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10-27-2011, 05:11 PM
  #108
Langway
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If/when Kuznetsov comes over he's making the immediate jump to the top six IMO. If he or mgmt. don't think he's ready for that then he won't be here. As far as $$$ goes, base max. would be $900k and in theory they could include performance-based bonuses on top of it. That's not ideal in terms of cap management but may be necessary and would most likely insure that he is a pretty relied upon player. The KHL can beat the biggest ELCs but the same goes for Tarasenko and other KHL youngsters down the line. The lure/challenge of becoming an NHL star will have to lure them over.

Many of us said Semin replacement when he was picked and it remains a pretty feasible plan. Retaining the blueline FAs and integrating him as 2RW seems like a pretty smart off-season strategy. His line may be inconsistent the second line (and Semin) is anyway. Long-term I think Kuznetsov is a little more dynamic and creative. Not as much of a sniper but nonetheless an adequate second-line presence (and, to the extent that it's significant, more marketable).

The fourth line remains an energy line, just not much in the physical sense. I don't think they'll go that young in those roles unless either the cap forces it or a Cup win leads to a broadened regular season approach.

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