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07-09-2009, 10:50 AM
  #101
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Hurricanes move?
Quick, name the player who tied for fifth among NHL defensemen in goals last season at 16. That would be Anton Babchuk. The 25-year-old is a restricted free agent, but he's nowhere close to agreeing on a new deal with the Carolina Hurricanes. In fact, he may get dealt because of the stalemate.

"I told his agent that if he finds a team that is interested enough that I'd be willing to move him," Hurricanes GM Jim Rutherford told ESPN.com on Wednesday.

There is also the possibility of an offer sheet.

"I don't know, that's certainly within the CBA, and they're certainly within their rights to do that," Rutherford added.

Babchuk doesn't qualify for salary arbitration, so he's limited a bit in his options.
I guess the writing has been on the wall and we've all seen it coming, but I think this is the first time JR has come out and said it.

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07-09-2009, 10:56 AM
  #102
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5 bucks says he will just sign someone completely inferior to Babchuk anyways. This ****ing pisses me off

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07-09-2009, 10:57 AM
  #103
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It wasnt going to happen anyways but Nick Boynton goes off the board to Anaheim.

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07-09-2009, 10:58 AM
  #104
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So long, Anton.

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07-09-2009, 11:38 AM
  #105
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The Boynton signing was apparently for 1 year 1.5 million. And here we sit with only 3 dependable Dmen

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07-09-2009, 12:02 PM
  #106
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Originally Posted by Caner Soze View Post
He's pretty much Vasicek playing D.
That's a very good observation! Nice.

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Originally Posted by DaleCooper View Post
I guess the writing has been on the wall and we've all seen it coming, but I think this is the first time JR has come out and said it.
For whatever reason (maybe some of the reasons people have brought up on this board) Hurricanes team personnel are not sold on Babchuk. I can live with their expert analysis.

Sign a replacement or move up a rookie to take his place.

I guess I don't see this as the crucial team issue some others seem to. To my mind signing Ruutu is far more important.

I simply can't imagine being deep into next season and saying "boy, we're really missing Babchuk. If only we'd re-signed him!" ...that could happen, but I'd put it in the realm of the "very unlikely".

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07-09-2009, 12:23 PM
  #107
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We all know how I feel about Babchuk so I could careless whether he is with the team or not. Sure he scored 16 goals, which is great for a defensemen, but I just can't get over how bad he sucks defensively. I get offensive-defensemen aren't that great defensively, but if Kaberle can actually look like he can play the position, then I'd expect that out of Babchuk. Sure Corvo has his 'Uh Oh' moments, but nothing like Babchuk's or as frequent as Babchuk's.

Like Chuck, I just don't see us saying "well damn if Babchuk was re-signed we would have won that game."

If he takes the QO and is on the team, I would welcome that. Prove me wrong, prove JR wrong, prove the org wrong. But in my mind, he hasn't done anything to warrant more than the QO and if he thinks he is better than that, then like JR said, go find a team that wants you.

Makes me wonder though that if he is so great why hasn't an offer sheet been thrown his way. I mean $1.5M is what a 3rd rounder. That's peanuts. Also, makes me wonder how much Babchuk and his agent thinks he's worth, maybe they are asking for way too much and teams just aren't biting.

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07-09-2009, 12:38 PM
  #108
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Well, I think I am right saying his QO was 1 million. I think that a dman who can shoot the puck like that and has above average offensive awareness is worth something. Perhaps our coaches should work with him on his defensive strategy and improve him in that area so he becomes a better overall player?!?!? If he wants more money, I think JR should at least make an effort and offer him like a 1.4-1.6 mil one year deal. At least that shows that the organization is making an effort to keep him. JR is a little hard headed it seems sometimes. But of course there is no telling what is going on behind the scenes.

Here is a question....how much would JR be willing to offer Babs if he didnt have the terrible Kaberle on the books already at 2.2 mil. Jeez that is a terrible contract.

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07-09-2009, 02:26 PM
  #109
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This offseason is shaping up to be unimpressive. Without Seidenberg and Babchuk's play last year I don't think this team makes the playoffs. There was a long stretch of games where Babchuk was the only positive thing about our PP. Unless they do something to address the PP, coaching or player, I think this will be a long season.

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07-09-2009, 02:27 PM
  #110
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Originally Posted by Moosetache View Post
Well, I think I am right saying his QO was 1 million. I think that a dman who can shoot the puck like that and has above average offensive awareness is worth something. Perhaps our coaches should work with him on his defensive strategy and improve him in that area so he becomes a better overall player?!?!? If he wants more money, I think JR should at least make an effort and offer him like a 1.4-1.6 mil one year deal. At least that shows that the organization is making an effort to keep him. JR is a little hard headed it seems sometimes. But of course there is no telling what is going on behind the scenes.

Here is a question....how much would JR be willing to offer Babs if he didnt have the terrible Kaberle on the books already at 2.2 mil. Jeez that is a terrible contract.
I think the organization probably thought he was worth 1.4 to 1.6 until he couldn't stay on the ice when it mattered in the playoffs. And frankly it is too much work keeping his fragile head/confidence into things. i dont see people knocking down Jamie Heward's door, who has virtually the same skill set. And despite the goal total im not sure i would say that Babchuk has above average offensive awareness.

The better question is whether JR would have offered him more had he stayed in Albany a few years ago and not bolted to Russia. Of course then JR would have had no choice since Anton would have had arbiration rights. Lets not forget that this is a business and Anton singlehandedly chose to give up his arbitration rights so why should JR now give him what he wants? Anton doesnt hold any cards and he created this situation.

Seidenberg is the guy that needs replaced not Anton and i dont believe Anton would have done the job in Dennis' place. It was interesting to see that Scott Howson also poopooed Seidenberg and his asking price. Sounds like Dennis continues to misplay his hand

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07-09-2009, 05:12 PM
  #111
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Sounds like Dennis continues to misplay his hand
You mean Anton?

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07-09-2009, 05:52 PM
  #112
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Anton doesn't have much of a hand. He's going to take JR's offer if he ever wants to play in the NHL again. Russia's not an option, because no GM wants a player that defects to Russia twice in a span of 3 years.

Seidenberg has much more options available than Babchuk, but he overrated himself in contract negotiations apparently.

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07-09-2009, 08:14 PM
  #113
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What's situation with Seids? I'd love to see him on team next year. Do it, JR, do it. Do it, do it, do it.

P.P - Strickland: Pens sign Jay McKee. (1Yr 800k)

You gotta be kidding me! Bring Seids in home, boss. This is the answer.

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07-09-2009, 08:52 PM
  #114
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I simply don't see the advantage Seidenberg has over Babchuk. Obviously, keeping one or the other is favorable to losing both, as they both have played in the system, but if JR's got money to sign D-berg, I don't see why he wouldn't increase the offer to Babchuk, other than his personal vendetta.

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07-09-2009, 08:53 PM
  #115
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Originally Posted by Blueline Bomber View Post
I simply don't see the advantage Seidenberg has over Babchuk. Obviously, keeping one or the other is favorable to losing both, as they both have played in the system, but if JR's got money to sign D-berg, I don't see why he wouldn't increase the offer to Babchuk, other than his personal vendetta.
SERIOUSLY...1 million dollars is a joke lowball. I bet JR is just being a hardass....he never reports to the media exactly what is going on

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07-10-2009, 08:38 AM
  #116
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Babchuk screwed up by running to Russia for a year. If I ran to Russia for a year then decided I wanted to come back, I think I'd be grateful that my employer gave me another chance.

He screwed up. Suck it up, work your butt off, and when that next contract rolls around you'll get your raise.

People shouldn't be rewarded for being dumba$$es. Just my 2 cents.

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07-10-2009, 08:48 AM
  #117
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If I went to Russia on the promise of a promotion that would pay me $800,000 a year and after three years of toiling away for $70,000 it looked unlikely that job would ever be mine full time, I would go home too. Especially if there was a job that paid about the same waiting there for me. He put his time in at the AHL level just like every North American prospect has to do. He didn't pout or whine about it when he wasn't good enough to be in the NHL straight after coming over. He played 200+ games down there and then was sent down in a cost cutting measure. If you were in Russia and that same thing happened to you, would you not go home?

What Anton did was a smart business decision for the situation he was given. What he is doing now is much more dumb than what he did the first time, but people will never see it that way. Yes, it's obvious that JR hates the kid and is lowballing him off the planet.... but if you stick it out and play next season to the best of your abilities then you will be free to pursue your NHL career with any interested party at the price you set for yourself and that is that. 6 months of playing for a *paltry* $1 million a season and then you hit the open market where you can be compensated according to what you bring as compared to being low balled off the face of the earth.

If Anton Babchuk ever wants to play in the NHL again, he'll take this offer, curse JR out, and play the hardest 82 games of his life and then leave on the first flight out of Raleigh the day we're eliminated or win it all.

If he leaves for Russia right now, JR will keep his rights out of spite and he'll never play here again unless he sucks it up and comes crawling back to JR.

Just sign the damn contract, Babchuk. If you're as good as you believe, you'll make up the $500k that JR is leaving off the table on your next contract with another team. Think about your future.

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07-10-2009, 09:06 AM
  #118
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Agree 100% with you Vagrant...

I didn't post anything about the situation, 'cause I am pissed of at how dumb and immature Babchuk is.

Oh well... if he doesn't want to suck it up for a year, his loss. It became quite clear that organization doesn't care about him when JR said his agent that they are free to look for a trade themselves.

Babchuk has absolutely 0 value to JR right now.

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07-10-2009, 09:50 AM
  #119
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Originally Posted by Vagrant View Post
If I went to Russia on the promise of a promotion that would pay me $800,000 a year and after three years of toiling away for $70,000 it looked unlikely that job would ever be mine full time, I would go home too. Especially if there was a job that paid about the same waiting there for me. He put his time in at the AHL level just like every North American prospect has to do. He didn't pout or whine about it when he wasn't good enough to be in the NHL straight after coming over. He played 200+ games down there and then was sent down in a cost cutting measure. If you were in Russia and that same thing happened to you, would you not go home?

What Anton did was a smart business decision for the situation he was given. What he is doing now is much more dumb than what he did the first time, but people will never see it that way. Yes, it's obvious that JR hates the kid and is lowballing him off the planet.... but if you stick it out and play next season to the best of your abilities then you will be free to pursue your NHL career with any interested party at the price you set for yourself and that is that. 6 months of playing for a *paltry* $1 million a season and then you hit the open market where you can be compensated according to what you bring as compared to being low balled off the face of the earth.

If Anton Babchuk ever wants to play in the NHL again, he'll take this offer, curse JR out, and play the hardest 82 games of his life and then leave on the first flight out of Raleigh the day we're eliminated or win it all.

If he leaves for Russia right now, JR will keep his rights out of spite and he'll never play here again unless he sucks it up and comes crawling back to JR.

Just sign the damn contract, Babchuk. If you're as good as you believe, you'll make up the $500k that JR is leaving off the table on your next contract with another team. Think about your future.
Agree fully on the last few paragraphs. Babchuk is being strong-armed because Rutherford has that ability given his RFA and non-arbitration status but it seemingly being vindictive now.

The first part of your post though, I disagree. First, Babchuk was sent down primarily for his poor play (he'd started to become a healthy scratch before the demotion) and the cost savings were a secondary factor at that point in the season. Where he screwed up royally (perhaps bad advice from his agent) was going AWOL during the Canes' playoff push. Huge issue for management and your fellow teammates.

Had he sucked it up then and reported to the AHL and then bolted to Russia, things would be very different I think. Now he is continuing to pay that penance and Rutherford is putting the squeeze on him. If Rutherford hadn't been in a bind with Wesley's retirement and Hedican's decision to go out West, Babchuk won't even have been brought back.

Now both sides are being hard-headed and engaged in a staring contest. Unless Babchuk is negative equity in the room, the Canes should make one last effort to reconcile the situation. Throw the guy a bone and give him a $1.2 million offer, which is reasonable given Babchuk's play last year and Seidenberg's old salary. If that doesn't work, then trade him but possibly forcing him play as a lame duck is counterproductive.

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07-10-2009, 10:03 AM
  #120
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Quote:
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Agree fully on the last few paragraphs. Babchuk is being strong-armed because Rutherford has that ability given his RFA and non-arbitration status but it seemingly being vindictive now.

The first part of your post though, I disagree. First, Babchuk was sent down primarily for his poor play (he'd started to become a healthy scratch before the demotion) and the cost savings were a secondary factor at that point in the season. Where he screwed up royally (perhaps bad advice from his agent) was going AWOL during the Canes' playoff push. Huge issue for management and your fellow teammates.

Had he sucked it up then and reported to the AHL and then bolted to Russia, things would be very different I think. Now he is continuing to pay that penance and Rutherford is putting the squeeze on him. If Rutherford hadn't been in a bind with Wesley's retirement and Hedican's decision to go out West, Babchuk won't even have been brought back.

Now both sides are being hard-headed and engaged in a staring contest. Unless Babchuk is negative equity in the room, the Canes should make one last effort to reconcile the situation. Throw the guy a bone and give him a $1.2 million offer, which is reasonable given Babchuk's play last year and Seidenberg's old salary. If that doesn't work, then trade him but possibly forcing him play as a lame duck is counterproductive.
Babchuk actually did eventually report to the AHL and played there until being recalled by the Hurricanes in an emergency situation.

The thing about Babchuk's "poor play" prior to his demotion was the way that Laviolette was running the defense increasing and decreasing icetime. Babchuk was playing in the mid 20's for a while there before his demotion and then Laviolette lost favor for him after a few tough games. He did the same thing with Tanabe. All three of those guys, Hutchinson, Tanabe, and Babchuk, were in the same position in regards to playing time. Babchuk was the only one on a two way contract and became the sacrificial lamb for the organization to save a few hundred thousand. There is no way to justify keeping Tanabe and Hutchinson on the roster behind Babchuk at that point, who was a young prospect that you supposedly wanted to develop. He needed the NHL time more than those other players, but the cost cutting effort blew up in JR's face. I think that's the part he resented the most. The guys in the room probably couldn't care less if Babchuk left them in the middle of a playoff race considering he was in and out of the lineup. The view from the room on that situation was widely overrated. JR just didn't like the fact that his brilliant idea to save some money actually cost him a young player. He has harbored that resentment for Babchuk ever since, not the other way around.

I also disagree about the reasons Babchuk was brought back. I don't think JR was in a squeeze when he brought Babchuk back. I think he viewed him like he was, which was cheap labor as a restricted player that could potentially play a lot better than his contract number. When that came true and the time came to pay him for his contributions, JR had no use for him. In regards to Babchuk, the only language that counts with JR is money. He is a hired gun. Nothing more. JR wouldn't have it any other way. He doesn't want Babchuk to become a part of this team because he personally doesn't like him. That's fine, but if you're Babchuk you have to find a way from under that.

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07-10-2009, 10:29 AM
  #121
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Babchuk actually did eventually report to the AHL and played there until being recalled by the Hurricanes in an emergency situation.

The thing about Babchuk's "poor play" prior to his demotion was the way that Laviolette was running the defense increasing and decreasing icetime. Babchuk was playing in the mid 20's for a while there before his demotion and then Laviolette lost favor for him after a few tough games. He did the same thing with Tanabe. All three of those guys, Hutchinson, Tanabe, and Babchuk, were in the same position in regards to playing time. Babchuk was the only one on a two way contract and became the sacrificial lamb for the organization to save a few hundred thousand. There is no way to justify keeping Tanabe and Hutchinson on the roster behind Babchuk at that point, who was a young prospect that you supposedly wanted to develop. He needed the NHL time more than those other players, but the cost cutting effort blew up in JR's face. I think that's the part he resented the most. The guys in the room probably couldn't care less if Babchuk left them in the middle of a playoff race considering he was in and out of the lineup. The view from the room on that situation was widely overrated. JR just didn't like the fact that his brilliant idea to save some money actually cost him a young player. He has harbored that resentment for Babchuk ever since, not the other way around.

I also disagree about the reasons Babchuk was brought back. I don't think JR was in a squeeze when he brought Babchuk back. I think he viewed him like he was, which was cheap labor as a restricted player that could potentially play a lot better than his contract number. When that came true and the time came to pay him for his contributions, JR had no use for him. In regards to Babchuk, the only language that counts with JR is money. He is a hired gun. Nothing more. JR wouldn't have it any other way. He doesn't want Babchuk to become a part of this team because he personally doesn't like him. That's fine, but if you're Babchuk you have to find a way from under that.
Yes, everyone knows he eventually reported but my point was that he went AWOL for a time and things would have been different he reported directly.

Sorry, but Babchuk played his way out of the lineup as his once-steady play got terrible over a stretch of games that led to his diminished TOI, press box duty and demotion. Tanabe was playing significantly better than Babchuk during that time and some even argued he was the best Canes blueliner at that time - that was debatable but he was one of the best and far more effective than Babchuk.

Hutchinson continued to get his PP specialty minutes as the 7th Dman and was effective in that role during that time. Babchuk was getting last pairing minutes and Kaberle was about to be activated and worked back in the lineup from his injury. Add all that together and that is the primary reason why Babchuk was the logical reason to go to AHL and get some TOI. The fact he had a two-way contract didn't hurt but that late in the year it wasn't much of a savings compared to sending Hutchinson down (Tanabe wasn't even a consideration for the demotion given his play at the time).

Who knows if JR personally doesn't like Babchuk as you contend. What's clear though is that he is an old school guy and you can hear the disdain in his voice when he talks about Babchuk's antics that year. You simply don't, especially when it's deserved, balk at a demotion and walk out on a team when it's in a playoff hunt.

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07-10-2009, 10:43 AM
  #122
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Well I can say with full certainty that I would have done the exact same thing and been justified in it. For some reason, hockey players are held to this archaic and unreliable standard that they should grind it out in order to play in the NHL regardless of how long they have done that. No matter that you're playing thousands of miles away from your family and loved ones, no matter that you've already spent more than enough time in a developmental league, no matter that you've been demoted ahead of two players who were on the scrap heap the season prior, no matter that you're making peanuts as compensation, etc. You're supposed to stay in the AHL until God Almighty comes down and extends his hand. I just don't see it.

The difference between Anton Babchuk and David Tanabe and Andrew Hutchinson that year is that everybody knew which one was the asset worth protecting. Even at the time of the demotion and prior to the announcement that Babchuk didn't report people were wondering why we didn't just waive one of the two instead. Especially Hutchinson. If Babchuk was really a prospect that they were trying to cultivate, then the NHL was the place he needed to be in order to do that. He didn't stand to gain anything by playing in the AHL and his "time to think", was more than likely him trying to broker a deal with a Russian club to leave immediately. The "playoff push" didn't matter to Babchuk and it shouldn't have. He was voted off the island and sent down to Albany. How was he going to help the playoff push from there?

In ANY other vocation, it would have been perfectly acceptable for Babchuk to return to Russia given the treatment he was given here. In fact, discrimination lawsuits have been grounded on a lot less than what happened in that time period.

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07-10-2009, 10:51 AM
  #123
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I don't understand the logic of "Suck it up and prove you're worth a contract"

What was this whole past year then? Wasn't that the reason we brought him back in the first place?

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07-10-2009, 10:54 AM
  #124
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I don't understand the logic of "Suck it up and prove you're worth a contract"

What was this whole past year then? Wasn't that the reason we brought him back in the first place?
i think the logic is "suck it up and take a first plane out of RDU after the season is over."

it isn't about proving you are worth. it is about being able to play in NHL in the team where you will be considered an asset.

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07-10-2009, 11:29 AM
  #125
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The difference between Anton Babchuk and David Tanabe and Andrew Hutchinson that year is that everybody knew which one was the asset worth protecting. Even at the time of the demotion and prior to the announcement that Babchuk didn't report people were wondering why we didn't just waive one of the two instead. Especially Hutchinson. If Babchuk was really a prospect that they were trying to cultivate, then the NHL was the place he needed to be in order to do that. He didn't stand to gain anything by playing in the AHL and his "time to think", was more than likely him trying to broker a deal with a Russian club to leave immediately. The "playoff push" didn't matter to Babchuk and it shouldn't have. He was voted off the island and sent down to Albany. How was he going to help the playoff push from there?

In ANY other vocation, it would have been perfectly acceptable for Babchuk to return to Russia given the treatment he was given here. In fact, discrimination lawsuits have been grounded on a lot less than what happened in that time period.
If you want to continue to ignore the significant difference in levels of play on the ice at that time and invent excuses for Babchuk, that's your call. His play went from steady to unsteady and he ended up exactly where it dictated he should be.

From a team standpoint, it should have mattered to Babchuk about the playoff push. You never know what is going to happen and he should have buckled down, reported right away and proved that he was worthy of TOI in the NHL in the event of injury. He took a totally self-centered view, which you seem to be supporting, and certainly caused issues with his teammates.

Look, he played himself out of the lineup and had become a defensive liability much like he was in the playoffs this year. But you think he paid his dues in the AHL and should have been kept in the NHL. To do what, sit in the press box? Kaberle's return forced a roster move and you conveniently are overlooking the blueline dynamics at the time including overall roles and PP duties.

Playing a slumping Dman or having him scratched makes as little sense and the utterly absurd comment about discrimination lawsuits. Holy crap man, what a load of nonsense.

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