My Fellow Thrashervillians, Our Long Summertime Offseason Is Over

Ok…well, maybe the summer isn’t exactly “over” just yet. But it’s sure beginning to feel that way to me given what is on schedule for Thrashers fans…indeed for the fans of all NHL teams…over the next couple of weeks.

The last time we saw the Thrashers skate in a game was last April 11 when they were smackin’ the Buh-JEE-zus out of Tampa Bay 6-2 to end the 2008-09 campaign. Like many of you, I just wasn’t ready for the season to come to a close given the way the team had played down the stretch. But…the hockey gods only give 82 regular season games each year and…barring a trip to the springtime tournament for Lord Stanley’s Cup…to the offseason ye shall go.

Peverley, Kovy, White and all the gang are ready to hit the ice at training camp

Peverley, Kovy, White and all the gang are ready to hit the ice at training camp (AP photo/Gregory Smith)

Since that time we’ve watched as Sidney and The Crosbiteers skated away with the cup…welcomed the re-signing of centerman Marty Reasoner…applauded the acquisition of new Associate GM Rick Dudley…cheered as Don Waddell used his 4th overall draft pick on Evander Kane… said hello to veteran defenseman Pavel Kubina, while at the same time saying good-bye to Garnet Exelby…greeted with excitement the news that Nik Antropov had signed a 4-year deal to play in Atlanta…realized Ilja Nikulin was jilting us yet again…got a nice mid-summers hockey tease with prospect camp…learned of several depth players being brought in…waved bye-bye to Eric Perrin who set sail to the KHL…sweated out yet another lonnnnnnnnnnnnnng August…and now, with the Thrashers prospect’s 5-4 shootout win bringing to a close their participation in the Traverse City Prospects Tournament, we are heading full steam into training camp.

That’s right dudes and dudettes… looks like we are at the brink of season number ten of Thrashers hockey!

This weekend many of us will make our way out to the Ice Forum in Duluth to help welcome the team back as training camp officially gets underway. There we’ll again feel the cool rink air…listen to the shouts of coaches as they bellow out instructions…hear the sweet, melodic sound of blades slicing through the ice and sticks slapping puck against the boards…and greet fellow Thrashers fans and friends, many of whom we haven’t seen since last we gathered in Thrasherville’s main cathedral of hockey…Philips Arena.

Ahhhhh…for hockey fans, this is our spring!

Of course, one of the players that we’ll have a sharp eye on is Mr. Kane. This past week in Travers City the 18-year old took yet another step in proving himself worthy of the status that comes with being picked so high in the draft. In four games played he scored five goals, at least one in every game, and finished with six points. He scored twice Thursday against Columbus, the second time with but 9 seconds left to tie the game…then scored on his shootout attempt…as the Thrashers beat the Blue Jackets 5-4. The six points scored overall tied him with Andrew Kozek, (3 goals and 3 assists), for the team lead…they were both one point off the overall pace of seven points achieved by Columbus’ Matt Calvert and St. Louis’ Aaron Palushaj. The five goals scored and 20 shots taken by Kane tied him with Calvert for the tournament high in both of those stats.

Evander Kane had 5 goals and an assists in the Traverse City Prospects Tournament AJC photo Hyosub Shin

Evander Kane had 5 goals and an assists in the Traverse City Prospects Tournament (AJC photo/Hyosub Shin)

Kozek had 18 SOG, which tied him with Carolina’s Brandon Sutter for the second most.

As is the case every time this season, some questions surround the Thrashers as they head into camp…can Kane make the squad or is another year’s worth of development in order?…What’s the story with Kari Lehtonen’s back?…What about the penalty kill?…Can this defense operate to the level that will allow the team to have at least an outside shot at the playoffs?

And ya know, speaking of the defense… given how I feel the offense will do this year, the blueline doesn’t necessarily have to function at the level of a finely tuned Swiss watched every night… just as long as it doesn’t more resemble Swiss cheese.

And of course…the mother of all questions going into training camp…can Waddell actually get Kovalchuk to ink a deal before the season starts?

This will all unfold before us as the next few weeks play out. But for now…

The offseason’s end draws nigh.

Training camp is upon us.

Preseason starts Thursday and the first home exhibition match is the Monday following.

The puck drops on a new season three weeks from tomorrow.

My fellow Thrashervillians, our long summer offseason is over!

131 comments Add your comment

Rawhide

September 12th, 2009
10:09 am

Brendan – As alway, professor, thank you for facilitating the entries in the “Guess the Opening Night Cap Hit” contest and “Points and Place in Standings” contest. Truly a servant’s heart you have, my good friend and I know everyone appreciates your service and contributions to tis forum.

I know I do.

As a scheduling note, Brendan…and all else…I plan on a season preview type of blog during the week leading up to opening night. There is where you will be able to see my forcast as to how many points the Thrashers will earn as well as their placement in the SE Division and Eastern Conference. I invite everone else to place their final entry on that blog also.

Remember, as Brendan has stated, unltil the puck drops shortly after 7:00 pm eastern time on October 3, 2009 you may ammend you entry on the “Points and Placement” contest.

Lee – A group of us normally gather in the CNN food court in the area just outside of Gorins and Arbys. On the weekends I, along with one or both of my tax exemptions, can be found in The Gulch hanging with the Nasty Nest crowd…many of the regular commenters here can also be found there as well.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
10:32 am

Doh!… sorry I missed the contest Brendan… forgot the deadline, and I was in Vegas all week.

Glovesave29

September 12th, 2009
10:45 am

Tony C – I’d be interested in the Falcons tics. As much as I love hockey, I am not missing a Falcons home opener (in person or on TV) for the first day of training camp.

five_hole

September 12th, 2009
10:52 am

This has been a long freakin’ summer. Thank the gods of hockey that I’ve finally got something to watch again.

Brendan Put me down for 88 points, 3rd in the SE, and the 8th spot in the East.

Brendan

September 12th, 2009
11:46 am

Hokie, I’m sorry you missed the deadline. But, on the plus side, YOU WERE IN VEGAS ALLLL WEEEEK! Truthfully, I’d rather experience “that which STAYS in Vegas and is never spoken of again” over submitting an entry into the budget contest. Thee prize for winning is … (1) the admiration of your fellow bloggers for having your finger on the PULSE of the team, and for (2) correctly understanding the OWNER’S INTENT for the upcoming season, as BUDGET SPEAKS TO INTENT. (That is, finishing inside the lottery draft, being a playoff team, or competing for and possibly WINNING the Stanley Cup.)

lee, you are in at 89-points, 3rd in SE division, just outside of the playoffs in 9th place in the Conference rankings. Good luck. lee, just so you know, poster “Smoothie” has 89-points, 3rd in SE Division, and 8th in the Conference, making the T-birds a playoff team this team. See … this is why the “tie-breakers” matter.

five_hole, you’re registered at 88-points, 3rd in SE Division, and 8th in the Conference. five_hole, it would be quite a nail-bitter between you, Smoothie, and lee, if the Thrashers come into Game #82 with 87 or 88-pooints. Poster Tom has 87-points, tied to 3rd in SE, and 9th in the Conference. HookyBob has 86-points, tied to 4th in the SE and 13th in the Conference. I’m registered at 85-points, 3rd in SE, and 10th in the Conference.

Historically speaking, I don’t think any team with 94 or more points have ever MISSED the playoffs. The 8th spot seems to be around 91-94 points. But remember, in 2003, the NY Islanders got into the playoffs with only 83-points. So, you just never know how many points the bottom spot might require. Eighty-three points is just one game over .500, “NHL style.” That’s probably in sight, for the Thrashers.

Lee

September 12th, 2009
11:50 am

rawhide-thanx, hope i can make it!!!!

brendan-thanx, oh tiebreakers definetly matter.

Thrashers27

September 12th, 2009
12:08 pm

Get ready for Zherdev to sign here in Atlanta…Eklund just posted that Z is close to signing with a Western Conference team, which of course means he’s coming east.

mid-ga-hockey fan

September 12th, 2009
12:08 pm

Eklund just posted zherdev deal to western canada.Given his track record I hope that DW has already inked Z.

Brendan

September 12th, 2009
12:18 pm

Rawhide, I can’t wait to see your “Thrashers Forecast.” I bet you’re more accurate than many meteorologists. Just once, I want to see a news telecast that switches to weather, and a little comment flashing across the screen, “Meteorologist Glenn Burns was 24-7 last month in his forecasts.”

‘Cuz … I never see that. Why don’t we ever get to see that? When you’re watching a boxing match, the PA guy says, “And here, in this corner, with a record of 28-1-1, wearing red trunks with white trim is ….” I’d be more intrigued to watch weather forecasts if it said, “Glen Burns was 86% correct last month in his forecasts. And he’s beaten other news channel’s meteorologist by 15 percentage points.” And then, let them duke it out, “BCS Style,” to determine Meterologist of the Year for the Atlanta metropolitan area.

But I digress. I eagerly await your projections. I can tell you that 10 of the 19 votes cast project Atlanta to be a playoff team. So, there’s a lot of enthusiasm out there among Thrasher fans. Perhaps it is best to ignore the national hockey publications that don’t have Atlanta within “sniffing distance” of a playoff berth this season. But remember, if we add Zherdev or make a trade for a defenseman, or Waddell reaches into his bag of European UNKNOWNS to land somebody good, those publication’s predictions don’t amount to a hill of beans.

There’s plenty of time to enter a vote in the point totals contest, which opened on August 28, 2009, and concludes at “puck drop” in October, for “Opening Night.” Good luck to all.

Thrashers27

September 12th, 2009
12:22 pm

Hilarious! MidGAHockeyFan…you and I had nearly identical posts @ the exact same time.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
12:57 pm

As far as budget… I would project $46,250,000… I think we’ll sign Kane or Fritsche and that will be about it.

My darkhorse for camp will be Krog and Sterling regaining some chemistry with Anderson’s system and pressuring Boulton, Slater and Thorburn for the 4th line.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
1:03 pm

Re: Zherdev… I wouldn’t blame Eklund too much… it’s probably Zherdev’s agent trying to put pressure on Waddell to get a deal done. I’ve come to realize that most of Eklund’s “sources” are the player agents. That’s why most of Eklund’s rumors fail to produce any real outcome… those ploys don’t work with GM’s.

Thrashers27

September 12th, 2009
1:03 pm

GaVa–Kane has already signed and unless we’re looking to roll four scoring lines there is no way that Krog and Sterling makeup 2/3 of the fourth line. There would be no grit whatsoever on a team like that.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
1:05 pm

Kane’s salary isn’t factored into the team cap until he makes the team. I’m pretty sure if he goes back to juniors it doesn’t count against the cap.

http://nhlnumbers.com/overview.php?team=ATL&season=0910

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
1:07 pm

Re: Grit… I think Boulton or Thorburn would still remain… then your grit is Antropov, Armstrong, Kubina, Valabik and Bogosian… and to a lesser degree, Kane.

Thrashers27

September 12th, 2009
1:23 pm

I can see that, but there’s still no traditional “grind” line.

Hell, I’m all for it if we have enough depth to be an offensive threat on every line, but I just don’t think that’s happening unless Zherdev is brought in and even then it’s a stretch…but hey, there’s a reason I’m not a coach in the NHL.

Good luck to Coach Anderson this season. I think he certainly has the tools to put together a contender. GO BLUE!!!

Trixie (Rawhide's Secretary)

September 12th, 2009
1:53 pm

Attention Mr. Tony C. … Please check your e-mail inbox for an important message.

Thank you.

R. Stroz

September 12th, 2009
1:56 pm

The differential between the Thrashers signing/not signing Zherdev is huge.

If Zherdev isn’t signed by the Thrashers, I’m confident the “Kovy contract extention issue” will not be resolved during the entire season. The effect on the team will be a cancerous distraction.

You can’t have a team captain/leading scorer contemplating whether he’ll be playing with the team next season.

So if Zherdev isn’t signed causing Kovy to doubt the commitment of management/ownership, my point guess will drop from 100 points down to 84 points.

Rawhide

September 12th, 2009
2:32 pm

Thrashers27

September 12th, 2009
2:35 pm

Heater is a Shark!

R. Stroz

September 12th, 2009
2:40 pm

Bring your pacifiers to Philips on October 24th to welcome Heatley back to town.

BTW, is San Jose a good Canadian hockey town?

World Be Free

September 12th, 2009
3:23 pm

Stroz-I am forced to agree with your take on Kovy and Zherdev. You know I think Kovy’s signing before the seaosn starts is so crucial.

The Sharks really didn’t give us much to get Heatley, if you judge Heatley on talent alone. Some teams can separate the talent and scumbag factors.

Had to laugh about San Jose and the hockey town thing.

thebigharybeast

September 12th, 2009
3:26 pm

Okay I must be drinking but this is for Brendan . . .

96 points 2nd in the Southeast, 6th in the conference.

Smoothie

September 12th, 2009
3:32 pm

Well then, I am so happy I “upgraded” my seats to be a part of Rawhide’s Rowdies on the 24th to welcome Heater “home” with a chorus of boos and cat calls. It certainly be an easier team to play against without Michalek and his career +49.

LAC

September 12th, 2009
3:47 pm

“Mr. Bettman’s plan is not working out. You have Phoenix, Dallas, Nashville, Atlanta and Tampa Bay all in trouble, it’s just not working in the south. These teams have to go north where everybody loves hockey.”

This is a comment from a jerry moyers some idiot who was connected to the Phoenix team at one time.

WRONG… it is working, why not mention Carolina or Florida too…

Just another example of an idiot who knows nothing about hockey and it’s fans.

LAC

September 12th, 2009
3:48 pm

Brenden, 80 points 4th in SE… No playoffs…

Rawhide

September 12th, 2009
4:25 pm

Smoothie & RStroz – Section 120 will be rockin’ on the 24th of October alright!

In light of this revelation, I’m going to see if I can get the my friends with the Thashers & Atlanta Spirit to add to their already very generous list of prizes and perks for all who’ll be joining us on the Party Bus from TJs that evening to include free pacifiers to hand out to everyone on board. We can then waive them at Heater as he takes to the ice…escpecially when he and the Sharks are warming up right in front of us!

ben

September 12th, 2009
4:45 pm

the owner of phx said that LAC and i feel he was sour graping a bit. But, he might also somewhat have a point. And his point is that people just aren’t as likely to drop aligences just because they move. Hockey has a long way to go in this town, and if Balsillie gets his way it might not matter. Some other zillionaire might just come along and move the team tov metro Montreal or something. I don’t feel its healthy for the league to have a bunch of teams up in Ontario, but they’re not asking me. I also feel that this is about to start a titanic shift in the NHL. Maybe, if Moyes and his lawyers are right, hockey won’t work in the sunbelt because cable and the internet means not giving up the loyalties of youth.

I love the Thrashers and I want them to stay and get healthy and find a crowd within these 13 counties to support them, but their not getting the message out there. I am at the point where I don’t feel any one player or group of players moves the needle of six million people. Kovy is one of the best players on Earth as was Hossa and we see the results. You want people to show up? You want to put people in seats? Then move the seats to the people. This organ-I-zation shafted itself by putting the arena where most fans don’t want to go. I say that as an urbanist and a resident of midtown.

Smoothie

September 12th, 2009
5:14 pm

BT – that would be so much fun. Hell, ill buy my own if they don’t provide them for us. Also, I think I might be caught in the blog filter, help a brotha out!

Rawhide

September 12th, 2009
5:26 pm

Smoothinator – Not seeing anything in the Spam Monster’s jaws.

Dwayne

September 12th, 2009
5:33 pm

No love for the Thrashers from LAC. I hope you are wrong.

Putting On The Foil

September 12th, 2009
5:42 pm

Brendan- Can I get in the pool at 94 pts., 2nd Div., 6th Conference. Thanks

R. Stroz

September 12th, 2009
5:52 pm

ben – I’m a native Atlantan. Hockey will work in Atlanta. I watched the Flames play to a packed Omni all the time; and, back in those days, the fans were all Flames fans, not a bunch of transplants watching their childhood team.

The Thrashers just need committed owners and management.

Brendan

September 12th, 2009
6:12 pm

Putting On The Foil, you’re in. My previous post got gobbled up, requresting LAC to confirm 80-points, instead of 76, and 14th in the Conference. Putting on the Foil, you are in at 94-points, 2nd in the SE Division, and 6th in the Conference.

bigharybeast, you’re guess has been entered, also. It was part of my post that got swallowed by SPAM filters.

Okay, so I haven’t checked on how long Michalek and Cheechoo are under contract, but I have to say … that Ottawa … GM Bryan Murray … did very well considering he pretty much “HAD TO” trade the crybaby. That’s a decent return, especially when you factor in that the Senators get San Jose’s 2nd round pick next year. Now, I hear ya. If the Sharks play for the Cup, that might be pick #59 or #60. That’s not exactly a “prized pick.” But if Heatley turns into a cancer out in San Jose, and can’t get along with Marleau and Thornton and Boyle, then that 2nd round could be something much better. San Jose gets a “throw away” 5th rounder from Ottawa, along with Heatley in this deal.

I tell you, I used to cheer for the Sharks. I liked them. I rooted for them. But if this this move backfires, they deserve the aftermath that follows. It’s not exactly a mystery that Heatley will want out of San Jose before his current deal is up, unless the Sharks remain serious contenders for the duration of Heatley’s contract. Who knows? Maybe San Jose has already agreed to trade Heatley next year, if this move doesn’t pan out? I understand the Sharks’ frustration. They fired Ron Wilson and brought in Todd McLellan, thinking that to be the correction to the cylinder that wasn’t firing. But they lost to Anaheim in the 1st round. Now, they must be thinking that with Boyle, Heatley, Marleau, Thornton that they just can’t miss. They better win. If they don’t, Heatley’s gone. How FORTUNATE for San Jose … to have players like Joe Thornton drop in their laps from Boston, and now Heatley, from Ottawa.

Brendan

September 12th, 2009
6:28 pm

Oh yes, I also meant to comment … hope Heatley’s happy that his selfishness disrupted the lives of Michalek and Cheechoo, who were lifelong Sharks, and did nothing wrong to deserve being traded out of the market where they agreed to play. Both Michalek and Cheechoo were original Sharks draft picks. I can’t rightly say that San Jose never trades their own picks away, as last year, they sent Matt Carle to Tampa Bay, to get Dan Boyle. And Vesa Toskala and Miikka Kiprusoff were original Sharks draft picks, as well. Don’t forget Steve Bernier and Brad Stuart, whom the Sharks also drafted and later traded. Jeff Jillson, too, I think. Does this mean Devin Setoguchi should be nervous? No. Chuckling. I think he’s safe from a trade. You’ll all recall Devin Setoguchi came to San Jose via trade with Atlanta, for a draft position swap in 2005, whereby Atlanta came to obtain San Jose’s #12 spot in exchange for Atlanta’s pick #8. The move allowed the Thrashers to pick up a 2nd round pick, which I believe turned into Ondrej Pavelec.

R. Stroz

September 12th, 2009
6:56 pm

Brendan – Actually the second round pick from San Jose turned into Chad Denny, as the 49th overall pick. The second round pick from the Rangers (via the Flyers) turned into Pavelec, as the 41st overall pick.

Brendan

September 12th, 2009
7:14 pm

R.Stroz, I stand corrected. And maybe Chad Denny will crack the lineup of the 2010-11 Thrashers?? Your thoughts?

I must comment on something else. I would like to start a new contest. And the contest question is, “Guess the Date when SOMEONE, ANYONE will tell Dany Heatley, ‘I don’t care who you are or what you want. You’re not getting it. Life is full of all sorts of disappointments, trials, and frustrations. So learn to deal with it.’”

My entry guess? “Never.” I’ve got a friend in law enforcement. I once asked him, “When you encounter the people you arrest, are they really cognizant they’re doing something wrong? I don’t mean, ‘Do they know they’re breaking the law.’ I mean, do they ever ‘GET IT’ that they just shouldn’t be doing what they are–and that the law exists for a reason?” He answered, “The pathological criminal never thinks they’re doing something wrong. They just think ‘Society doesn’t understand,’ or ‘Society is wrong and has BAD laws.’” Hmmn. I noticed Dany Heatley was repeatedly quoted as saying, “I haven’t done anything wrong.” Or “I don’t think that I’ve done anything wrong. If people want to feel differently, that’s on them.” Or words to this effect. I almost think “Chutzpah” is something that’s been entirely lost. Whatever happened to the concept of, “You honor your contract. And the Coach utilizes you the way in which he sees fit. If you don’t like it, you deal with it. Nothing says you have to re-sign with this same team when your contract is over.” But in Dany Heatley’s brain, the PROPER thing to do is to be ADAMANT about being traded out, but not JUST THAT, it must be a trade to a team he wants.

The next thing Heatley will say is, “I’m a role model for kids.” Or, should I say, “I’m a role models for ‘blue chip, talented kids.’ I show them how to DEMAND your way into preferential treatment, while shirking responsibility.”

R. Stroz

September 12th, 2009
8:11 pm

Brendan – The answer is NO. Waddell was fleeced in that trade.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
8:22 pm

Well, I can’t speak for Michalek, but Cheechoo will be closer to home, and he gets a fresh start with another program.

It sucks that the Sharks had to give up Michalek, I’m sure they would have loved having a top line of Michalek, Thornton, Heatley.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
8:31 pm

Stroz… just a feeling I have, but I don’t think Zherdev will make or break discussions for Kovy. He seems pleased already with Antro and Kubina. He also seems pretty aware of Kane too.

World Be Free

September 12th, 2009
9:21 pm

Eklund sez Zherdev is going to Edmonton-which means he’ll sign in the east.

R. Stroz

September 12th, 2009
9:47 pm

Edmonton only has $850,000 of cap space.

On the different and more disconcerting note, the Caps are trying to move Nylander off their books. If they do, the Caps will have room to sign Zherdev.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
10:44 pm

I believe Nylander has a no trade clause.

GaVaHokie

September 12th, 2009
10:48 pm

Stroz… yep, found it… check it out at the very bottom. Nylander has a No Trade Clause. Does that make you feel better? :)

http://www.nhlscap.com/no_trade.htm

World Be Free

September 12th, 2009
11:51 pm

Not sure who would take Nylander at this point. He’s too old, over the hill and his contract makes him unmoveable, aside from the NTC issue.

I think Washington will miss Sergei Federov more than they think. They also have not addressed their problems on defense. Who is their no 1 goalie? Don’t get me wrong, they are a very good team. But they have done little to improve.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
1:21 am

Hmmn, Ovechkin asked for Zherdev? So, the Capitals response … is to try to move someone with an NTC to make room. Ya know, to keep the “face of their franchise” happy, even though he is under contract for 12 more years. The owner of the Capitals is named Ted Leonsis. I think he’s TRYING to win the Stanley Cup.

But when Kovalchuk asks for Zherdev, the Atlanta Spirit, LLC’s response is … to NOT ADD him, when no cap space must be shed first, no draft picks need be lost or squandered, and no difficult trade negotiations need be discussed. Are the Atlanta Spirit, LLC TRYING to win the Stanley Cup? Where’s the budget, again? In a league that allows as much as $56.8 million in cap hit?

WBF, I totally agree with you. The Capitals will miss Federov. I’m not sure why Federov left? I thought it might be to retire. But if I recall correctly, he’s going to play in Europe this year. In net, my guess is that Simeon Varlamov is their #1 goalie … until or unless he falters. It’s not bad to have Jose Theodore as the capable backup. Though a “pricey” one at that. (That could be another place the Caps try to shed payroll.) The Capitals are trying to “threepeat” atop the Southeast Division this year. If they get it, they’ll be seeded no worse than 3rd in the playoff seedings. Imagine if the Capitals actually get Zherdev. Ovechkin will just “wink and smile” at Kovy all year long about that one.

Sara

September 13th, 2009
2:46 am

Brendan, I think for Spirit it’s a matter of the team butting up against the internal cap number. Falconer made a very astute observation a week or so ago about a potential Zherdev signing and how it relates to the payroll. The Thrashers are at the point where signing Zherdev would push them over the limit for full revenue sharing.

Now, I think if there was no question that Kane was NOT ready for the NHL this season, the Spirit would go ahead and tell Don to pull the trigger on that deal. However, from their perspective, I’m sure they would rather try and use the cheap rookie and hope they can get as much production from Kane as they would Zherdev, while still leaving them the opportunity to collect their full allotment of revenue sharing. Penny-wise and pound foolish quite possibly. If this team plays as well as they need to – ie they are a play-off team – the ticket sales should be there to make up for lost revenue-sharing. And while it is within the realm of possibility that Kane could have a good season, I think they’d get more production out of Zherdev. Plus, if Zherdev decides he likes Atlanta and the system suits him, maybe he signs a new contract and we move forward with both Kane and Zherdev on the roster. It’s not like Kozlov is going to be here forever.

World Be Free

September 13th, 2009
10:38 am

Speaking of Kozlov, Washington lost their Kozlov. He was a pretty valuable player for the Caps. Federov went to the KHL.

As for the Thrashers, I am not sure ownership has an internal cap. Has anyone heard of such a number or are the guesses of an internal cap pure speculation? I don’t believe the Thrashers have the luxury of playing with the numbers. This team has to get off to a good start early in the season, to sign their star to an extension and get people to come to games.

Having said this, I am not sure if we should gauge ownership’s commitment on Zherdev. Don and Duds are weighing the possible contribution (or negativity) or having Zherdev on the team. Overall, is he an asset or liability? We need more team defense, and “Z” will not bring defense. Does management believe Kane is ready for prime time and if so, does Zherdev stand in the way of the new “Real Deal’s” big league development? The potential signing of Zherdev and Kane’s NHL readiness are directly linked.

Hockey Biltong

September 13th, 2009
10:47 am

That’s what I believe as well, Sara. Well put…

ben

September 13th, 2009
11:01 am

a while back i said that we had that in regards to Zherdev. I still say that.