him, more power to him.

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I saw that Aaron was brought up, but I'm quite surprized that no one has mentioned getting Cullen back for playoffs. I know he's probably high-priced, but we KNOW how well Matt did here, & we know he works into the chemistry of the team. Besides, if we were to get Matt & Aaron back, w/ the exception of Belanger, Gleason, Grahame & Walker (which are an added plus), we'd have pretty much the same team from last year that did so well (obviously we wouldn't have Gerber, but Crackers is a nice compliment to Cameron & I think he'd hold up better in the actual playoffs than Marty did).

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I saw that Aaron was brought up, but I'm quite surprized that no one has mentioned getting Cullen back for playoffs.

I know he's probably high-priced

You can't just brush that off. His salary would prevent us from re-signing our current players. Cole and Staal would be up for new contracts while Cullen's $2.8 million a year would still be on the books. I'd only be for bringing up Matt if (1) He was on a one or two-year deal (which he isn't) and (2) The Rangers would be willing to part with him cheaply.

You can apply this logic to deadline deals in general. Giving up a first and a second was fine last year, but continuing to do it year after year is stupid..

but we KNOW how well Matt did here, & we know he works into the chemistry of the team.
We also know he had a great season in a contract year where he scored most of goals during a couple of hot streaks and was a ghost for long stretches of the season. We know that right now Matt is playing exactly like he did in the rest of his career. Was Cullen a great fit or was it that Cullen was eligible to become a UFA?

Same goes for Aaron Ward, who was solid last year and in 2001-2002, but was terrible in between and was the guy everyone wanted traded for a bag of pucks prior to last season. Guess which years were contract years. Does the name Sean Hill ring a bell?

There is no guarantee that these guys are going to play like last year and they sure aren't doing it with the Rangers.

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