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

R. Stroz

September 11th, 2009
12:17 pm

FIRST, or GOLD

FormerIslesFan

September 11th, 2009
12:21 pm

I have it on good authority (R5) that Kovy is back in Atlanta and practicing with the rest of the Thrashers that are in town at the Ice Forum.

“Well, FIF,” you ask, “how do you know that?” Well, see, Lilibeter called me on the way into work this morning to tell me that she just pulled next to an SL600 on the 85N. When I asked her why she was telling me this, she was all excited and said, “because Kovy is driving it!” That was the exit before the exit for the Ice Forum in Duluth…

World Be Free

September 11th, 2009
12:22 pm

Looking forward to live hockey, instead of the endless repeats of the 2009 playoffs on NHL Network.

Daculafan

September 11th, 2009
12:39 pm

Thank all that is holy!!

We still have many questions to be answered before the puck drops at the Bulb or the season..but the drought is over…it’s time to get a drink of that water known as Hockey

See you guys at the forum on Sunday!!

Smoothie

September 11th, 2009
12:43 pm

Wooooo hoooooo!!! 3 weeks till Opening Night!! Cannot wait!

Great blog Tillzy!!

Toby

September 11th, 2009
12:54 pm

Just put this on the last bloggers…

Good interview with Kane. Looks more and more like the spot is his. He does say he’s up to 190 lbs. now.

http://communities.canada.com/theprovince/blogs/dubhub/default.aspx

Russian

September 11th, 2009
12:54 pm

I will come at Sunday also. I really want to see whole team together. Great Post! How many days left? IT IS 21 days. Let’s Go Thrashers!

Riceowls8891

September 11th, 2009
12:55 pm

NO! NO! Hockey starts monday night. Or, aren’t you going to the propsects games? (Seriously in hockey withdrawal)

Russian

September 11th, 2009
12:57 pm

**to Toby**
No way, Man!
He got 190 lbs. What did he eat? Whole Cow? :-)

Rawhide

September 11th, 2009
1:00 pm

Daculafan – See ya there, buddy!

Riceowls8891 – I’ll be there Monday night and Tuesday afternoon. Will we see you there as well?

Toby

September 11th, 2009
1:08 pm

Sunday…bright and early! Can’t wait :)

Sara

September 11th, 2009
1:37 pm

Kane wasn’t training with Norm Maracle was he?

J.B.

September 11th, 2009
1:43 pm

I’ll be there on Sunday with Lil’ J.B. in tow early as well. He’s got that on his jersey, so feel free to say hi if you see us.

Anyone know where good overflow parking can be found where I won’t have to worry about getting towed? According to Ben, 62 are on the camp roster; pretty sure there’s that many spaces at the Ice Forum, much less any left for fans!

BTW – Russian, didn’t you say a couple of posts ago that Zherdev told the russian media he was coming to the states on the 12th? Do you have any more details or a link to that?

Smoothie

September 11th, 2009
1:49 pm

With that big fat signing bonus Evander got in July, I reckon it would be pretty easy for a growing 18 y/o boy to eat whatever, whenever, and however he wants! If he’s in the gym just about every day lifting, 7-10 lbs is attainable. I don’t know if he packed on 14 lbs since May though. Even at 185, he’ll have a much better shot at making the team.

Viking

September 11th, 2009
1:54 pm

RAWHIDE & Co,

There must be some built-in troubles in the blog software. Today, I have twice been in the midst of making a comment and boom – everything’s gone!

Midfield

September 11th, 2009
1:57 pm

I have a personal favor to ask of you, Rawhide. Could you please refrain to mention Sidney Crosby if you don’t really have to? It’s enough that the league ordered all the paddlers to mention his name every 15 minutes during the “Sidney Crosby identification” pause.

Thrashy Thrashy

September 11th, 2009
2:00 pm

Norm “All I Need Is A” Maracle “All I Need Is Food”

I would have paid to hear Chris Berman say that. In fact, I’d still pay to hear him say that.

Rawhide

September 11th, 2009
2:03 pm

Viking – The techno-wizards at Rawhide Central are aware of the situation and are currently moving towards remedying this situation in a prompt and timely manner.

BTW, I slipped ‘em all a couple of donuts and Moon Pies to bribe them, so it should be taken care of soon.

Midfield – So noted and logged, sir!

LAC

September 11th, 2009
2:08 pm

WBF I agree 10,000% these 2009 playoff repeats are BORING as watching grass grow.

I also agree with Midfield, ENOUGH speaking the name of that crotch beater sniviling punk Crotchby… He has NO respect for the Game of Hockey, The Fans or his teamates, only want 100% attention on him 100% of the time. What a waste for a slighty better than average player, Not worth all the hype or glory, just a backstabbing PUNK, who…
I hope Boris PLASTERS into the boards and brakes his back for what he did !!! WOW What a nice repayment by Big Boris….

Midfield

September 11th, 2009
2:08 pm

Thank you, Rawhide. The load’s off. I can enjoy my Friday to the fullest now.

Toby

September 11th, 2009
2:26 pm

Promising answers from Kovy in an interview on the Blueland Blog:

What do you think of the moves the team made over the summer?

Kovy: “I think the team is going in the right direction. We brought in guys with experience who know how to win and that’s very important.”

Do you expect the team to have a better year than last season?

Kovy: “For sure. It looks like we will. We’re getting bigger and we’re getting stronger. Our young guys like Bogo (Zach Bogosian) and Litts (Bryan Little), and now Kane are very good. We have an all round better team and I really believe we are going to be better.”

Zoomo

September 11th, 2009
2:31 pm

It’s like Christmas Eve. Nice blog to get us fired up, Bill. I’m sure I’ll drop by the rink at some point on Sunday and I’ll be there with my 7-year old on Monday for the prospect game.

PuckedUp

September 11th, 2009
2:46 pm

Looking forward to hockey. Gets the mind off being unemployed.

Russian

September 11th, 2009
3:02 pm

**to JB**
Yes. He should be in USA at September 12. I do not have any news. I hope we will see him at Sunday in Duluth. It will be Great. :-)

World Be Free

September 11th, 2009
3:23 pm

You just wonder what the Kovy thinks of Zherdev and if he will give it a push.

LAC-I was even looking for some OLD Canadians’ playoff games I had on VHS! Can’t find ‘em-nothing like seeing a game called by Danny Gallivan, the best play by play man ever.

Pam on Weck

September 11th, 2009
3:38 pm

Does anyone have stats on how many 4th overall picks make their NHL team out of training camp? And also well those same 4ths do for their rookie season? It seems like Kane really has a shot at it.

J.B.

September 11th, 2009
3:47 pm

Russian- Thanks. I’m curious as to why he would publicly set a date for his return stateside when currently he really doesn’t have a reason to return by a specific date… like the day a particular team’s training camp activities begin. Very interesting. But, this entry isn’t about Z, so I’ll quit typing and see y’all on Sunday morning.

Brendan

September 11th, 2009
4:32 pm

Danny Gallivan was one of the best, WBF. Truly.

Rawhide, a very inspiring blog today. It has seemed like a very, very long offseason. I have enjoyed the 2008 and 2009 playoff rewind on NHL Network, but it’s time to see some games whose OUTCOME we don’t already know in advance.

I had really thought, back in April, that Mike Komisarek would have joined Atlanta’s blueline. But he wound up elsewhere. I also thought we might try out Steve Montador. But he, likewise, went elsewhere. I never envisioned Nikki Zherdev giving Atlanta the time of day, but it has been fun to speculate about him, lately. Nik Antropov wasn’t my first choice for a free agent signing, but it’s not an awful one. Plus, Kovy WANTED him. And if Kovy WANTS Zherdev, I’d say … it couldn’t be bad to add him, on a 1-year deal. That won’t hurt next year’s budget.

R. Stroz

September 11th, 2009
5:09 pm

Make Kovy Happy, Sign Zherdev for 1 Year, Re-Sign KOvy, Sell Tickets

Pan on Weck – Any ideas on a logo/slogan for your Rawhide’s Rowdies idea.

Hockey Biltong

September 11th, 2009
5:37 pm

Brendan – 91 points.$51million cap. 2nd place s.e. 5th place in east.

Brendan

September 11th, 2009
6:05 pm

Hockey Biltong, you’re registered at $51,000,000, just underneath “rightshot,” who has $51,200,000. “dwayne” is right under you, at $50,900,000. Also, you are locked in at 91-points, with tie-breakers being 2nd in the SE and 5th in the Conference.

Shifting gears, I just want to thank Garnet Exelby for 5 seasons and change of service to the Atlanta Thrashers. I remember him breaking into the league with those two fights, like it was yesterday. Garnet had his following here. Even if he does a “face plant” at Center Ice in Toronto, he has FANTASTICALLY OVERACHIEVED in his hockey career. Exelby was a 7th round pick, 217th overall. He bounced between the middle and third pairings on defense. But he can tell ANYONE … I got drafted into the premier hockey league in the World, the NHL, and I cracked the lineup, playing over 350 games. Though he is a career -20, minus-21 of those came in the 2008 season. Exelby never set the world on fire, but WHO expected him to? To the best of my knowledge, Exelby played here without complaint. I’ve never heard him say a discouraging word about the Thrashers, the City of Atlanta, or Atlanta hockey fans.

I genuinely and sincerely wish Garnet Exelby the best with the Maple Leafs organization. Toronto is, perhaps, the single most scrutinizing hockey market in North America. I just hope they give him a chance. I believe Exelby is from Manitoba, so maybe they’ll ease up a bit, since he’s Canadian? But plenty of Canadians have played for the Leafs and been unmercifully crucified in the Toronto media. And scrutinized to the Nth degree. I’ll be watching Exelby on Center Ice and hoping he does well. Except against the Thrashers, of course. I think it would be classy for Atlanta fans to give him a nice ovation during the warmups and if he should happen to be announced as part of the starting lineups when the Leafs visit Philips Arena. But remember, Exelby is now “fair game” for Boris Valabik, or any other Thrasher, to grab and pound.

Midfield

September 11th, 2009
6:36 pm

Amen, Brendan

ben

September 11th, 2009
6:40 pm

Brendan, I too miss Garnett. But Le Thrash is / has moved on. You know what would be classy, putting his name, not number, in the rafters. Or naming a trophy given to an unlikely rookie who made good. On a related note retiring Snyder’s number would be class too. I just want to put it out there that if Z-Man shows up this year, I’ll be cheering. Soo let’s just clear that up right now. My objections were purely fiscal.

R. Stroz

September 11th, 2009
6:51 pm

OK, I’ve waited long enough.

I’m hoping/guessing Zherdev gets signed, so here are my predictions.

1) Budget $50 million

2) 100 points

3) 1st in the SE division and 3rd seed overall.

Riceowls8891

September 11th, 2009
7:04 pm

I’ll be there both days. Gotta get my lungs ready for the season. Is it bad form to heckle the refs in a prospect game? (Kidding).

Brendan

September 11th, 2009
7:12 pm

Allright, R.Stroz. You got your vote in “on time.” Everyone has until 11PM tonight, that’s Sept. 11th, to submit that budget vote. We have to cut it off somewhere. The season starts in 3 weeks. This is probably the “latest” we’ve ever let the Budget contest go.

R.Stroz, you’re in at $50,000,000. On the nose. Your point total guess is now the highest, at 100. That would set a franchise record. In 2007, the Thrashers won the SE Division, with 97-points. You are also locked in with a 1st place finish in the SE Division, ahead of both Washington and Carolina. And, you also have Atlanta seeded 3rd in the Eastern Conference. Man, I hope your pick wins!!!

So far, R.Stroz is the only guess to win the division. But we do have five (5) 2nd place finishes projected, by J.B., Thrashers27, rightshot, dwayne, and ben. And we have nine (9) votes that project the Thrashers to be a playoff team. That’s a lot of positive momentum.

Sigh Zherdev already, to support these optomistic Thrasher fans! Get ‘er done!

Brendan

September 11th, 2009
7:14 pm

Freedom of speech allows it, Riceowls. I’d say, “if the spirit moves you.”

Brendan

September 11th, 2009
7:17 pm

ben, Midfield, … what do you think of giving Exelby a radio gig job, like Jeff Odgers has right now, once XLB’s playing days are through?

Brendan

September 11th, 2009
7:31 pm

I’m still a little surprised the Thrashers haven’t retired the #37 yet. What are they waiting for? It’s been more than five years since the crash. Coming up on six, on September 29th. Snyder’s death anniversary is in October, however. Forgive me for resurrecting any of that. But really, why wait to retire the number? I heard that. Whoever just yelled, “But Brendan, they’re not going to let anyone else wear #37, anyway.” Probably so. That’s a good point. But why not formalize it? There’s got to be someone else in the league who wears #37, who could, one fine day, be traded to Atlanta. Okay, I heard that, too. “Then they’d force him to pick a different number.” I suppose these kinds of arguments could go on forever.

kracker

September 11th, 2009
7:47 pm

Ben > “Or naming a trophy given to an unlikely rookie who made good.”

That could be appropriate, not a trophy per se but maybe sort of an informal GE achievement award for guys that make it from the last couple of rounds or even less likely as an invitee. The criteria could be sort of vague and left up to the players to decide when and if a player earns it.

Riceowls8891

September 11th, 2009
8:20 pm

If the Breakaway Grill is open beforehand, the spirits may move me. Not that I need much help.

Smoothie

September 11th, 2009
8:28 pm

Okay Brendan, I’ll go with an Opening Night cap hit of $48,774,179.39 to go along with my points prediction of 89 points. Is that what I gave you the first time? 89 pts with a 3rd place / 9th place finish?

Also, I say Kovy signs a 2 yr extension the day before the Casino Night preceedings whenever the hell that is this year. Since there is no AS break and January has a full slate of Saturday games, I’m not sure when this will be scheduled…Friday, January 8th??

ben

September 11th, 2009
8:42 pm

yeah Brendan

Sara

September 11th, 2009
8:55 pm

Brendan – Peverley wore #37 in Nashville…so now you know they won’t give it out.

Snyder was a great guy and the whole thing blew, but officially retiring numbers is for players who have made very significant contributions to a team. Snyder was a 3rd/4th line grinder and never even played a full season. Thus, his number becomes unofficially retired, much the same way Detroit has done with Vladdy’s #16 (who played for the team for years and won a Stanley Cup to boot). Plus, unofficially retired numbers are actually pretty common.

Scotty

September 11th, 2009
9:22 pm

great blog again Rawhide. And as always, the comments here are simply the best! Its been a long, long summer hasn’t it? I’m pumped to get this season started!

Brendan, please put me down for 91 points for the Thrashers and they will finish in 3rd place in the southeast division and 9th in the east.

I agree with Sara about the #37. I don’t think it shold be officially retired but it should never be worn by another Thrasher again. That they made Peverley take another number shows that the team thinks the same and I’m ood with that.

Pam on Wrek, maybe a slogan could go along with the Rawhide’s Rowdies logo like “We were Rowdy when Rowdy wasn’t cool”.

Dwayne

September 11th, 2009
9:37 pm

Is it bad form to heckle the refs in a prospect game? (Kidding).
No, its never bad to heckle the refs.

Brendan

September 12th, 2009
12:28 am

Well, Sara makes a good point, Scotty. Does Dan Snyder hold any team records? Pause. I don’t think so. A retired number usually is given out for longstanding years of service, or being a team leader for goals or points, or playoff leadership. Or in the case of goalies, wins, shutouts, playoff performances, and championships delivered. Scotty, you’re in for 91-points, 3rd in SE, and 9th in the Conference.

Smoothie, I have you down for 89-points, 3rd in SE Division, and 8th, not 9th, in the Conference. If you want to switch it to 9th in Conference, that’s fine. You can change it all the way until “puck drop” of Opening Night. As can anyone else. So, R.Stroz, if Zherdev never comes, you can ammend your pick, between now and “puck drop” for the Points contest.

But … **Announcement Alert** … (1) all guesses for the 2009 “Opening Night” budget are now over. As in, “Oh-vahh.” That contest has completed. No more entries are being accepted. At this point, you go to http://www.nhlnumbers.com and go click on the ATL tab, then gaze at the “cap hit number” at the bottom of the screen. Whatever that says … at “puck drop” is the official number, for purposes of our little AJC.com contest. Whoever guessed the closest to that number, whether above, below or exactly that number, is the winner of the contest. And hopefully, they will update the site soon, as they are a tad bit behind, but I think they’ll catch up by puck drop, in October. Those were the announced rules for that contest, as posted back on August 28, 2009.

**Announcement #2** … there are no more guesses for the Kovalchuk re-signing contest. That, likewise, concluded. Back in JUNE. If you correctly guessed the date, but never entered the contest, well kudos, but you didn’t win the contest. The winning guess will belong to the poster, or posters, who made the guesses DURING the voting period … of April 11, 2009 to I think it was June 17, 2009. Kovalchuk became eligible for contract renewal on July 1, 2009. As a reminder to those who voted during the open dates for voting, you MUST CORRECTLY GUESS the team, not just the closest date, when Kovalchuk signs or re-signs with some club, in SOME league. (We allowed guesses for KHL teams, too.) In the contest, there were NO GUESSES for between September 10, 2009 and June 29, 2010. September 9th was guessed by Nikita. June 30, 2010, was guessed by Ranallo10 (in AT) and by Brendan, with 5PM and 8PM as “tie-breakers” for “time of day” for the contract announcement. If there is a Christmas re-signing, I believe it would be Nikita’s win. Officially. She’d be the closest, by about 3 months, compared to June 2010.

Tony C.

September 12th, 2009
4:21 am

Hey, I know everybody’s geeked to start thing moving towards the season (finally)….but uh, I got a small problem:

We got a bunch of tickets for the Sunday Falcons home-opener and well, one of our friends stiffed us…if anybody’d like to get a pair of tickets in section 204 for at/near face value (I’ll work with you, but need to recoup the loss). Please hit me up if you know my address or with Trixie’s good graces get in touch with Mr. T and let me know.

I’ll see you guys Monday or Tuesday @ the Forum.

Also, what do you guys make of Buccigross letting the cat out of the bag on the 3-way deal for the Crybaby/Marleau/Kopitar deal???

Lee

September 12th, 2009
7:33 am

brendan, plz put me down for 89 points, third in division, 9 in conference.

rawhide-great blog to get everyone pumped up for the season!

hope to be @ the forum!

Lee

September 12th, 2009
7:35 am

hope to see u guys there @ openin game!

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.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
12:21 pm

I liked Sara’s post, too, because she logically spelled out the argument. Well done. But here’s what I like to see happen.

I’d like to resurrect Archie Bunker, (From “All in the Family,”) to grab Bruce Levenson by the lapels, jigger him, and say, “Ain’tcha got no judgement in dere, Dingbat?”

My goodness, I’m not an advocate of violence, really. But if ever someone needed to be b!tchslapped … hard … by someone who REALLY KNOWS HOW … it’s Bruce. Let me see if I understand this argument correctly? The “face of the franchise” could possibly leave, taking HALF of the season ticket holders with him, and the ownership’s take on that is … “Why risk ONE MEASELY YEAR’S WORTH of “FULL” REVENUE-SHARING. We’re passing on Zherdev.”

Digest that one yet? But by signing Zherdev, defensive liabilities not withstanding, to a one-year deal … (1) they keep the “face of the franchise” happy and (2) they DON’T IMPACT NEXT YEAR’S CAP, ANNNNNND (3)they potentially put their team INTO THE PLAYOFFS … THIS SEASON … and still qualify for “partial” revenue-sharing dollars. And I did mention … that Playoff Revenue … is 100-PERCENT PURE PROFIT FOR THE OWNERS? Well, it is.

Even if Zherdev doesn’t work out, and the team misses the playoffs, and the owners don’t get “full” revenue-sharing dollars, it’s NOT BAD or WRONG. And here’s why. It SENT A MESSAGE about COMMITMENT … to the most important player to ever wear a Thrashers uniform … and it SPEAKS TO INTENT to win. Lest these things be IRRELEVANT. “Penny wise-pound foolish,” as well stated by Sara.

If I were Don Waddell, that is, DEALING WITH MORONS at Hockey Operations, I’d sit down with Bruce. Maybe slip some “thinking juice” into his coffee, and explain the benefit of having KANE ANNNNND Zherdev. As well as the possibility, if things are going great, of BUYING at the trade deadline, so long as we’re not giving away the farm, like we did in 2007. And then … PRAY … PRAY … that the synapses in Bruce’s brain will fire. And if that doesn’t work, appeal to Michael Gearon, who seems to have the most cranial capacity out of all of the Octocluster.

It’s times like these that I simply must DEFER to a David McDavid quote, from the December 12, 2008 AJC article, “Suit’s winner might have won here,” by Jeff Schultz. Here now, the quote. “Do you know what a camel is? It’s a horse designed by a committee.” McDavid continues, “Those franchises are being run by a committee. They’re a camel. If I had taken over, nobody would be fighting, unless I was fighting with myself. Does that guarantee anything? No. But I will always believe I would have done a better job. Look at their history. none of them had [ever] run a business [sports] like that in their life.”

Okay, my point there, with that quote, isn’t to “pine away” for David McDavid. Hardly. My point is … “WELL LOOK, THEY STILL DON’T KNOW HOW TO RUN A SPORTS-BUSINESS.” At least, not a hockey one. They’ve had some successes with the Atlanta Hawks. They won a playoff series last year. And the year before, the Hawks took the eventual NBA Champs to Seven Games. Kudos to them.

R. Stroz

September 13th, 2009
12:54 pm

And don’t you know Jay Grossman, Kovalchuk’s agent, has pointed out to Kovy that the ASGs willingness to exceed the “full revenue sharing” cap number is a “tell” as to whether the ASG will ever be committed to hockey in Atlanta.

If the ASG isn’t willing to exceed the full revenue sharing cap number this year when Kovy has leverage, isn’t it obvious that they will not do so in the future when the leverage is removed?

Waddell and the ASG are trying to bluff Kovy with a pair of twos. And when bluffing with a pair of twos in poker, you will lose money nearly every time. If the ASG loses Kovy, they’ll be lucky to have revenue at all.

World Be Free

September 13th, 2009
3:40 pm

We don’t know that Kovy is in favor of signing Zherdev. Kovy may look at Zherdev, the full package, thinking he’s not worth his defensive shortcomings.

I seen a couple entries on thgis blog that signing Zherdev is crucial if we are going to resign Kovby. Earlier, I stated that I thought the 2 were intertwined. Now I am not so sure now.

Sara

September 13th, 2009
4:10 pm

Rawhide – Ben Wright interviewed Waddell and confirmed that Welch is out injured. Had off-season surgery apparently and is a month away from action per Don. No indication of Kari playing any time soon either.

GaVaHokie

September 13th, 2009
4:39 pm

WBF… I agree… I don’t think Kovy is begging for Zherdev.

Sara… Zherdev is a one year player… he either sucks and we don’t resign him, or he plays incredibly well and wants $6 million to stay and we don’t resign him.

… one year player.

Viking

September 13th, 2009
5:12 pm

To add fuel to speculations regarding Zherdev’s possible signing with Washington;

A Swedish newspaper says Bodreau is telling Washington Post that the club together with Nylander is looking a new club for him in Europe, since he is not marketable in the NHL due to his salary. Only KHL clubs can therefore be a possibility. So it appears that Nylander is willing to waive his No Trade clause.

Rawhide

September 13th, 2009
5:28 pm

Sara – Thanks for the let-know on Welch. As for Kari, well…hence Legace’s invite to camp.

Good to see you and your little tax-exemptions there today. Same for everyone else hanging in our group…and you know who your are!

Jameson

September 13th, 2009
5:47 pm

Brendan- Looks like I missed the cap game, but for the points game, put me down for 98 points, 2nd in the SE and 6th in the East. I’m going to say with the addition of a few players the boys continue what they did the last 10 games of last season all year this time around.

Zoomo

September 13th, 2009
6:22 pm

That was me that said hello to you on the way out, Bill (with my 7 year old in tow). We chatted previously, before a late season game at Taco Mac. I used to post under “ZB” but that was before we got Bogosian. Since I didn’t want to be seen as a Bogo stalker, I changed my moniker.

We’ll be back for the prospect game tomorrow.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
6:43 pm

Where’s Russian? Didn’t Russian translate an article from Europe for us that said that Zherdev said Kovalchuk, his workout partner, wanted/asked him to join him in Atlanta, but that Zherdev said, “We’ll have to see about that.” I grant you, that’s a bucket load of “hearsay,” and would never be entered into evidence in a criminal proceeding, but why would Zherdev mention that Kovalchuk wanted him to play in Atlanta next season, in an article, if it bore NO RELEVANCE?

Was Kovalchuk ever asked if he wanted Zherdev? I don’t know. I can’t say. I only got the impression that’s what Kovalchuk wanted, since Zherdev specifically went out of his way to MENTION IT. The “it” being that Kovalchuk wanted him to play in Atlanta next season. Moving right along.

Jameson, you’re entered at 98-points, 2nd in SE Division, and 6th in the Conference. Jameson, so that you know, “rightshot” has 98-points, 2nd in SE Division, and 8th in the Conference. So, that 2nd “tie-breaker” comes into effect for you guys. If the Thrashers finish with 98-points, 2nd in SE Division, and 7th in the Conference, you’d both win, being equidistant in your Conference rankings.

Rawhide

September 13th, 2009
6:55 pm

Zoomo – It was great to see you again. When you went by and said “hello”, I thought you looked familiar. I hope we’re able to chat longer tomorrow should we cross paths.

Smoothie

September 13th, 2009
7:13 pm

Does anyone have any fun observatiuons from camp or is everyone watching their DVR to see if the Falcons won?

Hockey Biltong

September 13th, 2009
7:22 pm

Brendan,
Blueshirt Hockey[Rangers] did a translation of a Zherdev interview, tying in his hopes for playing Olympic hockey and the way to prove he was capable, by playing with Kovy.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
7:33 pm

Biltong, cool.

Rawhide

September 13th, 2009
8:19 pm

Smoothie – John Anderson came over to the table I was sharing with C-Viv and a few other of my blogger buddies in the Breakaway Grill to say “hello”. I told him that I thought his skating skills were greatly improved over last year.

He laughed and said that he just tries not to get run over out there.

DWTOO

September 13th, 2009
8:43 pm

Good to see you today Rawhide. Your popularity is SOARING! Rawhide’s Rowdies – could be a whole new cult. Anyway we need to hook up before one of the pre-season games as the lovely Puckwench leaves for South Africa on a two and half month detail October 1.

Rawhide's Rowdies

September 13th, 2009
8:52 pm

Making Noise For Years

Rawhide

September 13th, 2009
8:52 pm

DWTOO – WHAT???? The lovely Puckwench is leaving me…er, ah…I mean…leaving you for a month and a half???

Indeed, we shall hook up then. I’ll be at the rookie games tomorrow and Tuesday afternoon. I’ll also be at the Monday preseason game as well as the last one on Sunday afternoon. You have my e-mail address…shoot me a quick note and we’ll set something up.

I can’t believe she’s leaving me…uh, I mean…leaving you for that long!

R. Stroz

September 13th, 2009
9:03 pm

All kind sof reports on twitter that Zherdev offered to go back to Rangers for 3.25 million, but the Rangers turned him down.

Hopefully, the Thrashers will step up and sign Zherdev for 3.25 million.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
9:15 pm

Not trying to start WW-III, but why COULDN’T Zherdev play on a 1-year deal, then get renewed, if things go well? Kozlov’s $3.666 million comes off the books. So does Kubina’s $5.0 million. As does Colby Armstrong’s $2.4 million. Jim Slater’s salary comes off. Not sure what he makes, but it’s under $1.0 million and more than $550K. Not sure if Chris Thorburn signed a 1-year or 2-year deal, but he’s probably under $750K. And if he is still on next year’s payroll, he can be traded as “sweetener” in a deal. Moose’s $1.15 to $1.25 million, or thereabouts, comes off the books next year. Eric Boulton’s $600K will be gone. Bryan Little needs a huge raise ($3.25 to $4.0 million), as would Rich Peverley, if he re-signs. Which isn’t a certainty. Brett Sterling could be traded, or re-signed for the league mininum. Kane will cost $3.1 million. Kari, assuming he is re-signed and not traded, will cost $3.0, roughly. Pavelec costs around $1.5 million, roughly. I think this DOES leave room for Zherdev, on a 1-2 year deal, if he were amenable to something like that. And he cannot command $6 million unless he puts up those kinds of numbers. I think the arbitrator awarded Zherdev $3.9 million. Atlanta’s budget has room for that figure this year, and NEXT year. Does Kovy really want him? And if so, how badly?

And if the organization can’t ever encroach on a salary figure that eclipses “full revenue sharing,” why should Kovy stay, when plenty of other organizations CAN and WILL spend to the limit, every single year, to try to win the Cup? Try to this see this from HIS SIDE of things, instead of the FAN’S perspective?

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
9:21 pm

R.Stroz, I agree with you. What’s the WORST that could happen? He doesn’t work out, and we trade him. Or we don’t renew him. Or, I suppose, he flat-out bolts for Russia. It was worth a shot. I know Zherdev is the outsider, with defensive question-marks, and Kane is the “orginal” Thrashers draft pick, but what’s more likely? That Kane will produce more than Zherdev? Rangers fans came here to give testimony that Zherdev wasn’t “that bad” of a defensive liability.

Smoothie

September 13th, 2009
9:28 pm

Rawhide – glad u had a chance to hang with Viv and some of the other dignitaries from camp, including the esteemed Coach Anderson. Good stuff.

Oh yeah, his skating isn’t the only person’s to have improved since the end of last season! LOL I can now go around the rink, albeit a bit raggedly, without the assistance of the wall or the lovely Ms. Ten.
If I only could use a hockey stick to help me with balance to develop my left leg.

One last thing: did Van Kane look like he belonged out there; how was he received?

And congrats on your ever increasing popularity! The legend grows…

Rawhide

September 13th, 2009
9:40 pm

Smoothinator – Well, don’t let on to the lovely Ms. Ten that you are getting so good on skates that you no longer are need of her…ahem…assistance.

As for Kane, he was well received by the crowd at hand, as one would expect. He played on a line with Reasoner and Army and did OK. It was the first time any of us had seen him play with the big-boys…but I think he played his position well and certainly was able to keep up. Big test will come during preseason.

Brendan – Congrats professor…your last comment was the 10,000 posted on this blog since we switch to the WordPress format in mid-February.

R. Stroz

September 13th, 2009
9:42 pm

Brendan – Zhitnik’s 1.167 million come off the books next season as well. Mo Money, Mo Money, Mo Money.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
9:49 pm

I plum FORGOT about Zhitnik!! (It’s easy to do.) Cha-ching! Mo-Money! Maybe if Waddell ANNNND Dudley cornered Bruce Levenson, and with the aid of “sock puppets,” demonstrated just how simple and easy this really could be.

R. Stroz

September 13th, 2009
10:10 pm

So easy a caveman can do it, or a drunk.

Tom

September 13th, 2009
10:55 pm

Isn’t it Waddell’s line that ownership always gives him the money if it makes hockey sense?

Or was that window dressing. Zherdev is a move that will make Ilya happy and improve the team.

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
11:12 pm

It’s the money the Thrashers could be making with ZheGEICO. One “quick call” to Bruce Levenson could make the Thrashers up to 20-percent.

Tom, I think Waddell’s line was, “I’ve never had a request denied.” But someone should really double-check that. I think … the key is … to never make requests beyond the “AGREED UPON” internal budget.
But, I really think some pie charts and/or bar graph charts could really do a long way.

I do wonder … has Bruce Levenson or Michael Gearon ever asked Don Waddell the following question, “Don, would MORE MONEY have helped avoid back-to-back 76-point seasons?” And would Don’s answer be, “No. Not really. We did the right thing setting the budget where it was. We got Kane, didn’t we? We’re right on schedule for our 4-year building plan.”

Brendan

September 13th, 2009
11:17 pm

Tom, what would ownership know about ‘hockey sense?’ Until the Dudley acquisition, the one and only voice resembling hockey ‘reason’ was Don Waddell. Himself. “The architect of Champions.”

LAC

September 14th, 2009
5:38 am

Hey Brenden, Yes 80 points, 4th SE and 13th in Eastern Confrence.

Defense still not stable enough and we need one more scorer.

Plus the Goaltending is not that solid, we have solid prospects
in goal, but too many goals last year and I do not see it coming down enough to put us in a playoff position. We HAVE to have 50 goals LESS scored on us this season to have any chance at playoffs.

Remember, we tied San Jose, who was The Number #1 Regular Season team,
in goals scored with 257… but 294 allowed… That is and has been the
problem from day #1 here and I do not see it improving rnough to get to the playoffs yet again.

Brendan

September 14th, 2009
11:04 am

LAC, you are in at 80-points now, still with 4th in SE, and now 13th instead of 14th in the Eastern Conference. The Thrashers will look to improve GA this year. I’d be surprised if things stayed the same or got worse, in that department. But this is why we play the games.