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Member Since 30 Jun 2011
Offline Last Active Oct 09 2011 01:47 AM

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In Topic: Grade Holland

01 August 2011 - 04:31 PM

I didn't say White would match Rafalski's offense. I in fact said the opposite. I said it was a win for Holland on the fact that White was one of the best options available to fill the offensive hole, and brings his own advantages over what Rafalski brought.

The current formula works as you have stated. However, the cap increased at a rate much quicker than expected by the league, so teams are actually spending more now than before the lockout. The cap formula will likely be changed, and the cap for 2011-12 will be lower than 2010-11. Depending on how much they lower it, it wouldn't be surprising to see a reduction/buyout situation similar to what happened in 2005. Although I would expect only the cap hit to be reduced.

As for Emmerton and Mursak, both are projected as top-six forwards. They certainly can reach that level. Maybe not this year or next, but in five years? Eight years?

If he wanted to fill the offensive hole left by Rafalski he would have went hard at Ehroff, who would have filled that hole nicely, as well as give us a first pairing defenseman for a while. Heck, Tomas Kaberle would have been a closer fit offensively to Rafalski as well - but that is a whole other debate. I like White, I am not mad we signed him, I am just pointing out that we needed to number one pairing defenseman in order to get better - and we didn't.

As for the salary cap, I really don't know where you are getting your information from. The salary cap is tied in to league revenue and while we have no idea what the terms of the CBA will be, it's safe to say with the new TV Deal, it'll probably go up again, just as it has every year since the lockout - or it may remain static. It will not however be lowered, not with revenue's increasing. They may adjust the 5% escalator rule that is undoubtedly a tad bit excessive, or we may see the salary cap floor lowered, but the ceiling will not be lowered, end of story.

Emmerton and Mursak will never be top 6 forwards, NEVER. Look no further then their AHL numbers to see this to be the truth, Mursak has never cleared 45 points, and Mursak has never hit 40.

Here is one of the lating scouting reports on your budding top 6 guys:

Corey Emmerton:

Emmerton was drafted to be a top-six forward but has morphed into a probable bottom-six forward. He has outstanding hockey sense and projects as a useful utility player who will likely get his start as a 12th or 13th forward. Although he has a new three-year contract, Red Wings general manager Ken Holland has said Emmerton must "play his way onto the team" in 2011-12. If he doesn't, he'll be placed on waivers in order to return to the AHL. He's at a critical point in his career.

"I haven't heard positive reports on forward Cory Emmerton, with one scout saying he's likely a career AHLer." - Hockey Prospectus

Jan Mursak:

"Mursak doesn't have an above-average offensive projection, as his skills and instincts are more of the average variety, albeit not poor either. He could use just a tad more strength to really help his case to push for a full-time job. His development is more or less done, and he is what he is."

"An average third line winger who safely projects into a bottom-six."

Mursak will be welcomed, he will be good on the third or fourth line, but his lack of offensive power and ability to play quality defense against the leagues top lines will keep him out of the top 6. I am sure we will see him on the PK though.

Emmerton is a different story. I have not seen him projected anywhere close to a top 6 forward since 2006-07. He is what he is, and that is a possible 4th liner who will not be around in 2 years. Personally, I would rather waive Emmerton and bring Conner up to play with Mursak, and Helm. Can you imagine the flat out speed of that 4th line. It would throw an insane curveball at opposing coaches trying to match up lines.

In Topic: Grade Holland

30 July 2011 - 04:36 PM

On Ericsson, at first I raised an eyebrow like pretty much everybody else at the amount Ericsson was offered. I would've been glad to have him back, but I didn't think he was worth that much.

But when you look at all the ridiculous overpayments to free agents those first few days of crazy free agency, it makes it a little bit easier to take. With that in mind, I would not have been shocked if Ericsson would've been offered more on the market by another team. It's just that Holland re-signed him first before a lot of the absurd overpayments happened and before a lot of the smoke cleared, hence most people in here going bats**t for better/worse.

Also, keep in mind that Datsyuk and Krownall at the times when they were offered their current contracts, they really underperformed some as well when it counts most in the post-season and a lot of people were going bats**t then about their contracts. Now, those deals are looking better and better every day. Now, I don't think Ericsson has that same potential as Datsyuk and Kronwall, but I still think he has room to improve. Hopefully in due time, he will live up to this contract. Unfortuantely, we won't know if that will happen yet.

Fair enough. You actually make pretty strong points that have me less peeved over the signing.

In Topic: Grade Holland

30 July 2011 - 02:00 AM

Assuming the offseason is over with Draper's retirement, then here is my analysis.

From last year's roster, we have the following changes:

Mike Modano - retired; replaced by Cory Emmerton
Kris Draper - retired; replaced by Jan Mursak

Brian Rafalski - retired; replaced by Ian White
Jonathan Ericsson - re-signed
Ruslan Salei - UFA; replaced by Mike Commodore

Chris Osgood - retired; replaced by Ty Conklin

Modano was not playing in the top 12 at the end of the season. And the way he had been playing all year was no significant improvement over what Emmerton is likely to bring. Win.

Draper missed part of the season, and was effective offensively when he first came back, but ultimately he was a spare part alongside Modano, rotating in occasionally. Mursak brings the speedy grinding game Draper built a career on, his only loss is the faceoffs. Mursak also has offensive capability if Babcock wants to add speed to the scoring lines. Win.

Rafalski had become somewhat injury prone and was not the slick skater he used to be, which was affecting his defensive game. But his overall game, due largely to his offensive prowess, placed him still as one of the league's better defensemen and a legit #1 defenseman on most teams. White brings the kind of skating Rafalski used to have and is an aggressive player and effective shot blocker, but his offensive game is basically a 'B' version of Rafalski. There weren't many options that could have been called a win, so while this is an overall downgrade in performance I am going to call this a Win due to the fact that White was perhaps the best option available to replace Rafalski.

Salei had basically played himself out of the lineup by the end of the season, and only played during the playoffs because he was a veteran and Kindl was a rookie. Commodore is a definite upgrade in physical game and defensive game, and that's what matters for the role required. Win.

Osgood had definitely been playing better after a couple of off seasons. Unfortunately, there has to be a "when healthy" in there for this past season. A healthy Osgood is better than some starters and just about every backup, but a healthy Ozzie isn't available. Win.

There's not much Holland could have done better this offseason, so it's hard for me to grade him down. You can make the argument that he has a lot of cap space so he should have signed someone; but the CBA expires next summer and Holland likely wants to save cap space because the cap will probably be lowered.

So re-signing Ericsson, the addition of two young Wing forwards who could be top-sixers in a few years, upgrading the third pair, signing a very solid backup, and replacing Rafalski with the best possible option available. That to me gets Holland an A-; the Ericsson contract should have been dealt with sooner, and no sign of any attempt to get a top offensive d-man before.

White for Rafalski, win? I know you are trying to make a point, and bend a lot of things in doing so, but I am going to have to whole heartedly disagree with you on this one. There is no way White will replicate Rafalski's 48 point, +11 season (and that was last year, by far his worst year)

I am curious what your source is in citing that "the cap will probably be lowered" next year?

Everything I have read leads to the exact opposite of your statement. You see the cap is directly reliant on league revenues, since the league has been increasing their profits, the cap has continued to rise. Projections are holding historically steady in a continue rise in revenue next year, hence another cap bump - just as there has been every year since the lockout.

The ONLY way the cap will be lowered is if the league revenues flat line or dip -- which, with the past 7 years as an indicator, ain't going to happen.

And lastly, there is quite literally ZERO change that either Emmerton or Mursak ever see the top 6. Nada, zip, zero, zilch chance. Both will be career 4th liners, and in my opinion, neither will make the team better. Not saying Draper or Modano were better, just pointing out that the inclusion of Mursak and Emmerton into the lineup will not make the team "better".

I do agree that Commadore is an upgrade over Salei, however think the Ericsson signing was an absolute joke. How can people applaud Holland for "not overpaying" with a straight face and give him a good grade with this decision?

In Topic: Your Favorite Red Wing Player

26 July 2011 - 04:22 PM

1) Who is your favorite Detroit Red Wing player overall to wear the Red Wings Logo? Steve Yzerman of course, but that is more or less a default answer for nearly all Wings fans. So my other would have to be Lidstrom or Hank.

2) Who was your favorite Detroit Red Wing player that joined the red wings? (Non drafted by Wings, could be threw Trade / FA / Waiver etc...) Bertuzzi and Hossa are up there but my favorite had to be Aaron Downey - I liked him a lot and new he was a great team guy. Gave us something we needed, and was a big part throughout the regular season in keeping an eye out for his teammates as well as punishing those who stepped over the line:


3) Which current player would you dream of them joining the Wings? Ryan Suter

4) Which are the players that really "hurt / bugged" you when they left the Red Wings to join another team? Hossa for sure. I wanted to keep him badly, even if it cost us Franzen.

5) Is there a player that you never wanted him on the team ... but eventually joined the team? Jason Williams, the second time… WOOF!

In Topic: Grade Holland

21 July 2011 - 10:00 PM

The problem with your theory is while Holland could have made trades, it would plug a hole while creating two new holes. Detroit doesn't have lots of assets unless you trade players you don't want to trade. Of course Holland could have probably traded Filppula, Kronwall, Helm, or Smith, but outside of that who? Trading any of those players, you just created new (bigger) holes.

Smith is our future, so why trade him? He's going to be a core player in a couple years.

Helm is a unique type player and a fireball, he's the type of player you need to win championships.

Kronwall's contract is arguably one of the best contract (cap hits) in the entire league. His cap hit is only $3 million, Holland can't replace him for under $6 million per year. So why trade him?

Filppula is a great player, but overpaid. He's not even a 20 goal guy. He's a good two-way guy, and a borderline 2nd liner. He doesn't really have lots of 'trade value' unless you package him up with a Darren Helm or a Brendan Smith. Then after you trade him, a new hole just opened up. He's an integral piece to Detroit's 2008 cup win, and was just as important in the 2009 run. He's a solid depth guy that helps Red Wings win championships.

I guess Franzen could be trade bait, but to be honest, I don't think he has much value. He's a playoff beast when healthy, but that's the problem, the guy is made of glass and has what... 9 years left on his contract? So perhaps Holland could offer him for an overpaid fringe 2nd liner that disappears in the playoffs, but what's the point? Aren't the Detroit Red Wings playing for the playoffs? Why trade the 2nd best playoff performer on the team for a fringe 2nd liner who will probably disappear?

I think people over-value the assets on this team. Detroit is a good team because the way it's built and the core (Lids, Dats, Zetterberg) with good supporting cast that compliment each other. Detroit doesn't have any real assets unless you want to package up some type of crazy deal just to trade (i.e. Helm, Kronwall, Smith).

There's no point in trading unless Holland can get a steal... but, unfortunately, that only happens on NHL11 or HFboards "trade proposal" message boards..

I understand that and wasn't saying he should have made a trade persay, rather illustrating that there were other routes a GM could take to bring a guy in opposed to free agency.

I also agree with you about our traceable assets, or the lack thereof.

All that said, I gave him a C because we didn't get Amy better as a team -- which in my opinion would warrant an A or B. On the flipside, I don't think we got worse as a team or let anyone "get away" -- if that was the case I would have given him a D or an F.

He did an average job, which is a C. Nothing horrible, nothing great, but average.