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MacK_Attack

Brian Rafalski announces retirement after 11 NHL seasons

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This is how I can see next years team.

Zetterburg-Datsyuk-Homer

Franzen-Filppula-Bert

Cleary-Helm-Hudler

Mursak-Abs-Eaves

O Reserves: Miller, Draper

Lidstrom-Stuart

Pitkanen-Kronwall

Wisniewski-Kindl

D Reserve: ?

Howard; Budaj

Really?!? Budaj?!?

He is a terrible goalie, even as a back-up. For the same amount of money, you could potentially get:

Hedberg, Osgood, Turco, Conklin, Harding, Theodore, Auld... even Nabokov possibly.

All of these guys are better than Budaj and I would much rather see them backing up Jimmy.

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so what are the aactual chances of Weber being interested in signing here? If not likely, i think Brent Burns would be a GREAT 2nd option.

Skeptikal likes this

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Really?!? Budaj?!?

He is a terrible goalie, even as a back-up. For the same amount of money, you could potentially get:

Hedberg, Osgood, Turco, Conklin, Harding, Theodore, Auld... even Nabokov possibly.

All of these guys are better than Budaj and I would much rather see them backing up Jimmy.

Fair enough. I just thought he was still relatively young.

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This whole "discussing his playing future," even though it's all but been confirmed that he's retiring signals to me that he will be immediately moving to the front office in some capacity.

The really intersting thought, that some will hate to hear, is could he be a candidate for assistant coach? Haha! This would warrant the smoke-screen that Kenny is putting up around his retirement tomorrow.

Bring on the hate!

The phrasing "Red Wings general manager Ken Holland and Brian Rafalski will host a press conference on Wednesday to discuss the veteran defenseman’s future with the organization," is somewhat interesting. I too wondered for a brief moment if he wouldn't be considered for the assistant coaching job, but I'm highly doubtful. Wouldn't be shocked at all though to see him get some role in the organization. He's one of the best U.S. players ever, a local guy and he won a championship with us. Why not?

Hockey13Playa likes this

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I don't think it's wise to put Fleischmann on a team that already employs the likes of Hudler and Filppula... it's just asking for trouble. If you are trading Hudler away and bring in Fleish, then that would be fine as you would be upgrading the position there. You're putting too many guys who have skill together and not really bringing any bangers.

I like Wiz, as I have said numerous times because I think he can put up 50+ points consistently and be a PP staple here. He also seems to play with a little bit of an edge that we could mold into a more disciplined style. Pitkanen, I'm not as sold on. He's young, but has had his ups and downs. He seems to be okay but another left handed shot? I mean if you are going to pay him 4.4 million, wouldn't you rather make a strong push for Bieksa for that same amount? Or you could save money on someone like Montador, Salo, Sopel, etc... since they'll more than likely be a 5-6-7 d-man. If Salei can fit in on the third pairing and do an okay job, I'm pretty sure any of those FA's can do the same, if not better.

Would you be okay if I moved Hudler to long island in exchange for Nabokov and signed scottie upshall to a contract similar to that of Hudlers?

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I say we put in offers on Weber and Doughty amd drive up the signing price for LA and NAS, maybe bettering our odds to signing Suter next season or something like that, its a s***ty thing to do offering like 7+ mill for either of them but in the long run its a good business move

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Would you be okay if I moved Hudler to long island in exchange for Nabokov and signed scottie upshall to a contract similar to that of Hudlers?

I would certainly entertain trading Hudler to Long Island for Nabokov and maybe a pick or prospect swap. I am not as sold on bring in Scottie Upshall. To a point, if we were to trade Hudler anywhere, I would entertain bringing Fleischmann in at that point to play with Zetterberg and Cleary.

What qualities do you see in Upshall that will help this team? More imporantly, qualities that we don't currenly employ (Eaves, Miller, Helm, Abdelkader, Mursak)

Edited by SwedeLundin77

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I would certainly entertain trading Hudler to Long Island for Nabokov and maybe a pick or prospect swap. I am not as sold on bring in Scottie Upshall. To a point, if we were to trade Hudler anywhere, I would entertain bringing Fleischmann in at that point to play with Zetterberg and Cleary.

What qualities do you see in Upshall that will help this team?

Well i feel he adds good speed and that grit we so lack right now. Saying that he still adds a little scoring touch and does have some hockey IQ. I've always liked him as a player and i feel that he is a hard player to play against and would be perfect on the wings third line to cause havoc as well as chip in offensively. Thats how i feel others may see things differently. I just really feel we need a shot in the arm up front. This may sound crazy but i feel the wings dont have as much skill as they once did. (Which is there greatest quality and makes them the team they have been). i feel a guy like Fleishman adds a lot of skill and flash and playmaking back into this lineup. I know its only one game, but this past year when they played the avalanche and got blown out pretty badly Fleishman tore us up and showed the skill he possesses. What do you guys think?

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Sounds good, but Richards makes nearly $8M now, why on Earth do you think that you would sign here for $6.7M? Or anywhere for that matter for $6.7M? Not unless you are looking at a "Cap Hit Ken Holland Special" that averages $6.7M but pays him $9M for 6 years and $1M for 6 years or some weird math equivilant that works out to be a lot more...

Yep, looking for the Ken Holland special ;) Plus i put 6.7 because no one should make more then Datsyuk up front. Richards obviously is a long shot as we'd be looking for D, but yah would be great.

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I say we put in offers on Weber and Doughty amd drive up the signing price for LA and NAS, maybe bettering our odds to signing Suter next season or something like that, its a s***ty thing to do offering like 7+ mill for either of them but in the long run its a good business move

This just gave me an interesting thought. What if we were to put in offer sheets for Weber and Doughty and both Nashville and LA decided not to match? We would owe both teams 4 first round picks each, but in which order would they get them? Is there some sort of rule in place to limit the number of RFAs you can sign? Otherwise you could just sign a big name RFA each off-season and just be ok with the fact that youll never have first round picks ever again.

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I find it highly unlikely that Holland would let four 1st round picks get away for Weber.

I also find it highly unlikely Nashville let their franchise player go...

That said, maybe Holland can work some magic to discourage Nashville from matching due to their internal cap. Front load the contract @ $20 million for the first 2 years, then taper it off so it comes out to about an $8 million cap hit. I am kinda thinking $8 million is too much for Weber, but with the cap going up, it could be a fair price in 2 years (compared to what the market will become)

5 year deal:

$10

$10

$8.5

$7

$6

($41.5 for 5 years)

Cap hit: $8.3

That said, I still can't see Holland willing to let his draft picks go. He said it before, drafting is gold in the Nu:NHL. I don't expect to see Weber wearing red and white anytime soon.

Though it would be killer if Lidstrom played for one more year, sign Weber to the scenario above, and then land Suter next season. So our top paring would be: Weber/Suter for 2012/2013

Holland hopefully is not stupid and realizes Weber is worth may more than 4 later 1st round picks.

You have to go back over ten years to find a single 1st round pick that even approaches Weber - and that is Kronwall in 2000. Not since 1983 have the Wings Drafted someone in the first round better than Weber.

For instance:

Would you trade Sheahan, Smith, McCollum and Kindl for Weber?

Hell yes! And those were 'good' picks for the end of the first round.

The Wings need to win now - they are losing Lidstrom soon and Datsyuk/Zetterberg/Franzen are all getting older, their window with this crop will be closing in a few years. Holland needs to make a big play. I don't think he will end up with a chance for Weber, but he better if given the opportunity.

Edited by egroen

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This just gave me an interesting thought. What if we were to put in offer sheets for Weber and Doughty and both Nashville and LA decided not to match? We would owe both teams 4 first round picks each, but in which order would they get them? Is there some sort of rule in place to limit the number of RFAs you can sign? Otherwise you could just sign a big name RFA each off-season and just be ok with the fact that youll never have first round picks ever again.

I would think Nashville would be the route to go - Stricter budget constraints plus the opportunity for Suter as the consolation prize. LA can afford to match any offer on Doughty pretty easily, IMO.

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A couple of options I wouldnt mind pursing that I heard mentioned on the radio are attempting to sign Mason Raymond and/or Devin Setoguchi to offer sheets. Both are restricted free agents and Vancouver/San Jose have cap restraints. I would love to add one or two 25 year olds to the forward corps and moving Hudler in order to sign a defenseman. This would be an outside the box approach.

I know Kenny doesnt like poaching RFA's, however we have a ton of cap space at our disposal with a relatively weak UFA market. I really hope he considers it this offseason.

Edit: *** Mason Raymond is an RFA in 2012. Still wouldnt mind poaching Setoguchi though.

Edited by wingsownnhl43

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I would think Nashville would be the route to go - Stricter budget constraints plus the opportunity for Suter as the consolation prize. LA can afford to match any offer on Doughty pretty easily, IMO.

Thats not my question. Hypothetically, if you signed two restricted free agents from two different teams and owed them both 4 first round picks as compensation, in which order would they receive your picks. Would Nashville get 2012, LA 2013, Nas 2014, etc. Is there some sort of rule about signing as many RFAs as you possibly can and giving up all of your first round picks from now until the rapture?

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Would you be okay if I moved Hudler to long island in exchange for Nabokov and signed scottie upshall to a contract similar to that of Hudlers?

I'd be ok with you moving Hudler to Alcatraz Island if it would free up his cap hit and get his useless little overpaid under-performing ass out of town.

Upshall would be a decent pick-up, but I'm not sure how much of an improvement over Eaves/Miller he would be. Does he kill penalties? At least with those other two guys they can play both sides of the puck and they're a known quantity. I would hate to think that Upshall would be on either of our top two lines though. I still would like another proven 30 goal scorer up there... Richards would be awesome... I would hope he takes a discount for guaranteed years and to play with a contender.

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Thats not my question. Hypothetically, if you signed two restricted free agents from two different teams and owed them both 4 first round picks as compensation, in which order would they receive your picks. Would Nashville get 2012, LA 2013, Nas 2014, etc. Is there some sort of rule about signing as many RFAs as you possibly can and giving up all of your first round picks from now until the rapture?

I believe its something like this say the Wings put offers in on Weber and Doughty and NAS doesnt match our offer we would owe them the picks once we do not have the required picks to sign that other RFA the deal cannot go through, all im saying is Doughty is making 3.4mill now you would think he's getting 5-7 range with this new deal so im saying the Wings offer like 6mill that way LA either loses him to us or they sign him to a min 6mill deal

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so what are the aactual chances of Weber being interested in signing here? If not likely, i think Brent Burns would be a GREAT 2nd option.

Zero. Neither are UFA's. Burns is after next year tho.

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verdict is out on Hudler. If Babs wants Hudler in his lineup at all, its hard to believe Kenny would go through the trouble of buying this guy out.

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As much as I don't want to see Raf go, this is a blessing in disguise. Holland is jumping up and down right now, Christmas came early for him. Rafalski was not playing like a $6 million D-man. I mean, Lids gets $6.2 mill and Raf gets $6 mill ... really? Was Lids only .2 million better ... NO! Had Rafalski not retired this year to wipe that off our cap, I sincerely doubt we'd be able to do any better next year than round 2 appearance. This knocks off that amount for us to go after someone in the 4-5 mill range and still have some $$ left over. Merry Christmas Holland.

wingsownnhl43 likes this

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I mean, Lids gets $6.2 mill and Raf gets $6 mill ... really? Was Lids only .2 million better ... NO!

Doesn't matter and we all know that Nick took a considerable discount in that contract. Going back and forth on Raf not living up to his contract when this deal was put in place years back we all applauded this. But yes, this was a huge gift for Kenny but a Rafalski is not easily replaced, my friends. Let that sink in please.

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One thing is for sure, they aren't going to be able to replace Rafalski's point production from one other guy. Look at where this guy has fallen into place when it comes to scoring at the end of the year. For his contract length with the Wings, he hasn't fallen lower than 24th. Every other year it has been in the top 12 in scoring for a defenseman. Trust me, Holland is not jumping up and down right now. He may be able to find 2 defensemen for 3 million each that will provide good D, but that scoring touch from the blueline is also hard to find. I suppose its a give and take. You get 2 solid stay at home defensemen, and you get less goals scored on you. At the same time though, the Wings fans will just have to settle with winning games 3-2 instead of 5-4.

Doesn't matter and we all know that Nick took a considerable discount in that contract. Going back and forth on Raf not living up to his contract when this deal was put in place years back we all applauded this. But yes, this was a huge gift for Kenny but a Rafalski is not easily replaced, my friends. Let that sink in please.

I think those that are jumping for joy at Raffi leaving should look at the stats. When you have a defenseman that is ranked in the top 12 for 4 of the 5 seasons he played in Detroit, wouldn't you have an "oh crap" moment? Especially considering you aren't going to be able to replace that production? Maybe instead of replacing the points, you add in hard nosed defensemen. Then you win more low scoring games.

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The Detroit Free Press has a little poll of who Holland should go after for a replacement....Kevin Bieska is in the lead with...JOVO RIGHT BEHIND HIM <_<

Freep story and poll

Bieska with 43% and Jovo with 36%...followed by Kaberle with 8%

I really don't understand the attraction with Ed Jovanovski? Even Helene St. James, who wrote the article, seems to think its a good idea.

Why aren't there other choices like Markov, Wisniewski, Brewer, Ehrhoff?

Best bang for the buck might be Wisniewski or Ehroff. I'm sure Kenny is on top of this. He probably knows more than you and me.

One thing is for sure, they aren't going to be able to replace Rafalski's point production from one other guy.

Wisniewski 10G 41A

Rafalski 4G 44A

You can replace his point production with one guy. I know Wis played 12 games more but it's close ...

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