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Fantasy impact of the Jones/Tanguay swap will be up tonight.


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Great news for Chris Kunitz owners - a three year extension for the gritty winger to remain in Pittsburgh. He will make $3.85 million per season when the new deal kicks in.


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Ottawa is going to be a team to watch for over the next week or two. They have a ton of cap space, a few roster holes, and a young and hungry team that is ready to take the next step. Briere? Lecavalier? The Senators should be in the mix for both of them.


Imagine these theoretical lines:


Michalek-Spezza-Briere

Silfverberg-Lecavalier-Alfredsson


And that gives Ottawa a third line of Turris with Zibanejad. Do the Senators have a good shot at landing both of these guys? Doubtful. But they have a shot. A good team, Canadian market, lots of money, and the cap flexibility to pay them well for the next two, three, or four years.


Ottawa is really a team to watch for, thanks to masterful building by GM Bryan Murray and the rest of a very underrated front office staff.

 

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So the Lightning have made a somewhat surprising move, electing to use one of their buyouts on Vinny Lecavalier. The move will cost the team $32 million over 14 years, but will bring with it significant cap savings. The Lightning will need to find a center somewhere, but this allows them to go out and make some moves this summer.


If nothing else happens there (not likely) - this is a huge opportunity for Tyler Johnson to center line two. I'd be shocked it that turns out to be the case, though. He may earn the gig, but the team won't want to hand it to him.


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Update: more on Lecavalier - he apparently has the right to say "no" to waivers, as he has a no-move clause (and going on waivers counts as a "move"). A little wrinkle in Stevie Y's plans?


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Apparently the Leafs are a "preferred landing spiot" of Kris Letang. Well hey now....


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Great job by the Blues getting Shattenkirk inked to a reasonable deal. Four years with a cap hit of $4.25 per season. Good term and fair amount for a proven top-four defenseman with a lot of offensive ability.


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Carolina is letting Dan Ellis, Chad LaRose, and Joe Corvo test UFA waters. Corvo's absence will help Carolina's goaltending significantly, but he is a positive factor on the PP. The 'Canes really, really like Ryan Murphy - he will have to completely tank at camp in order to not make the team (in my estimation, at least).


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My look at what the Dallas Stars should do up front.


Ideally Benn would move back to LW and the Stars would bring in two centers, but how realistic is that in one summer? My thoughts:


Sign a solid 2C (Weiss or Filppula) and a solid 2LW (Clarke MacArthur, Damien Brunner). And re-sign Eric Nystrom.


Potential lines:


Whitney-Benn-Eriksson

MacArthur-Weiss-Chiasson

Fraser-Eakin-Cole

Nystrom-Fiddler-Roussel


And this doesn't count on Radek Faksa making the team (I don't think he's ready yet). Benn is going to be more productive as a LW. Maybe the Stars look at one of the potential buyout options? I could see them making a move for Shawn Horcoff, but he is more of an elite 3C (where Eakin needs to settle in for the next few years.


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Thanks to many generous donations, the DobberHockey community has raised $1000 and counting to help many poor people in Cambodia (click this link to check out more details).


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Andrew Ference won't be back in Boston next year. The team won't be able to afford him, and they want to open up ice time for both Krug and Bartkowski.

 

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Elliotte Friedman's latest 30 thoughts column, in case you missed it.


Some interesting points raised (as always):


Tampa is trying to move Ryan Malone, and they may add a draft pick to entice other teams to take him. He still has a lot of years left on his contract, and he has been injury prone in recent years, but big scoring wingers are always at a premium in the NHL.


Love the idea of Filppula to the Jackets. He fills a huge need for that team, and would likely slot in as the 1C there, at both even strength and on the power play. The Blue Jackets have a lot of grit and jam, and adding Gaborik and Filppula (along with a fully healthy Cam Atkinson) would give the team a huge skill infusion as well.


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And I really like this contract:

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Damien Brunner wants to re-sign in Detroit for a few years. But can the cap dollars work out?


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Replacing Bryzgalov... apparently the Flyers don't want to spend too much money on a goalie (ruling out Miller or Luongo). Do they make a move for Ray Emery? Can he and Mason split the duties in goal? Emery is probably a better goaltender than Mason, but I'm not sure the Flyers would be completely comfortable with that as their goaltending tandem. We will find out in very short order.


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Defensemen typically take longer to become fantasy-relevant. Seth Jones will likely be in the NHL this season or next, but after him, there aren't any "can't miss" defensive prospects who promise to have immediate impacts. However, there are still a number of very good defensemen with a lot of upside, and one of them is Ryan Pulock.


High praise:

 

 

"He does everything well," Central Scouting's Peter Sullivan told NHL.com. "He's got the hardest shot I've seen in years. He's so smart. The thing that's even more impressive is I've seen him take seven or eight super hits -- body checks and hip checks -- laying guys into the boards. He's got all the tools to be a top pick."

 

 

Sullivan went as far as to say Pulock has an NHL-caliber shot right now.


"He's got one of the hardest shots not only in the Western Hockey League, but would have one of the hardest in the NHL," Sullivan said. "Don't laugh … it's that good."



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Here is a very extensive look at Lindy Ruff and what could be in store for Dallas' players.


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I think that the Islanders are going to be very aggressive this summer. Perhaps moreso than people think, or than even they thought they would a few months ago. And for two reasons:


1. They need a goaltender. Nabokov is good, but he isn't going to help them get anywhere deep in the East. None of their prospects are close to being starter material right now.


2. Bailey and Okposo both broke out in huge ways. Both players have been disappointing on Long Island, for the most part. Bailey was rushed to the NHL and it seemed like his game had stalled, whereas Okposo simply had failed to live up to the massive hype and expectation placed on him, especially after he left college early.


I think the Islanders are further ahead in the rebuild process than they thought they would be, and they have a ton of tradeable assets (and a lot of cap space... but doubtful they spend most of it). If they can get Luongo for pennies on the dollar, that would make a lot of sense. And if they want to go after a goalie with a better contract, they have a lot of assets they could potentially move.


Losing David Ullstrom to the KHL stings a bit, but he is more than replaceable. The Islanders are a starting goaltender away from making some noise in the Eastern Conference.


Oh, and here is a really good read on Josh Bailey while on the subject.


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A good draft-related interview with Devils chief scout David Conte.

 

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If any news breaks today, I will do my best to update it tonight. On the road for most of the day. And as Dobber mentioned, Steve and Mike will be taking over some of the rambling duties, starting with my Saturday coverage this week. And they will transition over to the management role of the website over the coming months. Glad to leave things with two capable guys who know their hockey.


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Matt Frattin is open to shifting to the left wing. Smart man, with Williams and Brown holding down the top two RW spots in Los Angeles. I know Tyer Toffoli is going to work on learning the left wing a bit this offseason, too.


And Brown can play LW (Brown-Kopitar-Williams), but splitting that line up would give the Kings more options. My opening night lines (assuming no major changes):


Brown-Kopitar-Williams

Toffoli-Richards-Carter

King-Stoll-Frattin

Clifford-Fraser-Lewis

Vey/Nolan as the extras


A very good and balanced forward group right there.


Frattin is probably better suited to the right side, but it would be an interesting option of the Kings aren't able to bring in a top six LW this summer. 

 

I like the sounds of a Clifford-Stoll-Frattin third line a lot, too. 


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Write comment
Comments (12)add comment

donpaulo said:

donpaulo
... I think it depends on what is being rated. Cup potential ? Then the Canucks are as good a candidate as any team, Philly fell flat too then bought out their goalie. So much for "over-rated".
As fan with no bone in this fight I am very happy for Ontario hockey fans. The leafs have turned the corner, Ottawa is improved too.
When will Toronto get a 2nd NHL team ?
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... IsleB is 1000% correct.

saying the Sens are overrated is ridiculous given the exposure (none) they get. Simple as that.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

The Comish said:

The Comish
... Some want to redefine the criteria for dynasty (die nasty?) so they can call the Pens that. Laughable. Then you'd have to include any team that is dominant in the regular season, but has only won one Cup (with Crosby).

I also think there is a possibility of a slide for the Sens next season. Expectations are high, which makes them perfect candidates to not measure up. Just saying it's a possibility.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
... Definitely a bitter Isles fan
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

Isle B. said:

Isle B.
... @rataylor22

When the prohibitive Cup favorite gets swept out of the Conference Finals by the eventual runner up, I'd say they are just a tad overrated. Factor in that debacle against the Flyers in 2012 and then they are even more overrrated.

June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

27Blue said:

27Blue
... if a number of things break right for the senators, they will be real contenders...

you could say that about a lot of teams in the league, not including the teams that are truly already contenders.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

Big Ev said:

Big Ev
... Ottawa is the most overrated team in the league? How so? nobody talks about them.

Best drafting team in the league and one of the upcoming contenders for a long time.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

rataylor22 said:

rataylor22
.... Lol. First in the East and ECF. Definitely overrated :s bitter Isles fan much?
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

Isle B. said:

Isle B.
... @27 Blue

"Oh, and I think Ottawa is now the most over-rated team in the league."

How about a little respect for the Pittsburgh Penguins? They own "overrated" until further notice.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

27Blue said:

27Blue
... Lecavalier's NMC just means he can avoid going on waivers (nobody was going to claim him anyway)... He still becomes a UFA, regardless, so I don't there is any kind of wrinkle in Stevie Y's plan.

Oh, and I think Ottawa is now the most over-rated team in the league.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +1

Isle B. said:

Isle B.
Re: Isles Ullstrom couldn't crack the lineup under Capuano last year. With Lee, Nelson, Niederreiter and Strome all likely to make the team next year Ullstrom must have seen there was no place for him. He was a bit of a defensive liability but if Capuano had been as patient with him as he was with Okposo and Bailey it could've ended up a lot differently as he is big, fast and skilled.

Jeff, what would you think of a hypothetical deal of Luongo for DiPietro and the Isles' 2013 first rounder from the Canucks' perspective? For my money such a deal makes perfect sense for both teams (the Isles get a capable veteran goalie in the middle of a front-loaded deal, the Canucks get something for their inevitable 20 million buyout) but maybe I am misreading the situation.

Ryan Murphy looked pretty good during his emergency call up last year. He didn't get any points but showed that he can bring the puck up the ice in the NHL.
June 27, 2013
Votes: +0

agentzero said:

agentzero
Idiot reporters.. Lol loved it.

So TSN runs the story...

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=426413

Rossi says:

"He has read reports of mine that there are people within the Pittsburgh organization that thought Paul Martin was the better defenceman last year, and there has been a sort of a hesitation on a willingness to commit to him (Letang) to a long-term deal at elite defenceman money."

"I've been told that if the Penguins couldn't reach some sort of understanding with Letang, and the belief was they wouldn't be able to sign him to some sort of deal, that Toronto has emerged as a preferred landing spot - perhaps by Letang. It would be a place that he would be willing, if dealt, to perhaps sign a long-term deal."

(so...no source...reports of mine... I made this up.....)

and later:

"But I don't think we're quite there yet and I don't know that they Penguins and Leafs have had any discussions." (read: I made it all up)

What a joke lol.... Yes, every good player wants to play in Toronto....

Bring on the draft and real news!

Nice to see reasonable contracts like Anisimov and Shattenkirk, after a few years of unreasonable monster deals.. Berglund basically has this year to prove he is a legit no.1 or I think the Blues are not committing anymore than like 3.something per yr...and he settles in as a second line C.

June 26, 2013
Votes: +2
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