Coming into the year, most of us really didn't know what to expect this year. far to many question marks. I thought anywhere from 6th to 10th is where we would finish up. baring changes I still think that. But we are also seeing clearly what our needs are. the D is coming along just fine. G is set and strong. We have several good small play makers. We lack big scoring forwards. In fact we need 3. We have 6 guys, that when healthy can provide 3 strong pairs of small playmakers: Dat, Z, Fil, Brunner, Tatar, and if they bring him up Nyquist. But they need some size to be put with them to work the best. Cleary can't do it, Abby is a checker, Andersson checker, Bert-done, franzen-lazy, sammy-walking MASH unit. That is about 15 million spent on 6 guys that can't do what we need. But it also is the amount needed to pay 3 good power forwards. the trick is, how to free up the money and aquire the players needed. We could have 3 good forward lines with the right moves. See below:
Power forward-datsyuk (playmaker)-Brunner (sniper)
Nyquist (playmaker)-Z (sniper/playmaker)-power forward
tatar (sniper)-Filppula (playmaker)-Power forward
4th line piece together out of Abby, Andersson, Sheahan, helm, Emmerton, TooToo, eaves, etc....
Now if you look at potential numbers of the top 6 that we have, yes datsyuk and Z are 70+ point guys. Brunner looks like a guy that can score 25-30 goals. tatar is a 20+ goal scorer. Nyquist is a passer and so is filppula.
The question is who and how? Would Umberger waive his NTC to come play on a line with datsyuk? Is Buf getting ready to sell off? if so would Stafford fit in on the 3rd with tatar and Filppula? Many possibilities, now Holland needs to get to work and find us the right mix of power forwars to go with the small skill guys.