Thread: Speculation: Erik Christensen to Phoenix
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08-27-2011, 07:23 PM
Change is good.
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Originally Posted by azrok22 View Post
Because I don't see a roster spot for him. I certainly do not see him in the starting lineup, so I think it's between him and Avery for the extra forward spot. Due to cap constraints, it really does not make sense to carry two forwards. Especially when you will have guys like Weise and Newbury in the minors (let alone the possibility of a guy like Hagelin showing that he is ready later in the year). The way I see the positional top 12 forwards is as follows:

LW: Dubinsky, Wolski, Fedotenko, Rupp
C: Richards, Anisimov, Stepan, Boyle
RW: Gaborik, Callahan, Zuccarello, Prust

That leaves both Avery and Christensen on the outside looking in. For Christensen to steal points in the shootout, he needs to be in the lineup. Even without Christensen (who is certainly impressive in the shootout with a 53.5% success rate on 43 attempts), the Rangers are in a very good position fielding Richards (41.7% success rate on 60 attempts), Wolski (50% success rate on 44 attempts), and Zuccarello (55.6 % success rate on 9 attempts) as the top three shooters. Barring catastrophic injuries, I don't just foresee any situation where Christensen plays regularly. So you're left with the choice of paying him and giving him an NHL roster spot (because he is not waiver exempt) or waiving him and sending him to Hartford.

Let's say the worst happens and Richards gets hurt. Christensen has shown that he is not suited for the 3rd and 4th lines. So do you want to insert Christensen into a top-6 role over Anisimov/Stepan? I certainly wouldn't. I'd rather move Stepan, Anisimov, and Boyle up in the lineup and insert a guy like Newbury in as the 4th line center.

Furthermore, with our current cap situation, the only way we can carry 2 extra forwards is if Zuccarello/Erixon end up starting in the AHL. I'd rather go into camp with the comfort of enough cap space to allow us to keep both Zuccarello and Erixon in the NHL than having the comfort of Christensen as a ~14th forward. For the few games we hope he would play, it would be a much more prudent investment to get a 4th rounder for him and to use a guy like Newbury,etc. from Hartford as the second spare forward instead.
Originally Posted by GAGLine View Post
If both Erixon and Zucc make the team, EC won't. We can't afford to carry 23 players if that includes Erixon and Zucc. If only one of them makes the team, then we can squeeze in an extra spare.

I'd rather trade EC for a draft pick than send him to Hartford and risk losing him for nothing. There's no guarantee that both Erixon and Zucc will make the team, but EC isn't really needed on this team. Even if he stays this year, he won't get re-signed. We might as well get something for him while we can.
Excellently said. If there's a deal to be had - go get it.

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