How big of a splash will Dudley make in UFA talent pool?

It’s been a busy week or so in Thrasherville. Big trade with Chicago…followed by Craig Ramsay being named new head coach…the NHL entry draft…RFA qualifying offers…then all the chatter throughout the week regarding UFAs and RFAs contracts.

Yup, very busy indeed. That, plus it’s been extremely hot and humid around these parts as well. So it’s the perfect time to have a pool party…the annual UFA “Talent Pool” party, that is.

That’s right, kids…today we make our yearly mid-summer trek to take a dip in the cool water of the NHL community talent pool. But for the first time in the Thrashers’ history, Don Waddell will not be the one looking to fish out UFAs from the pool…instead it’ll be new GM Rick Dudley.

The question is… just how big of a splash does he intends to make?

Here on the deck surrounding the pool, our good friend Five_Hole has once again agreed to DJ today’s extravaganza while the lovely Joyel from TJ’s Bar & Grill will be serving up drinks behind the bar. Also for those who might, shall we say, overindulge…Tony C. will be proving cab rides back home.

And the best part… it’s all on the AJC’s tab!!

Now…Dudley has indicated that he’d like to snag a 15-plus goal scorer this summer and there are a few to choose from today. But if he’s not able to pluck out such a player from the pool, he’s also said that a trade could be on the horizon to procure one.

But for me, the top priority is finding a #1 goalie for the upcoming season. Dudley has told us that he’s “comfortable” with having Johan Hedberg return…however, the veteran Swede netminder does not seem to be “comfortable” with the terms and conditions of the contract that was extended to him.

The one I would most like to see Dudley & Co. snag is Evgeni Nabokov, who was informed just last week that he will not be factoring into San Jose’s future plans. I’m sure he will be the prize target for those looking to upgrade between the pipes.

The All-Star is netminder is 293-178 with 29 ties and 37 OTLs. He owns a 2.39 GAA, .912 SV% and has posted 50 shutouts in his 563 total regular season games played…all with the Sharks. In the playoffs he is 40-39 with a 2.29 GAA, .914 SV% and 7 SO during San Jose’s nine playoff appearances since 2000.

Nabokov is coming off a four-year deal that paid approximately $21.5 million.

What type of splash will Rick Dudley make in the UFA talent pool?

  • Cannon Ball - Big splash with huge signing or two (26%, 22 Votes)
  • Like Platform Diving - Dives in but no big splash (53%, 46 Votes)
  • Belly Flop - Not pretty and it'll hurt just to watch (21%, 18 Votes)

Total Voters: 86

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Around the rest of the NHL, Ilya Kovalchuk looks to be the big free agent fish in this year’s UFA talent pool. Joining the long list of superstars who have done so in the past, the Russian winger departed Atlanta last winter for New Jersey but now gets to select where he’s heading next. Could it be the L.A. Kings, Toronto, another NHL team…or even back home to play in the KHL? 

Keep in mind he turned aside an offer by Don Waddell last winter that would have paid him $10 million as season for three, five or seven years. He also said “nyet” to a 12-year deal that was worth $101 mil. It’ll be curious to see what he gets elsewhere.

Oh, and for those of you who still clutch to the hope that Kovy might return here…don’t hold your breath. Well, unless you’re swimming underwater, that is. Sure I’m trained in First Aid and CPR, but I really don’t want to be bother with such things today.

I thank you in advance for your understanding.

One last note before we crash the pool and join in the fun… I will once again warn each and every one of you that a repeat the infamous “Baby Ruth Bar Incident of 2008” will not be tolerated!

Yes, I’m looking at you, Smoothie…

It takes a lot of time and expense to drain, clean, disinfect and re-fill these things, ya know.

UFA Signing Updates

UPDATE 4:55 pm: Thrasher trade Evgeni Vishovskiy and 2nd round draft pick to Chicago for forward Andrew Ladd.

UPDATE 4:40 pm: Thrashers sign goalie Chris Mason…2-year deal paying $1.6 million this year and $2.1 million next year.

UPDATE 1:36 pm: Thrasher killer Antero Niittymaki is now a San Jose Shark.

UPDATE 1:34 pm: Colby Armstrong is now a Toronto Maple Leaf. 3 years, $9-million.

UPDATE 9:01 am: Kevin Allen of USA Today Sports reports via twitter, “Thrashers making another run at G Johan Hedberg this morning, and they will shop for a forward (and maybe a goalie) later today”

617 comments Add your comment

Zoomo

July 1st, 2010
4:39 pm

I’m just guessing…I say MacArthur and a prospect

Jason

July 1st, 2010
4:39 pm

NHL.com is saying on the blog we picked up Chris Mason to be the starting goalie.

Lee

July 1st, 2010
4:40 pm

Oh yeah! LADD!!

glovesave29

July 1st, 2010
4:40 pm

I hope not! Too much!

Dandylions

July 1st, 2010
4:41 pm

I love Moose – wait that doesn’t sound right

TableHockey

July 1st, 2010
4:41 pm

pick and prospect – go DUDs!!!

Michael

July 1st, 2010
4:41 pm

I hope it is not Little.

TableHockey

July 1st, 2010
4:41 pm

CHI must be desperate to get cap room

glovesave29

July 1st, 2010
4:42 pm

For Little I mean…take Clarke!

Zoomo

July 1st, 2010
4:42 pm

Ben Wright says “for a pick and a prospect”

TableHockey

July 1st, 2010
4:42 pm

wonder if it’s Cormier – they wanted him in the Buff deal

Michael

July 1st, 2010
4:43 pm

Isn’t Ladd a RFA? So we shouldn’t give up too much (I would hope).

fes

July 1st, 2010
4:43 pm

can’t see it being cormier. duds is big on him.

Michael

July 1st, 2010
4:44 pm

According to DarrenDreger: “draft pick and prospect for Ladd. Thrashers have yet to speak to agent about a Ladd extension”. Now worried what prospect.

Judge Smails to Thrasher fans

July 1st, 2010
4:44 pm

You’ll get mason and like it. I just could not see Duds sitting on his hands with Opie/Moose tandem. Not with Ramseys up style offense, I say Kubina is the key now. With the 2 yr deal to Mason, can we still get a good forward? Providing Kubina sins here?

glovesave29

July 1st, 2010
4:44 pm

McKenzie says its a pick and a prospect

World Be Free

July 1st, 2010
4:45 pm

Don’t you people have jobs?

Judge Smails to Thrasher fans

July 1st, 2010
4:45 pm

Michael

July 1st, 2010
4:45 pm

TSNBobMcKenzie: Darren Dreger reports Ivan Vishnevsky and a second-round pick to CHI for Ladd.

Darren

July 1st, 2010
4:46 pm

Vishnevsky and a 2nd-round pick for Ladd

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
4:46 pm

Wow, when it rains it pours!! Way to go Duds, unless you gave up Klingberg and then I will hunt you down when you sleep! j/k

Zoomo

July 1st, 2010
4:46 pm

McKenzie reports – Ivan Vishnevsky and a second-round pick to CHI for Ladd

Vitamin Z

July 1st, 2010
4:46 pm

Andrew Ladd goes to Atlanta for a 2nd round pick, plus Ivan Vishnevskiy. the Thrashers got Vishnevskiy from Dallas for Leighton.

Dwayne

July 1st, 2010
4:46 pm

If my company checks my computer, i’m fired!! Maybe I can clean up after the POOL PARTY.

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
4:46 pm

Dang! I called it! And we didn’t even have to give up Thorburn!!

TableHockey

July 1st, 2010
4:47 pm

WBF – I do but I intentionally scheduled a lot of meetings for this afternoon!

Netminder

July 1st, 2010
4:47 pm

TSNBobMcKenzie: Darren Dreger reports Ivan Vishnevsky and a second-round pick to CHI for Ladd.

Smitty

July 1st, 2010
4:47 pm

WBF The Sabres should have hired Dudley

Michael

July 1st, 2010
4:47 pm

So we basically traded a pick and Kari for Ladd? I’ll take that. We have some depth at D, so good to see Duds trade from position of depth while getting someone who will play right now. Now if we could just sign Kubina, the excitement can grow for the upcoming season.

somaatl95

July 1st, 2010
4:48 pm

Nope. A prospect and Vishneski (forgive my bad spelling)

Jack

July 1st, 2010
4:49 pm

I can work with that trade.

somaatl95

July 1st, 2010
4:50 pm

and tardiness too…. sigh….

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
4:50 pm

One hell of a pool party indeed!! Someone pass me the bourbon!

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
4:51 pm

Kubina might crack and give in on our offer…he said he likes the direction of the young team. Take the discount, be our quiet, steady leader and presence on the blueline! C’mon Pasha!!

Netminder

July 1st, 2010
4:51 pm

(Passes bourbon to Smoothie)

World Be Free

July 1st, 2010
4:52 pm

I think some of us predicted Vish would never play in ATL. ow it has played out.

Smitty-folks in Buffalo are fuming, lose 2 of your top 4 defenseman and add nothing. They want Darcy’s head!

Not the goaltender I wanted, but all in all I am pretty happy.

hip czech

July 1st, 2010
4:52 pm

wow…i go to another window to actually do some work and bingo!

Love Mason, like Ladd….sorry to see Moose go – thanks for being a class act! But this is an instant upgrade.

Time to pop the beverage for dinner

somaatl95

July 1st, 2010
4:53 pm

Be careful with the drinking Smoothie, Booze and Pools usually lead to lapses in judgment – pretty soon clothes will start coming off and I seriously doubt most of us need to be crashing the pool party in that way :) Bill and Trixie would probably run away screaming!

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
4:54 pm

netminder – right back at ya man!! Happy Day!

IDWT

Netminder

July 1st, 2010
4:56 pm

Kubina comes back we are set…

Zoomo

July 1st, 2010
4:56 pm

lots of chatter that Kovy is going to LA

Smitty

July 1st, 2010
4:58 pm

We just sent out for a 12 pack. Good day for the Thrash. They still have plenty of cap space

glovesave29

July 1st, 2010
4:58 pm

Looks like we will need a Stanley Cup ring ceremony at Philips for all of the ex-Blackhawks now on the roster.

Moving to a new team with 3 teammates should make the transition easier.

Starting to look like a team I can get excited about!

Russ

July 1st, 2010
4:59 pm

Ladd has been an even or “+” player every season in the NHL, I like that.

DW is doing a good job keeping his hands out of things today. I don’t like the Byfuglien trade as much, so I will say DW got involved in that one.

Get Kubina re-signed and no other moves are necessary for this to be a playoff team. Get it done Duds!!!

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
5:03 pm

506 busted! And thensome! Well done folks, well done!

Red Light

July 1st, 2010
5:06 pm

Atlanta to Chicago Recap

Thrashers gave up Ivan Vishnevskiy, the 24th and 53rd overall picks in 2010, a future second round pick, Marty Reasoner, Jeremy Morin and Joey Crabb for Andrew Ladd, Dustin Byfuglien, Ben Eager, Brent Sopel and Akim Aliu.

Tom

July 1st, 2010
5:08 pm

I leave for an hour and we get Mason and Ladd for next to nothing … Awesome

R. Stroz

July 1st, 2010
5:08 pm

Don’t write Moose off yet. There are issues with Pavelec and his agent Walsh wanting too much money.

Pavelec may end up as trade bait.

Smoothie

July 1st, 2010
5:08 pm

Kovy on deck?? So sayeth David Pagnotta of the Fourth Period.

Michael

July 1st, 2010
5:08 pm

Man…you start thinking..Ladd, Antro, Bergs, Little, Kane, Slater, Peverly, Eager, Buff, Thors…not a bad place to start. Add Frolov (who is talking to the Rangers) and add Kubina to the D and I think we are looking good!