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07-20-2011, 03:31 AM
Join Date: Jul 2004
Over the last few weeks there has been a lot written on this board and the Trade board regarding LA's depth at the D position. Many have argued that players like Voynov, Hickey and Muzzin are NHL ready but do not have a spot due to the logjam on defense at the NHL level. Some have insisted that one of them may step in when Mitchell becomes an UFA but I don't see this happening.
After the Richards deal LA is geared to win now. If Mitchell isn't extended during the season or signed in the off season I think LA will need to look for a replacement for him outside the organization. In other posts I have mentioned that I would love to see LA bring back Tim Gleason as an UFA next summer. He would bring the toughness and shut down ability of a Mitchell as well as the leadership. Another option may be B.Allen.
So with this in mind my idea was to open up a roster spot for Voynov or Hickey by trading Jack Johnson. Let me start by saying I really like JJ and he has been very good offensively for us in the playoffs (1-11-12PTS in 12 GP). He has also been putting up increasing offensive numbers every season. But as they say "you need to give something to get something"
NYI-J.Johnson (7 yrs at $4.35M)
LA-Kyle Okposo (5 yrs at $2.8M)
The deal makes sense to me as it gives the NYI a top offensive dman to go with Streit and he is young enough to also fit in with their core rebuild. Streit is 33 and an UFA is 2 seasons. The higher cap hit also helps them get closer to the cap floor.
For LA they would get a solid young power forward with a very good scoring touch and solid playmaking ability too. With him locked in for 5 yrs at a great hit LA would have almost unmatched scoring potential on its top 3 lines. As an added bonus he has played with Trevor Lewis before in the USHL. The only real problem may be that with him on Kopitar's RW it would push Brown to the 3rd line or maybe over to the LW if Penner isn't brought back in 2012-13. But thats not too bad a problem to have.
Hickey or Muzzin as 7th dman
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