June 27, 2004

The Sens get started: Here it comes. Lalime to St. Louis, Bonk to the Kings, they're taking a long look at Hasek, and a decade of building from within and solid drafting that had brought no small amount of success is flying out the window before our very eyes.

posted by chicobangs to hockey at 11:21 AM - 33 comments

This reeks of one-step-back. They better hope here's no season next year. It could be ugly.

posted by chicobangs at 11:23 AM on June 27, 2004

Do you think they're serious enough about Hasek that they would actually sign him? On the draft: I went to the draft yesterday here in Raleigh and I must admit, it was pretty fun. Especially when Rutherford traded up to get Ladd. People went freakin' nuts! You would've thought that the 'Canes had finally scored a goal or something. I can't wait to see Ladd and Staal on the ice together in a couple of years. Hey, you gotta love a kid that holds Cam Neely as his idol. I just hope that there isn't some kid out there that holds Ulfie as *his* idol and takes out Ladd's knee. The RBC was jumping with people; mostly families. There were collectible vendors in the concourse selling cards, bobbleheads, those cool hockey player action figures, and other collectible stuff. All of the trophies were on full display in the concourse as well. Outside, there was a "Caniac Carnival" with lots 'n lots of hockey related stuff for the kids. It rained pretty hard in the morning, so about mid-way through the first round when it finally cleared up, all of the kids got extremely restless to play the games outside. Thank god, I could finally stretch my legs a bit. We sat near Ray Borque (his son got drafted by Washington with one of their 2 billion picks) and his family. Glen Wesley walked down and sat near him. When Borque saw him, he about leapt out of his seat to greet his old teammate. By that display, I assume that they were pretty close friends from their times in Boston. Wayne Gretzky seemed truly and honestly shocked by the standing ovation that he received when he walked up on the podium. I figured that he would be used to it by now. Lots of Crapitals fans there, as I assumed there would be.

posted by NoMich at 12:26 PM on June 27, 2004

Do you think they're serious enough about Hasek that they would actually sign him? There were reports yesterday (sorry, no link) that they have agreed to terms with Hasek, they just have to wait until July 1st to sign him. I'm assuming that this trade confirms that.

posted by Stan Fields at 01:04 PM on June 27, 2004

Frankly, I'm a bit stunned. One, I didn't expect the Blues to give up on Chris Osgood so quickly. I thought he did a pretty good job for St. Louis this season. Two, Lalime is worth WAY more than a stinking conditional fourth-rounder. The guy had a bad playoff series, yes, but that's just rolling over and tossing his ass out the window. Couldn't the Sens have gotten more for him? Welcome, Patrick ... and enjoy the sport world's most forgiving fans.

posted by wfrazerjr at 01:49 PM on June 27, 2004

I think these moves are great. Ottawa had no intention of qualifying either player, and they would have walked in a week for nothing. Bonk is a good defensive player with some offensive upside, and a work ethic that rivals that of a couch-riding pothead. He'd simply stopped contributing. He had a fantastic playoff last year, led the team in scoring, and looked like a real threat on the ice. But that turned out to be an outlier performance, an exception to the rule. While I'm glad to see him gone, I'm not happy to see him traded back to the same division. Beyond Muckler's control, I suppose. Lalime needed to go, for his own sake. Would you want to play under that kind of fan scrutiny next season? He'd get lynched after every goal-against. Muckler did the right thing to ship him as far away as possible, which has the secondary advantage of keeping him out of the East and thus away from potential opponents. Hasek WILL be signed on July 1st. The deal is all but done. If Muckler does one more move -- a bonafide #1 centre -- Ottawa will be the complete package next year. There are whispers that Kris Draper might sign with Ottawa, too. God damn this CBA stuff. I want to watch hockey!

posted by Succa at 01:53 PM on June 27, 2004

Oh and don't forget, the money Ottawa saves by ditching Lalime and Bonk ($2.5M + $3.5M) can go towards signing core guys like Chara, Phillips, and Havlat.

posted by Succa at 02:02 PM on June 27, 2004

Bonk is a replaceable player, really a lousy player. However, putting all their eggs in the basket of a wonky ancient goaltender is so Maple Leafs of them. Apparently it's a two year deal loaded with incentives and a base of $2mil.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:40 PM on June 27, 2004

Haha... Hasek in Ottawa? The Sens will be out of the playoffs faster than you can say "temper-tantrum". I'm kind of surprised by the move, but kind of not. Either way, St. Louis is, obviously, a far better team with this move. Though I do wonder what will happen to Osgoode now.

posted by mkn at 04:09 PM on June 27, 2004

Lalime is a good goalie, hes taken a bad wrap and yes, did not play up to the level he should and can. However that said one bad season and hes gone? He didnt win 40 games a couple years ago with luck, nor did his team do it all themselves. St.Louis made a good trade here, and I would take him over Osgood.

posted by DonovanMD at 10:18 PM on June 27, 2004

"We owed it to Patrick," Muckler said Sunday. "He's a character guy and a loyal soldier, and I think he did a very good job for the organization. "There was a lot of pressure of Patrick because we lost to Toronto last season. I don't think a lot of that criticism should have been put on his shoulders but I thought he played very well for us. And going to St. Louis I think is a good thing for him because he gets a fresh start."
This kills me, but I've gotta agree with Muckler. Not all Ottawa fans are as understanding as I like to think I am, and I wouldn't have wanted him to place under those kind of conditions next year. His problems this year (apart from playing injured in the playoffs) stemmed from confidence issues: the city of Ottawa never really accepted him, and even after he got us within one goal of the finals, we still labelled him as "the big question mark in goal". I wanted him to stay. I wanted the Sens to be that drafted-and-developed team, the kids who'd been turned into stellar hockey players economically to win their first Stanley Cup. I didn't want to buy our way there. I wanted to be proof of the abilities of the small-market system. I wanted to beat the Leafs on our own terms, not by mimicking them. But it really is best for Patrick to go. St. Louis will be good to him. He's an excellent goaltender, and just needs a team and a city which will give him the credit he deserves. Good luck, big guy.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 07:24 AM on June 28, 2004

succa, bonk is now in the west (kings)...you scared me for a second. Nice work by the Sens. Lalime had to go after that meltdown this spring. He is the reason the Leafs won. Period. And think, just a year before he was breaking long held playoff shut-out records, against the Flyers. (then again, so was Giggy, and then we changed the rules) Tough break for Lalime, because he'll be watching his old teammates win the east in the near and uncertain future. On a personal note, I got to celebrate the signing of super-skilled and gritty forward Darcy Tucker. yippee.

posted by garfield at 08:51 AM on June 28, 2004

garfield, Bonk got traded by the Kings to Montréal with Huet almost immediately in exchange for Garon and a draft pick. If the Canadiens can get him motivated like they got Kovalev motivated, you'll be facing a strong centre line next year.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 09:04 AM on June 28, 2004

Bonk's in Montreal garfield!

[Habs GM Bob] Gainey sees Bonk as his team's No. 3 centre behind Saku Koivu and Mike Ribeiro. "We addressed a weakness on the club and we feel we'll be a better club with Bonk,'' Gainey said. "At centre ice, he can complement other centres we have. He's a good, strong two-way player, physical and reliable.''

posted by Succa at 09:42 AM on June 28, 2004

oh crap. i guess that's what losing 'net service over the weekend does to you on monday morning...nevermind...

posted by garfield at 09:48 AM on June 28, 2004

This trade will turn out to be a huge bargin for the Blues. To get a goalie of Lalime's calibre for a late draft pick is a steal. Shesh.. now I know why Calgary can't unload Turek. Compare Lalime who would cost ~2.5 million / year against Turek at ~4+ million. Would someone take Turek in exchange for a bag of pucks?

posted by camcanuck at 12:07 PM on June 28, 2004

camcanuck: But then again, somebody took Irbe and his 2.5 million last week.

posted by NoMich at 01:05 PM on June 28, 2004

NoMich: I don't know why the Blue Jackets took Irbe. I would have to assume that they will negotiate a better deal than 2.5 mil a season for a 37 year old goalie who hasn't played well in quite a while. That's a lot of money to pay a goalie to provide moral support to Marc Denis from the bench. Then again that's exactly what Turek did for the Flames last season.

posted by camcanuck at 01:38 PM on June 28, 2004

I dunno guys. Lalime had a woeful season. I watched probably 80% of the Senators games this year, and there was never a time when he had "found his game". Remember that he's playing behind arguably the best defensive unit in the league. He was a sieve this year. No Ottawa fan will deny it. No matter how well he's played in the past, there have always been doubts about whether he is a true #1 goaltender. I will be interested to see how he performs behind a much less defensively talented team. Would someone take Turek in exchange for a bag of pucks? If I recall, Turek was put on waivers towards the end of the season and not claimed. Looking at his contract, his agent deserves a round of applause.

posted by Succa at 01:46 PM on June 28, 2004

succa, glad you opened this can of worms. Lalime = Osgood. Both have been benefactors of tremendous skaters in front of them. I'd be happy he's gone.

posted by garfield at 02:07 PM on June 28, 2004


posted by DrJohnEvans at 03:41 PM on June 28, 2004

I wouldnt be happy he was gone for a 4th rounder, talk about a steal for the Blues. And I wouldnt be excited Hasek is going to come in, a 41 yr old goalie who hasnt played in 2 seasons and it looks like it will be 3 right away with the lockout. I would be worried about what Muckler is doing.

posted by DonovanMD at 09:40 PM on June 28, 2004

How did I know that this trade would get a reasonably long thread response here? I mean come on, you guys are more predictable than my bad knee on a long car drive! ROFL, thanks for the good laugh after a long day of flying.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:47 PM on June 28, 2004

And I wouldnt be excited Hasek is going to come in, a 41 yr old goalie To be fair, Hasek was born January 25 1965, so he's not even 40 yet. But I agree. Getting rid of Lalime might have been necessary, but picking up Hasek seems to be the wrong answer.

posted by grum@work at 11:54 PM on June 28, 2004

bill: hockey-starved spofiers?

posted by gspm at 01:34 AM on June 29, 2004

Yes, kettle. We are so predictable, with all our being-into-hockey and whatnot. Glad we can entertain you with our version of As The Stomach Turns (Ottawa Edition). Care to add anything, or are you just here for a laugh?

posted by chicobangs at 09:00 AM on June 29, 2004

DJE, Hasek is a question mark, no doubt. However he is punctuation with tremendous...wait for it....its etched onto your gray matter if you caught 30 seconds of draft coverage....upside. Should Sens fans be excited? not really. That would be premature. Should Sens fans be excited when Hasek returns to form? You betta baleve it baby. bill, how are your arms holding feeling?

posted by garfield at 10:21 AM on June 29, 2004

this thread is attracting less traffic than several offseason baseball OMG A-ROD FARTED! threads I figure.

posted by gspm at 11:17 AM on June 29, 2004

I was not being critical, just mentioning my amusement. I thin dumping Lalime for Hasek will not really buy all that much in the way of Stanley Cups.

posted by billsaysthis at 11:43 AM on June 29, 2004

Waitwaitwaitwaitwait. A-Rod farted? Again, or was this same as last time? Damn. I missed that. Link, please.

posted by chicobangs at 11:57 AM on June 29, 2004

Guys. The only thing I'm worried about is the injury possibility. The Sens have demanded full medical clearance and have done a detailed investigation of his injury problems. In Hasek's last full season, he won the Cup.

posted by Succa at 01:14 PM on June 29, 2004

On a Detroit team that was at its peak. I can't remember Hasek truly stealing any games that year, and, quite frankly, if they had Cujo that year they probably would have won it just the same.

posted by mkn at 01:28 PM on June 29, 2004

I have a pretty different recollection. He was stellar against Colorado in the semis (got shutouts in games 6 and 7), and he was no slouch against Vancouver and St Louis. I thought he was a big reason they won the Cup that year, despite the mismatch in the Final. He's an upgrade to this year's Lalime, I know that much. A sack of soybeans would be an upgrade there.

posted by Succa at 02:32 PM on June 29, 2004

As a Leaf fan, it will be quite interesting to hear what the Ottawa fans complain about when they get dumped by Toronto in April 2005. By changing the goalie and the coach, the Senator-fans will have to find something new to gripe about. *whimper* Too many Europeans! *sob*

posted by grum@work at 03:31 PM on June 29, 2004

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