I know what you mean, an example of this could be Ottawa. The Sens probably won't have much else going for them this year, but with Chris Neil, Zack Smith, Zenon Konopka, and eventually Matt Carkner in their lineup, they won't be getting pushed around. At the same time, Chicago is a contending team, and we saw them pick up Dan Carcillo and Jamal Mayers, instead of finesse forwards that would have definitely produced more offense, such as Sergei Samsonov, who was available. Los Angeles is a contending team that we saw get Ethan Moreau as opposed to a guy like Brunnstrom (who was available at the time, as well), who clearly has more offensive potential. In addition, Kevin Westgarth just signed a 2-year extension with them. I don't think the GM of a contending team would waste a roster spot and cap space on someone they didn't feel helped the team.
You forgot to mention Lilja going to the Flyers.