Ok, so what would you have done? Keep in mind, Suter and Parise wanted to play together, and Parise is from Minnesota, and Columbus and Nashville don't want to trade with us. Would you really overpay for Doan or Semin when we have some young forwards ready to step in and play? Why not just see what we have this season, then add to it.
I agree we need to add someone on the blueline, but if Suter would rather join Parise in Minnesota and Nashille didn't want to trade us Weber, you would you add? And how would you add?
I think it's clear that drafting and developing players is the way to go now. The way the FA market is under the current CBA, it's really not worth getting locked into 13 year deals, and making players that may not even be the best guys on your team your highest paid.
Instead of what I would've done, how about what I'd like to see? And that is: a more balanced, well-rounded, "dynamic" team - one that can, of course, play the puck-possession game, but can also change things up if that system falters.
We have skill. With the puck. When we have the puck. Beyond that, we're vanilla. We're not big. We're not physical. We're not nasty. We're not fast. We're not young. We can't punish on the forecheck. We can't play lockdown D. Our goalie is good, but we can't expect him to win games for us. Our special teams aren't spectacular.
All of which is to say: disrupt our system, and we fall apart. We have no fallback plan, no other looks we can throw the opposition. No other hats to wear."You say it like it's so simple, disrupting our system."
It is. Take away our time and space. Rush us. Take the body to us, hitting a man at every opportunity. Crash, bang, punish, wear down. Block shots. Box us out to the tops of the circles when we're on the forecheck. Shut down Datsyuk (he'll be battling an injury that has him at 75%, at best), shut down Zetterberg (ditto. Moreover, he's got a bad back; he can only take so much punishment.)
We've seen it done before. We saw it done again just a few months ago."We lost because of some unlucky bounces. Sometimes the puck luck just isn't there."
Look at the final scores of each game. It was a low-scoring, grinding, D-centric series. That's not us, that's not the game we like to play. We were forced to play the Predators' game. Defeat was, in retrospect, pretty much guaranteed - because, again: throw a wrench in our system and everything goes to s***.
We need new dimensions, new ingredients, new possibilities. Take our top-6, for example - it's basically six different versions of the same player. How about a power-forward, a guy who will crash and bang and drive to the net, a guy who won't be boxed out to the perimeter? (Nash, Ryan, Doan, Hartnell, Lucic, et al.)
We need a shot in the arm, new bood. Something to be excited about.
We need to sign big UFAs and/or trade.
Drafting? Unless we plan on tanking (or trading), we're not drafting high. And while, yes, we've found some gems in later rounds, that was when we were ahead of the curve. Now every team looks at Europe, digs for diamonds.