O'Sullivan

 

Last week’s article touched on the possibility of two Flames being moved at the deadline, and boom three blockbuster deals came into fruition last week which involved two of the players that I mentioned. Let’s see if this week I can find a few more movers and shakers for my fellow Dobberities.

 

Maaasquito Buzzings…


Players in the last seven days with the highest production in each category who are less than 50% owned in Yahoo leagues.

 

Goals

Assists

+/-

PPP

SOG

Yandle (4)

O’Sullivan (4)

Yandle (7)

Demers (3)

Stewart (17)

Modano (3)

Filppula (3)

Erat (5)

Stoll (3)

Vrbata (14)

Brouwer (3)

Brunette (3)

Fistric (4)

Giordano (2)

Gagner (14)

Boyd (2)

Stoll (3)

Brunnstrom (3)

Gagner (2)

Wisniewski (12)

Ladd (2)

Lundmark (3)

Cleary (3)

Perron (2)

Benn (12)

 

Maaaasquito Bite of the week: Keith Yandle

Yandle has been blazing hot with 10 points in the last 14 contests all while picking up a plus six rating along with 28 SOG. He’s also averaging 20:17 per contest, 3:57 of which have been on the Coyotes’ PP. In the last 10 contests, he’s spent 47.12 percent of his ice-time in a formidable pairing alongside Sami Lepisto. One fact that only a handful of people may know, is that he registered 84 points in 66 contests in his one and only season in juniors with Moncton Wildcats of the QMJHL. If that doesn’t show offensive potential I don’t know what does. Either way if the 46 percent owned Yandle is still sitting on your waiver wire definitely snatch him up ASAP!


Now onto the good stuff.


I basically split the players into three categories.


HOT- look for the player to garner plenty of trade attention come deadline time.

LUKE WARM- the player does have some trade value, but will need a considerable amount of work in order to get moved.

ICE COLD- the player has essentially a slight chance of being moved, but don’t bet the farm.

 

Columbus

Safe: Rick Nash, Kristian Huselius, R.J. Umberger, Antoine Vermette, Sammy Pahlsson, Chris Clark, Jakub Voracek, Derick Brassard, Andrew Murray, Derek Dorsett, Mike Commodore, Fedor Tyutin, Jan Hejda, Roti Klesla, Marc Methot, Kris Russell, Mathieu Garon, Steve Mason

Movable:

HOT

Raffi Torres- Torres is on pace for 24 goals by the season’s end, and most importantly 9 power-play goals, which should garner plenty of interest come trade deadline day. What also works in the 28-year old’s favour is the fact that he only has a cap hit of $2.25 mil for the season. Either way there are plenty of signs that the soon to be UFA could be dealt at deadline time.

LUKE WARM

Jared Boll- Boll’s currently tied with Cam Janssen for sixth in the league in terms of PIMs. The Jackets have a younger and cheaper version of Boll, named Derek Dorsett, under contract for the next two seasons, which means that Boll might just expendable come deadline time. I generally believe that fourth lines don’t really get dealt at the deadline, but Brandon Prust was dealt late Monday night so there might just be a market for Boll after all.

Nikita Filatov- Filatov’s spat with coach Ken Hitchcock has been widely documented throughout the internet and in many various different forms of the media, which means that something will have to give whether it’s Filatov being dealt or Hitchcock being fired. There are plenty of signs that the later will happen first, but in the new NHL you just never know...

Anton Stralman- Stralman is having himself quite the contract season, as he’s on pace to top 35 points this season. He actually leads all Blue Jackets in PP ice-time while averaging 3:29 per contest. His 15 PP assists also leads all Columbus players. The Jackets, in reality, probably need Stralman more than dealing him for future pieces at the deadline, but if Columbus can get a great puck-moving defenseman in return for his services, you might just see him move at the deadline.

ICE COLD

Freddie Modin- I don’t know if it’s a bit harsh to call the 35-year old Swede past his use-by date, but I’m going to do so anyways. He has only suited up in 93 contests in the last three seasons, and doesn’t seem to be able to stay healthy. I honestly think that Mikael Samuelsson was justified in being miffed about the Olympic snub by Team Sweden selecting Modin ahead of him. Either way Modin’s NHL career is essentially done like dinner, and I don’t see very many takers for his services at deadline time.

Milan Jurcina- Jurcina was acquired earlier this season as part of the Jason Chimera deal with the Caps. Jurcina is your prototypical stay-at-home defenseman, and generally speaking there isn’t a larger market for those types of players at deadline time. Look for Jurcina to finish off the season in Columbus and search for a new home in the off-season.

Mathieu Roy- Pretty much same idea as Jurcina, but what’s interesting is that Roy actually has nine points in the 28 contests, so on a whole he does have some offensive potential. I just don’t think there’s a large amount of interest in fifth/sixth depth chart filler defenders, so I don’t picture him moving at all at the deadline.     

 

Dallas

Safe: Brad Richards, Brendan Morrow, Loui Eriksson, Jamie Benn, Brian Sutherby, Trevor Daley, Stephane Robidas, Karlis Skrastins, Jeff Woywitka,

Movable:

HOT

Fabian Brunnstrom- Since signing with the Stars in the 2008 off-season, Brunnstrom has only appeared in 87 contests, but what’s more alarming is that he’s only averaging 10:47 per contest this season. That’s certainly a disappointment for a player that garnered as much attention that he had in his sweepstakes prior to setting foot on North America. His $875k salary actually isn’t too big of a deal, but his $1.35 mil bonus incentive might be a bit of a turn off to other teams. Either way should be plenty of interest on Brunnstrom come deadline day.

Steve Ott- Ott was once an offensive gem in juniors when he tallied 237 points in 174 contests with the Spitfires, but that offense has still yet to translate at the NHL level as he only has 134 points in 386 contests. The PIMs are still there, as he has 762 PIMs, so if teams are looking for a strong physical presence upfront (ahem... Brian Burke) they might just come calling in the next few weeks.

Marty Turco- There were numerous rumours last week of the Leafs discussing a possible deal with the Stars for the services of Turco, but a recent deal acquiring J.S. Giguere pretty much has nixed any chance of that happening. Either way, Turco does have career 2.31 GAA and .910 save percentage numbers which are solid numbers for teams on the bubble or contending teams (Blackhawks/Capitals) looking for stability between the pipes. Turco’s salary hit does come off the books next year as he is up for UFA in the off-season, so he definitely is a great option as a rental player for the playoff push.

LUKE WARM

Mike Ribeiro- Considering the large amount of overpaid albatross center contracts (Shawn Horcoff – $275k, Scott Gomez - $210k, Daniel Briere - $191k, Vinny Lecavalier - $148k per point) out there, you would think that Ribeiro’s $5 mil per season contract might actually be fairly fiscally responsible contract to take on. His 106 SOG and 325 FW are perfect numbers that you would expect for a second-line center on 29 other NHL teams. The Stars are looking to shave salary and if they can get Ribeiro’s $5 mil per season cap hit off the books that will certainly ease off any fiscal pressure on the books for next season.

Jere Lehtinen- Lehtinen is a three-time Selke winner, which showcases how strong of a two-way player he really is. He’s headed for UFA status in the off-season, and with a cap hit of just $2.5 mil, there could be a few teams interested in utilizing Lehtinen in a third-line checking role for their playoff push.

Tom Wandell- Wandell is one of the quickest skaters in the NHL, and every time I watch him play, his speed never ceases to amaze me. He’s like an Energizer bunny that just keeps going and going and going. His 44 percent faceoff win percentage isn’t a bad option for a fourth line role and the fact that he’s also only 22 means that he has plenty of years for development left in him.

Nick Grossman- As mentioned above with Jurcina and Roy, there isn’t much need for stay-at home defenseman, but Grossman might just be the exception. He’s averaging 19:19 per contest, while racking up 93 hits in a very solid shut down role for the Stars this season. The Stars also have seven, possibly eight, NHL ready defenseman on their roster, so Grossman is certainly expendable.

Matt Niskanen- Niskanen has been given plenty of chances to succeed in Dallas for the last few seasons, but has certainly dropped the ball on many occasions. In 547:36 minutes of PP ice-time in the last three seasons, Niskanen has amassed just 23 PP points. To give you a fair comparison, Robidas has 174:29 minutes of PP ice-time this season, but he’s tallied a whopping 15 points. Niskanen is only 23 this year, so he has plenty of room for improving, I just don’t know if he’s burned too many bridges in Big D for that to happen.

Alex Auld- Auld has a 9-6-3 record along with a 3.00 GAA and a .894, which isn’t exactly going to make teams balk at opportunity of picking him up at the deadline. His one million dollar salary certainly makes him a little bit more attractive to potential trade partners come deadline time.

ICE COLD

Mike Modano- It’s nearing the end of the line for the 20-year NHL veteran, as this might just be his final season with the Stars. He has stated that he wants to finish his career as a Dallas Star and has certainly earned his stripes for GM Joe Nieuwendyk to grant him that favour.

James Neal- Neal currently is third in team scoring with 39 points. At just 22, he’ll be an integral part of the Dallas offense for years to come. Look for him to re-sign as a RFA in the off-season with the Stars.

Toby Petersen/Krys Barch- Petersen and Barch are pretty much in a identical situations as Wandell listed above, the downside is that Wandell is 22, but Petersen is 30 and Barch 29. There isn’t a demand at all for a 29 or 30 year-old fourth liners. Look for Petersen/Barch to head into the off-season as UFAs.

 

 

Detroit


Safe: Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, Valtteri Filppula, Dan Cleary, Kris Draper, Brian Rafalski, Brad Stuart, Niklas Kronwall, Jonathan Ericsson, Chris Osgood, Jimmy Howard


Movable:

HOT

- Ville Leino- The Wings are in cap trouble once Franzen, Jason Williams, and Niklas Kronwall return from their respective injuries, which could result in the Wings being forced into dealing some of their more attractive players just to free up enough cap room to activate the infirmary. Leino seems to be main talk of the deals as his 800k cap-hit would be enough cap relief for the rest of the season. He has quite the offensive history as he registered 46 points in 57 contests last season with Grand Rapids of the AHL, while also picking up 77 points in 55 contests with Jokerit of the Finnish Elite League in 2007-08. With the Red Wings desperate to unload salary and Leino’s propensity for offense, it could be a very beneficial for a team to pick up the services of Leino come March 3rd.

LUKE WARM

- Justin Abdelkader, Patrick Eaves, Drew Miller, Darren Helm- With salary shaving being the name of the game in Detroit, the foursome of Abdelkader, Eaves, Miller and Helm could all be considered “movable” pieces if push comes to shove on deadline day. The foursome are all headed for RFA status in the off-season, and you would think that at most they would only be able to sign one, maybe two, of them heading into next season. The Wings can’t exactly trade away an entire line, so you’ll probably see GM Ken Holland roll the dice with all four of them and see which of them sparkle in the post-season to warrant a longer termed contract in the off-season.       

-Brett Lebda/Derek Meech- Lebda is developing well in his fifth season and the same could be said for Meech in his fourth season with the Red Wings. I don’t think that the duo are prime candidates to be moved, but with Niklas Lidstrom, Rafalski, Stuart, Kronwall, Lilja, Ericsson, and the two named above, the Red Wings don’t need to have eight players for six defensive roster spots, which might lead to the Wings moving one, possibly two, of them on deadline day.

ICE COLD

- Nicklas Lidstrom- Lidstrom stated earlier in the season that he has no intentions of leaving the Red Wings next season if he decides to continue to play in the NHL. There are also numerous reports that if he does leave the NHL it would be to join the SEL next season, which means that teams wouldn’t overpay for the services of Lidstrom at deadline time. That plus the Wings will need every ounce of veteran presence on the blue-line to help them make a run at a third consecutive Western Conference title, which would certainly jack up the asking price if he were to be dealt. Either way the asking price would be too high, or there would be no intention at all in dealing Lidstrom at the deadline, so consider him safe as a Red Wing moving forward.

- Tomas Holmstrom- The 13-year veteran is having himself an okay season. He’s scheduled to become an UFA at the end of the season, but Detroit probably needs him for their playoff run more than dealing him away for pieces at the deadline. Look for the Swede to continue to wreak havoc in front of opposing goalies in the Motor City.

- Todd Bertuzzi- Detroit is short on big physical North American presence in their top-six, which should give the Red Wings plenty of reason to keep Bertuzzi beyond the upcoming trade deadline. His 155 SOG is on pace to come close to his career-high of 243 that he set back in 2002-03, which should give the Red Wings even more reasons to keep him once the infirmary clears.

- Jason Williams – There won’t be much interest for a band-aid boy. He hasn’t been in the Detroit line up consistent enough to garner enough value to be picked up at the deadline.

- Kirk Maltby/Brad May – Much like Williams there isn’t a big need for third/fourth liners at the deadline, so look for the two to remain a Wing.

-Andreas Lilja- Lilja has missed the entire season dealing with concussion symptoms. He hasn’t been on showcase for any teams willing to take a leap of faith on him, which means his trade potential is quite low. Look for him to remain property of the Red Wings for the entirety of this season.

 

 

Edmonton

Safe: Shawn Horcoff, Dustin Penner, Ales Hemsky, Sam Gagner, Zach Stortini, Tom Gilbert, Steve Staios, Ladislav Smid,

Movable: Jason Strudwick, Jeff Deslauriers, Devan Dubnyk

HOT

- Patrick O’Sullivan- If you’ve been following my columns from the pre-season, you’ll know that I’ve had high hopes for O’Sully heading into the year. The problem is he hasn’t panned out in the NHL offensively despite all of his outstanding accolades. At a cap-hit of $2.925 mil for next season, you would think that could prove quite attractive to an up-and-coming team willing to gamble on O’Sully.

- Mike Comrie- Comrie should be used to changing addresses during deadline time as he’s been moved to the Senators twice (07 and 09) in the past. Could he be moved to the Sens for a third time? His salary of $1.25 mil isn’t too much of problem for the Sens to accommodate, and with Nick Foligno out for the next six-eight weeks, they certainly can use a veteran presence as a third-line center or second-line winger. I honestly think that there’s a strong possibility that he gets moved at deadline time.

- Lubomir Visnovsky- Despite a $5.6 mil price tag, Visnovsky is only a couple of seasons away from being a top 20 defenseman. If he wasn’t playing on a lowly team like the Oilers, you would have to think that he’d actually have pretty decent stats this season. If a buyer is willing to take on his large salary, you would think they’d be very happy with the services of Vizzy moving forward.

- Denis Grebeshkov- If Visnovsky’s price range is too much for trade partners, they might turn to the Russian Olympian as an alternative. Grebby does have 56 points in the last 112 contests, which is a steady pace for a 26-year old with plenty of room for improvement left in him. He’s scheduled to become a RFA at the end of the season, so teams won’t necessarily have to treat him as a rental player post-deadline.

LUKEWARM

- Robert Nilsson- Nilsson is an interesting case for the Oilers as his contract doesn’t expire with the Oilers till the end of the 2010-11 season. The problem is that the Oilers are in a downward spiral and are in desperate need of a major rebuild. Packaging a cheap offensive alternative like Nilsson ($2 mil) with an expensive contract (Lubomir Visnovsky, Sheldon Souray, Denis Grebeshkov) might just help clear up the books next season. I don’t picture the Oilers dealing Nilsson in a straight up one-for-one type deal, but it’s probably going to be a package situation that will see Nilsson being shipped off from the Oil.

-Sheldon Souray- I would have easily placed Souray in the HOT section of the movables, but his recent hand injury has certainly derailed any trade possibilities for this season. There’s news that Souray may require surgery to fix his broken hand, which might have a lot teams shying away from taking a leap of faith on the booming shot defenseman. You can blame Jarome Iginla for potentially costing the Oilers a few extra prospects during the rebuilding phase.

- Gilbert Brule- I wasn’t quite sure where to place the former sixth overall pick, as there are plenty of reasons that could see him slotted in all three sections. Brule finally broke out this year by showing some of that physical flare that he had in juniors, which is one of the main reasons why the Oilers might keep him post-deadline. With that said, Jordan Eberle, Linus Omark, Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, Anton Lander and Riley Nash could all make an impact with the big club next season, and if the right offer comes rolling along, Brule’s 800k salary could prove quite inviting for potential trade partners.

- J.F. Jacques- I really liked the way JFJ began the season, and seems to be a great fit as a fourth liner. At 525k he’s a bargain for a role player. I don’t know if other teams saw his potential early in the season, but JFJ might have a few suitors come calling on March 3rd.

- Ryan Potulny- Potulny is establishing himself as a NHL player as he’s appeared in 37 contests this season with the big club. His 19 points is beginning to be quite noticeable, since he joined O’Sullivan and Brule on the Oilers second line last contest. As I mentioned before the Oilers will be major sellers this trade deadline, and if the right offer comes Potulny could be had on the cheap.


ICE COLD

-      Fernando Pisani- Pisani was rewarded with a big contract in the 2006 off-season by signing a four-year contract worth $10 mil, since then he has tallied 67 points in 187 contests. If you are looking for the very definition of underachieving and overpaid, you could consider Pisani as the poster boy for that department. No team is going to want to swallow that salary. Look for Pisani to finish off this tenure with the Oilers, and be let go at the end of the season.

 

-      Ethan Moreau- Almost everyone in Edmonton thinks that Moreau possesses a lot of trade value, but I’m thinking in an entirely different direction. Edmontonians will vouch for Moreau and his 74 hits, or his leadership qualities in the dressing room, but if you compare him to a Chris Clark, who has 64 hits, and a cap hit of $1.433 mil, you have to think for yourself why would someone want to take on Moreau’s $2 mil salary next season? The Oilers would make out like bandits if they can find a taker for “minus 12” Moreau.     

 

-      Marc Pouliot- Pouliot was once a 22nd overall pick by the Oilers in the 2003 NHL entry draft. Considering his draft position and being sandwiched between Ryan Getzlaf, Brent Burns, Mark Stuart, Ryan Kesler, and Mike Richards, that certainly makes the blow even harder. At the end of the day there won’t be any trade interest in a player who has amassed just 42 points in 148 NHL contests while struggling to find a permanent spot on the big squad. Look for MAP to remain an Oiler for the rest of this season, but not qualified for an offer in the off-season.


- Ryan Stone- Stone’s currently dealing with a major knee surgery which is still having lingering side effects. His six points in 27 contests probably wouldn’t have garnered major trade attention anyway, but with all of the problems with his knee, there’s essentially zero chance that he gets dealt at the deadline.

Questions or comments? Like always I’ll be ready and willing to discuss them with you in the comments section below. Stay tuned next week as we discuss the trade deadline situation of Kings,Wild, Preds, and Coyotes.




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