Thursday, July 21, 2011

News And Views

1) With the Dog Days of August nearly upon us I thought I'd comment on some of the various news stories that have occurred the past couple of weeks.

  • Steve Stamkos- As expected Steve resigned without an offer sheet being thrown his way. He got as much as he could expect raising his average salary nearly to 7.5 million over the 5 years. A few observations. One is that even after this deal is completed the Bolts will still be on the hook for another 2 seasons to pay Vinny Lecavalier at a cap hit of 7.77 million!! The other is that we wonder if Stamkos is prepared for the intense pressure he will now be placed under. Its one thing to be the new young guy, and another cog in the offense. Its another to be one of the highest paid NHL players. There are now expectations, fair or not, to score 40-50 goals every year. Lets see how he handles a slump. Of course it will help that he plays in a less of a media circus than NY or any Canadian market.

  • Osgood- Chris Osgood retired this past week. FR has opined of his Hall of Fame worthiness in the past. Once in 2008 with wizard-of-osgood and again the following year with: revisiting-osgood-to-hall-argument It can be said that Osgood's Hall of Fame case is based on his 401 career wins, he's 10th on the NHL's career list, and his performance in the postseason. He went 74-49 in the playoffs with a 2.09 goals-against average. He ranks fourth in league history with 15 playoff shutouts. What we believe will hurt him is lack of a major award (Vezina, ConnSmyth, and/or First team All star selection) and his non-Redwing record of 84-67. Not bad, but hardly Hall of Fame material. In our estimation If Curtis Joseph gets in (with Zero Cups or Vezinas) Ozzie should too!

  • Islanders- Still waiting for that other 'proverbial shoe' to drop. Word is that Snow has been feverishly working the phones with his fellow GM's in an effort to get a big deal done. problem is he has an artificial deadline other teams do not. Namely the August 1st referendum where Nassau County voters will approve(or not) a new arena. If that goes down to defeat the Isles are history(after their lease runs out supposedly in 4 years). To make a yes vote more likely, Wang/Snow want to make a big summer splash to get the locals excited enough to vote yes. Most GM's who don't have arbitration issues have left for their summer vacations are would rather deal later in the summer or are set i their rosters and aren't interested in anything big right now. Our sources tell us Snow and Darcy Regier have talked but no deal is immanent, but as one Asst GM told me, don't be surprised to hear about a sabres and Isles swap

2) So there we are, almost to the end of July. Most teams rosters are 90%+ set. FR tells us they will commence their annual 'winners and losers' of the summer season some time later this month or early August. When something drops we will sure to cover it and discuss any rumours we hear. As always keep it hear for all the latest!!

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