Miscellaneous Debris

With the Summer Doldrums officially in full effect thanks in no small part to the League taking its sweet ass time to announce an agreement for Olympic participation in Sochi this coming February, and as a result its own regular season schedule, it’s time to take a spin into a couple matters beyond the Blackhawks.

But one local matter needs to be addressed first.

Yesterday Stan Bowman gave restricted free agent Kyle Beach a one year deal, with the terms not yet disclosed publicly, but it’d be an upset if it was anything above the minimum. This is a puzzling move, as it hasn’t appeared for a long time that Beach is in any kind of plans the Hawks may have going forward. He was passed on the depth chart by the likes of Jimmy Hayes, Jeremy Morin, and Andrew Shaw on their way to the big club, with Beach even being left off the massive callup for the meaningless game 48 in St. Louis, against an opponent where Beach’s numbskullery would have been well received.

Other than being a dope and an asshat to his teammates, the knock on Beach’s game itself has always been his skating, similar to Jimmy Hayes, and that hasn’t prevented the Hawks from giving him a look in the show. Word is that he’s worked on it, but he’s now had five, yes FIVE years to work on it, and his game has never come around. Kyle Beach is now the highest remaining pick from the 2008 draft to not see his NHL debut, and that coupled with some of Dale Tallon’s other picks (Cam Barker (as assistant GM), Jack Skille, Dylan Olsen), along with Stan Bowman now having a ring no one can question in theory should tamper some of the remaining Tallon loving dead-enders.

As for Beach himself, it appears that this is his last shot with the Hawks, though it seems highly unlikely he even gets a sniff of the big club, barring a miraculous turnaround in his game or a series a catastrophic injuries.

— One of the more hilariously under-reported stories of the off-season is just how screwed the San Jose Sharks are cap-wise. They’re currently over the cap without the luxury of an LTIR in their back pocket like the Flyers and Bruins (though it’s always a possibility with Marty Havlat on the roster), and they’re basically bringing back the same roster as last year having only added the hamster-faced Tyler Kennedy over the summer. And Brent Burns is going to remain a forward full time, which makes the David Clarkson contract look almost reasonable by comparison. At least it serves to drive home the point that Bryan Bickell did indeed take a discount to stay here.

This is the same team that needed a herculean effort from Antti Niemi in a shortened season to barely make the playoffs last season, with an aging core who have all got to be acutely aware that it’s put up or shut up time. Patrick Marleau, Joe Pavelski, Joe Thornton, and Dan Boyle are all in walk years, and GM Doug Wilson and Coach Todd McLellan’s seats have got to look like the door knob from Home Alone at this point. If the organization had any foresight, they could have whacked Wilson and McLellan this spring and actually done quite well to reload on the fly by dealing Marleau, Boyle, and Thornton, as well as buying out Burns. But they’re going to go for one more roll of the dice with this lot this year, and with with a full 82 game season for Niemi to have to keep things afloat, look for a stunning bloodletting in February.

— There are still a fair amount of interesting scraps left out there unsigned, chief among them Mikhail Grabovski, who was inexplicably deposed from the Toronto Maple Leafs in their unending quest to be the absolute paragon of meatball hockey. There are places where he’d be an obvious fit, namely Washington, Winnipeg, and Nashville, so it’s curious to me why he hasn’t landed yet. Perhaps he’s still deluded in thinking that he’s actually worth what Toronto initially paid him, which no one is going to now that he’s going to be paid anyway for the next few years.

It also baffles me why Mark Streit’s rights were traded for and he was given $5.25 for four years at 35 when Ron Hainsey is basically the same guy and still remains unsigned. Hainsey was one of the more vocal leaders of the union last fall, so perhaps no one in ownership is jumping at the chance to give him another contract.

However, the fact that both Brenden Morrow and Douglas Murray remain unsigned after all of the ridiculous fanfare they received when they were traded to the Penguins is some delicious schadenfraude. Ray Shero, GM Of The Year, everybody.

— I’m still convinced that Lou Lamoriello had to know about the constructs of the League’s recapture clause when he signed Kovy to v2.0 of his deal, which the league helped the Devils with getting it right. It seems like Lou and Kovalchuk’s team had an agreement that if he was ever thinking about leaving for Mother Russia, it’d have to be after year 3 or 4 of the deal, which was constructed absolutely perfectly to minimize the financial and cap burdens on the Devils in that event, to the tune of only $250k a year.

It’ll never actually come out, but that won’t keep the conspiracy theorist in me from believing it.


  • OMFS88

    Hot like the door knob from Outside Providence

  • MattC86

    Wow, we now piled Olsen into the “terrible pick” category? The guy who a year ago (before an admittedly crappy season in Rockford) played a bunch of NHL games and got one of the ToS to say something along the lines of “has the makings of becoming a Robyn Regehr-like brick shithouse on the blue line for years to come?”

    How quickly we change our mind. Uncle Dale had way worse picks than Dylan Olsen.

    I’m not holding my breath for Beach, I did think the guy who pointed out his AHL stats versus, say, Brian Bickell’s posed some interesting food for thought. I’d say this is a pretty harmless deal unless they paid real money for him.

    • MattC86

      In fact, it was McClure who said so. http://www.secondcityhockey.com/2012/2/19/2810462/separation-sunday-hawks-3-blues-1

      I’m not being a prick for the sake of being a prick – did the guy completely shit himself in Rockford this year??

      • robondacob

        He didn’t look too good towards the end of the year in 2011-12, but I think he is a more than capable 7th d-man. At this point, I doubt he can develop anymore in the AHL, and he MUST be better than Brookbank right?

        I’ve been beating this drum for a while, but I think that Brookbank should be traded and Olsen should be brought up. That’s saves half a million in cap space and we lose hardly any skill in the 7th d-man position.

        • putmeinthemadhouse

          Stanton is better than olsen

          • robondacob

            Maybe in Rockford, but the NHL is a different beast. Olsen has played 28 games in the NHL and Stanton has played 0. If Brookbank is traded, I think Olsen gets a chance before Stanton does.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            Stanton looked more solid in the last game vs the blues than olsen did in any of his 28 games. Stanton is older, more mature, and more developed. He deserves his chance and has earned it in my opinion.

          • robondacob

            First of all, sample size. Second of all, Stanton is one year older than Olsen. And third of all, I feel that Olsen’s slight size advantage is better suited for the 7th d-man position.

            Unless Olsen takes a dump in training camp, I don’t see Stanton being higher on the depth charts than Olsen.

          • putmeinthemadhouse

            Was olsen a black ace?

          • robondacob

            Yes he was. You can find the list of healthy scratches for Game 6 of the SCF here: http://espn.go.com/nhl/boxscore?gameId=400470605

          • Fleshrifle

            Great link Rob. That boxscore never gets old.

            18:44Bryan Bickell (9)
            Assists: Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith

            19:01Dave Bolland (3)
            Assists: Michael Frolik, Johnny Oduya

          • cliffkoroll

            Fourth of all, we’re talking about the #7 defenseman, right?

            Won’t somebody think of the pixels?

      • By all accounts, yes.

        • Fleshrifle

          Does a rookie develop better practicing by day and hanging out in the ‘organ loft’ at night? Or by flying around Rockvegas? I’d say in a 42 game season, better off in Rockvegas since practice was so limited. In a regular year, scheduled practices are more common, then the rookie would be better served traveling and learning in the loft.

        • MattC86

          So he’s gone from future cornerstone of the big club blue line to more evidence that Dale Tallon was, except for easy home runs like Kane and Toews, a shitty drafter?

          That’s some shitty year.

          • I was comically, hyperbolically, embarrassingly wrong.

            Email me your address so I can send you a refund.

          • MattC86

            Was just curious, cause I don’t watch the Hogs. As I said above, not being a prick for the sake of being a prick. I just feel like it’s worth being cautious about calling him a total bust. . . .

          • lizmcneill

            Olsen is 22. That’s still a baby in dman terms, so I wouldn’t write him off just yet.

      • Joe Banks

        Olsen is a solid, defensive minded defenseman, extremely good at clearing assassins out of the crease area.
        Unfortunately, a handful (I’m being generous) of NHL elite can skate around him like the proverbial pylon.
        With Clendening and Johns in the pipeline, I’d say he’ll wind up in Vancouver someday…

        • zacked

          Your first sentence and your second sentence contradict each other. If he’s a “solid, defensive minded” d-man then he can’t also be a pylon.

          Count me as all aboard the Olsen sucks train.

  • robondacob

    I’ve been wondering about the Sharks for a while.

    The only moves that could help them are trading burrish then signing a minimum wage goon and putting Havlat on LTIR, which is what the Sharks apparently plan on doing (according to Fear the Fin). I’m honestly baffled at how they managed to screw up this badly with the cap. Their lineup isn’t even that good!

    • Joe Banks

      Well, we didn’t have to endure any offer sheets from Dougie this year!

  • AMR

    Matt Duchene signs a 5 year extension

    • roadhog

      Dustin Brown signs for 8 more royal years.

  • putmeinthemadhouse

    Winnipeg fans are very *ahem* vocal in their opinions on hainsey.

    • AMR

      I wonder what they said about Oduya before he was traded? I’m serious, were they sad to see Oduya go or were they happy?

      • MattC86

        I seem to recall them giving a pretty straight up take on Johnny OD. Said he was talented, prone to yips, and definitely not going to be resigned at a price point they could or would pay for.

        • AMR


      • robondacob

        Here’s the analysis of the trade from some Winnipeg fans: http://www.arcticicehockey.com/2012/2/27/2828898/winnipeg-jets-trade-johnny-oduya-to-the-chicago-blackhawks-for-2nd

        Seems like he wasn’t as good for them as he was for us, and they weren’t planning on re-signing him unless he was going to be cheap. Sounds like a rare, good trade for both sides.

  • M7

    I’m not sure I’d put Hainsey and Streit in the same category. I mean, Streit is a pretty elite point-producing d-man with an absolute hammer for a shot. (Side tangent here – a healthy Andrei Markov is one of the most underated players in the league. He’s tee’d things up, in succession, for Souray, Streit and now Subban – making all 3 look pretty damn good in the process).

    Anyways, yeah – I don’t see any part of Hainsey’s game that says PP point shot and offensive production.

  • cliffkoroll

    * temper.

    “Tallon loving dead-ender” – as you put it with characteristic panache – here.

    I also think it’s premature to put Olsen on the roasting spit.

    I’m more interested in your slotting Olsen under the Tallon banner, though.

    The 2009 draft was on June 26. Stan took over on July 14, 2009. I’m inclined to guess that the organization knew where it was going on draft day, in which case it was really Stan’s draft. But I’m very open to being convinced otherwise.

    If you’re keeping track at home, though, like we Tallon loving dead-enders are, note that both Pirri and Kruger came out of the 2009 draft too.

    • neo1978

      Bowman didn’t put together his staff until after he was
      officially named GM. So the 2009 draft was from Tallon’s people. It is my understanding that the only exception to that was Kruger, who was drafted because of the information brought over by Bowman Senior from the Wings.



      • cliffkoroll

        Interesting. I always had Kruger linked with Stan in my head.

        As others have mentioned, there is a tricky process of delineation here, since Stan and Dale overlapped for a few years.

        • Joe Banks

          I can’t quote an article, but I know I read somewhere long ago that Kruger was “Scotty’s boy”.

          • cliffkoroll

            Scotty also had some glowing things to say about Hjamarsson. It’s all a rich tapestry.

            OTOH, a friend of mine told me that the Bowmans were Very High on Stalberg, so my sources could be full of shit.

          • lizmcneill

            They seem to like Swedes. Also a Detroit carry-over?

          • Joe Banks

            Yesss. The Bowman’s like the Swedes… is it wrong?

          • Z-man19

            I’d say they liked him until he was due a raise and whatever happened before the finals happened

          • Joe Banks

            I seem to recall a Toronto fan warned us that Stalberg could get from one end of the rink to the other faster than anybody, but didn’t have a clue (what to do) once he got there…

  • Waylon

    “Other than being a dope and an asshat to his teammates, the knock on Beach’s game itself has always been his skating…”

    I made a similar point in the last thread, but it was called to my attention that he deserved another chance – because youth, or something. But his skating still apparently sucks ass after 5 seasons in the minors, so what do I know?

  • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

    Just watched the replay of game 6 on CSN. Still don’t believe it.

    • Z-man19

      It’s freaking awesome

      • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

        Have you seen the CBC footage synched up with WGN radio? Awesome.

        • Z-man19

          Yes I have, might go watch it again

          • Z-man19

            Here are 5 different calls, I hadn’t heard the French call


            and the one you referred to just in case no one has seen it yet

          • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

            Love the last one on the Five Different Calls, is it Finnish?

          • Z-man19

            yes, it’s over, there is no more

          • Sparky_The_Bard-barian

            {rim shot}

          • bizarrohairhelmet

            so lovely. The Finnish call sounds a bit like Triumph the Insult Dog Comic

    • Joe Banks

      Me too. When do the DVD’s come out? What do we call those fateful 17 seconds ??? It must be immortalized!!!
      17 seconds over Tuukka?

      Bolly’s bazinga?

      • cliffkoroll

        Technically, there were two distinct intervals, each about 17 seconds. The first of the two was, IMO, the purer demonstration of The Will to Win, the bigger goal, the more definitive fuck you.

        The sequence can be seen as a metaphor for the season- the Big Guns do the heavy lifting, then Dave and Fro put the watercress round the edges.


        • bizarrohairhelmet

          This bout of self-promotion is CNS-ian by all accounts.

    • chichicagochi

      #2 is absolutely gangbusters this game

  • mightymikeD

    I’m inclined to agree with McClure about Lou.. it’s either that or he’s psychic genius from the planet Smartz. Having signed a player to (possibly) the second shittiest contract in the league, NJD get out of it for a (relative) pittance. Meanwhile, in Vancouver, GMMG is trying to subtly drop hints that Lu might like to explore his heritage by retiring and signing for Milan when they join the KHL next year

  • 815Sox

    I have never once watched Beach here in Rockford and thought that he could make it in the NHL. I am just glad I have never seen him out, because I’d imagine he is a DB at the bar as well.

    Beach is 23 years old.. hard to believe but its true.

    For the record: Most of my interactions with the Hogs players have been very positive.