I'm pretty high on our prospect pool. Why? Becase the talent, yes, but mostly because we're good at picking and developing. I get that we don't have any obvious SUPERSTARS!!! in the immediate pipeline, but...when was the last time we really did? I mean guys that we KNEW were going to be HUGE. Franzen has been a consistent top-six producer and was a force to be reckoned with earlier in his NHL career. Was anyone jumping for joy when we drafted him? Kid SUPERSTARS!!! are exceedingly rare. And they haven't been our bread and butter for awhile now. We try to get a number of solid players and one or two gems. That's doable. Hell, Tatar's already making a case for himself as a future 40-goal scorer. As a point of comparison, Franzen had 16 points in his first season with the Wings (12 goals, 4 assists).
About Pulkkinen, because everyone seems to hate him - he's Nyquist-quick, is a pure sniper (something we absolutely, positively do not have on the current roster), and competes very, very hard (e.g. can take a lot of abuse and just keep on going). Small? You bet. Facing a real uphill battle at the NHL level? Without a doubt. But every player starts as a prospect. (Terrible argument, I know.)
I expect sheahan to be here next year with glendening (unfortunately)
What's wrong with Glendening? I like what he's brought to the team. Hasn't scored, but he's not going to be a scorer at the NHL level. He's going to be a bottom-six grinder. There's a bit of Helm in him.
It never used to be a thing, but lately it's started popping up. I think the general consensus on St. James is that she doesn't really matter one way or another, but a small minority tend to think of her as a company-line hack. Presumably because she's a beat writer and therefore tends to just report on what management says, rather than doing more in-depth analysis like other sports journalists.
Actually, I think the biggest knock against her is that she tends to make assumptions and leaps in logic, rather than just straight-up reporting the facts and leaving it at that. Also, her writing itself isn't great, and she's definitely a company-line cheearleader.
As for Dats - good for him! I'd assumed they'd give the C to Ovechkin (being Ovie) or maybe Kovalchuk (KHL loyalty). He was definitely my pick, though.
I wonder how much Sochi - and maybe the possibility of being the captain - has been weighing on him. He's been good this season, but also a bit off.
Girardi is a shutdown defenseman who can move the puck well. He can log silly-big minutes, play in all situations, block shots like a machine, and be a solid leader. In theory, he'd complement Kronwall or Smith very nicely. At the very least, he'd give us a good top four. Ouellet projects high, and he might actually end up being a lot like Girardi. But, as always, I'm thinking about a Cup, and within the next two seasons (our core is old; our window is closing). Ouellet might not even make the team next fall, and if he does, it's very likely he'd be on the third pairing. That's a far cry from what Girardi could give us in the here and now.
Same idea with the two Callahans. Except, I'm not sold on Mitchell being anything more than an NHL fourth-line agitator who pots a goal here and there. (Yes, I know, he's scoring in Grand Rapids. But that doesn't impress me a whole lot.) Callahan could play on the first line and give us some more speed and tenacity and all-around grit, kind of like Helm, but he can play in a scoring role. My only concern with him is that he's injury prone. He's not big, so his style of play means he's not going to be highly effective for much longer, unless he becomes a great two-way player or something. Still, anyone who wants the Cup and thinks Mitchell can help the cause about as much as Ryan would is being a Wings homer. I get not wanting to spend money, but come on.
Not that we're getting Girardi or Callahan, never mind both. But if you're gonna dream, might as well dream big.
They would be affordable, needed, and adequately used if these trades were made.
For the record, I'm not sure we should trade for either of them. But we should definitely pursue them in the summer, assuming they test the waters.
B) no finishing work from any of our forwards there were many good chances
C) ducks mighty difficult to beat at home
D) all the above
I'm actually tempted to blame the whole thing on Smith's brain fart. Many nights this season it's been a case of us playing a good overall game and battling hard and doing the things we set out to do - but then someone makes a boneheaded mistake and the puck ends up in our net, and that ends up more or less deciding the game. Often there are multiple such lapses. I mean, I'm not saying the PP didn't kill us. And I'm not saying we're not missing our injured players. It's just, on the whole, I think simple, stupid mistakes have cost us an incredible number of points in the standings this season. Clean that oh-whoops-my-stick-should've-been-on-the-ice-my-bad s*** up and maybe we get a point out of this game.
Then again, shoot the puck a millimeter to the right and it doesn't hit the post and maybe we get a point out of the game. Or bury any of our countless chances right in front of Hiller and maybe we get a point out of the game. So, I dunno, ignore me.
Now we have something to build on, with the prospect of getting 3 to 4 guys back Thursday in New York.