This blog may come too soon, we may still see a Ryan Smyth trade, we may see more signings or we may even see a new assistant G.M.
To Summarize the weekend I think we have to break it down into a few different categories. They are the Draft itself, the trades, Smyth, and Tanguay's Contract.
The Draft: I do not think anyone really thinks Bartschi at 13 was a bad pick, in fact it may be very good and that can go for Granlund as well. Both are offensive players with speed and really we can use that right? Not every player has to be over 6'2". Mcniell and Armia will be the players that we may look back on and say, "wow we could have had those guys", but time will tell. Drafting a goalie made sense as well, who knows with these guys when they'll turn out if ever but having Brossoit in the system can't hurt really. John Gaudreau put up pretty good numbers in the USHL however was ranked 197 at the end, why? Because he's 5'6. Theo Fleury looks this guy in the eye. Having said that small guys can succeed if given the opportunity and hopefully this is another kid who will in a few years.
Feaster didn't really make the move into the top ten I was hoping for, I think that's a let down from a guy saying he needed to hit a home run at the draft.
Draft Grade B-
The Trade: Look moving Regehr was not a bad thing, i've long said a stay at home d is the easiest position to fill, either via the draft, the system or free agency. Regehr was worth something though because he was a premier shut down guy, a top pairing d. Getting a 2nd round pick and a decent prospect would have been something. So why did Calgary end up giving a pick and only getting b level prospects for him? Kotalik. Kotalik is like the herpes of the Flames and to get rid of it they needed to package Regehr. Kotalik was the bane of this team and that trade from Sutter may have been his undoing as well. In essence Regehr leaving town has a lot to do with a bad trade from Sutter. The plus side is the salary dump, 7 million roughly, that goes a long way. I'll get to that when I write about Tanguay but looking at just the trade on paper and taking into account the salary dump i'd say the sabres won because in the end they got the best player.
Trade Grade: C-
Ryan Smyth: This will upset some of you but I like it. First off the Flames Power play sucked most of the time. Smyth had 9 PP goals, that would have been second only to Iginla. His 47 points would have been 5th in team scoring. His 24 goals would have been 4th on this team. He has a ton of character and provides a front of net presence that no one is willing to do except Langkow. I know he's 36, it's a one year contract, for anyone saying we should re-sign B-Mo make sure you think about that. In addition his LW position is a position the Flames need to fill up. After Tanguay they have Hagman and Glencross. For those of you who think he's too expensive, you are right however the Flames will trade salary to get him and his actual salary isn't as high as his cap hit so the owners won't mind. I think if you hate this trade if it happens you'll forget that when he is doing his thing in front of the net on the PP, giving Iggy that screen he needs and garaging the rebounds.
Tanguay: This one is pretty easy the cap hit is great, 3.5 million. The term is too long at 5 years. He will be 37 by the end of it. Some have said he has a NMC, I've heard a modified NTC, whatever I do not think it really matters. Regehr had a NMC too everyone, how'd that work out for him? He's in Buffalo that's how.
Tanguay Signing Grade: B because of term.
So as it stands today:
Top Line is Tanguay, Iginla, Backlund (for arguments sake)
Second line is Glencross, Bourque, Jokinen (great chemistry so Langkow moves down)
Third line is Hagman, Langkow, Moss
Fourth is a blend of Jackman, NONstopolous, Nemisz, Bouma, Stajan.
Defence looks like:
Gio and Sarich
Bouwmeester and UFA Defence or Babchuck
Carson and Brodie
with 7th guy either Mikkelson, Butler or Negrin
In my estimation Hagman could easily be traded because even though his season sucked his previous seasons were great, he's not a huge cap hit at 3 million, and even when he's dry he works his tail off.
I've thought Feaster has done a passable job so far however prior to the Regehr trade and Tanguay signing I was very frustrated at his perceived inability to get the job done. Erixon was a rough start but since then I would give him a grade of somewhere around c-. The void left by Regehr needs to be filled so if it's Pelech or if it's a ufa or Babchick will make a big difference in how I look at him moving forward.