It's less than a week since the trade deadline, and while the Canucks have picked up 2 of a possible 6 points, they are a disappointing 0-1-2 in that spell.
Not only that, the teams top line has gone pointless in those 3 games, and while there has been some secondary scoring, the team seems to be more apathetic as the games go by.
Even Luongo's passion has diminished since their loss to Colorado last week.
They are all facing the sad reality that the team simply isn't good enough to make a long haul in the playoffs. They just don't have the pieces needed to do it.
While I am still unhappy about losing out on the Richards deal, I agree with Nonis and believe that the King's ransom they wanted for him was ridiculous.
And then the audacity of Jacques Martin thinking that Jokinen is worth BOTH Sedin's is something else. I believe that he's still bent about the Luongo deal and was looking to gain some ground back on that one.
But as anyone who's negotiated anything knows, it HAS to work for both sides. Uneven trades are fine if it provides the right fit.
Think of the deal Tampa got for Richards. Jussi Jokinen, Mike Smith, & Jeff Halpern. That's it. While the Canucks offered up Schneider, Bourdon, a 1st & 2nd round pick. The latter was a better offer, but the former was a better fit as Mike Smith is ready to play goal for Tampa right now.
So what is actually available this summer for Nonis to 'spend' his money on that has been saved from the expiring contracts of Markus Naslund (6m) and Brendan Morrison (3.2m).
Not a whole lot, that's what.
I believe there is only one other player in the league right now that would fill the void the team has and that's Jeff Carter of the Philadelphia Flyers.
With good young wingers such as Mason Raymond, Jurak Simek, & Jannik Hansen coming along nicely, it's strength up the middle the team needs. Morrison won't be back with the emergence of Kesler this last year. Him and Burrows make up an excellent shut-down 3rd line. The second line needs some bulk, and with Richards & Jokinen no longer possibilities, Jeff Carter is the next best option.
He's still only 23, with a massive potential upside. He's over 6'3" and still bulking out. He not only provides the presence the Canucks need, but also the right age for the future of this team.
That, and consider that Philadelphia is completely plugged up at the center position. Daniel Briere just signed on for 8 years, and is earning 10m this year. And Mike Richards just signed on for 12 years at an average well over 5m per year. That's leaves Carter out in no mans land with Philadelphia needing to do something to get the most out of an asset they simply can't keep.
And what they'll need is defensive help. Jason Smith is coming to the end of his deal. Hatcher has never been cared for in the city of brotherly love. They will have a need to do some shoring up there this summer.
Nonis, I know you like this kid. Let's see some magic happen before the summer ends. It's either that or another exceptionally boring year of hockey.
The Chief Canuck