I'm not sure what your meaning is when you say that we could have "easily" gotten Clarkson in the offseason. The guy's current contract began before free agency commenced in 2010, and, as far as I can remember, New Jersey never placed him on the trading block. Travis Moen was likewise already under contract during the 2011 offseason, and the Habs specifically noted that he was not on the table at the deadline.
I can't help but think that you're looking at Nystrom with goggles tinted by hindsight. He scored 16 goals this season, sure; but he had totaled 25 in his roughly 250 games before that; he was coming off of a rather unpleasant incident; and he had been waived by a Wild team that couldn't exactly be called deep in any fashion. More, the Wings had a rather extensive glut in the bottom six; Holmstrom, Bertuzzi, Cleary, Hudler, Mursak, Helm, Abdelkader, Eaves, Miller and Emmerton were all candidates for those lines. Too, acquiring Nystrom would have required waiving somebody, as the roster limit had been reached.
Well, part of making good moves is signing players no one else think will succeed. Kind of like Holland did with Cleary many years ago. You've gotta take chances sometimes to be a step ahead of other teams. Someone took a chance on Nystrom, and it paid off.
Plus, some of those "so-called" bottom six players are interchangeable. However, we don't have any player like a Clarkson or Moen. Abby is sort of like Nystrom I guess.
But guys like Nyquist, Hudler and Holmstrom aren't really bottom six players. They need to play with more skilled players to be effective. But frequently, they're just thrown on the bottom lines and that's why those bottom lines have no identity.
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