Tuesday, August 2, 2011

August Dog Days: Notes and Observations

1) Isles New Coliseum voted down! Devastating is what one of our Isles' insiders tells us about the recent vote. The "Yes" side would have seemed to had all of the advantages built into the vote: It was held on a Monday in the heart/heat of summer. Few folks had time to mount a meaningful 'NO' campaign, right? WRONG! What Wang and Co. didn't realize that in the current political climate asking people who are already taxed at the highest level in the nation to cough up ANY additional money for the sake of a sports franchise most don't pay attention to was asking a lot! Its no shocker to us at Fauxrumors that this went down. Some over in Isle's country are already asking , "What is Wang's Plan B"? Well folks, this WAS plan B!!

2) 11+ years ago Wang invested heavily in the Isles and lost millions to get his real estate deal (The Lighthouse Project) The Isles were a mere pawn/PR to get it done. Whatever money he had to drain to eventually get his money rain maker off the ground would ultimately be worth it. When the Town of Hempstead (Kate Murray) blocked Wang he decided that he'd spent enough of his own $$ and refused to build a smaller version of Lighthouse or his own new arena. Instead asking taxpayers to build it via bonds, etc. Now that this has been rejected its unlikely that Wang will invest further big money in Nassau County and a move is very likely. Where? Another NY area locale is the most logical set up because the Isles make a ton (12 -15 mil/year) of money in their local TV deal and would lose that if they moved to let's say KC. So Suffolk County, Queens, or even Brooklyn, (who has an arena already in the making) could be the Isles next home.

3) On a related note: Alexei Yashin?? Are you &%$#ing kidding me? So lets get this strait. The guy was not good enough to play on the team 4 years ago but is now? He was a dog in the dressing room, getting under the skin of fellow veterans, but he'll be a positive influence on this young up and coming lineup? Tell us its a very late Aprils fools joke Garth! The Rolston pick up was a nice move, don't counteract it with this bold move of blithering stupidity! Imagine the Isles reaching the cap floor by paying Yashin TWICE!?! Will this be Wang's revenge against the lack of support for the recent referendum? LOL Sorry Isle's fans. We know many of you, and you are as die hard as it gets, but even you die hards would have to see that move as the beginning of the end!

4)Remaining Free Agents: Its been quiet on the RFA scene recently. Doughty, Bogosian, Marchand remain unsigned. Shea Weber is slated for arbitration so he barring a rejection of the award or a trade (both unlikely) will be a Predator this season. Doughty, we hear, is asking for either a Carter/Richards type of 12+ year deal near 7.5 mil per average, or a 3 year at 8 mil that would place him into UFA status at contracts end. Both are NOT what LA would like. They see Doughty as a 5-6 mil player, but they would raise that to 6.0-6.5 IF he agreed on a 7+ year deal. WE are told to expect a shorter term, probably 1 year 6. mil deal and then continue negotiating towards a long term extension. Our LA sources tell us Drew will be in camp on time.

5) Bogosian is also close to getting signed by Winnipeg. Zach will assuredly get a pay raise, but our sources tell us "he won't be getting Doughty or Weber money". Closer to a 3.5-4 mil 5 year deal. Almost word for word can (and has) been said of fellow RFA Leaf defender, Luke Schenn. Marchand might be the trickiest one left. The 23 year old who had a nice season with 20 goals, but a great playoff wants to be paid like a 1st line forward. The Bruins aren't yet ready to commit big bucks on 2 months of work. A scout told us that Brad might have to bite the bullet and accept the B's offer of 2 years 5 mil. "He's not going to get anything near the 4 million his agent was asking for".

6) As for UFA's: Here are a few of the remaining big names still looking for work: Mike Grier, Cory Stillman, Sergei Samsonov, Paul Mara, Bryan McCabe, Marek Svatos, Nikolai Zherdev. Not an impressive list but some vets who will likely get a training camp invite if not a minimum wage 1 year job. NONE should expect a big/multi year contract. Jobs/rosters are pretty much set with a few moves yet to come, but don't hold your breathe for each move. Its early August and most teams are taking their summer vacations right now and not talking deals/contracts

7) Ranger moves: Finally it seems Glen Sather is getting how to run a team with a limited payroll. (What did it take, 12 years? ) His avoiding arbitration, and signing forwards Callahan and Dubinsky to VERY cap friendly deals was a very nice way to end the ranger 'offseason'. With the jettison of cap anchor Chris Drury, and Wade Reddon set to ride the buses again Glen has positioned the Rangers to be well within cap constraints and be flexible to add talent during the season is he desires.

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