Thrashers Extend Qualifying Offers To Three Players

Our old pal Craig Custance twittered …or is it twitted…or twittled…anyway, he informed us by way of “twitter” yesterday that the “Thrashers have made qualifying offers to at least three potential restricted free agents – Kari Lehtonen, Jim Slater and Colby Armstrong.”

This now leaves Jordan Lavallee, Scott Lehman, Grant Lewis, Chris Thorburn, Dan Turple and Boris Valabik as impending RFAs that the team will need to extend offers to.

However, as Ben Wright of the Blueland Blog writes, “The Thrashers have a lot of RFA’s and it won’t shock me if some of them don’t receive qualifying offers”.

If so…who amoung those renaining might be left out in the Thrashers’ plans for the future? Well, we’ll find out come Monday.

Would You Like To Play A Game?

Here’s a little activity to keep you busy today…you know, instead of actually working!

See if you can name this team I’m describing.

This NHL franchise finished a season with a record of 22 wins, 46 losses and 14 overtime losses…good enough for 58 points in the standings. They had the worst goals against average of 3.78, surrendering a league-high 316 goals for the season.

This team had the second worst penalty kill unit, (78.8%)… third worst shots on goal average, (28.8), fourth worst shots-against average, (33.2) and won only 45.9% of the faceoffs taken, an NHL low that season.

Although this team had a rookie phenom who scored 39 goals and 102 overall points, the second most productive skater only had 12 goals and 58 points. Their young goalkeeper that played in 50 games, starting 45, compiled a record of 13-27-6 with a 3.25 GAA and .898 SV%.

Name the team and season.

Hint: It’s not the Atlanta Thrashers.

Long Term Performance

Here is a very interesting piece done by timmyf of the Thrashing About blog titled “Long-Term Team Performance And The ‘5-Year Plan’”. Great work on the graph chart there Timmy…and a good write up too.

TJ’s Draft Party Update

For those of you choosing to enjoy the NHL Entry Draft Party with the gang and I over at TJ’s Friday night , I’ve been informed that my contact person at the Atlanta Spirit L.L.C. will be providing a few goodies to add to the prizes that’ll be raffled off. Those items include mini hockey sticks that have been signed by Garnet Exelby and Zach Bogosian as well as tickets to upcoming Thrashers games this season.

Tim and Mark Ecclestone have already graciously provided a prize package that includes four premium seats to a Thrashers game…and the lucky winner of that prize will also be treated to a ride on the Zamboni between periods of that game.

Oh…and that’s on top of the $1 draft beers that they’ll be serving up and the chance to meet new AJC Thrashers beat writer Chris Vivlamore as well chat with some of the former Atlanta Flames.

And if all that isn’t enough…it seems as though we are going to be graced by the presence of the entire Blueland Chronicle gang as announced hereand hereand even here.

Uh-huh, I know…I know.

95 comments Add your comment

R. Stroz

June 25th, 2009
7:23 am

Smitty

June 25th, 2009
8:31 am

2005-2006 Penguins

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
8:46 am

The answer is the ‘05-’06 Penguins (the ‘03-’04 Pens also finished with 58 points).

I hope they tend offers to Lewis, Thorburn, and Valabik (though I wouldn’t be heart broken to see him traded).

My draft wish list is Evander Kane and in the later rounds pick up Ray Ferraro’s kid.

Toby

June 25th, 2009
8:47 am

Bye Thorburn…Roster spots are getting too valuable to keep you around.

Is this a sign and trade for Kari or does this solidify Pavs as being the goalie on the blocks?

Toby

June 25th, 2009
8:48 am

Oh…I really hope we keep Valabik. I know he was pretty bad most of his rookie year, but he reminds me a lot of Chara when he first started playing…

Toby

June 25th, 2009
8:52 am

…from ‘99-’01 with the Isles. We won’t get the pts. that Chara puts up, but I think he could use that size to clear the crease and eventually have a great +/-

Rawhide

June 25th, 2009
8:57 am

Smitty & Hip Czech – Yup…you are correct. And two seasons later they are playing in the SCF.

The next year they win the thing.

Big Shooter

June 25th, 2009
9:09 am

Rawhide, I believe the correct term is “tweeted”. I don’t know, sounds kind of naughty to me.

GaVaHokie

June 25th, 2009
9:17 am

I was going to guess Penguins or Washington… I guess it’s Pittsburgh based on the above replies.

Toby… it only guarantees we hold Kari’s rights past July 1st and we won’t lose him to Free Agency. He can still be traded. I think the best scenario is to go ahead and wait for other teams to make qualifying offers for him. If anyone offers more than $3 million, we’ll get 1st Round compensation for him. We always have the option of matching.

Nikita

June 25th, 2009
9:38 am

I think we’re keeping both Thorburn and Valabik. I think we’re keeping Valabik in the hopes that he opens up, and I don’t think that’s an unrealistic goal. I think we keep Thorburn because management LOVES HIM. Seriously, I think he and Cunneyworth might have matching tattoos.

As to the others:

Jordan Lavallee is meh — personally I think he’s good insurance, but I don’t know that he’ll ever make the big team.

Scott Lehman is seriously meh and has whiffed at camp twice now — he should not receive an offer.

Grant Lewis — I think we should sign, but I doubt we’ll ever play him. His style is too much at odds with the Anderson system, so either he’ll slowly convert or we’ll need to trade him to, say, the Devils or Phoenix or some other team that relies on defensive defensemen. However, I like Lewis and think he’s very talented, and could be a valuable asset in either case after a little development.

Dan Turple — meh. He’s not bad, but he has a long way to go and we have several equally or more promising goalies in the pipe. Unless the team has a specific destiny in mind, I think he should not receive an offer.

It’s not mentioned above, but I think Oystrick is a UFA. And I don’t think we’ll resign him. I like him, but for whatever reason I haven’t seen a lot of enthusiasm for him. And if we pick up any more D men we’ll have to shed him or Exelby or Valabik — I don’t think either of the others will go.

GaVaHokie

June 25th, 2009
9:42 am

What would everyone think about trading a second round pick for Brandon Dubinsky? He’s a relatively big, tough Center. He gets a lot of shots on net. Kind of underutilized on the Wing in NY due to Drury and Gomez playing the middle.

The Rangers seem willing to part with him. They have a lot of salary issues to deal with this summer. Plus they want to keep Antropov and sign a top free agent.

Dubinsky could use a change of scenery.

LAC

June 25th, 2009
9:52 am

Why slater,he is NOT part of the future he part of the past,he has done almost nothing since being here… Why bring back a player who does NOT help your club ?

Toby

June 25th, 2009
9:54 am

Hokie

I like Dubinsky who I think has the best years ahead, but I think there would be a massive log jam at Center. With White, Peavs, and now Slater getting an offer, I think the centers are done. We need a winger.

Toby

June 25th, 2009
9:55 am

oh…and Reasoner signed…

Glovesave29

June 25th, 2009
9:55 am

Sorry I can’t make it to the party, gotta hit the beach…but for those going, get a 8×10 and not a puck for Dan Bouchard’s auto – he makes a great big one and ususally puts a personal message on it. Definately one of the nicer signatures I have in the collection!

Keep Kane with the fourth – I like someone with grit and determination and an attitude in front of the net. He will pay more immediate dividends, and we certainly need that considering Kovy’s sit-CHEE-a-shen. You can have issues at times with Euro players adjusting to the 15′ thinner ice surface. MPS is more of a long shot, so I hope DW stops listening to the chatter out there meant to throw him off and take the guy who can also be marketing gold.

Cut ties with Turple…he’s a waste. Cannot stop even ECHL shots.

ThrasherTim

June 25th, 2009
10:02 am

Glad to hear we’re trying to retain Slater. I know some folks haven’t been enamored with him based on where he was picked but I feel like he is coming into his own, understanding his role on the team and being a great energy guy. I feel like last year’s injuries really slowed down what was becoming his best season.

We definitely need to see if Valabik can grow into Anderson’s system and be the enforcer we’ve been dying for all these years.

Toby

June 25th, 2009
10:15 am

This makes me nervous…Leafs have nothing other than overpayment that would get me interested…

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sport…rticle1196039/

Atlanta Thrashers general manager Don Waddell admitted Wednesday he is listening to tenders for the fourth overall selection at the draft Friday evening, and he revealed he has swapped trade ideas with his Toronto Maple Leafs counterpart.

“We’re certainly going to look at the trade market, but we’ve had no serious offers,” said Waddell, who was asked if he has been contacted by Burke. “We have talked to everyone. He has a better chance of getting to No.1 if he already has the [No.]4.”

Don Waddell

June 25th, 2009
10:26 am

I will finish ruining this team yet!

Burke will screw me and I’ll enjoy it.

If I only had a brain.

Smitty

June 25th, 2009
10:32 am

If Burke can get to #1 from #4 why can’t we?

Toby

June 25th, 2009
10:35 am

Because Burke will overpay. Isles stated they won’t take less then Schenn from Toronto for that pick. If that’s the price, I want nothing to do with it.

Brian Burke

June 25th, 2009
10:36 am

Because I’m smart and Don is stupid.

It’s really important to have seriously stupid friends.

LAC

June 25th, 2009
10:45 am

Jim Slater is… AT best an average ECHL player,he is NOT NHL calaber
player plain & simple… The ONLY reason he is retained is the Michigan ties with waddell, any other GM would CUT him… He is terrible,
we have NOT won with him in the past and won’t in the future.

Rawhide

June 25th, 2009
10:51 am

I personally don’t have a problem with Don waddell “listening” to offers. If someone is willing to give a king’s ransom to procure our #4, then he should at least hear what they have to offer.

“Listening” and “doing” are two different things. Kinda like how I “listen” to the Divine Mrs. R tell me how she’d like to have the family room painted a mustard yellow color. :grin:

GaVaHokie

June 25th, 2009
11:03 am

If Tomas Kaberle is willing to waive his no trade clause to come to Atlanta, I would move down to #7 in a heartbeat… Toronto will definitely take Brayden Schenn.

Phoenix will probably take Jeff Cowen which means LA and Atlanta will split the difference between MPS and Kane.

We can get Kaberle and still “get the guy we wanted all along”. ;)

Smoothie

June 25th, 2009
11:04 am

LAC, give it a rest dude. You are flat wrong in this instance. Stop bemoaning the fact Slater isn’t a Top 6 center when you damn well know the 2nd half of a 1st round is a total crapshoot. There are few guarantees in the NHL and Slater at #30 was hardly a guarantee to play Top 6 mins. He’s coming along and still has 3rd C potential. Look around the NHL and you’ll see plenty of 3rd and 4th line C who are paid a heckuva lot more than Jimmy Slater.

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
11:09 am

What would we have to gain by swapping the 4 and 7 picks? I don’t think this is an exceptionally deep draft so an extra draft pick does nothing.

There are no Leafs players that would help us…Maybe Stajan but that is not worth moving down.

GaVaHokie

June 25th, 2009
11:09 am

Let’s say LA drafts MPS… we could pull a “Dudley” and offer Phoenix a 6th round pick NOT to draft Kane with their 6th pick.

The only worry would be Phoenix trading down and someone swooping up to 6th to take Kane ahead of us.

Smoothie

June 25th, 2009
11:09 am

GVH, I would agree with you with the assurance of 2 conditions:

1) PHX promises to take Cowen overall

2) Burke agrees to take Hainsey in return for Kaberle AND Grabovski

The only way a trade with TOR makes sense is if they are willing to do a salary swap plus throw in the rights to a young guy like Mikhail.

Actually, even if we lose Kane at # 6 and could still get MPS to go along with Kaberle and Grabovski, we might just have to consider it.

Smoothie

June 25th, 2009
11:10 am

Oh dang, I forgot about LA at # 5 who would be quite peeved about losing Schenn I think to Burke at # 4. Nevermind!

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
11:11 am

I guess you answered my question Hokie…

dwayne

June 25th, 2009
11:15 am

Didn’t Slater do a pretty good job on the pk after he got back from injury? I had posted last week , or maybe 2 weeks ago about the short handed goals after Pevs arrived, and isn’t that about the time Slater came back? I could be wrong.

Hockey Biltong

June 25th, 2009
11:17 am

26th!! Kaberle and Kane could be cool. Would Dudley have some sway in getting Bouwmeister here???

Smoothie

June 25th, 2009
11:19 am

Slater was indeed much improved on the PK after his injury. I don’t see why he an Peverley can’t continue to gel as our 2nd unit on the PK.

#1) Marty and Stewy

#2) Pevs and Slatesy

#3) Army / White and FA (peace out Thorburn unless they bring him back as the 13th forward / pressbox keeper)

Brian Burke

June 25th, 2009
11:29 am

I’ll take Donny boy to the cleaners.

Toby

June 25th, 2009
11:29 am

Not at all interested in Bouwmeister. IMO he is way overrated and not worth the $7 mil/year he is about to get

dwayne

June 25th, 2009
11:29 am

I always thought Thornburn would “endear” himself to us, the fans, had he fought more, he wasn’t much good for anything else, but every team needs a pugilist. Is bolts coming back? Ever thought that maybe a FA scorer looks at a team to see if there is someone who will watch there back? In addition to money, can we win the cup, the city, team mates etc.

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
11:39 am

I’d much rather we try and move up….The Snow/Wang tandem is the one that DW/ASG might even be able to snooker (though Andy Sutton may have soured them on any picking up any more ex-Thrashers).

I shudder at the thought of DW making any deal with Burke.

R. Stroz

June 25th, 2009
11:39 am

Bring up Hoffman from Chicago, that guy can pound.

If memory serves me though, Hoffman is UFA on July 1.

What Will Don Do?

Jacques Strapp

June 25th, 2009
11:42 am

Waz not zee last time Waddell made zee deal wiz Burke zee one that brought to us Schneider, no?

Nikita

June 25th, 2009
11:43 am

The problem is that Thorburn’s not a good fighter. He’s not horrible, but his win percentage on hockeyfights.com is, like, 20%. He generally doesn’t have the patience to get a good grip, and therefore he goes down. Slater has great fighting technique, though — he doesn’t fight a lot, but when he does it’s a quick onslaught and he wins.

I think Thorbs should’ve had a make-or-break year last year. But he pretty much just made incremental improvement. I will continue to state, however, that his hands are developing and I think he could eventually mature into a solid 3rd-or-higher liner. His major drawback is speed and conditioning — he actually has a nice sprint, but lacks the sustained hustle I’d like to see for him to be an elite forward.

What I don’t get about Thorbs, though, is that he’s on a line with two of our relatively fast skaters. Slater is, of course, one of the fastest. Boults picked up the pace last year to reveal that he has good legs, as well. They seem to gel well as a unit, but Thorbs is notably sludgier.

R. Stroz

June 25th, 2009
11:50 am

Yez Jacques Strapp, Burke send us Schneider. De uther teamz wanted Bobby Ryan too in a trade. If Burke culd not dezpose of Schneider’s contract, dez Booby Ryan could not have been brought up to play in Anaheim.

So de Waddell took de Schneider and Booby Ryan become star for de Ducks.

GaVaHokie

June 25th, 2009
11:51 am

I would trade just about any prospect we have to Colorado for the #3 pick and draft Duchene, and never look back in regret… I don’t care if it’s Pavs, Espo, Postma or anyone else.

I think it was Brian Burke himself who said, “if you got the player you were aiming for and he helps your team, you didn’t overspend.”

GaVaHokie

June 25th, 2009
12:41 pm

Hopefully taking Klee and Larsen for Schneider doesn’t entitle Burke to a “favor” from Waddell.

(pause for sexual joke from Jacques Strapp, or whoever that person wants to be today)

Alan

June 25th, 2009
12:48 pm

This now leaves Jordan Lavallee, Scott Lehman, Grant Lewis, Chris Thorburn, Dan Turple and Boris Valabik as impending RFAs that the team will need to extend offers to.

I’ll be brief:

In: Lavallee, Valabik, Lewis.
Out: Lehman, Thorburn, Turple.

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
12:58 pm

If we do wind up drafting Kane, and do manage to re-sign Kovy, and Kozlov can hang on for another year or two and they became a line then

we have the, ba-dum, the KKK line

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
1:00 pm

My apologies to any politically correct thinkers out there…there was supposed to be a disclaimer on that last post that somehow got edited out

Hip Czech

June 25th, 2009
1:14 pm

A write-up on Bogosian – http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=431516&cmpid=rss-rosen

It’s not a stretch to think Bogo could go have a 20 goal, 40 assist season if he gets enough time on the PP…anybody know who the youngest defenseman to score 20 goals is?

dwayne

June 25th, 2009
1:21 pm

Hip Czech…thats a good one…who cares about the PC police.
I remember a fan at a baseball game a few years back complaining about a KKK rally in the upper deck of a stadium…they had to explain to her(an elderly woman) K was a strikeout. blah blah blah. no harm no foul.

LAC

June 25th, 2009
1:30 pm

First off smoothie, cut the “dude” crap, tell it like it is. Slater is a washed up nothing who has NOT helped us in the past and has NO future being in Atlanta one shift longer !!!! Got that smoothie ??????

maali

June 25th, 2009
1:46 pm

heeeey lookit you with a picture and everything! snazzzzzy!

i want more information on the QOs offered. i must now dig. a tweet (the past-tense verb is, “tweeted,” btw) is not news, i don’t care who he is. isn’t craig sorta persona non grata now anyway??