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Fulfilling Our Biggest Needs in the 2010 Offseason

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Old
03-31-2010, 01:31 PM
  #1
Rabbit
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Fulfilling Our Biggest Needs in the 2010 Offseason

DO NOT MENTION OWNERSHIP, THIS IS PLAYER SPECULATION. WE WILL LET THE EXPERTS FIGURE OUT THE FINANCIAL SITUATION.


Number One Center:
With Upshall most likely returning next season, and Stempniak playing his way towards a shiny new contract, I assume along with many others that Lombardi will move down to a more fitting #2 role centering those two. What does that leave us lacking? A number one center who can play between Doan and Wolski.

A. Free Agency:
This years free agent pool isn't swarming with #1 Centers, in fact, most of them are just now exiting their prime, inching toward retirement. I don't see the Coyotes going after another Robert Lang type deal, so I assume their age limit will be around 33-34.

Candidates- Patrick Marleau(SJ), Tomas Plekanec(MTL)

Both are big money players, either one would cost a lot of money. Though if we want to be a contender for many years to come, we need this role to be embraced. I personally would choose Plekanec. He's younger, and just imagining him and his creativity on a line with Wolski, and his creativity, makes me quiver. Doan would finally have a purely skilled top line to play on.

Honorable Mentions In Free Agency: Mike Comrie(EDM), Kyle Wellwood(VAN)


B. Via Trade:
This is obviously a more wide open criteria as far as personnel available, so I am just going to mention players who are around the same talent level of what I expect from the Coyotes to pursue.

Candidates- Antoine Vermette(CBJ), Stephen Weiss(FLA), Derek Roy(BUF), Nik Antropov(ATL)

All of these players are currently in the scoring range of 60 points, and are in the top 30 among centers in the league. Vermette seems like a real nice fit to go on our top line, tremendous speed, and good playmaking ability. Like I said, these are only players that I predict are in the same talent level of what the Coyotes may want to pursue.

Honorable Mentions Via Trade: Matt Stajan(CGY), Jordan Staal(PIT)


Feel free to comment/dispute/butcher my predictions. Also, if there is anybody who wants to do this kind of setup for another position you think we need to have filled, please do. Thanks, and go Coyotes!

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Old
03-31-2010, 01:42 PM
  #2
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I'd love Marleau, but only for 3 years. And I don't think he'd go for that, he'll probably get better offers.

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Old
03-31-2010, 01:52 PM
  #3
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Doesn't Marleau play left wing?

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Old
03-31-2010, 02:02 PM
  #4
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Repeating my previous point, #1 center is not going to happen this off season. Coyotes have too many other needs and quite frankly they don't need one right now. Team is more or less working as is.

To further illustrate my point, teams don't just move for # centers much these days. I did some checking of the top 25 centers in the league in points. It was even more lopsided than I thought it would be.

Of the top 25 scoring centers only the following players were NOT drafted by the team they are currently playing on:
Joe Thornton
Tim Connolly
Antoine Vermette
Brad Richards
Nik Antropov

So out of the top 25 centers in the league, 20 of them were home grown and remain in house. So that pretty much tells me that the #1 center for the Coyotes in the next 3 years is KT or bust. The Tippet system will have to carry them until they get one in the draft.

BTW, to me, Lombardi is more of a #1 center than Comrie or Wellwood. Probably to most actually.

Don't get me wrong, if the Coyotes want to/can spend the money on a FREE AGENT, #1 center then go for it. But I'm not buying it.

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Originally Posted by knowsthegame View Post
Doesn't Marleau play left wing?
He played center a lot before this season.

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Old
03-31-2010, 02:08 PM
  #5
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Our #1 center is currently in the AHL. Unless we make a serious splash in the playoffs this year, I don't see us trying to speed up to be a contender. It is going to be hard to find a #1 center that will believe in the system and the pack mentality too.

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Old
03-31-2010, 02:14 PM
  #6
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I think we should be more concerned with re-signing Michalek and Lombardi and keeping somewhat of a core intact going into next season. Keeping Stempniak would be nice too, but I have my doubts we'll be able to hang onto all three. I think having our RFAs due for raises, combined with re-signing our UFAs, we'll be close to our self-imposed budget restrictions anyway.

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03-31-2010, 02:20 PM
  #7
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Another note on Stajan,

19G 35A 54P
16G 34A 50P

Lombardi in a defensive system is having a career year with 50 points. Stajan has 54 points, but he spent a lot of time as one of the best options on a bad team (Jokinen anyone?)

If we are calling Stajan a #1, we might as well call Lombardi a #1.

I wouldn't call either a #1 but lets be consistent.

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Old
03-31-2010, 03:12 PM
  #8
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Isn't Antropov a UFA?

Give me Marleau or nobody, personally. Maybe Weiss in a trade if it doesn't cost too much. Him and Doan just seem like the perfect fit. Plus, he might like the anonymity of the desert and not having to be a leader.

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03-31-2010, 03:24 PM
  #9
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I would agree with this to a point. One of the biggest needs for the Coyotes right now is a centerman who is a faceoff specialist. The Coyotes have been getting killed in the faceoff circle in many of the games in the past few weeks.

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03-31-2010, 03:36 PM
  #10
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IMO the keys are resigning our UFA's/RFA's in order Michalek, Wolski, Hanzal, Lombardi, Upshall, Stempniak, Lepisto, and maybe one of Morris or Aucoin.

Second key is getting Sauer back.

Third key is easing in some of the prospects - Turris, MacLean or Tikhonov, Summers or Goncharov or Stone into the roster.

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Old
03-31-2010, 03:48 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ducky View Post
Morris or Aucoin.
Aucoin. Definitely Aucoin. He's older, but he has more to offer. To me, Morris has been very "meh" so far. Average defensively, and not a whole lot going on offensively.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ducky View Post
Second key is getting Sauer back.
My gut says Sauer's done with hockey. I wouldn't count on him coming back. And if he does, I don't think he'll be magically back to 100%.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ducky View Post
Third key is easing in some of the prospects - Turris, MacLean or Tikhonov, Summers or Goncharov or Stone into the roster.
Absolutely. But that's going to be tough. Tippett wants to win games, and doesn't have a whole lot of patience for prospects to learn on the job. These kids are going to have to really stand out and make a great impression to be able to stick around. My guess is we're going to see each one get a few games here and there like Boedker did this season. But unless they go on scoring streak, it's going to be tough for them to get a full time roster spot.

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03-31-2010, 03:49 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dolemite View Post
I would agree with this to a point. One of the biggest needs for the Coyotes right now is a centerman who is a faceoff specialist. The Coyotes have been getting killed in the faceoff circle in many of the games in the past few weeks.
Lang was unheralded but effective in this department.

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Old
03-31-2010, 04:09 PM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wpgyotes View Post
Lang was unheralded but effective in this department.
Agreed. However, his long stretches between scoring almost negates the faceoff abilities.

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Old
03-31-2010, 04:27 PM
  #14
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Here's current full-season cap hits for this year, and who's signed going into next year. You can play with these when figuring out who's in, who's out, and what will they cost.

FORWARDS
PLAYER2009/102010/11
Shane Doan$4,550,000$4,550,000
Radim Vrbata$3,000,000$3,000,000
Petr Prucha$1,200,000$1,200,000
Vernon Fiddler$ 1,100,000$1,100,000
Petteri Nokelainen$850,000$950,000
Lauri Korpikoski$700,000$750,000
Paul Bissonnette$500,000$612,500
Wojtek Wolski$2,800,000
RFA
Scottie Upshall$1,500,000
RFA
Martin Hanzal$980,000
RFA
Daniel Winnik$600,000
RFA
Lee Stempniak$3,500,000
UFA
Matthew Lombardi$1,816,667
UFA
Robert Lang$1,700,000
UFA
Taylor Pyatt$600,000
UFA

DEFENSEMAN
PLAYERPLAYER2009/102010/11
Ed Jovanovski$ 6,500,000$6,500,000 
James Vandermeer$2,300,000$2,300,000 
Kurt Sauer $1,750,000$1,750,000 
Keith Yandle$1,200,000$1,200,000 
Sami Lepisto$550,000
RFA
 
Derek Morris$3,300,000
UFA
 
Mathieu Schneider$2,750,000
UFA
 
Adrian Aucoin$2,250,000
UFA
 
Zbynek Michalek$1,250,000
UFA
 

GOALIES
PLAYER2009/102010/11
Ilya Bryzgalov$ 4,250,000.00$4,250,000.00
Jason LaBarbera$1,000,000.00$1,000,000.00

BUYOUT
PLAYER2009/102010/11
Dave Scatchard$700,000$700,000.00

CAP TOTALS
 2009/102010/11
FULL SEASON CAP HIT$53,196,667$29,862,500

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Old
03-31-2010, 05:12 PM
  #15
RemoAZ
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Yeesh! How much longer are we paying Dave Scatchard??? That guy made out like a bandit. No wonder he was at the BK proceedings.

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Old
03-31-2010, 05:41 PM
  #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RemoAZ View Post
Yeesh! How much longer are we paying Dave Scatchard??? That guy made out like a bandit. No wonder he was at the BK proceedings.
and he got paid a little from the Preds this season. I know

As for needs:
#1) A new owner, that goes without saying.

#2) if it ain't broke don't fix it, I would rather us lock up the the guys and add back Uppy and I am happy this off season. In the Tipps "system" there really isn't a traditional #1 Centre roll, which I like

I would suspect Vandy pants or the Closer wont be coming back so that clears space for a Goncherav/ Summers/ OEL?/ whom ever makes the club out of camp.

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Old
03-31-2010, 06:05 PM
  #17
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The biggest need in the off season is an owner that is going to keep the team here in the Valley of the Sun.

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Old
03-31-2010, 06:16 PM
  #18
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Not sure where people are thinking we have open roster spots. People are saying sign our UFA/RFA's AND more. RFA UFA

Upshall Lombardi Doan
Prucha Hanzel Vrbata
Stempniak Fiddler Winnik
Wolski Nokelainen Korpikoski

Bissonnette


Jovo Michalek
Yandle Morris
Lepisto Sauer
Vandermeer

This is using who seems to be the "favorites" and assuming they sign.

Assuming Lang, Pyatt, Aucoin, Schneider are goners, who else is moving on to make room for the money shot signing(s) or trade(s)?

With the exception of the bottom "leftovers" line, everyone else has shown chemistry that we wouldn't care to disrupt.

Don't get me wrong, I love that we have this problem. It's odd for me to not really care about the draft yet.

Edit: Tikhonov already has shown attitude-wise that he's "too good" for the AHL. If he doesn't make the main roster over Korpikoski, I think we can figure he's gone for the KHL again and may lead to a trade.


Last edited by crazyhockeylover96: 03-31-2010 at 06:22 PM.
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Old
03-31-2010, 06:18 PM
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PPD7952 View Post
The biggest need in the off season is an owner that is going to keep the team here in the Valley of the Sun.
Yes.

This is driving me crazy. We've got 3 parties with a huge vested interest in keeping the team in Glendale (league, Glendale and IEH). Not making the deal would be extremely bad for all parties - the league would lose face and would set now have to start over in a new market, IEH would have wasted 1 year of efforts for nothing, and Westgate would go down the drain, no question about it.

SO WHY IS THIS TAKING SO LONG?!

Just cut a deal already.

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Old
03-31-2010, 06:20 PM
  #20
Dolemite
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RemoAZ View Post
Yeesh! How much longer are we paying Dave Scatchard??? That guy made out like a bandit. No wonder he was at the BK proceedings.
The drawback of buying out a player's contract.

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Old
03-31-2010, 07:07 PM
  #21
rt
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It's worth mentioning, I think, that Wolski can play center. It opens up options...

Doan-Turris-Wolski or Doan-Wolski-Tikhonov or Doan-Wolski-Boedker or MacLean-Wolski-Doan

to go with...

Upshall-Lombardi-Stempniak
Prucha-Hanzal-Vrbata
Pyatt-Fiddler-Winnik
Bissonnette

I say bring Prucha, Pyatt, Winnik, the Fins, and the Kids to camp and let them fight it out for jobs. The losers hit the AHL or the waiver wire.

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Old
03-31-2010, 07:16 PM
  #22
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I don't think Stempniak will be back. His strong showing since the trade will almost certainly cause his agent to make demands that DM will not accept and some other team likely will. So as much as I'd like him back, I think he takes the money and runs which is sad because I think he needs the Yotes as bad as they need him. It's going to be like Vrbata thing 2 years ago but without the happy ending. The Coyotes and Stempniak are greater than the sum of their parts, some players just 'fit'!

As for the #1 center talk, I say no on Marleau. A good friend of mine is a HUGE Sharks fan (I like him anyway) and he's adamant that Marleau is not a good fit at center and I tend to agree with him. Until recently he's always been considered an underachiever and that is in large part due to him playing as center. The times he's exploded offensively have all come at wing.

So with that in mind, I agree with the idea that the Yotes sign their own players and not worry about a "#1" center. Besides, they don't play the traditional 1,2,3,4 lines anyway. I'd say the Yotes are more of a 2a, 2b, 3a, 3b team.

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Old
03-31-2010, 08:12 PM
  #23
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I echo rt's thoughts...

Wolski - Turris - Doan
Upshall - Lombardi - Stempniak
Prucha/Pyatt/Korpikoski/Tikhonov - Hanzal - Vrbata
Prucha/Pyatt/Korpikoski/Tikhonov - Fiddler - Winnik

wildcard = MacLean

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Old
04-01-2010, 06:55 AM
  #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ducky View Post
I echo rt's thoughts...

Wolski - Turris - Doan
Upshall - Lombardi - Stempniak
Prucha/Pyatt/Korpikoski/Tikhonov - Hanzal - Vrbata
Prucha/Pyatt/Korpikoski/Tikhonov - Fiddler - Winnik

wildcard = MacLean
Nokelainen?
Edit: Maybe that's figuring Turris out battles Nokelainen.

I would also consider Turris a wildcard only because of his featherweight body. His skills are far above Nokelainen's but how many goals can Turris score on his ass from the blueline? Well that still may be more than Nokalainen can score anyway.

I thought most people were for not resigning Pyatt as a UFA.


Last edited by crazyhockeylover96: 04-01-2010 at 07:02 AM.
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Old
04-01-2010, 08:24 AM
  #25
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I like Wolski, Lombardi, Hanzal, and Fiddler down the middle. That's pretty good depth. It could easily end up 60, 50, 40, and 30 points respectively.

Prucha makes too much. However, he does have 4PP goals, and some proven NHL level scoring in his past. Pyatt does, too. He's been heating up lately and has shown that he is capable of producing in this league. Even Winnik scored nearly thirty points as a fourth line rookie, a couple of years back. He's tried to simplify things this year, but I wonder if he's gone a little too far. Korpikoski has at least shown some AHL production. Nokelainen has never produced in any men's league. Its almost too bad that the two Fins are under contract and the two Canadians aren't.
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