What makes you think Filppula is going to give us a good return? So Selanne likes him. Teemu is also 41 and not likely to be playing much longer. So the Ducks are going to trade for him so Teemu can play with is buddy when they don't know how much longer he'll play? So he sucks, lets trade him, and we'll get someone really good in return? What value does Cleary have? He's old, often injured and overpaid. Emmerton? What picks and prospects?
I always have to laugh when fans think our players suck, but yet they think they're incredibly valuable to someone else. If small skilled players aren't the "in" thing, why would other teams want them?
Aside from Dats and Z, who aren't going anywhere, we have no guys who are worth anything alone. Flip and Franzen are the only guys we have that we can live without that will be of any interest to teams that might deal top-end talent, and they both come with significant caveats.
Flip's a very valuable trade asset generally, but not in the final year of his contract, hence why I was suggesting moving him the last couple years especially considering our depth at center and the impending retirement of Lidstrom.
Franzen alone won't be worth as much as he would've a couple years ago either, so again, only thing that might work, and it's still a stretch at this point, is a package with Franzen and Flip and a maybe a prospect and draft pick.
The idea of Cleary having any value is absurd. He might find a way to get it going down the stretch, but even if a team would trade for him, it's not going to net us much in return.
Bottom line, we need major help on D. We need a top-pairing guy who can come in and stabilize the defense and play a lot of minutes. No way that comes in without Franzen and Flip going out, and they won't go alone. We don't have much to work with at this point and we're up against a wall, desperate. The asking price will be high, but Holland doesn't have many choices. Franzen's been floating and inconsistent and it makes sense to just cut the experiment off if we can add a solid defenseman. Flip, as said, is in the final year of his contract, and there's no guarantee that we'll sign him anyways. Sure, we "want" to keep him, but if he expects a big raise and our defense hasn't improved, I have to wonder if we'll even be able to afford him under the new cap. It's early enough in this weird season that Flip might have more value to a team looking to add a strong, experienced 2-way guy especially if they think they can sign him this summer.
And worst case scenario, I think Flip gets dealt at the deadline even if no other moves are made. If nothing gets done before, I don't think this team has a prayer of landing in the playoffs, so dealing Flip for even mid to low draft picks is a better scenario for the team than holding on to him until July 1 just for the sake of holding on to him. They can still try and sign him this summer if they really want to, after all.
But any way you shake it, we're between a rock and a hard place. We need to shake the team up, but we have no leverage and very few worthwhile assets. Add to that the likelihood of a dry free-agent season and we could be in serious trouble for some time. We haven't been a destination spot for a few years now, and it's only going to get worse the way things are going. That's why I really think Holland has to do all he can to make a big move to improve the D. He's got to send a message to this team and the rest of the league that he still wants to win. These current Wings players (sans Dats and Z) could really use a reminder that they're expendable; maybe it'll finally get their feet moving and they'll magically start "hearing Babcock's message."
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