Shane Doan visited with the Rangers and Flyers over the past few days. He apparently wants to make a decision soon for family reasons (kids enrolled in school, sports, and so on).

 

The Devils locked up unheralded defenseman Mark Fayne to a two-year conract, avoiding arbitration. Fayne will earn an average of $1.3 million per season.

 

“With Fayne now re-signed, the Devils have eight defensemen under contract for 2012-13—Fayne, Andy Greene, Bryce Salvador, Anton Volchenkov, Marek Zidlicky, Henrik Tallinder, Adam Larsson and Peter Harrold.``


According to the Edmonton Journal, the Oilers were definitely interested in Shea Weber.


"But, as I wrote at the end of a Sam Gagner blog late Thursday night, the Oilers certainly were sniffing around Weber. My sources tell me it never got to where they were digging in to make an offer sheet right now, but my sources tell me they might well have later. We all know they’ve gone that route before, going for Buffalo’s Thomas Vanek in 2007, only to have the Sabres’ match their stunning $50 million, seven-year offer, then getting Dustin Penner from the Ducks with a wildcat five-year offer sheet."


The big question on many people’s minds – how does Pekka Rinne’s value get affected if Weber doesn’t return to Nashville? I think the Predators simply have to find a way to match this offer sheet, although I am not privy to their financials.

 

Right now, Rinne is the second or third best goalie in the league. However, with no Suter and potentially no Weber playing 25+ minutes a night in front of him anymore, his value will drop – quite a bit.

 

Last year, Suter and Weber both excelled playing extremely tough minutes. Nashville’s other defensemen all struggled in lesser roles. Rinne is too good to have his value completely dependent on two defensemen, but no other team relied on a defensive pairing as much as the Predators did on Weber and Suter.

 

Solid depth signing by the Ducks – Daniel Winnik – two years, $1.8 million per. Winnik has stone hands and next-to-no fantasy value, but he is a great PKer and very dependable defensively. He’ll boost Jonas Hiller’s value a little bit.

 

I haven’t done a fantasy mailbag in a while – look for one later this weekend or early next week.

 

Hockey Prospectus takes a look at the top 10 prospects on Long Island. A few of the profiles:

Kabanov:

 

“Kabanov is a high-end puck possession player who NHL scouts praise for his "tremendous hockey sense on and off the puck." One scout said on him "He's got great vision with the puck, but he's always around the play because he senses so well without it and always knows where the puck will be." Kabanov has plus puck skills and can really dangle defensemen. He's an above-average skater who can generate good power from his stride. The interesting thing about Kabanov was the praise I heard this year for his all-around game. One scout said, "He's very competitive on and off the puck, and plays a good team game. He's been solid defensively." I don't buy the character issues with him that are widely discussed, and everything I've heard from scouts this year points to him having good on-ice work ethic and getting his off-ice work done. I've written about how I feel those issues were overrated, and NHL sources I talked to this year echoed that.”


Matt Donovan (their best young defenseman, in my opinion):

 

“Donovan is a high-end offensive defenseman with an explosive combination of puck skills and skating, although the former is much more impressive. He has the ability to hit with a quick strike scoring chance and is also dangerous controlling the puck from the offensive blue line. He had a very impressive first pro season, and his offensive numbers look better when you consider the fact he was not being sheltered in offensive roles.”


Derek Roy talked to Dallas radio about his recent shoulder surgery.

 

“A little bit of a surprise," Roy said of the trade, "but at the same time my agent told me don't be surprised if you get traded this summer. I was shocked at first because I had been there so long. I had been there my whole career and I have a lot of good memories back in Buffalo, but you know, this is a new chapter of my life and I'm excited to be a Dallas Star and I'm excite to get going. We don't play here much. I think I've only played here a couple of times in my career in nine years with the Sabres organization so...it's a tough move but it's exciting at the same time. This being my first trade, even throughout junior and all growing up and whatnot. No trades."


The way Dallas handled the surgery, it appears that they would like to keep Roy for the long term. Considering they don’t have much up the middle in the organization, that would be a smart move. Roy has never fully seized the role as a top line center, but he would be the perfect complement in a secondary role to Jamie Benn.

 

Shea Weber slap shot time:

 


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Mark said:

bluecollar
Let him walk, take the 4 first rounders Stanley cups are usually won by teams with 3rd and 4th liners who play like second liners. LA, Boston, and Chicago stick out the most to me when I think of teams who won the cup with practically three sets of second line players, but you can almost make this statement with pretty much any championship team since the lockout. Gone are the days where you can 'Patrick Roy' your way to a Stanley Cup (when he was in Montreal).

Because of the salary cap, I believe the goal for any GM is to assemble a $90 million team while paying them $70 million, meaning you are paying them just before the peaks of their careers where they cash in huge. This was most evident in Chicago because as soon as they won the Cup and they had to re-sign their players, many of their depth players were signed to bigger offer sheets elsewhere because Chicago won the Cup right before everyone cashed in on their big contracts.

I guess my point is that Philly has been close to wining the cup for a few years now, and such a huge contract is worth it's price if it brings Stanley home. To me, the only time you pay the big bucks is when you can almost taste a championship. I consider Nashville a playoff contender, but not a cup contender. For this reason, I say let Weber go, use your 8 first round picks wisely over the next 4 years, and work towards building a team that can contend perennially. Just my two cents.
July 21, 2012
Votes: +2

Brady19 said:

Brady19
Or... Because Weber and Suter are so good defensively, they generally only allow low percentage shots to go through to Rinne. So the degree of difficulty in the shots Rinne faced was significantly lower than those of many other goalies in the league.

July 21, 2012
Votes: +1

Nate said:

Nate
Weber - Sutter - Rinne Did the thought ever occur to anyone that perhaps Rinne was the reason Weber and Suter had good plus minuses last season?

Pekka Rinne took the MOST SHOTS of any goaltender in the NHL in 2011-2012 with 2153.

Lets put this into perspective. Steve Mason of the Columbus Blue Jackets (the worst team in the league with the most anemic defense) took 1355 shots last season in 46 games. That averages out to 29 shots per game against. Rated over a 73 game season just like Rinne, Mason takes about 2150 shots. I mean Jonas Hiller took less shots last year in the exact same number of games and Anaheim didn't exactly have 200 million dollars on their blue line last year.

My point is that statistically speaking, IF Weber and Sutter we're such incredible defensive contributors, then you should expect Rinne's shot total to balloon tremendously over the course of next season.

Conversely, it's also possible that Rinne continues his good play and Sutter/Weber are exposed more defensively on their new teams. (Assuming Nashville doesn't match the OS)
July 21, 2012
Votes: -1
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