USATSI_7855502_160885884_lowres

Draft Day Funstravaganza

Shit’s about to get really wacky, if it hasn’t already.

  • The big news of the day is that the Ducks traded for Ryan Kesler, sending the 24th overall pick to Vancouver along with Luca Sbisa and Nick Bonino. After it was rumored that rookie Nucks GM Jim Benning wanted Saad and/or Teuvo in the deal, that probably quickly left him with only Red Ass Uncle Bob Murray to turn to, and he appropriately housed him in this deal. Rumor was that the Hawks were concerned with the second year of a $5.0 hit for a soon-to-be-30 and injury prone Kesler, which they can’t really be blamed for. It makes the Ducks even douchier, but they still have to get through the Kings for them to even be a realistic concern of the Hawks in the WCF.
  • The Hawks also locked up all of their restricted free agents in Antti Raanta, Ben Smith, and even the ersatz Jeremy Morin for just a curly over $3 million (Raanta $750 K, Morin $800K, Smith $1.5 million), all for two years. Smith’s number raises some questions regarding just what relative value the organization places on people, considering that Marcus Kruger makes less than Ben Smith as a center with the most punishing assignments in the league, and barely more than Bollig who does…well, not much. Morin’s salary can be buried in The Rock, but he’s no longer waiver exempt, so it would stand to reason that whenever he arrives here, he’s here to stay.
  • There’s a growing belief that the cap will be at or right around $68 million for this year, which screws the Hawks big time, considering they’re already over it. If that’s the case, Patrick Sharp is as good as gone, any other hearsay be damned. However, it is so hilariously appropriate and backwater of the NHL to not have their fixed cap ready to go for the biggest transaction days of the year.
  • Feel free to discuss any of the goings on here, and if something major happens, it will be covered with an appropriate dedicated post.

  • AirTrafficAJ

    After one of the most profitable years in NHL history, how is the cap not considerably higher? CONSPIRACY!

    • http://www.nosqldatabases.com Derek Stainer

      No kidding just imagine what it will be when there are only 2 outdoor games next year #Capgahzi

  • TitanTransistor

    Re: Kesler – Considering what Vancouver accepted from Anaheim, I think the Hawks could have still done a deal. But in addition to the concern of paying 5 mill for an injury-prone 30 year old, I think deal was pretty much dead the moment word hit that Kane and Toews made an initial offer of 12 million. Hawks had to sort out their contracts before they could worry about bringing in a major new piece, and Canucks probably weren’t willing to wait with a pick on the table.

    My hope of hopes is that with the cap about 2 million dollars lower than expected, Stan bites the bullet and trades Bollig to Calgary for ‘future considerations’ or a bag of pucks. He’s a type of player that’s easily replaceable at league minimum and if Versteeg is staying, that opens a slot for either Nordstrom or Morin on the 4th line, who can do everything he can, plus play hockey.

    My new wish for 2C is Grabovski. Doubt it happens, but he’s relatively cheap, fast and skilled. Concerns include how Q responds to him (ie, instant doghouse), and the fact that he’s rumored to be one big offer away from saying ‘fuck it’ to the NHL and heading off to the KHL on a whim, leaving the Hawks high and dry.

    • http://www.thecommittedindian.com/ Matt McClure

      If the cap is going to be $68, Sharp and Bollig to Calgary for Backlund and #4 overall is what I would call Burke and Treviling proposing until they changed their number.

      • TitanTransistor

        If Burke is dumb enough to give up #4 OA when his team is clearly in a rebuild, then you make that deal. I mean like dead sprint to the fax machine.

      • Tornsys

        Morin signed, 800k to sit in the press box.

      • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

        A proven young roster stud in Backlund and a sure stud draft pick … for a 32-yr-old winger and 4th-line filler? I think I remember you not respecting Burke much, but no way he’d give that a nod.

        I’m disagreeing with you twice in one day. Come on, post something else. I’m going to disagree just for the fuck of it.

        • http://www.thecommittedindian.com/ Matt McClure

          Based on the opinions expressed by the Calgary braintrust, you’re correct that I do not hold them in high regard. If they truly valued what Backlund brings to the table, they’d have locked him up already.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            Backlund’s an RFA next year, though, isn’t he? I think he’s still got a fine little contract …. yeah, just looked, he’s at 1.5 this coming season, RFA next.

            Three times! (But not on purpose.)

    • WinnetkaCoach

      Hawks Could have done deal that Anaheim did, but VAN only accepted that deal bc the Hawks were out for reasons you outlined above.

  • Jacqueass

    All this talk about Sharp … any chance that Seabrook goes instead/as well? Cap hits are 100K apart, Seabrook has 1 fewer year.

    • AMR

      I wouldn’t trade Seabrook because its harder to replace a d-man than a forward. We can’t be sure that Johns, Oduya, or anyone else can really replace the minutes he plays

      • Jacqueass

        Sharp, Seabrook, Bollig and Pick #27 for #1 overall.

        • AMR

          In this draft class for what Ekblad? There isn’t a sure hit superstar this draft year. Next year for McDavid you may have something but this year I wouldn’t make that trade

          • Jacqueass

            Cap hell is coming.

          • AMR

            Maybe. We don’t know what will happen once they factor in the new TV deal. We also don’t know what Kane and Toews will sign for. So lets not have a fire sale before we have all the information to make an informed decision on who to jettison

          • Jacqueass

            Also both Seabrook and Sharp have no trade clauses, according to capgeek. Maybe someone will take Bollig and Versteeg instead. That would help a little (about 1/2 of a Sharp or Seabrook salary).

          • AMR

            If anyone wants to take Versteeg and/or Bollig. Bowman should pull the trigger without a second thought

          • Jacqueass

            Yeah, someone took Carcillo…

          • http://www.nosqldatabases.com Derek Stainer

            Cap Hell Part 2: The Culling

        • WinnetkaCoach

          Seabrook or Sharp… Not both. IMHO

  • jordyhawk

    Canucks have lost Kesler, Hodgson, and Malhotra over the past couple of years; i.e. gutted themselves down the middle. Fubar. Love it.

    • AMR

      Just traded for Dorsett

    • OMFS88

      Not to mention both Luongo AND Schneider. #LOL

  • AMR

    Ribeiro is being bought out by the Coyotes

    • Oldfarthawkfan

      Pass on Ribero, he would sit in the pressbox next to Morin,

      • AMR

        I don’t want him in the same state as the Hawks let alone be a Hawk.

    • AMR

      Apparently he was bought out for behavior issues not monetary issues

  • Oldfarthawkfan

    With the cap at only $68m, Hawks are not the only ones screwed, Bruins, Flyers are over and Bruins want to sign Iginla still, Kings have no more room

    • http://www.nosqldatabases.com Derek Stainer

      is the 68m confirmed yet, by anyone?

      • AMR

        Its just a rumor and I think the NHL wants to include the new TV deal. Some don’t because it would increase the escrow amounts

      • Guest

        Capgeek is saying $69m

        • http://www.nosqldatabases.com Derek Stainer

          Yeah just got confirmed by all of the regular NHL guys at $69 mil, so Hawks officially over the cap

  • Commit88

    I have to say I was really pissed to see Kesler went to Anaheim. But they did trade a first AND 2 good prospects (especially apparently the dman). I say screw trading Saad… But maybe he should have traded Teravainen to get the deal done. Kesler could help them win now and in the forseeable future whereas I still feel like TT is not ready and too weak to play in the NHL for another year. And also, who knows what his ceiling is. He seemed to be all hype when he played in only 3 NHL games this year.

    • TitanTransistor

      I don’t think TT was the issue as much as the cap space. I think the deal was dead the second Stan go 12 million first offers from Kane and Toews. He can’t make a trade for a 5 million dollar player and give up cheap, young talent, before he even finalizes 8(!) digit contracts with his key players. And Vancouver probably wasn’t waiting around for him, with a draft pick on the line from Anaheim (2 actually, 1st and 3rd).

      • Commit88

        …you make too much sense. I want to be angry.

        • TitanTransistor

          I think we can all settle for disappointed. It would have been great to see Kesler in Blackhawks colors.

  • TitanTransistor

    It seems the cap is set at 69 (ceiling) and 51 (floor). Another Blackhawk is losing his job this off-season.

    • jhb

      Oduya. I could see Sharp, if they got a knockout offer.

  • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

    I’m not sure why you’d say Sharp is as good as gone. Granted, you were saying that when the number came in at 68, but at 69 we’re only 500K over with only one spare-part roster spot to fill. We don’t have to get rid of 6 million to get that done.

    • jordyhawk

      Yeah, I capgeeked it a few weeks ago and by my count we can manage it, and if we can shed any/all of Versteeg, Bollig, Rozy was have some flex room.

      • TitanTransistor

        That would certainly be the SMART decision…

        *cough*

        • Oldfarthawkfan

          Yup lets just dump Versteeg, Bollig and Rozy on someone else, you are assuming all the rest of the General Managers are dumb idiots. Also, other teams have cap issues too and are looking to get rid of their own Versteegs, Bolligs and Rozys also

    • Oldfarthawkfan

      I would trade Sharp, look at the youngsters coming in and who is left. Teuvo is more a winger, you have Saad, Bickell Morin, and Nordstrom on the left, Hossa, Smith, Kane on the right, plus MacNeil etc, we need the cap space and we need another true center. Oduya does not give us enough relief on the cap

      • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

        Lots of valid opinions on who we should get rid of, sure. Just saying it’s not a situation where we have to shed a big salary. Jordyhawk mentions a few guys below, and just one of them would get it done. Leddy too. We’re also at 22 for our roster, and lots of teams have started the year with 22 instead of the full 23. (I wouldn’t necessarily want that … but we have time, before October, to get that 23rd guy in some kind of move.)

    • http://www.nosqldatabases.com Derek Stainer

      Trade value probably at highest now coming off the season he had, plus next year is already looking a bit ominous if you factor 20 mil for both Toews and Kane

      • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

        I definitely agree on the future cap hit, and how much more flexible we could get with a 6-mil salary off the books. I just don’t sense we HAVE to make any big move now. By all reports the cap is likely to rise significantly over the next 2 or 3 years, too, so I’m not quite as worried about that as some.

        Also, I think Sharp is likely to have another fine season next year production-wise. Maybe not his best, but nothing that would decrease his trade value.

        • Hags

          Does a Sharp move HAVE to be made? absoutely not. But, i do think there won’t be a better time than now. I’m wary of the reports about the cap. back in January it was being said it would be as high as 71 million, and obviously it came in 2 million lower. is it realistic to expect the cap to jump higher than say, 72 or 73 Million next year? i don’t think it is. It seems like everything has lined up this week to move Sharp, and if they can get someone at 2C to help them now (Antoine Vermette?) along with an upper tier prospect or 1st rounder, i would pull the trigger.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            I wouldn’t disagree with you. I do think the cap will jump, but you can’t 100% bank on it. I think Stan makes a move, though, if there’s an asset he actually wants out there. I think that will steer his decision, not the ridding of salary.

          • Hags

            right on, make the deal if the deal is right. otherwise, hold on to him and find a way later.

          • lizmcneill

            They have to add the TV deal money into it at some point.

        • wardrums

          Is their a possibility Versteeg gets buried in Rockford? Or gets claimed? A lot will depend on his training camp I suppose. I hope he makes me eat my words.

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            You could send him to Rockford, but his cap hit would count all the same. No more contract-burying with this CBA.

  • Commit88

    The cap in the NHL sucks, I’m sorry. Breaking up the 09-10 team should not have ever happened. Also the 12-13 team before they could replace them. Moving more guys after this season is kinda bs.

  • mightymikeD

    Lets all take a moment from fretting about the Hawks to point and laugh at Boston and, to a lesser degree, Toronto who are really facing the cold, hard shithammer of a cap crunch

  • ballyb11

    What’s the Kings cap sit’n?

    • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

      They’re just fine this coming year … but the next might be interesting. Lots of key contracts coming due.

      • mightymikeD

        Kopitar will be getting PAID.. $10 mil wouldn’t surprise me

        • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

          Very good point … and that’s one season after yet again. Cap will be 75 million by then … probably.

          • mightymikeD

            it will be hilarious to see the likes of David Krecji getting $8 mil that year..

          • http://www.lotsofbutterplease.com/ I am not Chico Maki

            This is it. We’re going to gulp when 19/88 get their payday, but it will be okay in 2 or 3 years time. And if we get to the WCF, say, 3 or 4 times in their 8 years … we’ll be surprised it wasn’t more. Maybe.

          • mightymikeD

            from the last couple of days on Twitter, it appears that having to pay two of the best players in the world a lot of money for their prime years comes as a shock to a large number of fans

          • ballyb11

            These two better swallow a little of their pride and reach a compromise that benefits their entire career. If not, trade ‘em to Carolina…… or Phoenix ……. or Florida or ….. Columbus ……..

          • Oldfarthawkfan

            LOL I was just thinking that, send Toews to Winnepeg, for like Ladd, E. Kane and picks, send Kane to Buffalo for Tyler Myers, Cody Hodson and picks, we will still have an awesome team, and the NHL will be pissed that 2 of their stars are buried in no mans markets

          • Joe Banks

            Baby Jesus just cried…

          • lizmcneill

            Kaner is worth about the entire Buffalo roster at the minute.

    • Oldfarthawkfan

      right at max, they might rethink the we are not buying out Mike Richards. they have serious problems next year signing RFA’s and UFA’s Tiffoli, Pearson, Martinez, etc. And their farm system is rated #21, Blackhawks is #4

  • ballyb11

    10% of the team making 34.78% of the team’ salary won’t be good for morale.

    • wowwowweewoo

      I’m sorry, where did you get 10%? 2.3 players???

    • ruinedhnic

      Good thing then that Toews and Kane aren’t 10% of the team, that they won’t be signing for $12M each, and that the cap won’t be $69M.

  • VanDorp’sMullet

    From ESPN’s mock draft:

    27. Chicago Blackhawks: Nick Schmaltz, C, Green Bay (USHL)
    DOB: 2/23/96 | Ht: 6-0 | Wt: 174

    I could very well see Schmaltz falling out of the first round, but a fair number of scouts see him as a first-rounder, and given Chicago’s high emphasis on skill, he would be a nice fit for the Blackhawks. After dealing Brandon Pirri to Florida, Chicago does not have a top-end skilled center in its organization.

    Uhm…. since when was Pirri a top-end center? And what about the Dragon? If Pirri is “top-end” the Dragon is a lock for the HOF.

    • YoAdrienne

      I assume that when they say, “Chicago does not have a top-end skilled center in its organization,” they are referring to the prospects? If not, somebody needs to tell Toews he’s not a top-end, skilled center. But, that’s ESPN for you.

  • Aaeismacgychel

    With the cap down to $69M (how did it take until today to get finalized?) I’m thinking we might be be going trade route today to clear some salary- Perhaps an Oduya or Rozsival plus pick for pick package deal. I don’t think we’ll be able to move Bollig or Versteeg at this point (And really at $2M/yr for Versteeg, it is probably smarter to see if a summer of training on the knee will help get him back some/any trade value). I think we’d likely keep Leddy around as well though I could see wheeling and dealing him if the price is right. Other than that I think we’re pretty much set. A Seabrook/Sharp trade would certainly be interesting, but even though it wouldn’t be entirely unexpected, I think it’s a pretty big longshot that happens. Based on cap we need to trade away about 2.2M to create room for two kids (Teravainen.Johns/Clendening) to fill out the roster. Seems like Oduya or Rozsival are the likely trade bait.

  • wowwowweewoo

    Hahaha, this is awesome. They’re booing him for his entire speech…

  • jacquescloutier

    panthers should’ve drafted a new jersey.

  • jacquescloutier

    ekblad compared to… brent seabrook.
    nachos south.

  • AMR

    Why can’t all the GMs announce like Murray?

    • jacquescloutier

      he spent less time talking than tallon took in his troll pause.

      • AMR

        Now if we could only get Pierre to shut up

  • jacquescloutier

    no one want to hear about your stupid fans at your crappy viewing party for jerks.

  • jacquescloutier

    james neal to nashville.

  • ahnfire

    James Neal to NSH for Hornqvist & Spaling.

    • YoAdrienne

      Oh, goody. Another cheap-shotter in the division. Hawks had better watch their backs. And, their heads. And, every other body part.

  • jordyhawk

    We have enough PMDs and bottom 6 wingers to last a long time. Let’s grab a two-way center with sharp elbows and a big ass who isn’t interested in school. Some goalies in the later rounds would be good as well. And nobody who has a relative already in the org.

  • Jachim Squeegee

    The rest of the West gets better and better, while we get older, slower, and more garbage castaways as our “big acquisitions” every year. Who will be the new Handzus? I just can’t wait to find out.

    • TitanTransistor

      Handzus leaving, along with (likely) Oduya and possibly another player.

      Morin, Smith, Nordstrom, TT all likely to be consistent presences in the lineup (hopefully, Q insanity aside), along with Johns on D.

      How exactly are we getting older?

      • Jachim Squeegee

        Smith has been on the roster (hello?), TT ain’t here yet, and Morin and Nordstrom … seriously? I’m talking about top six forwards and top four defensemen, not fourth line filler.

        • PE-TER RE-GIN

          Your lack of understanding of what Smith, TT and Morin can be is sad to me.

          • Jachim Squeegee

            Your lacking of reading comprehension is sad to me. Did you not see the specific reference to Morin and Nordstrom? TT may be great in a year or two, we don’t know yet. Smith? I love him, but the point was that he’s already on the roster. Now go sign up for an Evelyn Wood class.

          • PE-TER RE-GIN

            You were talking about getting older and slower. How is keeping Smith, TT, Morin and Nordstrom making the team older and slower, and how are they fourth-line filler? (You didn’t quite specify who you were calling fourth-line filler).

            Oh, and chill, man.

          • Jachim Squeegee

            ONE LAST TIME: MORIN AND NORDSTROM are the fourth line filler.

          • PE-TER RE-GIN

            Umad?

          • PE-TER RE-GIN

            Oh, and I disagree about one of the two. So I guess we’ll never be on the same page :’(

          • TitanTransistor

            Why you haf to be so mad?

          • PE-TER RE-GIN

            Bryz’d

          • ahnfire

            Breathe, Jachim.

        • TitanTransistor

          I’m aware that Smith has been on the roster. He is younger than Fro and Bolland, who he replaced.

          As far as where the youth slots in, most young players that aren’t drafted top 10 or have absolutely AMAZING AHL numbers start as depth and work their way up (or establish a niche and stay where they are).

          Are you under the impression that the Hawks are going to magically pick up Nate Mckinnon or something (who btw, plays on the 3rd line of his team as well)?

    • wowwowweewoo

      You’re right, we should trade our entire team for picks 1 – 20. Then ice an all rookie NHL team. The potential is limitless for what so many rookies could do. Maybe they’re all the next Wayne Gretzky…

      • Jachim Squeegee

        Your post is damned near as intelligent as your screen name. Is that Moron for “short bus?”

        • wowwowweewoo

          wow wow wee woo – borat.

          I still think we should trade our team for youth

    • wowwowweewoo

      Is trading up a few picks kind of like getting younger? are you happier now?

    • DJ

      What would you do differently?

    • Bannerman
  • HarryBalzonya

    Well we just traded up. Must be pretty horny for someone.

  • ahnfire

    Traded up and now have Nick Schmaltz.

    • YoAdrienne

      I saw that he’s supposedly comparable to Spezza. Hopefully, a few years at UND will be good for him.

      • ahnfire

        Toews might love him solely because of the UND connection.

        • YoAdrienne

          I just saw on Tumblr that his favorite player is Kaner. Uh oh.

          • Joe Banks

            Was it just me, or did St Louis look stunned the Hawks took him? They have his brother, so it makes sense…

          • HarryBalzonya

            I think thats why we moved up. We knew that St Louis was going to take him, so if we wanted him we had to move.

    • jordyhawk

      He is the fifth (5th) center we have taken in the first round in the last 5 years (both Kayes and McNeil were drafted as centers). We have spent a lot of our draft currency on filling the hole with not much to show for it so far. This year will be something of the acid test to see if it’s been worth it.

      • jacquescloutier

        since kane, hawks first round picks have played a total of 31 games [olsen 28, teuvo 3]. i understand it takes time to develop and slot these kids in, and picking later in the draft doesn’t help, but 31 games over the past six years for first round selections seems a little low.

        • jordyhawk

          I does seem low. Obviously Saad and Shaw help offset that, but its obviously weak and aside from TT there are not a lot of high ceilings there.

      • Jachim Squeegee

        Agreed. But, it’s in large part because we keep drafting undersized, non-physical centers who really don’t fit in to the NHL game. I don’t know why they left Fabbri for St. Louis. He seems to be a faster, more driven and more physical player. We don’t need another guy to shy away from contact and hide on the perimeter.

        • lizmcneill

          KHayes and McNeill are big. Danault and Hartman aren’t tiny (and if the Frogger and Shaw comparisons are yaccurate, it’s the size of the fight in the dog). Beach and Olsen were big, and much good that did.

      • lizmcneill

        You draft centers because it’s easier to go C > W than the other way around. If there’s an obvious more skilled winger, pick him, duh, but late in the first there’s not much in it.

    • jacquescloutier

      cool. liked mccann at that spot too.
      listed at 5’11″ on the official site. i see 6’0″ elsewhere.

      at least three straight years now drafting an area kid.