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04-15-2004, 04:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Caniacforever
Few Options from a Carolina standpoint:

1. Radim Vrbata- Came into this season with high expectations placed on him. 'Canes officials were hoping for production over 20 goals this year after seasons of 18 and 16 goals respectively. Vrbata quickly found himself in coach Laviolette's doghouse for his unwillingness to drive the net, much like Marcel Hossa in Montreal. Actually ended up being a healthy scratch at a few points in the season. Finished the year with 12 goals and 25 points. He wouldn't come cheap, but he could certainly be had if the price was right i'm sure. 23 year old snipers with 3 seasons of 12+ goals aren't going to come cheap, but this one could be had.

2. Aaron Ward- Aaron was the 5th overall selection in the 1991 draft, and never quite lived up to his billing. Played some inspired hockey for stretches during the Hurricanes Stanley Cup run, but has since been unreliable at best on the blueline for the 'Canes. Plays a stay at home style with the occasional pinch, and is a pretty solid body checker. With good coaching, he could be a #3 or #4 in a system like Minnesota employs. Despite his offensive limitations, he is certainly capable of playing hockey at a high level. It's just that consistancy has been an issue in his defensive game.

3. Kevyn Adams- This is the typical pickup for Lemaire. Adams was a former Boston Bruins first round selection that never quite lived up to his billing. He's all heart and determination and he's coming off a career year in terms of scoring. Adams tied a team record for shorthanded goals this year, despite only scoring 10 goals in total. He's a fantastic faceoff centerman and brings a sound defensive game with a lot of speed. He's a beast on the penalty kill as well. On Carolina he's nothing more than a 4th line centerman, but I've seen the potential flair in his game to be a top 9 forward for sure. He's a fan favorite around Carolina, so he wouldn't come cheap either.

Good call on Vrbata, though I think he could be had for a early 3rd rounder. I think there are plenty of 12+ 23 year old goal scorers (for 3 seasons) though I could be wrong. Having said that though, I don't think that 12+ goal scorer is an accurate depiction of Vrbata, as I think this was an off year for him and he will bounce back. What do you consider "not coming cheap"? Just asking out of curiosity.

As far as Adams goes, I see your point. I think his value to the Canes is much higher than any return a trade could bring you as he is the heart of that team. But if he is a 4th liner on the Canes, dont you think it would be the same on the Wild? They are equal in terms of depth IMO.

And I believe Vrbata becomes more expendable because of Brendl's play this year. Talk about reclamation. He certainly looked very good in the 5-7 games i saw of him this year (and I payed close attention to him). I think next year the kid is going to break out. I also think he still has the potential to be a 30-40 goal scorer someday in this league. Many teams gave up on him, and the Canes are going to reap the benefits of that one.

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