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Old
02-06-2009, 06:13 PM
  #1
Maelmoor
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Thoughts about next season

So much is unclear and a lot will change but I still have been thinking about next season and would like to hear your thoughts aswell.

Coaching
I think we should keep Toc, he has a plan, the players have stated that its much more clear now and with a proper off-season and time to prepare it would help even more. Been thinking of other coaches who are out of work but can't say any makes me excited really.

Goaltending
Well since the Bulin days we don't have to worry about trying to find a nr 1 goalie, Smitty is that, yes he can still improve his game but I think he will be great for us. So the question is our back-up. We have lot of promising goalies in the team, so Im not keen to sign a veteran goalie (as I don't think Ollie will return). Camp might give some clues and I don't think its fair to judge Ramo yet, if he fails us, well then we have other guys who could be given a shot.

Defense
Screw Malik..really. Drop Krajicek and Heward. Sign a solid defensive veteran. Then we have Mez, Ranger, Emminger and new signing. Smaby, Quick, maybe Rogers and Lundin would battle for the last two spots. Im not very impressed on Mihalik, but guess he would have a go aswell. I think Wishart needs an AHL season before he is ready. Then we have Murphy aswell..but I let you guys handle that issue (as you do it so well!)

Forwards
At centre it looks great with Vinny, Stamkos and Halpern. Im not worries about the fourth spot really. Maybe Blair Jones should have a shot? I really like Malone and Pettinger is a solid lower line player, I think he has some nice energy in his game. Marty stays of course, im not sure about Prospal to be honest..if we can trade him, maybe it would do us good? Downie and Arty are keepers in my eyes. I don't know about Vrbata returning, don't think it would be so good. Roberts must be dropped and I take it Recchi will be dealt, if he returns then fine, think he can do it one more season.

So to sum it up! (without counting on contracts and such I have to admit). Players I want to see leave are Roberts, Malik, Jokinen (I dont even count him), Prospal, Heward and Krajicek. Im still unsure of guys like Hall, but they don't make any major impact either way.

We would need to sign a solid defensive defenseman and a couple of wingers.

So, that might been a bit messy, but what are you thoughts about next season?

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Old
02-06-2009, 06:56 PM
  #2
TheDaysOf 04
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I think it's still too far away to even beginning thinking of what are roster will look like. There is so much that could happen between now and next season's training camp that could change our team: trade deadline, draft, free agents, trades, prospects, etc... I think the only thing you can expect, (or try to with these owners, who I'm sure wouldn't have much of a problem replacing half the team and rolling the dice for round 2) is that the core will stay together. I'll give it a shot anyway.

Your starting goalie will be Mike Smith. His back up is harder to determine. We could bring back Ollie or get another vet goalie, or some prospect like Ramo could win the job.

For Defense, I see Ranger and Meszaros here, and after that I'm not sure. Eminger has had a career year, but was it a fluke, or the turning point in his career? Also, how much money will he be asking for might be the difference between choosing a different option. Malik, Krajicek can walk, and depending if we can find a defensmen who can run the pp and play a little offense, Murphy could go too. I think Smaby is our only D prospect who has finally earned a spot. Wishart and Quick could both use another year in Norfolk, I think Rogers again doesn't get it and looks else where, and we'll see in Camp if Lundin and Mihalik are ready or not. I think Lundin is ready to return, if he's worked out most of his problems in the AHL, while Mihalik I just want o see him crush somebody..just once.

On Offense, your first line should be the MVP line. After that it gets a little tricky. I think Stamkos should get the 2nd line center after a year in the NHL and a summer of training. Malone will be on his wing, and the other side could be anyone. I don't think Vrbata will be welcomed back. He doesn't play Toc's system and I'd rather us lose his contract. Bottom 6 for me is Halpern, Downie, Hall, Artyukhin, with 2 spots for either Szczechura, Smolenak, Jones, (who should get a look. He is 1 point behind leading the team in points) or some other prospect. I could see Koci staying to be the tough guy, and a utility player. I think Recchi and Roberts will be gone by the trade dealine, and Pettinger and Craig can leave to.

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Old
02-06-2009, 07:08 PM
  #3
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prospal-lecavalier-st louis

malone-stamkos-downie

vrbata-halpern-artyhkin

hall-craig-szczchura

i think were stuck with vrbata. hopefully he comes back and pots some shots or we get rid of him.

ranger-ohlund (wishful thinking)
meszaros-eminger
lundin-smaby

news coming out of vancouver is ohlund is the odd man out. we have under $40mil committed next year per nhlnumbers.com, of course the rfa raises will account for some of our cap, but not too much im guessing. but we could get ohlund if we throw a good offer, and a #1 dman is a desperate need.

smith
?

im more curious how far along some of our prospects are. tyrell with the injury, how will he be next year? who do we get at the draft? i was hoping cowen, but he just had a season ending injury so well see.

i hope we just focus on one of the few defensemen available. that is whats killing us.

tocchet is a decent coach. i would like to see what happens when he actually has time to mold the team. let him have next year unless someone really good becomes available. keep mike sullivan.

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Old
02-06-2009, 08:19 PM
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Mr Underhill
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2 things that must happen this offseason:

1) Sign a top 2 defenseman. I.E. Ohlund, Komisarek, Bouwmeester(not going to happen)

2) Draft a winger in the 1st round. Svenson-Paajarvi or whoever they think will make the best winger out of Kane, Schenn, Duchene.


Hypothetical question for everyone just for fun: If we win the lottery, what do we do? Trade down. Draft Taveras then trade Vinny?

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Old
02-06-2009, 08:50 PM
  #5
Sear91
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antdvda View Post
2 things that must happen this offseason:

1) Sign a top 2 defenseman. I.E. Ohlund, Komisarek, Bouwmeester(not going to happen)

2) Draft a winger in the 1st round. Svenson-Paajarvi or whoever they think will make the best winger out of Kane, Schenn, Duchene.


Hypothetical question for everyone just for fun: If we win the lottery, what do we do? Trade down. Draft Taveras then trade Vinny?
No, we use them together and hope for the best.. I don't think Vinny is gone unless we are rock bottom for another year or two, and even that probably wouldn't send him outta here.

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Old
02-06-2009, 08:55 PM
  #6
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Next season, realistically, barring an NHL ready draft pick, I'd like to see:

Prospal-Lecavalier-St. Louis
Malone-Stamkos-Downie (make it happen)
New Guy (or Recchi)-Halpern-Artyukhin
Craig-Hall-Szczcechura

Boynton(UFA)*-Meszaros
Ranger-Eminger
Murphy-Smaby

Smith
Ramo/McKenna/Fire hydrant/UFA

*My UFA shortlist for 1st pairing D:
Mike Komisarek (ideal, but unlikely, and expensive)
Nick Boynton (under the radar, very realistic to get)
Mattias Ohlund (very good player, but his style is not as in-demand for us, right now)
Francois Beauchemin (2nd tier, will be overpaid)

If we get a pick near, but better than Toronto's, I'd trade it down so they could grab Schenn, we'd get our guy (Ellis? Schroeder? Svensson Paajarvi?) and another asset.

I'd love to see Svensson Paajarvi on the back of a Lightning sweater.

Let's see...
Svensson Paajarvi
Spendsom Parmesan
Spaghetti Pajamas


Last edited by Felonious Python: 02-06-2009 at 09:26 PM.
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Old
02-07-2009, 05:57 AM
  #7
Maelmoor
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I actually forgot about Harju, I think he can take a spot actually.

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Old
02-08-2009, 03:19 AM
  #8
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Prospal - Lecavalier - St. Louis
Malone - Stamkos - Downie
UFA winger/Harju*- Halpern - Artyukhin
Hall - Szczechura - Craig

*of course if Harju can show he has what it takes in camp...if not he may start in the AHL.
*I wouldn't be surprised to see Halpern traded to a contender around the deadline.
*then theres also the Vrbata situation...i'm just going to pretend that problem is resolved somehow. Poof...no more Vrbata.


Meszaros - Ranger
Eminger - Smaby
Krajicek - UFA signing/Lundin

*I have a feeling Murphy will go back to a european team as they will pay him more than most NHL clubs will offer him.

Smith/McKenna(or UFA signing)
*At this point McKenna is looking like our best option to backup. Ramo needs more starting time in the AHL and we all know Helenius isn't ready.


Potential UFAs I'm currently interested in us signing during the off-season, for the right price of course: PJ Axelsson, Ales Kotalik, Erik Cole, Jere Lehtinen, Rob Niedermayer, Mike Komisarek, Francois Beauchemin, Derek Morris, Mattias Ohlund, Adrian Aucoin, Greg Zanon, Joey MacDonald, Craig Anderson

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Old
02-08-2009, 02:51 PM
  #9
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Our future is really good except for maybe needing one more dman and winger. I know that sounds like a jinx but...

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Old
02-08-2009, 06:29 PM
  #10
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So many things to fix. I find it odd that even when the defense is horrible people seem to think picking up a #1 or #2 guy will fix it. Other than Ranger and Meszaros, the rest are borderline AHL caliber guys.

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Old
02-08-2009, 07:37 PM
  #11
Mr Underhill
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokala View Post
So many things to fix. I find it odd that even when the defense is horrible people seem to think picking up a #1 or #2 guy will fix it. Other than Ranger and Meszaros, the rest are borderline AHL caliber guys.
This is not true. Eminger has proven he can be a damn good defenseman.

This is the problem: Let me put this in baseball terms. We need an "Ace". Just like a pitching rotation in baseball needs an ace. By getting an "ace", it not only gives you a really good pitcher to play, but it moves the other pitchers down in the rotation. So if we can get a legitimate top pairing defenseman (i.e. Ohlund, Komisarek, Bouwmeester, etc...) the other defenders can be moved down in the rotation.

Now some aces are better than others of course. So naturally some top defenseman are better than others as well. So Ohlund or Komisarek might not be Johan Santana but they might be a Scott Kazmir or John Lackey. But we cant fix it all in one year. But if we can get one of the above, the "rotation" or defensive pairing will look 10x better.

Ohlund - Meszaros
Ranger - Eminger
XXXXX - XXXXX


Last edited by Mr Underhill: 02-08-2009 at 07:42 PM.
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Old
02-09-2009, 02:31 PM
  #12
Tokala
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antdvda View Post
This is not true. Eminger has proven he can be a damn good defenseman.
In your opinion. IMHO Eminger and Kracijek hasn't shown a consistent #3-5 quality level of play. They're playing way beyond their talent level. A few good games here and there don't make them top level guys. Hell, Smaby had a much better game against the Islanders saturday night than Eminger. Does that make him better? Not necessarily, but he was for that game.

Face it, the Lightning defense doesn't scare any other team in the league. It was the main, glaring weakness over the summer and it hasn't really improved consistently.

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Old
02-09-2009, 02:43 PM
  #13
The Fear Boners
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tokala View Post
In your opinion. IMHO Eminger and Kracijek hasn't shown a consistent #3-5 quality level of play. They're playing way beyond their talent level. A few good games here and there don't make them top level guys. Hell, Smaby had a much better game against the Islanders saturday night than Eminger. Does that make him better? Not necessarily, but he was for that game.

Face it, the Lightning defense doesn't scare any other team in the league. It was the main, glaring weakness over the summer and it hasn't really improved consistently.
I just wanted to say... i've been pretty impressed with Smaby.

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Old
02-10-2009, 08:12 AM
  #14
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can't really say I've ever seen Derek Morris play, he might be an option. Phillipe Boucher might be up for grabs, but he doesn't look that good this year...

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