you guys are absolutely correct. Not sure where my head's at. I do remember watching Kevin Stevens handle Zubov like a rag doll at some point, which precipated that trade. The 90s are becoming fuzzy to me. The 70s and 80s are already out of my head so I'm not even talking about those trades.
The Zubov trade actually included Ray Ferraro and Bruce Driver. They weren't much of a consolation prize, but I figured I'd mention it. I remember a lot of talk about signing Driver to allow Neil to move Zubov, with Nedved already half-way out the door because Ferraro was here.
I was out of the country when Driver was signed and remember calling my friend to find out if it happened. When he said it did, I told him, "I guess now we have Robitaille and someone for Nedved and Zubov done".
At the time it seemed like a big improvement for the team to add Robitaille for nothing up front while replacing Nedved with Ferraro, and on defense, we'd have Ulf+Driver for Zubov, which didn't seem too bad.
Most people thought Ulf+Driver is an improvement on Zubov, who was getting slaughtered on the boards, and Ferraro=Nedved, while the addition of Luc Robitaille would mean an extra 50-55 goals. A lot of people thought he'd break Adam's record. Instead, he got 23, less than half of what everyone thought he'd get.
We also signed Stu Grimson that year, but Detroit matched it.
And then the hammer dropped when Larmer retired. That screwed over the team completely and led to the Ferraro+Norstrom, etc for Kurri, Churla and McSorley.
If we had Grimson, we wouldn't need Churla (Stu was better). Larmer was better than Kurri, so we wouldn't have needed him. And if Driver didn't suddenly begin to blow, we probably wouldn't ever go after McSorley.
That trade left a hole for the present (Ferraro in the center) and the future (Norstrom).
If Larmer didn't retire and Detroit hadn't matched Stu Grimson, I bet we'd have won the Cup that year, even if Driver sucked.
We were leading the league in points as of 2/1/06. Take the same team and add Larmer+Grimson, and they'd probably have enough strength to survive the rough spot in February. In March, Neil would've done something along the lines of Marchant for MacTavish, as opposed to a major overhaul.
Originally Posted by n8
Those were real stinkers. I also think the Zubov trade was bad. Even at the time. The one trade I find to suck a lot that would have affected the team today was
Savard + 1st (Saprykin) for Hlavac + 1st (Lundmark) + I think a 3rd that was traded back to Calgary.
We got one season of the Czechmates and Savard has gone on to be a number one center scoring at 1+ ppg for the last 7 seasons. Savard means we don't sign Gomez (although the same amount of money would probably be tied up) but our management has always had a size complex.
Regardless, we should all smile as our "worse moves ever" list can't hold a candle to the Islanders.
the Rangers had their chance at Savard a couple offseasons ago - 5 years, $25MM, something I wanted them to jump all over. Oh well, the steal of the century wasn't meant to be. Thought that was an easy one.
As trades go--the worst was Middleton for Hodge. I know a lot of posters here probably never saw either but it's kind of equivalent to say the Rangers giving up Zherdev today for say Owen Nolan or Gary Roberts. Rick was pretty much at the beginning of a career and it wouldn't surprise me to see him in the HOF some day. Hodge was absolutely washed up. The trade was made somewhat to make Espo feel more comfortable in New York--reuniting him with one of his pals. Hodge played that one year and the next year went to the minors and never resurfaced. That was a bad bad deal.
The Ridley-Miller thing was also horrible as was the deal that sent Norstrom to LA.
Hard to put the Espo or Zubov deals in the same class. The Rangers at least got some serviceable players back that contributed for a while. Some of our better deals came at Sather's expense--Messier, Graves for Mallette, Beukeboom.
As for coaches we've had a lot of bad ones. Larry Popien, Jean Guy Talbot, Ted Sator, Muckler, Trottier, Low.
A lot of bad first rounders as well--Brendl, Lundmark, Montoya, Jessiman and a lot of bad luck with Cherneski, Blackburn and Cherepanov.