Dropping the Gloves: Dudline Winners/Losers

Updated: March 3, 2012 at 1:35 pm by Cameron Chase

Dropping the Gloves is a new series in which Cameron Chase and Alexander Monaghan share their weekly thoughts on fantasy hockey via email. The main purpose of the article is to entertain so keep in mind that the contents may, or may not, be factual. Feel free to gripe in the comments.

—–Original Message—–
From: Alexander Monaghan <brozefstumpel22@geocities.com>
To: Cameron Chase <hattrickswayze@hotmail.com>
Subject: Dropping the Gloves — Trade Dudline

Hey Cameron,

How has your week gone?

Hope you didn’t take Monday off to watch the all-too-many breaking trades. Seriously, I hope you didn’t. Why? Well, because I did, and honestly I could have used more sleep. Waking up at 7 am to watch the boys over at Sportsnet go over player after player that simply did not get moved. I mean, they really fill the television screen with player’s headshots, stats, projected value, etc. And none of them were moved.

The three deals that garnered interest — Hodgson, Schultz/Gilbert, and Kostitsyn — were kind of all hockey trades. Furthermore, Hodgson was really the only one nobody saw coming. There were no salary dumps or really rentals moved. I was shocked to see Carolina standing pat. Even more shocked to hear about a UFA like Parenteau not getting traded after he refused to negotiate an extension. These GMs do understand that they are getting nothing for an expiring asset, right?

Then again, I suppose it does put them in position to re-sign said player. Jaro Spacek and Bryan Allen might be more inclined to sign on the dotted line since they didn’t have to move for the stretch drive. However, I still can’t understand the Parenteau move… I mean, the guy will never put up those offensive numbers away from Tavares. So the Isles are now expected to pay him $3-4 million, or could have probably gotten a roster player and a first. Considering they signed him for nothing, and pay him close to nothing this year, it would have only been prudent to flip that asset. Alas, GM Garth Snow stood pat and my day was boring.

Prudence was really a big word on that day from what I heard. As in, the general managers around the league were prudes. Kind of like that girl who wants you to ask her out but can’t stop talking about her guy-friend Wallace. These GMs teased us — sorry for the visual — but at the end of the day, nobody wanted to fork up the money for a steak dinner. And nobody really wanted to attend either.

Therefore, my team honestly went stagnant post break; which hurts. I typically always get someone good due to trades– that’s why, aside from being fans, we follow that day intensely. But I’m not adding the stone hands of Keith Aulie or banking on a Kostitsyn. Maybe Cody Hodgson is worth a look but would you drop a guy like Eric Staal for him? Because that’s one of my only options. Ben Bishop, Carter Ashton, and Zack Kassian would be good moves… in 2014.

What was your experience like on deadline day? Struggling to fill the airwaves? Struggling further to help your fantasy team?

—–Original Message—–
From:  Cameron Chase <hattrickswayze@hotmail.com>
To: Alexander Monaghan <brozefstumpel22@geocities.com>
Subject: Dropping the Gloves — Trade Dudline

Yes, another disappointing trade deadline (in my eyes, at least) came and went. I even went through all the effort of downloading the “Trade Centre” app, and even though the app was free, it still seemed like a waste.

It seemed so quiet after I woke up on Monday, kind of like I was still dreaming…a very boring dream. I figured that there would be some early morning trades but I guess GM’s need their sleep too. I wasn’t even sure I had the right day until the Kostitsyn brothers were reunited (which was the first trade of the day) and even then I had to check the calendar.

The effect of Trade Deadline day was lost on me, absolutely no one in my hockey leagues were affected…not one. I wouldn’t imagine many fantasy teams out there were; after all not many big names were dealt on Monday. The only person that was mentioned in Monday’s headlines that that me be involved in some fantasy leagues is Hodgson and TSN has him being owned in a mere 7.2 percent of the overall leagues conducted through their website.

You know the feeling that the general public gives you, you know…when everyone says the same thing so you think to yourself “they must be right”. That reminds me of how sure I was that Rick Nash was going to be dealt away. Now as Scott Howson so un-eloquently stated, Nash did request a trade in January but nothing came of it. Now Nash has had the chance to defend himself and admitted he did ask for a trade but only to help facilitate a true re-build for the Blue Jackets as the pieces in a Nash deal would be true assets to help build the BJ’s (can that be a nickname) into a playoff contender in the future while Nash would have a more immediate path to Lord Stanley’s mug. However, Howson’s asking price was not met and like the Soup Nazi would say…No Nash for You!

Now Nash will wait to be dealt in the summer — which is now almost a foregone conclusion — and the asking price might be more reasonable for a team who needs those pieces Howson wanted right now. You might not like the way he handled the post trade deadline press conference (and he handled it badly) but you have to hand it Howson for not making a trade for the sake of making a trade. Now that takes “cojones”.

This leads me to the clubs who did make trades and a couple winner and losers in my eyes.

Winners: Buffalo Sabres

You gotta hand it to Buffalo as GM Darcy Regier absolutely fleeced Nashville, obtaining a first round pick for pending UFA and third line centre Paul Gaustad. Don’t get me wrong, I like Gaustad as a player  — he’s gritty, seems like a great teammate, plays a thankless job as defensive centre and penalty killer and will strengthen the Preds up the middle as they try and bulldoze their way through the playoffs. But a first round pick? Now granted this year’s draft class isn’t as deep as the past few years but it still seems like a stretch for 2 reasons. 1. He could easily walk July 1st, and for a team who builds through the draft, that’s a big asset to give up for only a few months service. 2. will his play truly warrant his price tag? Now if he came into Music City, sticks a blazing (just say no to guns) and potted a point-per-game, then yes a first rounder would be acceptable but the Predators made their move for Kostitsyn to play that role, and for a smaller price tag.

So nice job Sabres brass for that move. But it’s the other move they made that could really pay dividends in the end though. Yes Zack Kassian is full of sandpaper (which must get uncomfortable) and Marc-Andre Gragnani is no slouch either on the backend but when I look at trades the best player is still Cody Hodgson. One thing this move does is give more credence to a possible Derek Roy trade in the summer as Hodgson and Ennis could be a pretty decent 1-2 punch up the middle. Furthermore, since Hodgson only averaged roughly 12-13 minutes a night and is still third in rookie scoring, imagine what he could with more ice time in a relatively wide-open Eastern Conference.

One thing is for sure…Leafs fans one day will come to truly hate this trade.

Winners: Winnipeg

Yes, the Jets were not extremely busy on Deadline day but made two shrewd moves — claiming Grant Clitsome off waivers and moving Johnny Oduya to Chicago for a 2nd and 3rd round pick. It’s been speculated Oduya didn’t have the best relationship with some of his teammates making the haul of picks even better. With the pickup of Clitsome, he can slide onto the Jets blue line for the rest of the season as they try and bring playoff hockey back to Winnipeg for the first time since 1996.

Losers: Washington

Here’s a club who could use a change…just about everywhere in the lineup. Gaustad would have been a great pickup but maybe the 1st rounder scared them off. I also thought the Caps would make a statement and address their crease situation but GM George McPhee must believe in the future Hall-of-Fame tandem of Tomas Vokoun and Michal Neuvirth. They also still have sulking Roman Hamrlik and a wily vet in Mike Knuble hanging around the pressbox, thought they’d have a new
home for some cap relief and lower round draft picks. Sorry Caps but the playoffs might not be reachable this year.

Losers: Toronto

They’re 1-8-1 in their last 10, 1-7-1 going into the deadline. They were offered first round picks, according to Burke, for “core members” Nikolai Kulemin, Clarke MacArthur, Luke Schenn and Mikael Grabovski. In another lost Leafs season, having five first rounders in June would have taken the sting off this year for sure. And actually having that many firsts would have made a summertime Nash deal much easier to accomplish wouldn’t you think? The Keith Aulie for Carter Ashton swap does look like a good move by both teams though; Aulie will improve a pretty pitiful Lightning d-corps and Ashton is that big bodied winger Burke loves
so much. Truculence.

So the 2012 deadline was pretty uneventful for me, trades that went down on Monday had really no effect on me, which is disappointing. I was hoping at least ONE of my players would be moved in order to shake my fantasy team up a bit, but no luck. Looking forward I’m looking to teams that are in that final stride for a playoff spot. Teams like Washington, Winnipeg, Colorado, Dallas and LA all seem to be turning up the heat in order to secure their playoff spot. Acquisitions may be a lost cause for me (because I don’t have any) but trades that seem to be “too good to be true” to other players in my league might work.

Sending players like Datsyuk, who might be taking it easy over the next month and a bit before the playoffs, for players such as Jamie Benn, Paul  Statsny and even Jason Pominville, would “seem” very one sided but these players might prove to be more beneficial (fantasy-wise) than the almighty, and useless-when-sidelined Datsyuk.

What do you think? Am I on to something here?

—–Original Message—–
From: Alexander Monaghan <brozefstumpel22@geocities.com>
To: Cameron Chase <hattrickswayze@hotmail.com>
Subject: Dropping the Gloves — Trade Dudline

I have to say when it comes to Nash,  I knew he was going nowhere. As a Rangers fan (I know, I know), his asking price was really astronomical. Look at some of the blockbusters to happen in the past, ie. Dany Heatley. The Ottawa Senators were able to procure two youngish roster players with upside for a 50-goal scorer. Nash, although a Rocket Richard winner in the past, hasn’t been that dominant for a few seasons. It could be that he has nobody to play with, he also is perennially banged up and doesn’t miss a game. The guy is a gamer, a franchise player, etc. But hauls like Eric Lindros aren’t ever gonna happen in the salary cap era. Why trade away Brandon Dubinsky, Michael Del Zotto, Ryan McDonagh, Tim Erixon plus prospects when those four-or-more players will be cheaper and cover more territory. Does the entire league crave a player like Rick Nash? Of course. All 29 other teams want him, or a guy like him, in their lineup. But I don’t see too many franchises sacrificing years of their development for the big salami. And now that ‘list’ is likely to shorten itself during the summer which should drag out the Nash trade fiasco even further.

Furthermore, the Howson thing really bothered me. I mean, here is a guy who sold the farm to construct this awful team and now has to rebuild. His captain, unlike Mats Sundin, tells him he would like to be traded to give the team the assets they would need and, in turn, the C on his sweater is thrown directly under the bus. Howson had no tact in the matter and really had no business in revealing that information. Clearly he was upset/frustrated/venting about the lack of off-the-charts offers he got for an asset that continues to depreciate — Nash is only getting older and the more he loses, the less value he can garner. Why should he even give his 100 percent every night at this point? As a Howson apologist for most of the season, I felt he handled it very poorly. But at least we had something to talk about.

Since you gave me some winners and losers of the dais, it’s only fair that I do the same.

Winners: New York Rangers

They didn’t trade for Nash.

Winners: Vancouver Canucks

Tom Benjamin of CanucksCorner.com had a great point on the Cody Hodgson/Zack Kassian swap. Although Hodgson did really well with the Canucks with a limited amount of ice time, his value really wouldn’t have gone much higher. Third line centers don’t typically score 60+ points — they simply don’t get that much ice time. The team would be lucky if they could squeeze out a couple of 20-goal seasons out of him.

So GM Mike Gillis found a player that he felt was fair value in Kassian. The power forward is young, mean, and most importantly can ease himself into the lineup. So far he’s replaced Dale Weise and Byron Bitz on the fourth line. Should any of the top-nine wingers get hurt, he could easily slot up a line. Keep in mind, he’s a right-handed power forward — a player type that historically has worked in the past with the Sedins. His value should only increase over the next couple of years which is something you sadly couldn’t say for Hodgson if he stayed on the third line.

Losers: Carolina Hurricanes

What are you playing for right now? I mean, there are a few guys in the minors who can help out your team like Riley Nash and Zac Dalpe yet veterans are still on the roster. Furthermore, I liked Paul Maurice, and felt that he got the most out of this current bunch. In fact, this team is still his while current head coach Kirk Muller needs a team of his own. So why keep a guy like Bryan Allen around when he’s a remnant of the old regime? He’s probably not going to re-sign anyways which means that second round pick will remain with its original team.

I love the Canes, don’t get me wrong, I just don’t see why. I get the Tuomo Ruutu re-signing — he’s one of five players who can score 20 and hit everything that moves. But not sending away free agents for picks just puzzles me at this point. GM Jim Rutherford is a fantastic hockey mind but I just don’t know what he was thinking.

Losers: New York Islanders

Trade Parenteau? Nah, let’s just let him walk or pay free agency prices. Wait, let me take a step back; trade Blake Comeau? No, let’s just let him get claimed off waivers. Doesn’t matter that he was a cost-controlled player who scored 20 goals. Also didn’t matter that he deserved more than third line minutes — the same as Brian Rolston.

Although, I have to hand it to Snow, he did get rid of the dead weight in Mottau and Rolston. In turn, he received an AHL and ECHL prospect, neither of which really have any chance of making the NHL. But congrats.

Much like last year, the Isles probably will bench their better players in the final 10 games or succumb to injuries. At that point, they will be forced to sign random players to professional tryouts just to fill the roster. This team simply is not rebuilding anymore, they are trying to win with what they have. And that isn’t working. So for standing pat and not moving a player like Parenteau, or even shaking things up at all, the Isles are  really big losers.

Honestly, it was a stretch for us to put together these eight teams since nobody really made their team marginally better, or worse. I mean, the Tampa Bay Lightning are somehow still winning games with their ECHL lineup…

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