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I'm not liking Gillies as an option. Sure, he can throw down, but he seriously lacks in the skill department. No, an enforcer doesn't have to be a skilled guy but he should at least be able to play. Carolina isn't going to dress a guy and send him out for a minute a game. Lavi just isn't going to go that far. I could see us signing a guy like Darcy Hordichuk. He's a real high energy guy, hits and will fight anyone. He could actually play a regular shift on the fourth line. We could potentially have a fairly skilled fourth line next year with Sutter and Larose, I can't see us putting Gillies out there with them. If you're going to doubleshift a forward just so you can have him play a minute a game...well that's a waste and again, I don't think Lavi will do that. Just my .2 cents.

I hear your point, but to return the serve, that is what he was doing with Brookbank this year only playing a few minutes a game. Sure it would be great to get Hordichuk, but you have to look at $$. If your looking for a serviceable 4th line tough guy, then we don't have one. But if ou are only going to play him 2-4 minutes a game I rather have Gillies on the bench over Brookbank.

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I hear your point, but to return the serve, that is what he was doing with Brookbank this year only playing a few minutes a game. Sure it would be great to get Hordichuk, but you have to look at $$. If your looking for a serviceable 4th line tough guy, then we don't have one. But if ou are only going to play him 2-4 minutes a game I rather have Gillies on the bench over Brookbank.

I'd rather have Gillies over Brookbank, too, but with Hordichuk money won't be an issue. He made just 517k this year.

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Show me where I called him a shutdown guy, I didn't. All I said is he's defensively responsible and a hard hitter to counter what you had said about him. He'd easily be on our top pairing. If we were to acquire him I'd see our pairings as:

Corvo - Bieksa

Gleason - Kaberle

Wallin - Seidenberg/Borer

Personally I'd sooner add another offensive defenseman and try to dump Kaberle. John-Michael Liles is another young, smooth skating offenseman with puck handling skills who could really use a chance of scenery. He's a ufa and JR has liked him for a long time. Decent defensively but because of his age he still has a lot of room to improve. Ron Hainsey is another guy JR likes but he's more of a pure offensive type. Because he just had a great year he'll be demanding a higher price whereas Liles could take a discount because he struggled this past year. My ideal defense next year would be:

Corvo - Bieksa

Gleason - Liles

Wesley - Borer

Wallin - Seidenberg

With the raise Gleason is bound to get it may not be feasible to sign Liles unless we move a second forward. I'd like to see Wesley back, I think he's got it in him. He'd be a great mentor to work with Borer as we ease him into full-time duties. Seidenberg is good enough to keep around as your 7th defenseman. As for Wallin, I hate to say it but we're stuck with him because of that damn NTC. As bad as he was this year I don't think anybody is all that interested in him to begin with and he doesn't seem to want to leave; he didn't last summer. Give him spot duty should Borer struggle or play him full-time if Wesley hangs them up.

a "shut down guy" is what we need, not another offensive defenseman - that was my main point to begin with - just remember that I generally don't like "offensive defensemen" (which has toned down a bit from "hating 'em" thanks to what I saw from Corvo) because - precisely their tendency to be out of position on defense - I think this is a case of "your best offense is a good defense" vs. "your best defense is a good offense" and we fall on opposite side of the coin there - don't get me wrong, I'm NOT advocating a return to a trapping style of play!

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Wallin has a ntc and he wouldn't waive it last summer, why would he now?

You're lying to yourself if you think none of those guys is going to make over 3 million. Streit just put up 62 points, he's easily getting 3.5+ I wouldn't want him on my d anyways. He's not that good of a defenseman, most of his points came playing as a forward. That's something most people don't know. He's a powerplay specialist and an average defenseman but he's going to cash in this summer. Gleason will be getting somewhere in the 2.5-3 mil range. Expect him to be locked up to a long term deal, something in the neighbourhood of 5-6 years.

I forgot to add this about streit. He has had one good year. He can play forward...so if we get him he gives us a lot of flexibility coming off the fourth line.

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On the Enforcer subject -

The best I could tell here is the list of free agent Enforcers.

Fedoruk (6 g, 7 a, 13 p)

Winchester (1 g, 2 a, 3 p)

Parker (0 g, 0 a, 0 p)

Godard (1 g, 1 a, 2 p)

Boulerice (0 g, 0 a, 0 p)

Roy (4 g, 3 a, 7 p)

Hordichuk (1 g, 2 a, 3 p)

Koci (0 g, 0 a, 0 p)

Boulton (4 g, 5 a, 9 p)

Shelley (1 g, 6 a, 7 p)

Laraque (4 g, 9 a, 13 p)

S. Thornton (4 g, 3 a, 7 p) <-- "part time enforcer".

Granted I missed a few, and I also only listed offensive players. By far Parker is the best enforcer on there, notable mentions go to Hordichuck, Laraque, Koci, and Shelly

Laraque and Thornton I say are out of the question because of their salaries, each making over 1 million last season.

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On the Enforcer subject -

The best I could tell here is the list of free agent Enforcers.

Fedoruk (6 g, 7 a, 13 p)

Winchester (1 g, 2 a, 3 p)

Parker (0 g, 0 a, 0 p)

Godard (1 g, 1 a, 2 p)

Boulerice (0 g, 0 a, 0 p)

Roy (4 g, 3 a, 7 p)

Hordichuk (1 g, 2 a, 3 p)

Koci (0 g, 0 a, 0 p)

Boulton (4 g, 5 a, 9 p)

Shelley (1 g, 6 a, 7 p)

Laraque (4 g, 9 a, 13 p)

S. Thornton (4 g, 3 a, 7 p) <-- "part time enforcer".

Granted I missed a few, and I also only listed offensive players. By far Parker is the best enforcer on there, notable mentions go to Hordichuck, Laraque, Koci, and Shelly

Laraque and Thornton I say are out of the question because of their salaries, each making over 1 million last season.

If you have seen Koci play I rather have Gillies instead. Maybe I am just partial to him but I would take Shelley. Those guys are all going to have a contract between 600-900k I would say. Except Koci.... Cody McLeod in Colorado is a RFA made 475 this past year and is young. He is a great hustle guy that will throw with anyone, not a heavyweight but a good guy that will get under the skin of the others.

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If you have seen Koci play I rather have Gillies instead. Maybe I am just partial to him but I would take Shelley. Those guys are all going to have a contract between 600-900k I would say. Except Koci.... Cody McLeod in Colorado is a RFA made 475 this past year and is young. He is a great hustle guy that will throw with anyone, not a heavyweight but a good guy that will get under the skin of the others.

You're right about Koci, the man cannot play hockey at all. Only reason he saw time in the nhl is because he's HUGE. McLeod will be re-signed. You said it yourself, he's an rfa. I'm not really sure why people on this forum always talk about getting guys who are restricted because it's extremely unlikely. If a guy is bad enough to not be qualified by his team why would we want him?

I know his Cap # could be high but Jason Smith(Philly) is a UFA. 1.976 last year, but here is a defensive defense men and a great leader.

We don't need another leader and we'd be better off going with someone younger.

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You're right about Koci, the man cannot play hockey at all. Only reason he saw time in the nhl is because he's HUGE. McLeod will be re-signed. You said it yourself, he's an rfa. I'm not really sure why people on this forum always talk about getting guys who are restricted because it's extremely unlikely. If a guy is bad enough to not be qualified by his team why would we want him?

We don't need another leader and we'd be better off going with someone younger.

Yes McLeod will be qualified but what will his # be qualified at... Ultimately since everyone else is throwing out crazy hopes how about Boll love that kid!

I now we don't need another leader, however, he was the one I liked the most for a ufa d man.

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I know his Cap # could be high but Jason Smith(Philly) is a UFA. 1.976 last year, but here is a defensive defense men and a great leader.

Jason Smith will definately be playing for New Jersey next year...a slim chance he stays in Philli.

I read it in quite a few papers near the deadline...that he would like to go back where he was drafted.

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If you have seen Koci play I rather have Gillies instead. Maybe I am just partial to him but I would take Shelley. Those guys are all going to have a contract between 600-900k I would say. Except Koci.... Cody McLeod in Colorado is a RFA made 475 this past year and is young. He is a great hustle guy that will throw with anyone, not a heavyweight but a good guy that will get under the skin of the others.

Don't you take Cody McLeod from me! I love that dude. He's like a LaRose who'll fight, and although he doesn't score much, all his goals were fairly clutch.

As for a heavyweight, if the Hurricanes were to target anyone, I'd advise either Parker, whom I hope the Avs re-sign, or Shelley. The Avs' record with Parker in the lineup is quite good, and although he doesn't fight much, he's either won or ended up with a draw in all his fights. He's also a very good locker room guy, is a class act off the ice, and is pretty scary looking, too. He certainly has earned the name of "the Sherriff" during his second stint with the Avs.

Shelley, Hordichuk, or Fedoruk would all be good choices. Shelley's probably the best fighter up there, Hordichuk's kinda in the mix, but Fedoruk has certainly improved his all-around game this year. He's seeing PP time with Minnesota.

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Fedoruk would be a bad choice, not much of a fighter now and he's one punch/big hit away from ending his career. There's more metal in that mans face than in a zamboni.

Anyways, Leighton is making a strong bid to be in the nhl next year. First playoff game tonight against the phantoms...39 save shutout. Rats win 4-0.

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I know this has been posted before, but can someone provide me (or us all) a list of the free agent defensivemen available this summer? Cause I'd like to know which "shutdown" defensivemen are available and just who we might go after.

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Good man. Now from that list here's who I like and consider "shutdown defensivemen":

Adam Foote

Brad Stuart (this guy has had a great spring with Detroit)

Dmitri Kalinin (iffy about this guy, but he's been real good with Buffalo before)

Mark Eaton (good spring with Pittsburgh)

Bryce Salvador

Jim Vandermeer (only 27 too!)

Brooks Orpik (yea yea I know we all hate him, but still he's young and very solid defensively)

Andreas Lilja (big guy)

Ron Hainsey

Branislav Mezei

Steve Montador (personal fav.-was good with Calgary)

Alexei Semenov (big guy)

Matt Walker (big guy)

Nolan Pratt

Now I'm not including RFA players, although there are some VERY good ones available that Carolina could try for. Examples would be Jay Bouwmeester, Kurtis Foster, Steve Eminger, Andrej Meszaros, Mark Stuart (this guy is goooood, Boston will surely keep him), and Randy Jones.

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Good man. Now from that list here's who I like and consider "shutdown defensivemen":

Adam Foote

Brad Stuart (this guy has had a great spring with Detroit)

Dmitri Kalinin (iffy about this guy, but he's been real good with Buffalo before)

Mark Eaton (good spring with Pittsburgh)

Bryce Salvador

Jim Vandermeer (only 27 too!)

Brooks Orpik (yea yea I know we all hate him, but still he's young and very solid defensively)

Andreas Lilja (big guy)

Ron Hainsey

Branislav Mezei

Steve Montador (personal fav.-was good with Calgary)

Alexei Semenov (big guy)

Matt Walker (big guy)

Nolan Pratt

Now I'm not including RFA players, although there are some VERY good ones available that Carolina could try for. Examples would be Jay Bouwmeester, Kurtis Foster, Steve Eminger, Andrej Meszaros, Mark Stuart (this guy is goooood, Boston will surely keep him), and Randy Jones.

Foote will either re-sign with the Avs or retire.

Kalinin's not really a shut-down guy.

Lilja just sucks. He and Chelios are responsible for probably 75% of the Wings' goals-against this postseason.

Although Orpik is, in my opinion, the best value on the list, it's obvious he'll never be signed here.

I'd go for Brad Stuart first and foremost. I'm almost positive he'll cost too much, so then I'd be go after Eaton, Salvador, or Hainsey. Hainsey's also got an offensive upside to his game (32 points in 78 games with the low-scoring Jackets), so that will probably drive his cost up. Semenov's size and age make him an interesting option.

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There are still questions as to whether Kurtis Foster will be healthy for the start of next season, so I doubt any team takes a chance on him as a restricted free agent.

The risk with the Red Wings on your list is the possibility that they are simply products of the Detroit system which can make defensive players appear alot better than they really may be. Lilja and Stuart are solid complimentary players, but I would seriously question either's ability to undertake the expanded role they would see in Carolina.

Vandermeer is a name I have brought up in the past as a bottom-pair defenseman who could add some determination and grit. Outside of him, I think the best avenue to improve the defense is through trades.

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I meant to post this last week when I originally thought about it.

There's one player in this league who currently plays for a defensive club and therefore his ability is limited...if he didn't play in that system he'd easily be a 100 pt. producer for another team. Anybody know who I'm referring to?

Marian Gaborik.

Now just think about it...if we could acquire a SUPERSTAR like him and put him in our "offense offense offense" type of system, just what type of ceiling would he have exactly? 100 points? 50 goals? Who knows really?

Now I know that we don't need any more forwards, but this guy is something that we don't have and would be a priceless addition to the club. And let me tell you Minnesota would trade him away for the right price, seeing that he's been there now for about 6 years and they still flame out of the playoffs early and often. They need something else, and trading away Marian Gaborik would give them a chance to get other offensive depth and consistent scoring players.

Guess who has offensive depth to give away??? WE DO!

In fact, when I was thinking about this last week I put together this trade in my mind:

Marian Gaborik

Brent Burns

for

Erik Cole

Patrick Eaves (or Ruutu, or Whitney)

Carolina's first round pick

Carolina's third round pick (or maybe instead one of our D-man prospects)

Now the real sticking point to this deal would be Brent Burns, because honestly I'm not sure Minnesota would trade away their franchise D-man. We would probably have to include something else.

Anyways, we have enough offensive depth to give away Cole and someone else, and the loss of the first round pick would be acceptable because we're getting a great D-man back in return. I'm telling you this trade would put us over the top.

But it will never happen, :lol: .

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I just can't help but be worried about Gaborik's ability to stay healthy for any extended period of time. As much as I love the potential of a Staal/Gaborik combination on the first-line, I also can't help but think that there is equal potential his $7.5 million salary could spend half of next season in the press box.

However, I could see a deal between Carolina and Minnesota that involved Cole+ or Whitney+ headed to the Wild in exchange for either Burns or Schultz.

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I say sign Hainsey or Liles for your other offensive guy, then trade for a shutdown guy. If we do that then re-sign everyone we need, then we should have a pretty solid lineup.

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I like McIver he would be a good 6/7 guy that would give us some solid toughness on the backline. Although he is an RFA. I also know I will get shot for saying this, but if Commie is allowed to play D and not given the idea to try and be Coffey I would like him back. He is a good defencemen when he plays D and does not worry about O.

I'll get shot with you, I have thought about it, if at the right price, do we sign him? If we had the money that would be crazy. Also sign an offensive minded guy like Liles or Hainsey and trade one of our forwards for a shutdown guy.

Gleason-Hainsey/liles

Corvo-shutdown guy via trade

Commodore-Wallin

Siedenberg

Then you still have Borer and Kaberle.

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I say sign Hainsey or Liles for your other offensive guy, then trade for a shutdown guy. If we do that then re-sign everyone we need, then we should have a pretty solid lineup.

Yes I like this idea, instead of doing it the opposite way. Go out and sign another offensive D-man, but save the trade bait for a GOOD shutdown D-man. It really shouldn't be the other way round, i.e. sign an ok shutdown D-man while going out and spending big bucks for another offensive guy.

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I'm not going to even try to speculate on the Defense until JR makes some some sort of move right before the draft.

Does anyone else agree with me that Hamilton should come back on the 4th Line Center Position? He had a great start, had his confidence shaken by Lavi, then he got it together by the end of the season again. He an be a great asset to the team when he's 100%. Personally I would like to see us trade for a shut-down d-man and then plan on Hamilton being the back-up point man on the PP incase Cullen is hurt again. He is signed pretty cheap and it would allow us to help our greatest need (top Defender to help out Gleason) without getting distracted with trying to get another puck moving D-man.

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I'm not going to even try to speculate on the Defense until JR makes some some sort of move right before the draft.

Does anyone else agree with me that Hamilton should come back on the 4th Line Center Position? He had a great start, had his confidence shaken by Lavi, then he got it together by the end of the season again. He an be a great asset to the team when he's 100%. Personally I would like to see us trade for a shut-down d-man and then plan on Hamilton being the back-up point man on the PP incase Cullen is hurt again. He is signed pretty cheap and it would allow us to help our greatest need (top Defender to help out Gleason) without getting distracted with trying to get another puck moving D-man.

The point of having a puck-moving defenseman isn't to man the point on the powerplay (though that would be one of their jobs; we do have a whole second unit to ice and I don't want to see Seidenberg/Walker there again). It's to be able to get the puck out of our own end at even strength, which in turn limits goals against and helps us score goals. Jeff Hamilton does not help us in that regard.

Corvo is merely an average defender, but he helped the team out a lot defensively precisely because he could skate and pass the puck out of trouble...unlike the rest of our D who just pass it directly to the other team half the time because they lack the ability to make good outlet passes.

Ideally, JR would be after a two-way defenseman who can play effectively at both ends of the ice. It doesn't have to be one or the other ("puck-moving" or "shutdown).

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