: Confirmed with Link:
Michael Grabner, Steve Bernier, 25th Overall to FLA for Ballard, Oreskovich
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06-25-2010, 10:42 PM
Join Date: Jul 2004
On trading the first round pick (after Tinordi and Bennett were gone):
"We didn't feel there were players there who would be able to help us for a number of years.
"We waited a long time to see if a couple players were going to be there, when they weren't there and we got to that point, we made the decision this was something we really had to do. There wasn't a player who could step in and help our team. We know Keith Ballard can step in to our team and play big minutes and make a real contribution."
On July 1
"We're going to be active. There are still areas we want to address.
"We have lots of cap space and lots of opportunity."
Letting go of Michael Grabner
"It was really difficult. But you have to include quality if you want quality in return, that's the nature of the NHL right now. We have a defenceman who is signed long term and signed through his key period and that was vital for us.
"This was a unique opportunity to improve our team and not be at risk.
"With Mason Raymond's emergence, with our lineup, it would have been very difficult for Michael to get in. If Mason continues to advance and gets into the 30-goal category, our third line can't be constituted with guys who are goal scoring players. We were fortunate to have that kind of redundancy so we could look at trade like this.
"Grabner is a really good player with big upside. But you're not going to get an NHL defenceman without giving up a player like that."
Are you disappointed in Bernier?
"No, we had to fill holes when I got here and we filled a hole. We filled a need and he played well.
"We thought initially he might be able to play with the twins then Alex Burrows emerged as the perfect guy to play with them. So again, you have that redundancy and we were able to take advantage of it."
Hard to argue with him IMO. Bernier and Grabner were expendable. And he didn't shoot down at the possibility of adding another solid dman but wanted the insurance of getting at least one at a long contract.
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