Flyer lines for the '04-'05 season (assuming there is one)
What will the lines look like for next year? Who will be promoted? Is there still a need to sign someone? A top 6 scorer maybe?
Here's my best shot...
LW C RW
Knuble Roenick Amonte
Gagne Primeau Kapanen
LeClair Handzus Radiojevic
Brashear/Somk Somik/Sharp Stevenson
Markov Seidenberg(Malakhov if signed)
Am I close?
LeClair HAS to be gone. The money we have tied up in him will bring the team down for years. Amonte may or may not be; he makes too much, but could conceivably be packaged in a trade. I think Zhamnov might get re-signed; Malakhov = who knows? There may be another significant move before hockey starts again, signing or trade.
If Zhamnov is back:
Knuble-Zhamnov-Roenick (don't know if JR is staying or will be traded)
Gagne-Primeau-Kapanen (I think Sami will be back)
Free Agent-Hanzdus-Radivojevic (LW could be anybody)
Brashear and/or Fedoruk.
I would love to see LeClair and Amonte gone, and Brashear traded in a package deal.
My perfect world scenario would be to mix and match these forwards:
Free Agent/Trade Acquisition
That's what I though. A lot of uncertainty...
Kapanen coming back.
Timander coming back.
Malakhov signs, or not.
Zhamnov signs, or not.
Amonte being bought out.
Is LeClair a free agent? Or are you fans hoping he'll be bought out.
Why would you want Amonte bought out? Who's gonna score goals?
Is there a scoring free agent the Flyers are coveting?
LeClair will probably be bought out, as no one (not even the Rangers) would take on his $9 million salary. Perhaps he could be restructured, but I won't hold my breath for it. Amonte has a better chance of staying, as I don't know that the Flyers can afford to pay both him and LeClair NOT to play. He has a chance to be decently effective. I hope he wouldn't be getting 1st line minutes, though.
If Zhamnov resigns I think they'd keep Amonte. Knuble-Zhamnov-Amonte could be a good line. There's always the chance Amonte can bounce back and be very productive w/ a full season next to Zhamnov and at his natural RW. A line of Amonte-Zhamnov-Roenick hopefully will never be seen again.
I think they want Roenick at RW full time. Radivojevic and Handzus seemed to click well last season. Add Roenick and they should have another good scoring line.
Then it gets confusing as to what their plans are. Will Carter be signed, Sharp remain in the NHL? I'd love to see Gagne with Carter and Sharp should be able to chip in to complement the other two well. What they do with Carter and Sharp are still huge question marks.
The Primeau line will most likely be Kapanen-Primeau-Stevenson.
What probably will happen though is something like:
that is an ideal lineup with stevenson and radoviovic being interchangeable on their lines
gagne wont be on a line with primeau next season, he will be on a scoring line, that is why they got knuble and stevenson so primeau can play with some grinders who compliment his style of play
I hope you are right. I think Gagne can and should log 1st line minutes. I doubt his defensive play suffers at all while playing on what should be a high-scoring line.
Leclair,Lapointe,Amonte are bought out.
Burke Might be back since the yotes are paying half his salary.
I still think Zhamnov will resign .
I also Think Carter will be given every chance to make this team.
and The flyers will sign 1 more free agent along with Zhamnov or 2 Free agents if we lose Alexi , Hitchs words not mine .
also Hitch has confirmed Sami will be back 100 %.
with that said...
Somik/Handzus/Radio ( The Slovik Line )
Esche/Burke or Nittimaki
If no free agents are brought in and Carter goes back to junior
yeah I no Handzus on a 4th line making 2.8 mill . but think about that line matching up vs other teams lower lines , they would be pretty good IMO. Plus Zues will get PK time as well as PP .
intriging Line The Slovik line of Somik/Handuz/Radio
I don't see kapanen retiring, by skipping the world cup he'll get his batteries fully loaded and come back in fine form
With no other players signing other than Carter...
I would like to see if Sharp can play wing and bring Richards in. Sharp-Richards-Radivojevic.
I think this could be the 20 million dollar question, and like posted above, I think there may be too many questions to answer to even get a good feel for the team.
The first group of questions involves players from last year and their status:
1. Does Roenick come back?
2. Does Kapanane come back?
3. Is Zhamnov resigned?
4. Is Malahkov resigned?
5. Does Timander come back to the Flyers?
6. Are Leclair and Amonte BOTH bought out, or just one of the 2?
The second group is about the youth:
1. Who of this group is ready: Carter, Richards, Umberger, Eager, and Ruzicka?
2. Does the season start on time?
3. How does the timing of the start affect Carter and Richards?
4. How quickly does the rust come off of Umberger?
The third group is lineup questions:
1. Is there room for both Brashear and Stevenson in the same lineup?
2. Where does the scoring come from to replace Amonte and Leclair?
3. Can Knuble score without Thornton and Murray?
4. Will Clarke make a trade to make room for any youngsters that impress at camp?
5. Can Sharp and Radio pick there games up a notch?
6. Somik and Brashear are both in the last years of their contracts, are either moved?
1. Yes - Just let him run his mouth for a while so he can get over himself and his ego.
2. Yes - Kapanen has already told some teammates and Ken Hitchcock he will be back.
3. Yes - as long as he is still around after a CBA is done and LeClair is bought out.
4. No - doesn't look like it since he wants too much money. If he comes down to around $2M he will be back I think.
5. Yes - There is a thread somewhere saying he will be back.
6. LeClair will definetaly be bought out, I think Clarke will try and trade Amonte first, there might be some interest as long as the Flyers pay a good portion of his salary.
7. We won't know if any of those guys are ready until they step on the ice. I think you can bet though Carter and maybe Richards will see NHL ice at some point, this season, Umberger, well I'll answer that later.
8. I tend to be optimistic on that subject, but after every CBA discussion, Gary Bettman say something to make himself look like a total assclown and makes us all beleive he has absolutely no intention of allowing the season start on time with his outrageous demands and his claim that a luxury tax is NOT an option.
9. If the season doesn't start on time, both will be back in juniors, but that doesn't mean they won't get a trial with the Flyers.
10. Not as quickly as we like. We saw how Marian Gaborik, as a young player with big upside (obviously he has already scored 30 goals once) went without a pre-season and part of the regular season..Umberger missed an entire season because of his moron agent telling him not to play in the NCAA and sit and wait for a deal to be done.
11. Well, Tampa Bay found a way to fit Dingman and Andre Roy into their lineup...
12. Don't forget Mark Recchi, either. LeClair had an OK season pointwise (55 points - 75 games isn't so bad, but he can't play defense despite his +20)
-Primeau plays a full season (hopefully 25 goals)
-I expect at least 15 from Knuble
-Sharp gets an actual role on the team (10-14 goals)
-Zhamnov is re-signed (25 + 40 assists)
-Desjardins is back for a full season
-Radivojevic has an extended role (12-17 goals)
-Gagne should have a 30 goal season
-Continued development from Joni Pitkanen
-Who knows with the rookies....
13. Knuble probably won't score as much, but then again he is in a much better situation, and is a better all-around player than most people realize. Murray most likely is out of Boston, and Joe Thornton is an enigma, more than most people know. (9 points his last 18 playoff games including a -6 vs. Montreal, I'm still looking for him to show up in the playoffs)
14. Clarke should know by now you can never have too much depth on the team. Something Clarke might want to take notes on is how the past 2 Stanley Cup Champions, rather than wheel and deal at the deadline, the Devils were never really active in 2002, and Tampa Bay made one trade all season (Svitov for Sydor). The key should be developing a chemestry within the team and not bring in a gathering of good players who know how to score, but who don't know how to play with his teammates.
15. Sharp and Radivojevic will definetaly get more ice time with LeClair, Recchi and Amonte potentially gone, their production will go up on that alone. Radivojevic in a few years, much like Handzus will be (since he isn't going to be traded) will be a valuable, yet underapprecitated member of the team.
16. I doubt Somik would get moved, Brashear may depending on how much of a role Turner Stevenson gets. If Somik finds himself injured again all season, he will probably go home.
Carter and Richards must start the season with the Flyers, if they'll play at all. They can't be brought up in mid-season. Once they're sent back to Jr.'s they're back for good.
Since Umberger will be with the Phantoms, he's free to move up and down all season.
That won't happen as long as Hitch is the coach. He loves his veterans.
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