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What about team toughness as a factor?

Losing any one of the 3 ( Cole, Wallin, Commie ) would make what I consider to be an already "soft" team even softer.

Sure toughness is not everything in the "new" NHL but IMHO lack of it hurt us a lot this yr. past.

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I would put Adams, Gleason, Ladd, and Walker higher on the toughness scale than I would Cole, Commodore, or Wallin. If we want to see an improvement next season, we'll need to make a major move. If we want a player like Derek Morris or Joni Pitkanen, it will take a player like Erik Cole headed the other way. We could keep Erik Cole and head into free agency with just enough money to sign a third-line center, but would we be any better next season for it? We would put virtually the same team on the ice with the only change at third-line center. Last year's team had much more problems than just the third-line center. I like Erik Cole as much as anyone, but if he can be traded to make the overall team better I think the option should be seriously considered.

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It would free up about $2 million if we shipped Erik Cole for Joni Pitkanen. That would leave us with about $4.3 million to spend in free agency.

We could:

Move Scott Walker up to the first line with Cory Stillman and Eric Staal.

Sign Shane Willis to be the right winger on our third-line with Andrew Ladd and a free agent center.

Stillman / Staal / Walker

Whitney / Brind'Amour / Williams

Ladd / ??? / Willis

LaRose / Letowski / Adams

Willis was a ppg player in Albany last year but he was also injured for a great chunk of the season and is coming off a major surgery. No way he makes our roster, especially on the 3rd line. If anyone from Albany makes this team it'll be Bayda, Reed or Hughes. I'm also not liking the idea of having Letowski as our 4th line center. He was brought in to centre the 3rd line last year after not playing the position for a number of year and in the pre-season alone he showed he can't do it at all. Trade Letowski and let Hughes or Sutter (depending on his camp) fill that spot. Will cost us half the salary and give one of our younger guys a shot.

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I would put Adams, Gleason, Ladd, and Walker higher on the toughness scale than I would Cole, Commodore, or Wallin. If we want to see an improvement next season, we'll need to make a major move. If we want a player like Derek Morris or Joni Pitkanen, it will take a player like Erik Cole headed the other way. We could keep Erik Cole and head into free agency with just enough money to sign a third-line center, but would we be any better next season for it? We would put virtually the same team on the ice with the only change at third-line center. Last year's team had much more problems than just the third-line center. I like Erik Cole as much as anyone, but if he can be traded to make the overall team better I think the option should be seriously considered.

Wallin is as tough as they come. Just because he doesn't fight doesn't mean otherwise. The guy is a beast. As for it taking a player like Cole to land Morris, that's a joke. Phoenix wants rid of him and his massive contract. He could be had for a lot less. Same with Pitkanen now that Philadelphia isn't so happy with him. If Cole was going to either of these teams additions would be have to made to their returns.

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Neither Hughes or Sutter are prepared to make the jump from junior hockey to major hockey in one offseason. They'll each need atleast one season in the AHL to prepare for the NHL and Sutter is likely atleast a year away from the AHL. Harrison Reed would probably be in Albany, but he isn't old enough to play in the AHL. If we signed him to a contract, it would either be NHL roster or bust.

Forgot about Ryan Bayda, he is a possibility. I don't think we see any of our prospects graduate from the AHL next season, so it'll likely come down to Ryan Bayda and Shane Willis as system players to make it to the NHL roster.

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I would put Adams, Gleason, Ladd, and Walker higher on the toughness scale than I would Cole, Commodore, or Wallin. If we want to see an improvement next season, we'll need to make a major move. If we want a player like Derek Morris or Joni Pitkanen, it will take a player like Erik Cole headed the other way. We could keep Erik Cole and head into free agency with just enough money to sign a third-line center, but would we be any better next season for it? We would put virtually the same team on the ice with the only change at third-line center. Last year's team had much more problems than just the third-line center. I like Erik Cole as much as anyone, but if he can be traded to make the overall team better I think the option should be seriously considered.

Wallin is as tough as they come. Just because he doesn't fight doesn't mean otherwise. The guy is a beast. As for it taking a player like Cole to land Morris, that's a joke. Phoenix wants rid of him and his massive contract. He could be had for a lot less. Same with Pitkanen now that Philadelphia isn't so happy with him. If Cole was going to either of these teams additions would be have to made to their returns.

I don't think so. If we acquire Joni Pitkanen, Erik Cole will be headed the other way. Unless we basically strip Albany of all of it's quality prospects.

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Normally it would take a guy like Cole to land Pitkanen but his value is lower than it should be. Philly is overreacting based on one off season with a poor +/- which came on an absolutely terrible team. He still put up around 43 points.

Don't forget how impressed the canes were with Hughes' and Reeds performances at training camp last year. One of them making the roster may not be as unlikely as you think after another year of development. Hughes may be undersized but he is insanely strong.

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Bobby Hughes may be physically ready for the NHL, but he still has to prove he is mentally ready for the NHL. A complete season in Albany would prove that.

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Bobby Hughes may be physically ready for the NHL, but he still has to prove he is mentally ready for the NHL. A complete season in Albany would prove that.

I'm not saying he'll play in Carolina next season for certain but there is a possibility. He was damn good in training camp last year and he's had another year to develop. Only management can know his mental makeup so any talk of that on our behalf is pure speculation. Lots of guys that age are mature enough to play and lots aren't. We'll just have to wait and see but Hughes is quite possibly an option for this team next year.

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It isn't speculation that he stood up in front of his teammates after a playoff loss this past season and said "I quit". It'll take quite a performance for him to show he has changed in the one or two months that have passed since that time.

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Now that I think about it the game wasn't even over, it was actually the end of regulation. He was upset at his lack of ice time and quit the team, he didn't play the overtime and Kingston lost.

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The incident sure didn't stop the canes from signing him to a 3 year deal, did it? There's lots you're leaving unsaid anyways. I can't find the article now but I'm pretty sure they had benched him for most of (or the entire) the third period because of an injury. He felt he could still play but the coaching staff disagreed and he was angry. He's just a kid to begin with and people make mistakes. I'm sure he's learned his lesson if the canes thought they wanted to bring him up to Albany to finish the year. Whether or not he's incredibly mature won't necessarily stop him from making the team anyways.

Also, you try to make it sound like his leaving the game had an effect on the outcome. He had barely played, if at all, in the third period and his team blew a 4 goal lead in the third alone. Pretty sure they were toast with or without Hughes.

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The Flyers are trading Pitkanen because they basically have no cap room and they know that nobody is going to take either Hatcher or Rathje off their hands. If we got him, it would be highway robbery. Getting Pitkanen from the Flyers for Wallin or Commodore, even though we'll lose one of our favorite players, will be a trade we look back on in a few years and put it right alongside of the Brind'Amour or Williams trade where be basically robbed the Flyers of talent. Pitkanen would be an anchor for our defense for many, many years to come, and it would practically make us forget about the whole Jack Johnson situation, thats how good this kid is. He had one bad year. One bad year playing on a team filled with a bunch of crap. He would THRIVE in the Canes franchise, and its seriously one of those players where I'd be willing to give up a fan favorite for him. He's young, he's got tremendous talent, he can score goals, and he's just an all-around good defender. I'm all for this trade. All for it 100%.

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The Flyers are trading Pitkanen because they basically have no cap room and they know that nobody is going to take either Hatcher or Rathje off their hands. If we got him, it would be highway robbery. Getting Pitkanen from the Flyers for Wallin or Commodore, even though we'll lose one of our favorite players, will be a trade we look back on in a few years and put it right alongside of the Brind'Amour or Williams trade where be basically robbed the Flyers of talent. Pitkanen would be an anchor for our defense for many, many years to come, and it would practically make us forget about the whole Jack Johnson situation, thats how good this kid is. He had one bad year. One bad year playing on a team filled with a bunch of crap. He would THRIVE in the Canes franchise, and its seriously one of those players where I'd be willing to give up a fan favorite for him. He's young, he's got tremendous talent, he can score goals, and he's just an all-around good defender. I'm all for this trade. All for it 100%.

if you ask the people in philly pitkanen is a turtle on the ice, so im not that syked about it

also did anybody see the article in the N&O today where Rutherford said "turns out the Canes were working on a trade but not that one (speaking of the Pitkanen deal)" and "we've got something going on right now.... if something were to happen in a trade.... it would probably happen in the next few days"

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Canada.com reports the same Commodore or Wallin for Pitkanen rumor as elsewhere, but also notes this:

"The Edmonton Oilers have always liked Pitkanen, too, but they've apparently cooled on him after some background checks."

Knowing how the Canes recently have valued character and a happy locker room above other things (which is why Esposito was passed over by us in the draft), makes me wonder whether Pitkanen is really the object of JR's desire, assuming Edmonton's background check information is true.

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Canada.com reports the same Commodore or Wallin for Pitkanen rumor as elsewhere, but also notes this:

"The Edmonton Oilers have always liked Pitkanen, too, but they've apparently cooled on him after some background checks."

Knowing how the Canes recently have valued character and a happy locker room above other things (which is why Esposito was passed over by us in the draft), makes me wonder whether Pitkanen is really the object of JR's desire, assuming Edmonton's background check information is true.

I'll just say this... attitude-wise, we're basically the Patriots of the NHL. Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap. I'm tellin ya, Joni would be a great fit with us.

If JR isn't going to be getting him, that means he has a better offer for someone else on the table, which could be awesome.

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Canada.com reports the same Commodore or Wallin for Pitkanen rumor as elsewhere, but also notes this:

"The Edmonton Oilers have always liked Pitkanen, too, but they've apparently cooled on him after some background checks."

Knowing how the Canes recently have valued character and a happy locker room above other things (which is why Esposito was passed over by us in the draft), makes me wonder whether Pitkanen is really the object of JR's desire, assuming Edmonton's background check information is true.

I'll just say this... attitude-wise, we're basically the Patriots of the NHL. Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap. I'm tellin ya, Joni would be a great fit with us.

If JR isn't going to be getting him, that means he has a better offer for someone else on the table, which could be awesome.

Pretty sure Tom Brady's attitude at the end of the AFC championship would say otherwise. Thats just my stab at the pats, cause I hate them heehee.

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Canada.com reports the same Commodore or Wallin for Pitkanen rumor as elsewhere, but also notes this:

"The Edmonton Oilers have always liked Pitkanen, too, but they've apparently cooled on him after some background checks."

Knowing how the Canes recently have valued character and a happy locker room above other things (which is why Esposito was passed over by us in the draft), makes me wonder whether Pitkanen is really the object of JR's desire, assuming Edmonton's background check information is true.

I'll just say this... attitude-wise, we're basically the Patriots of the NHL. Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap. I'm tellin ya, Joni would be a great fit with us.

If JR isn't going to be getting him, that means he has a better offer for someone else on the table, which could be awesome.

Pretty sure Tom Brady's attitude at the end of the AFC championship would say otherwise. Thats just my stab at the pats, cause I hate them heehee.

I think the Panthers would be a better example of a team that builds on character. And i agree with you, I hate the Pats and esp. pretty boy Tom Brady

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Canada.com reports the same Commodore or Wallin for Pitkanen rumor as elsewhere, but also notes this:

"The Edmonton Oilers have always liked Pitkanen, too, but they've apparently cooled on him after some background checks."

Knowing how the Canes recently have valued character and a happy locker room above other things (which is why Esposito was passed over by us in the draft), makes me wonder whether Pitkanen is really the object of JR's desire, assuming Edmonton's background check information is true.

I'll just say this... attitude-wise, we're basically the Patriots of the NHL. Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap. I'm tellin ya, Joni would be a great fit with us.

If JR isn't going to be getting him, that means he has a better offer for someone else on the table, which could be awesome.

Pretty sure Tom Brady's attitude at the end of the AFC championship would say otherwise. Thats just my stab at the pats, cause I hate them heehee.

I'm watching this ya know! Leave my Pats out of this.... ;)

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Canada.com reports the same Commodore or Wallin for Pitkanen rumor as elsewhere, but also notes this:

"The Edmonton Oilers have always liked Pitkanen, too, but they've apparently cooled on him after some background checks."

Knowing how the Canes recently have valued character and a happy locker room above other things (which is why Esposito was passed over by us in the draft), makes me wonder whether Pitkanen is really the object of JR's desire, assuming Edmonton's background check information is true.

I'll just say this... attitude-wise, we're basically the Patriots of the NHL. Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap. I'm tellin ya, Joni would be a great fit with us.

If JR isn't going to be getting him, that means he has a better offer for someone else on the table, which could be awesome.

Pretty sure Tom Brady's attitude at the end of the AFC championship would say otherwise. Thats just my stab at the pats, cause I hate them heehee.

I'm watching this ya know! Leave my Pats out of this.... ;)

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Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap.

I guess Babchuk was the exception to the rule?

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I doubt they will trade Cole, and if they do I will cry. Anyways, I'd look into a player that can handle the pressure of a starting or second line, but won't grumble at a 3rd line placement either.

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Players come to this team and they get their act in gear from day one because our veterans won't put up with any of their crap.

I guess Babchuk was the exception to the rule?

Not really. If they don't get their act in gear they're not put up with and he isn't. He can do whatever the heck he wants...over in Russia.

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Kariya.. he's a pred, right?

Correct. Kariya would cost us alot but he would be pretty good. No offense to the preds but I think he would do even better if he had a team with better players (points wise at least). Staal,Cole,Willy,Brindy,Stillman and Whitney ETC. I would like to see him get on our team but I don't think there is truth behind this so its just a rumor.

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The canes came incredibly close to signing him after the lockout. There was some more speculation this offseason until we signed Walker. Now there is absolutely no way he's coming here. Would you drop Ladd or Walker to the fourth line? Nope.

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