Adam Oates has been hired as Washington's new head coach. I'm looking into tendencies and coaching style - it's hard to tell, when his last gig was an assistant with the Devils.
Live chat right here on Sunday. When should I start it? Noon? Call it noonish. But let’s chat. I’ll invite all the writers on, and I’m sure some or most will be up for it – chat it up, get your voice heard and your questions answered!
If the Penguins get Zach Parise, I’ll eat my hat. They freed up cap space to keep Crosby and add a complementary winger – and still have a bit leftover for a deadline deal. So enough of the stupid talk.
In unrelated news, I have this awesome new hat made of nachos.
Florida would have to be crazy to go after Roberto Luongo. Not with Jacob Markstrom as close as half a season away from becoming an NHL starter. And when Markstrom is a starter, he won’t be 25th in the league… or 18th in the league. He’ll be top 10. Luongo is dreaming.
Mike Gillis is dreaming too. Another GM I respect (I think he, Burke, Lombardi, Tallon, Shero, Holmgren, Holland and Chiarelli are my favorites – off the top of my head, hope I didn’t leave any out). But he’s going to play the waiting game with the Luongo situation. The problem is - he only has one opponent. I don’t think he will admit that to himself yet, but Brian Burke is his only potential deal. Sure, there are rumblings about Chicago, but payroll-wise the Leafs have better flexibility and desperation-wise the Leafs need goaltending more. There were only three teams in absolutely desperate need of a goaltender – Toronto, Tampa Bay and Columbus. Two of those teams have apparently addressed the need. Gillis lost the waiting game with those guys. Gillis has made some smart moves, but in this I don’t believe he has a lot room to maneuver. I think it’s Toronto, and I think if he waits until the season starts and something happens like a James Reimer of old re-emergence, or a Ben Scrivens show, then the potential return will only get worse. When you have such a big contract, you almost have to give it away.
My prediction on Parise:
New Jersey – 40%
Minnesota – 30%
Toronto – 10%
Other – 20%
The Lightning did not qualify Benoit Pouliot. That seems weird, considering what they gave up for him, and he will apparently get a shot in the top six. But the team and Pouliot both believe that they will come to an agreement of some sort.
Apparently the Islanders offered Columbus all of their draft picks just for Ryan Murray. Snow was turned down. Uh…interesting. I guess, credit goes for originality? But is Murray so good that he’s worth Reinhart and six draft picks? So instead, the Isles drafted seven defensemen with their picks and thus increased the odds that one of them will turn out to be as good as Murray. Yes. Yes, that would be smarter.
The Rangers qualified Mats Zuccarello, which is interesting since he agreed to a KHL contract. So they have hope of a return next year? They also qualified Anton Stralman, who will return to Sweden according to several sources.
This one slipped by me – Isles Trevor Gillies signed to play in the KHL. Just an FYI.
The Stars took their time with this decision, but they did indeed qualify Tom Wandell. They qualified the rest of the RFA’s (who they wanted) last week.
Hall of Fame announcement later today – Sakic and Sundin are the locks, with Shanahan close behind. Although most experts will say Sakic and Shanahan are the locks and it is Sundin who is close behind. But I always go back to the best player in the world in their position for a give season. I think there were two or three seasons where Sundin was second or third best on the planet. I don’t know if Shanahan was ever the second or third best winger on the planet. Anyway, whatever – my criteria is different from the HoF’s and I don’t get a vote.
The Oilers qualified, among others, Linus Omark. Cam Barker was not qualified.
Here is the most interesting one – Peter Mueller. The Avs did not qualify him AND they do not plan to pursue him, per Adrian Dater. Now watch him sign and flourish elsewhere, injuries behind him. Or maybe he just Pascal Leclaires his way out of hockey.
Kevin Porter also not qualified.
Florida did not qualify Wojtek Wolski, and Vancouver did not qualify MA Gragnani.
This Fabian Brunnstrom Damien Brunner guy is starting to sound pretty promising. Mike Babcock, via mLive: “I know a lot about him because I went to the World Championships (in May) and watched him play,'' Babcock said Saturday at the NHL entry draft. “The thing for us is he’s high, high paced, he scored, looks like he has tons of skill. Can he adjust and play the North American game? We’re going to give him every opportunity. He’ll be a top-six forward to start with us and see where he goes with us.''
Wow – you just don’t hear that kind of stuff about an unproven player. I don’t think Roman Cervenka even got those kinds of words from Calgary brass. So he’ll be Gustav Nyquist’s competition to take the Jiri Hudler job. I’m pretty high on Nyquist so I don’t see Brunner topping him. But maybe he finds a niche as a third-liner to start. He’s 26, and 5-11, 180 pounds. So why wasn’t he making headlines when he was 25? Had to ask. There’s late bloomers, but this is crazy.
Brendan Ross here from Dobber Prospects. Please feel free to head on over to the DP site to view our latest featured story, "2012 NHL Draft Report Cards" Part One and Part Two, grading how each team did (initially) at the draft.
While you are over there, you might as well take the poll asking which Canadian team had the strongest draft and view the latest Ramblings (Stats from the 2012 NHL Draft). Browse back a bit in the Ramblings if you missed my own and Rich Dillon's lastest rambles using the "Next" link at the bottom of the Ramblings.
Here’s some Damien Brunner highlights:
Cody Eakin’s first pro multi-goal game: