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2011-12 Sabres Cap and Free Agency Discussion

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Old
04-15-2011, 06:54 AM
  #151
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoFFacet View Post
Still, ShaMo for a bag of pucks so that we can sign Monty to ~ShaMo's contract would be better than keeping ShaMo and letting Monty walk.
Personally, I'm tired of Dr. Monty/Mr. Derp. You never know what you're going to get from him. I think it's Ruff and the system that make him, not the other way around. He's destined to leave as a UFA to become the next Jeff Finger.

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04-15-2011, 07:19 AM
  #152
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Originally Posted by Husko View Post
And what do we do when we need to give Myers 6 million a year?
Don't forget Ennis is an RFA in the same offseason as Myers, I would say if we do got out and grab the monster contract it likely comes at his expense.

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04-15-2011, 09:29 AM
  #153
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And what do we do when we need to give Myers 6 million a year?
I'm not sold yet that he deserves or will get that type of money. He may change my mind next year but his game has a long way to go.

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04-15-2011, 09:34 AM
  #154
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I'm not sold yet that he deserves or will get that type of money. He may change my mind next year but his game has a long way to go.
Agreed. As much as I'd like to say otherwise, he's not on Doughty's level yet. We can see what Doughty gets, and Myers will likely get something in that range, but a bit less.

Right now, I'd offer a 3yr/$12m deal ($4m cap hit). That way, he'd still be a RFA at the end of the deal, and we could start talking long-term deal at that time.

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04-15-2011, 09:43 AM
  #155
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Originally Posted by captaincrunch89 View Post
Don't forget Ennis is an RFA in the same offseason as Myers, I would say if we do got out and grab the monster contract it likely comes at his expense.
Not at all. As others have mentioned, we have Boyes, Hecht, and Morrisonn coming off the cap that summer. Even assuming for a moment that we get Richards, and let those three players walk, look at the possible lineup at that point (including Ennis and Myers)

Vanek-Richards-Pominville
Ennis-Roy-Stafford
Gerbe-xxxxx-Kassian
xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxxx

Butler-Myers
Leopold-xxxxx
Weber-Sekera
x Gragnani

Really, the only holes we'd have to fill are 4th line wingers (easy and cheap, and Foligno could possibly fill that role by then), two bottom-6 centers (hopefully, Goose on a market-adjusted contract), and a 2nd pairing righty (that could come from our organization in the form of one of Schiestel, Brennan, Pysyk, or McNabb).

It's very doable.

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04-15-2011, 10:00 AM
  #156
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Originally Posted by Zip15 View Post
Not at all. As others have mentioned, we have Boyes, Hecht, and Morrisonn coming off the cap that summer. Even assuming for a moment that we get Richards, and let those three players walk, look at the possible lineup at that point (including Ennis and Myers)

Vanek-Richards-Pominville
Ennis-Roy-Stafford
Gerbe-xxxxx-Kassian
xxxxx-xxxxx-xxxxxx

Butler-Myers
Leopold-xxxxx
Weber-Sekera
x Gragnani

Really, the only holes we'd have to fill are 4th line wingers (easy and cheap, and Foligno could possibly fill that role by then), two bottom-6 centers (hopefully, Goose on a market-adjusted contract), and a 2nd pairing righty (that could come from our organization in the form of one of Schiestel, Brennan, Pysyk, or McNabb).

It's very doable.
I think by two years from now, MAG+Weber will be the solidified 3rd pairing. Come to think if it, it looks like Butler-Myers, Leo-Adrej, MAG-Weber will be our D for the next several years.

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04-15-2011, 10:04 AM
  #157
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Originally Posted by SoFFacet View Post
I think by two years from now, MAG+Weber will be the solidified 3rd pairing. Come to think if it, it looks like Butler-Myers, Leo-Adrej, MAG-Weber will be our D for the next several years.
Things change quick, though. What if, a month ago, I told you that you said the bolded? MAG in particular. Despite his awesome AHL year, dude was off the map as far as the Sabres were concerned until just recently.

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Old
04-15-2011, 10:06 AM
  #158
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Originally Posted by SoFFacet View Post
I think by two years from now, MAG+Weber will be the solidified 3rd pairing. Come to think if it, it looks like Butler-Myers, Leo-Adrej, MAG-Weber will be our D for the next several years.
As we've seen with Sekera, Weber and Butler the last few years. There are no guarantees with the play of young dmen.

I highly doubt that group will be our top 6 for the next several seasons.

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04-17-2011, 10:38 AM
  #159
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"It just makes everything smoother," Richards said of strong ownership. "You are competing against teams that are going to spend $63 million next year, teams that are in the playoffs now that are Cup contenders and are going to be just as good or better next year. We've got to compete with that. That starts with ownership, and that's why it's on my mind and that's why I'm asking questions."

Richards has a very good agent in Pat Morris, so he will definitely be well-compensated when this is over. But you get the feeling that his expected foray into free agency isn't so much about the most money as it is the best chance to win a championship. Could the best place to win a championship be Dallas if new ownership is in place? Definitely. But, are you going to take that risk when this process has dragged on for so long?
Quote:
For the Stars, the decision isn't so easy, either. Richards, who will turn 31 on May 2, will likely seek a contract for five years or more. He made $7.8 million last season, and while he will probably take a pay cut, the process will include a lower cap hit for more years. That means there is little chance you will get him for say five years at $6 million a season. If you want $6 million, you'll probably have to go to seven years.
Quote:
"I know he loves the city, he loves the team and he loves his teammates," said Brenden Morrow. "I think he's just wants security and he wants to know the franchise is stable, and he has every right to. He wants an owner who will spend to have a competitive team, and if he doesn't see that situation here, he's probably going to move on."
http://starsblog.dallasnews.com/arch...medium=twitter

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04-17-2011, 10:41 AM
  #160
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Good find Tipster. That glimmer of hope remains that they can lure him to town and not cripple their cap allotments doing so.

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04-17-2011, 10:54 AM
  #161
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Good find Tipster. That glimmer of hope remains that they can lure him to town and not cripple their cap allotments doing so.
That article and a few others recently that have quoted Richards and his agent have seemed to emphasize that Richards is ultimately most concerned with finding a long-term, stable situation in an organization that not only can compete for a Cup every year but has ownership that cares about winning. What better way to describe Pegula's and Black's master plan?

The references Richards makes to his Tampa experience, where they won but quickly plummeted to the cellar and saw the team torn apart, is worth keeping in mind IMO - because two things Pegula made blatantly obvious is that he believes in treating his staff / players like a family and that he isn't going to allow the mass exodus of free agents like Golisano did, just because of money. One has to think that Pegula / Black - if they truly end up showing interest in Richards - would try to sell him on that.

I think a recent article by ESPN also cited quotes from Richards on his salary expectations this summer in comparison to the past. Richards has admitted that the huge contract he signed with Tampa right after their Cup win not only put a burden of guilt/pressure on himself but handicapped his team from keeping the other players beyond Lecavalier and St. Louis - and ultimately forced his own trade. I trust the inferences in the articles that Richards at age 31 does want stability and a chance to win again in the near future more than breaking the bank of some team. As for the stereotypes about the city, I would think that all Pegula / Black / Regier would need to do is ask Richards to talk to his former teammate and captain, Andreychuk, about life in western NY. Andy loved the area and lived there long enough - and got to play under Ruff & Regier for a season as well.

It would seem that there's no reason Richards can't be viewed as a realistic option short of either Pegula or Regier not being interested in him. Certainly, I think there should be more than a glimmer for us Sabre fans. We should keep in mind that much of the media reports about Richards and the Rangers come out of NY in the first place and often have been proactive editorials lobbying for the Rangers to pursue Richards more than Richards ever admitting wanting to play in NYC. The only references supporting the rumors are the ones Richards made about how he respects and enjoyed playing for Tortorella.

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Old
04-17-2011, 10:57 AM
  #162
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Nice finds Sabretip.

Its certainly allows for more optimism in reagrds to signing Richards.

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04-17-2011, 11:06 AM
  #163
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sabretip View Post
That article and a few others recently that have quoted Richards and his agent have seemed to emphasize that Richards is ultimately most concerned with finding a long-term, stable situation in an organization that not only can compete for a Cup every year but has ownership that cares about winning. What better way to describe Pegula's and Black's master plan?

The references Richards makes to his Tampa experience, where they won but quickly plummeted to the cellar and saw the team torn apart, is worth keeping in mind IMO - because two things Pegula made blatantly obvious is that he believes in treating his staff / players like a family and that he isn't going to allow the mass exodus of free agents like Golisano did, just because of money. One has to think that Pegula / Black - if they truly end up showing interest in Richards - would try to sell him on that.

I think a recent article by ESPN also cited quotes from Richards on his salary expectations this summer in comparison to the past. Richards has admitted that the huge contract he signed with Tampa right after their Cup win not only put a burden of guilt/pressure on himself but handicapped his team from keeping the other players beyond Lecavalier and St. Louis - and ultimately forced his own trade. I trust the inferences in the articles that Richards at age 31 does want stability and a chance to win again in the near future more than breaking the bank of some team. As for the stereotypes about the city, I would think that all Pegula / Black / Regier would need to do is ask Richards to talk to his former teammate and captain, Andreychuk, about life in western NY. Andy loved the area and lived there long enough - and got to play under Ruff & Regier for a season as well.

It would seem that there's no reason Richards can't be viewed as a realistic option short of either Pegula or Regier not being interested in him.
Andy is one guy who would've been great to have at the alumni event so he would've had a broader scope of what Pegula is about, going beyond what Andy thought of just the area. Similarly, Stu Barnes was working that night and couldn't attend either -- he was beloved while here and would probably be someone who could shed some light on things for Brad.

Morris is going to be a key guy. I posted somewhere else that he has a few current Sabres in his stable, mostly prospect types like Luke Adam, and there isn't much of an acrimonious relationship between him and Regier for anything in the past.

If there is no new ownership in Dallas, it wouldn't surprise me to see the Sabres try for Richards' negotiating rights in trade as a way of getting the ball rolling earlier. Nieuwendyk may be willing to make that move if they aren't funded sufficiently -- he gets futures for someone he can't sign, Buffalo gets the opportunity to sign the guy prior to July 1st.

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04-17-2011, 11:58 AM
  #164
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Andy is one guy who would've been great to have at the alumni event so he would've had a broader scope of what Pegula is about, going beyond what Andy thought of just the area. Similarly, Stu Barnes was working that night and couldn't attend either -- he was beloved while here and would probably be someone who could shed some light on things for Brad.
From what I read, Andreychuk had another commitment preventing him from attending.

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Morris is going to be a key guy. I posted somewhere else that he has a few current Sabres in his stable, mostly prospect types like Luke Adam, and there isn't much of an acrimonious relationship between him and Regier for anything in the past.
I didn't know that Morris was Adam's agent - the only current Sabre veteran that I know of being represented by Morris is Matt Ellis. Tallinder, Rivet and several others were represented by Meehan; I know Morris and Don Meehan are partners

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If there is no new ownership in Dallas, it wouldn't surprise me to see the Sabres try for Richards' negotiating rights in trade as a way of getting the ball rolling earlier. Nieuwendyk may be willing to make that move if they aren't funded sufficiently -- he gets futures for someone he can't sign, Buffalo gets the opportunity to sign the guy prior to July 1st.
I definitely could see that kind of proactive thinking by Pegula / Black, if Regier advocates the pursuit of Richards. If they legitimately want him and think he could be signed, the week of time between the draft and free agency kicking off would allow the Sabres time to fly Richards to Buffalo, show him the area and even try some sales pitches like bringing him to an alumni event so he can get a feel what other former players living there think of the city and fans.


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04-18-2011, 09:24 PM
  #165
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Pretty clear they will need a couple of physical vets to go with some improvement in the middle and at leat one more quality defenseman.

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04-19-2011, 12:11 AM
  #166
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I never thought of Richards' relationship with Andreychuk. This seems like it could be a legitimate possibility after hearing what Richards is looking for in a team. Out of us, the Rangers and the Maple Leafs (the two teams most talked about for a possible Richards destination), Buffalo seems like the best fit for what Brad is looking for. They have the best overall team, and they have an owner willing to spend, willing to take care of his players like family, and willing to win with Pegula.

I really hope we can land Richards. IMO if we settle for anything less than him (or those pipe-dream offers like Stastny or Spezza) then we'll end up being like the St. Louis Blues 2.0.

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04-19-2011, 06:22 AM
  #167
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Pretty clear they will need a couple of physical vets to go with some improvement in the middle and at leat one more quality defenseman.
Yeah, someone to fill Grier's role essentially. An upgrade down the middle would be nice as well. And one good dman (an upgrade over Montador on the right side could be ideal) is definitely needed.

If they could flip Boyes for a #2 C that would be just wonderful.

Vanek-X-Pominville
Ennis-Roy-Stafford
Gerbe-Gaustad-Hecht
X-McCormick-Kaleta

Butler-Myers
Leo-X
Sekera-Weber
Grags

Yeah, I'd enjoy that.

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04-19-2011, 06:35 AM
  #168
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Pretty clear that we need a sniper IMO, especially one at the Center position.

they need someone who wants to take the big shot

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04-19-2011, 08:21 AM
  #169
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Pretty clear they will need a couple of physical vets to go with some improvement in the middle and at leat one more quality defenseman.
Agreed. A player I've always been particularly fond of is Joel Ward. He'll probably cost in the neighborhood of $1.75-$2m. This is the second straight playoffs where I've been impressed with his game (6 pts in 9 playoff games the last two seasons--not bad for a bottom-6 player). And he's a very good shot-blocking forward. We have a lot of RW's right now, but he warrants consideration, at the very least.

On the defensive side of things, since we'll probably be pursuing righties, I'd take a look at Bieksa, Wiz, and Jon Ericsson. All three have an edge to their game, and bring varying degrees of offensive and hitting abilities. If we're looking at the trade market, Cory Sarich is still somebody who warrants a look; he's been through the battles.

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Pretty clear that we need a sniper IMO, especially one at the Center position.

they need someone who wants to take the big shot
They scored on two snipes last night. What they need is guys who can play sizable minutes that are willing to go to the dirty areas in the playoffs in order to score ugly goals. Though he's a winger, I think Upshall is another player who'd step up his game in the postseason.

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04-19-2011, 11:09 AM
  #170
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I never thought of Richards' relationship with Andreychuk. This seems like it could be a legitimate possibility after hearing what Richards is looking for in a team. Out of us, the Rangers and the Maple Leafs (the two teams most talked about for a possible Richards destination), Buffalo seems like the best fit for what Brad is looking for. They have the best overall team, and they have an owner willing to spend, willing to take care of his players like family, and willing to win with Pegula.
Some added points:
1. Everything I read at the time when Andreychuk was still playing was that he was an inspirational part of the Lightning's Cup team in 2004 - kind of like Ray Bourque was in Colorado in 2001. Andy was not only the oldest player but was voted their captain - one can assume that he was looked up to by a lot of the younger Tampa players at the time, including a 24-year old Richards.

2. We always see NY and Toronto (along with Montreal) be the most-linked teams to rumors because of the media markets in those cities. The Ranger rumors were started because of Richards' professed admiration of Tortorella as a former coach of his; the Toronto rumors seem to be driven more out of the media's desire to find a solution to the Leafs' lack of a center than anything Richards has said. In fact, I think there were some reports in January where Richards downplayed any desire to play in a city like Toronto.

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I really hope we can land Richards. IMO if we settle for anything less than him (or those pipe-dream offers like Stastny or Spezza) then we'll end up being like the St. Louis Blues 2.0.
A recent TSN article on the Senators season wrap up pretty much extinguished any prospect of Spezza IMO - both he and Murray were quoted as looking forward to the rebuilding process together. A parting of the ways between Spezza and the Senators doesn't seem remotely likely.

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04-19-2011, 11:18 AM
  #171
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Originally Posted by Ron Barr View Post
I never thought of Richards' relationship with Andreychuk. This seems like it could be a legitimate possibility after hearing what Richards is looking for in a team. Out of us, the Rangers and the Maple Leafs (the two teams most talked about for a possible Richards destination), Buffalo seems like the best fit for what Brad is looking for. They have the best overall team, and they have an owner willing to spend, willing to take care of his players like family, and willing to win with Pegula.

I really hope we can land Richards. IMO if we settle for anything less than him (or those pipe-dream offers like Stastny or Spezza) then we'll end up being like the St. Louis Blues 2.0.
We're already better than St. Louis has ever been post lockout. I don't get that comparison at all.

Hell a healthy Sabres coming into the playoffs would be a decent upgrade over our current team.

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04-19-2011, 12:59 PM
  #172
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We're already better than St. Louis has ever been post lockout. I don't get that comparison at all.

Hell a healthy Sabres coming into the playoffs would be a decent upgrade over our current team.
I make the comparison to St. Louis because in 2009 when St. Louis made the playoffs, they had an average core of older players (Steen, McDonald, Boyes, Jackman) and a core of rookies (Perron, Oshie, Berglund) heading into the series against Vancouver. The inexperience of the young players showed, and the older "core" players didn't step up like they should have to match Vancouver. That year, in the first half of the season St. Louis was one of the worst teams in the league. But they got hot in the second half of the season and had one of the best records in the league, which put them in the playoffs.

In the off-season they didn't really bring anyone in, and just hoped that their young players continued to develop. Well, the next year they didn't make the playoffs. I could see the same thing happen to Buffalo if they don't bother to make the next step with their currently average line-up.

Anyway, here are some UFA defensemen I'd want to go after this summer:

Scott Hannan (32)
Eric Brewer (32)
Joni Pitkanen (27)
Christian Ehrhoff (28)
Jan Hejda (32)
Anton Babchuk (26)
Jonathan Ericsson (27)
Kevin Bieksa (29)

Ehrhoff and Pitkanen are pipe dreams, they'll most likely be re-signed by their respective teams. But guys like Hannan, Brewer and Hejda will bring some rock solid stay-at-home veteran presence to our line-up, something we haven't had at all this year. Jonathan Ericsson seems like he's developing into a solid stay-at-home guy himself, maybe he can really blossom if given a bigger role than he has in Detroit (having to play behind Lidstrom, Rafalski, Stuart and Kronwall). And Babchuk and Bieksa will bring a physical presence, and a big shot from the point (we have a lot of somewhat weak shooter at the point, and I know having a booming shot isn't as important in today's NHL, but it would still be helpful).

After seeing how inconsistent Montador is, I don't want to bother re-signing him anymore. He's not a shut-down guy, and we need one of those. Not to mention he'll still be getting a raise even after his piss-poor play in the playoffs, because of his increased point totals during his stay with Buffalo the past couple seasons. I could see Montador making around 2.2+ million this off-season, which IMO is a huge overpayment for a guy as inconsistent as he is.


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04-19-2011, 06:35 PM
  #173
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If there is no new ownership in Dallas, it wouldn't surprise me to see the Sabres try for Richards' negotiating rights in trade as a way of getting the ball rolling earlier.
This bit of news from TSN isn't encouraging, in terms of teams hoping that Richards leaves Dallas:

Quote:
The National Hockey League and the Dallas Stars seem optimistic a new owner will soon be confirmed.

The NHL won't comment on the negotiations with prospective buyers, nor will the league identify those involved, but sources say one group has been given a 30-day exclusivity window to finalize the details of the purchase.
http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/dregerreport/

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04-19-2011, 07:12 PM
  #174
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So is it pretty much a given that Montador won't be back?

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04-19-2011, 07:14 PM
  #175
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So is it pretty much a given that Montador won't be back?
Well, he's not exactly playing his way into a big new contract at this point.

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