Wednesday, August 03, 2005

The Eastern Conference just got a lot better

TSN is reporting that Peter Forsberg has signed a two-year, $10.7 million deal with the Philadelphia Flyers.

After some questionable moves with his defensive core, Bob Clarke just went from the "free agent losers" category to perhaps near the top of the winners list. Forsberg is not without some baggage, including questionable health, but he's not someone I want my team playing against with any kind of regularity. The salary is one of the first reasonable ones of the past couple day.

Meanwhile, Sens fans are sitting on the sidelines, watching the Bruins and Flyers load up, seeing the the Habs re-sign Kovalev, and the best we can supposedly do (if you believe rumor blogs) is Martin Lapointe, at $2 million a year no less?

Throw in the Flames inking their franchise player to a new long-term deal while adding a few players on the cheap, the Canucks bringing back their captain for three more years when all signs pointed to a different result, and the Oilers (of all people) acquiring not one but two impact players in Chris Pronger and Mike Peca, and we feel quite left out of the fun.

I realize we've been told that on paper the Sens have as good a chance at winning Lord Stanley as anyone, and that's probably true, but it would sure be reassuring to see some action on our end to keep up with the arms race that's going on.
I mean, if everyone else is going to spend their brains out, which seems to be the theme of this off season, what use is there in Ottawa being the financially responsible ones?

But hey, it could be worse


At 11:31 PM, Blogger aquietgirl said...

I'd be happy with just re-signing of our RFAs to long term deals. I'm having nightmares about Redden, Chara, Havlat, Hossa leaving ...

At 12:09 AM, Anonymous VBAB said...

This just in.. Ottawa signs Chara, Redden, DeVries, Smolinski, Phillips, Hasek, Varada, Schaefer, Pothier, Alfredson and Hamel!!!

OK, after reading that, how'd you feel? The biggest D in the NHL, one of the top puck movers, a premier goalie (with baggage though), All-star right winger etc..

Just because we're not making the headlines doesn't mean we don't have things to get excited about.

As for Redden and Chara leaving, they both make 3.724m and with Foot and Aucoin in the 4m to 4.5m range, these 2 could be pretty happy with that kind of money also. We have that kind of cash (extra 300-700k each?).

As for the restricted free agents, I wish they'd hurry up and sign so that we could get our house set then shop on the free agent market a bit. I also wouldn't be surprised if we played hardball with some of the RFAs. It's the ottawa way..we don't overpay

At 6:50 AM, Blogger CMcMurtry said...

Believe me, I understand about all these points

But I'd just like to see the Sens do something to keep up with the Jones'.

However, if they can sign Havlat and Hossa to long-term deals (4ish years ideally) I'll be content.

Also, if they spend $2 mil on Lapointe, I will pull out my hair. He's a decent two-way player with a lot of grit, but Darren McCarty went for $800,000 and Gary Roberts went for $2.25. Anymore than $1.5 mil for Lapointe is crazy.

At 8:48 AM, Blogger v said...

I think the Sens may elect to sign one of Chara or Redden (I'd choose Chara) long term and let the other walk at the end of the season. Muckler's comments immediately after drafting Brian Lee seemed curious to me.

I think Chara is worth Pronger\Iginla money and once Havlat, Hossa, Phillips, and Spezza are signed long term there may not be enough cap room for two franchise defencemen after this season, especially if you consider Ottawa will be active in the free agent bumper crop expected next summer. We'll need to sign a franchise goalie soon and I think that will mean letting at least one big name walk.

At 10:12 AM, Blogger Nick said...

I think free-agent signings are overrated. When's the last time a free agent really burned up the scoresheet? OK, surely a couple of them have...but the point is that I'd rather have our core players signed. The pieces are all there for Ottawa. What would a Palffy or Kariya add to this team that we don't already have?

The Martin Lapointe signing seems like a good one. He's a step up from Bonk, with double the work ethic and just as much defensive skill. If Mucks signs him and maybe one other decent C or LW, I'll be happy.

At 10:16 AM, Blogger Nick said...

Sorry, I meant to say I think "big name" free agent signings are overrated. I have no problem signing role players and missing pieces. But adding a star player tends not to have the effect you'd be hoping for. See: Bondra, for example.

At 11:27 AM, Blogger CMcMurtry said...

The Martin Lapointe signing seems like a good one. He's a step up from Bonk, with double the work ethic and just as much defensive skill. If Mucks signs him and maybe one other decent C or LW, I'll be happy.

They don't have nearly enough money for that. Assuming they sign Hossa (probably $4 million), Havlat ($2.5 mil at least), and Spezza ($1.5 at least), they'll have a couple million at most to sign someone.

At 1:03 PM, Blogger aquietgirl said...

Anymore than $1.5 mil for Lapointe is crazy.

How true it is. The Blackhawks just signed him to a $2.4 mil/year, 3 year deal.

At 1:40 PM, Blogger CMcMurtry said...

Chicago's desperate to regain their status as an unembarassing franchise. They have to overspend.

Jaroslav Spacek for $2.5 million is no less silly.

At 12:58 PM, Blogger v said...

They just got a whole lot less embarrasing by signing Khabibulin. I've always liked Thibault - especially since he shut out the Sens 1-0 a few seasons ago. He is coming off surgery, but given his relatively young age (30) and solid if unspectacular resume on some crappy teams (see .905 career save %, 36 career shutouts, 6 seasons w/60+ games) I think he is a good enough goalie to take Ottawa to the cup in the same way Osgood or Vernon did for their teams. If he's healthy I think he'd make a good signing and could solve some teams' problems in goal for years. I for one would feel more confident having Thibault locked up for 3+ years than our present situation.

At 12:03 PM, Blogger CMcMurtry said...

I too like Thibault, but having seem him often in Montreal, I'm not sure he's much of an upgrade over what we have. I remember him being quite streaky and prone to bad goals. But to be fair, I've probably a dozen Hawks games the last two seasons so maybe he's improved.

I'm willing to give Hasek a try, and like the idea of him mentoring Ray Emery along the way. Would I prefer Khabibulin or Brodeur or? Of course. But considering the cost of that scenario, it's not viable.

Hasek for $1.5 million is a risk I'm cool with.

And we still have Jeff Glass, one of the best goalie prospects in the world, in ths system.


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