On Rebuilding, Part 8: The Florida Panthers

Jonathan Willis
August 30 2012 11:47AM

Frequent commenter and guest contributor RexLibris' series on rebuilds continues with the Florida Panthers.

The Florida Panthers have recently been held up as proof that a team doesn't need to be terrible for long periods in order to become good. Many fans have commented that they would prefer to see their team take the approach of Dale Tallon and the Florida Panthers over that of the Edmonton Oilers, and that a team can be rebuilt on the fly, with as much chance of success as a “nuclear-style” rebuild.

Our task in this case is to find the truth in this matter. The Panthers have obviously rebuilt under Dale Tallon, that much is clear. The question becomes was this rebuild done in such a fashion that it can reasonably be applied to other situations and franchises where a team can be remade over a summer and go from a perennial bottom-place team to a playoff contender? In order to ask, and eventually answer, that question one needs to look at the talents that were acquired between the period of poor performance and resurgence, the existing conditions that facilitated this remodeling (in case the term rebuild is becoming repetitive), and what assets were acquired as a result of the Panthers being so bad, and drafting so high, under earlier management as well as their true impact on the recent improvement of the team.

FairyDale Beginning?

Let’s begin by looking at the change of ownership that occurred just before the Dale Tallon hiring. The Panthers were purchased by Cliff Viner and Stu Siegel from Alan Cohen on November 16th, 2009. Viner made it clear in media interviews following the hiring of Tallon that he was going to build the team through the draft, but that the resources would be there in other areas of the franchise.

Dale Tallon was hired on May 17th 2010 and immediately he began to prioritize the draft. He brought in six new members to the Panthers scouting staff and today that department of the organization numbers thirteen members, from European scouts to pro scouts and so on.

His first draft with the Panthers in 2010 saw him acquire two 1st round picks (one of which he traded to L.A. in order to trade down from 15th to 19th and acquire an extra 2nd round pick) in addition to his own which was a 3rd overall. He traded Dennis Seidenberg to Boston for Byron Bitz, Craig Weller and a 2nd round pick that was used to select the promising defenseman Alex Petrovic. Tallon next sent Gregory Campbell and Nathan Horton to Boston for Dennis Wideman, a 1st round pick (the 15th overall alluded to and which would eventually result in the selection of Nick Bjugstad) and a 2nd round pick later traded to Minnesota for a 3rd and a 4th round pick. After that, Tallon sent Keith Ballard and Victor Oreskovich to Vancouver for Steve Bernier, Michael Grabner and a 1st round pick (25th overall - Quinton Howden). By the end of the draft in 2010 Tallon had acquired Eric Gudbranson, Nick Bjugstad, Quinton Howden, Alex Petrovic along with nine other prospects through the draft. He would also go on to waive Michael Grabner while Steve Bernier would find free agency after Tallon chose not to retain his RFA rights, thus whittling the Ballard/Oreskovich trade return down to just Quinton Howden.

Tallon's moves showed a great deal of faith in his newly assembled scouting staff in acquiring all of those picks. As we have already seen, in 2004 Bob Pulford put everything he had into the draft and his scouts rewarded him with few NHL players of note. It is too early to pass judgment on Florida’s 2010 draft other than to say that there are some intriguing prospects in Gudbranson, Petrovic, Howden and Bjugstad.

Following the draft, Tallon then stocked up on NHL talent of questionable quality. He traded for players such as Darcy Hordichuk, Sean Zimmerman, Hugh Jessiman, Jack Skille, Ryan Carter, Niclas Bergfors, Sergei Samsonov and Alex Sulzer. If one could be accused of deliberately acquiring a collection of underperforming players, Tallon would qualify. Many of the players brought in were either journeyman or in the reclamation phase of their careers.

During this period and up to the 2011 trade deadline, Tallon added only two additional draft picks, bringing the total to ten for the 2011 draft. At the draft Tallon would select Jonathan Huberdeau, Rocco Grimaldi, Rasmus Bengtsson, and Logan Shaw amongst others.

If you have a problem, if no one else can help, and if you can find them, maybe you can hire...

With the franchise already having amassed the talented prospects necessary to slowly rebuild a franchise either before or immediately after he arrived, Tallon was free to take the Panthers in a direction the club had never previously gone. Receiving both approval and funding from ownership, he began aggressively pursuing free agents and trading for players that were a financial liability on other teams but could still be productive players on the ice. The Panthers were going to buy and barter for an NHL squad.

In an interview with the Palm Beach Post shortly after purchasing the team, Viner states that he and Tallon agreed that the team would be rebuilt through the draft, rather than free agency. And yet, because of the salary cap floor, they ended up doing both.

It is important to note that Tallon wasn’t just working within the salary cap limit. He actually had to make up nearly $20 million in player salary between draft day and the beginning of the pre-season just to reach the salary floor. Where other teams were desperate to shave four or five million dollars off of their player roster, Tallon had approximately $40 million dollars to work with. This gave him an enormous tactical advantage when negotiating trades and acquiring talent.

Tallon was able to use both the lifestyle advantages of playing in Florida as well as significant, though short-term, contract offers to upgrade many areas of the roster, often with players that were familiar to him from his other NHL jobs. Through free agency Tallon also added Ed Jovanovski, Tomas Fleischmann, Marcel Goc, Jose Theodore, Matt Bradley, Sean Bergenheim and Scottie Upshall.

By trade he was able to add Brian Campbell from the Blackhawks for Rostislaz Olesz. He then acquired Niclas Bergfors and Patrick Rismiller for Radek Dvorak and a 5th round draft pick, Tomas Kopecky was brought in for a conditional 2012/2013 7th round draft pick, Kris Versteeg came from the Flyers for a conditional 2012 3rd round pick or 2013 2nd round pick (at the Panthers discretion). Marco Sturm and Mikael Samuelsson were both acquired from the Canucks for Steven Reinprecht, David Booth and a 2013 3rd round draft pick.

Tallon also made several trades to bolster his AHL team in an attempt to improve the internal development system for the Panthers, subscribing to the philosophy that prospects thrive when they must compete for ice time.

In exchange for short-term contracts Tallon could afford to overpay some free agents. Perhaps with an eye to preventing the team from being tied to a declining player when their young prospects eventually began to vie for NHL jobs. The longest contract on the Panthers’ books right now is that of Brian Campbell which has four years remaining, a contract that Tallon himself signed Campbell to while in Chicago. Fleischmann, Upshall, Jovanovski, Kopecky and Bergenheim all have three years remaining while the remainder of the roster is either entering free agency this summer or has only one year remaining on their current contract.

Tallon’s situation is one that provides a great deal of flexibility for the team over the next few years as it begins to graduate some of the young prospects to the NHL. However, this flexibility, if managed incorrectly, can turn into instability and we will have to wait and see what he does over the next few years in Florida before declaring his experiment a success.

Soldiers of Fortune

The turnaround that Florida experienced this past season (and it deserves mention that many in the media had expected a bottom five conference team) was the result primarily of the players that Tallon pursued in this period of free agency and trade. Tomas Fleischmann, John Madden, Mikael Samuelsson, Marco Sturm, Kris Versteeg, Scottie Upshall, Ed Jovanovski, and Brian Campbell; by gathering together this list of expendable and castoff players Tallon was able to cobble together a roster that could compete in a weak division.

Of the players drafted while Tallon was GM, only Erik Gudbranson has had any time playing at the NHL level (72 games played, 8pts, 78 penalty minutes). This eliminates the draft boon that the Panthers experienced while at the bottom of the standings as having had any impact on their overall performance in the 2011-2012 season.

Rather than simply elevate their young players to the NHL regardless of their readiness (something previous regimes had chosen to do, to the detriment of the players) Tallon approached the issue from a more patient perspective. He would keep many of the prospects in their development leagues until they were truly ready to compete for an NHL job even though it would create a void in the roster.

This gap gave the Panthers an opportunity to take a very different approach in handling the rebuild.

Putting the “T” in Teamwork

These mercenary tactics worked and Tallon put together, and held together through approximately 300 man-games lost to injury, a roster that earned a playoff berth and challenged the eventual Stanley Cup contending New Jersey Devils in the first round of the 2012 playoffs.

Dale Tallon hasn’t rebuilt the Florida Panthers in a traditional sense. In fact, if one were to discount the prospects that the team has in its system and which were predominantly drafted prior to his hiring, Tallon’s moves all bear the mark of what is generally referred to as a re-tooling. At best Tallon could be said to have executed a hybridized version of both approaches, one specifically tailored to the situation that exists in Florida where a poor team needed to plan for the future but also needed to ice a lineup that would create some local interest. Tallon traded away many of the underperforming and ill-fitting players for draft picks, then filled the available roster spaces with better players during a deep free-agency period. He capitalized on his team’s enormous cap space, and its need to reach the cap floor, to acquire good players signed to bad contracts and to overpay for free agents. He never needed to take the team to the bottom of the standings, that had already been accomplished by the mismanagement of previous GMs Jacques Martin (2006 - 2009) and Randy Sexton (2009 – 2010) under then-owner Alan Cohen. In short, Tallon preserved the integrity of the Panthers’ farm system and prospect depth while improving the team immediately through the mercenary ranks of free agency.

As in some of the other cases of franchise rebuilds, it is often a moment of change that leads a team to undertake the dramatic process of a rebuild. For the Florida Panthers it is the day that the ownership of the Panthers changed from Alan Cohen to Cliff Viner and Stu Siegel. Less than a year after the change of ownership Dale Tallon was hired to run the team.

Credit belongs to Viner in recognizing that the draft was currently the best method of acquiring high-end talent and for instructing his GM to value that process. Credit also belongs to Tallon in so far as he was shrewd enough to notice the window of opportunity available to him under very specific NHL market conditions and capitalize on them.

I Love It When A Plan Comes Together…

In summary, Dale Tallon didn’t exactly tear the Panthers down and stockpile all of the draft picks that have put the Panthers at or near the top of most prospect rankings. That was done prior to his arrival and is primarily the result of the poor management of the team under Mike Keenan, Jacques Martin, Randy Sexton and the previous owner Alan Cohen. Tallon deserves credit for flushing out the weaker elements of the old roster and replacing them, creatively and opportunistically, with better veteran options while still retaining many of his prospects and draft picks.

Before advocating this path as a viable alternative to a rebuild for one’s team, a fan needs to look at many variables. One of those being, is there a quantity and quality of free agent players available at the necessary positions to be had? Tomas Fleischmann became a 1st to 2nd line center in Florida and was only available as a free agent because of repeated health concerns over blood clots. On average, players at his position and of his caliber are not readily available on July 1st.

That being said, Tallon took a team that had finished at the bottom of the Eastern Conference the year before and turned them into a team that won a majority of its games in one of the weakest divisions in hockey. They were also beaten in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Tallon has provided an example of how a team might be reshaped in a single off-season, but his model should not be held up as a viable option of bypassing the draft and creating a cup-challenging team overnight.

Tallon and Viner purchased a modestly competitive team; if that is one’s goal then it certainly is achievable.

The 2012 season for the Florida Panthers could just as easily have gone down in the record books as another failed campaign finishing outside of the playoffs.

Tallon had been tasked with growing the team and the game. Florida is a non-traditional market for the NHL and has to fight for fan attention. At the same time the team has had 19 years to develop both and it is unlikely that ownership can afford to spend another extended period at the bottom of the standings in order to add more prospects. While the goal of seemingly every NHL organization is to win a Stanley Cup, pragmatic concerns must also be considered, and thus far Tallon has seemed to serve these two masters relatively well.

Tallon’s retooling in Florida is no more or less of a guarantee (as that appears to be what so many fans want today) of a successful franchise than the radical rebuilding methods pursued by George McPhee in Washington.

PREVIOUSLY IN THIS SERIES

 

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
Avatar
#51 Rebuild
September 02 2012, 07:12PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I think the test of his re-build will be determined next season.

The east was incredibly weak last yr, Carolina, Tampa, Buffalo and Habs have all improved over the summer. Where Florida on paper got worse, they lost some key pieces (Samuelsson, Garrison). The question is, will they be able to stay out of the bottom of the basement next yr while their conference got stronger.

Avatar
#52 RexLibris
September 02 2012, 08:02PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@BurningSensation

So the Flames are rebuilding. But Feaster has explicitly said that he isn't rebuilding.

The skilled center is a massive risk, given the Flames lack of depth at center. I'm not sure who the aging winger was, but if it was Bourque then Feaster acquired an older, though more effective, winger/center in Cammalleri. The Erixon trade was forced on him and to his credit he turned it around to something fairly effective and the Jankowski trade down was due in part to his inability to move up at the draft and the need to recoup a 2nd round pick that he had earlier traded away.

I'd still disagree that the Flames are rebuilding, but I doubt we'll find common ground at this point. ;-)

I'll be very curious to get your feedback on the Flames article.

Avatar
#53 RexLibris
September 02 2012, 08:32PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Rebuild

Agreed. Just as last year I had said that I would wait to laud Yzerman as a GM until a few seasons had rolled past, Tallon's tenure in Florida needs some more time for his work to be accurately evaluated. This article was meant more as a look at his work thus far and an effort to strip away the common misconceptions about the season.

Avatar
#54 BurningSensation
September 02 2012, 09:28PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
RexLibris wrote:

So the Flames are rebuilding. But Feaster has explicitly said that he isn't rebuilding.

The skilled center is a massive risk, given the Flames lack of depth at center. I'm not sure who the aging winger was, but if it was Bourque then Feaster acquired an older, though more effective, winger/center in Cammalleri. The Erixon trade was forced on him and to his credit he turned it around to something fairly effective and the Jankowski trade down was due in part to his inability to move up at the draft and the need to recoup a 2nd round pick that he had earlier traded away.

I'd still disagree that the Flames are rebuilding, but I doubt we'll find common ground at this point. ;-)

I'll be very curious to get your feedback on the Flames article.

I think Feaster uses 'rebuild' in the sense of 'deliberately sucking for a high pick', and I think he is right to avoid that context of 'rebuild'. Not coincidentally the 'sucking for a high pick rebuild' is what most commenters here think 'rebuild' means, and why any and all efforts to keep the team competitive (i.e. not riding Iggy and Kipper out on a rail for draft picks) drives them collectively bananas.

IIRC Cammalleri is actually younger than Bourque..., but I admit I could be wrong on this.

The Erixon trade may have been forced upon him, but Feaster nevertheless is responsible for how he maximized the return (2 2nd rnd picks and Horak). He could have tried for a different return (like a vet winger or D man).

I agree that Feaster likely tried to move up in the draft ( Grigerenko being the likely prize of interest), but who is to say that the price to do so wouldn't have been ruinous? We can't judge the deals he didn't make, but we can judge the ones he did. He correctly determined the guy he wanted would be around later, and he had Buffalo pay him a 2nd rnd pick (Sielof - who looks like a decent prospect right now) so they could swap spots.

The whole 'he only needed to do this because he dealt a 2nd away earlier' is a red herring. He extracted a profit for his decision to move down, and while it might have been to replace the pick he previously dealt, it also might have been because he wanted more bullets fir the Button/Wisebrod gun at the draft. motivation isn't discernible from his actions, but the results (Jankowski/Sielof vs just Girgensons) is.

Lastly there is zero risk with the Cervenka signing, precisely because the team is weak at pivot. He cost nothing but a rookie contract offer, is the right age, right skill set, and right (more or less) position to fill a need for the team. It is the exact opposite of 'risky'.

I do look forward to reading your Flames profile (having read all the others), as I've tended to agree with your analysis on the whole.

My quibble remains that 'rebuild' needs a better/fixed definition - one that has a more empirical bent to it (ie., a % change in roster or 'core players'), otherwise you are only going to talk past your critics (who so far seem to number judt myself) in the same way Feaster does with his.

Avatar
#55 RexLibris
September 03 2012, 10:27AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@BurningSensation

You are right that Cammalleri is younger than Bourque, by about six months. Cammalleri is an upgrade in terms of skill and effort. The contract length is more amenable, though the pricetag is far too high.

I still maintain that there is risk in the Cervenka signing because of Feaster's stated goals for the team: remaining competitive and trying for the playoffs. That being said, given that his options at the time were to sign Cervenka or Jokinen, Cervenka was probably the bet with the greater payoff. Had he traded for Carter this might all have been moot.

Thanks for reading through them all. I appreciate the time taken.

I don't know that rebuild can be defined any more than that most people, like art, can only say that they know it when they see it. I realize this leaves the whole conversation open to debate, but let's try and crystallize some terms to find common ground before we proceed to the last two articles.

We can agree that a rebuild involves major changes to the key members of a core. In some cases this could be the acquisition of an entirely new core group, or the retention of one or two minor pieces while adding several more core players. Either way, I think we can agree that a rebuilding core is marked by the dramatic changeover in a roster.

At this point your contention is, and I apologize if I get this wrong, that Feaster has affected a rebuild by his many roster moves, adding players such as Baertschi and Cervenka to the core of the team.

My contention is that Baertschi and Cervenka cannot be considered core members yet and that many of his changes appear to have been on the periphery.

We can wait until after the Flames article to debate that further.

Another point on a rebuild is the deliberate prioritization of drafting and the acquisition of elite level talent.

I cannot find where Feaster has been able to implement this outside of the drafting of Baertschi (who still has to establish himself as an NHL player). The cost for acquiring these players is usually steep, and cannot be simply waived off, so Feaster may have attempted multiple deals that have not come to fruition.

Again, I think we can put this aside until the Flames article where we can look over all of Feaster's moves.

I would also include that a rebuild needs a public admission from management that it needs to be undertaken.

They could do one thing privately and another in public, but the media coverage for all sports teams today is such that this subterfuge would not last long and would only serve to undermine their reputation in the long run.

By saying that he absolutely refuses to rebuild the team (he does not specify method, just the overall approach) it would appear that Feaster, at the behest of ownership, has decided on a more mercenary approach, though not entirely at the cost of drafting.

Finally, the objective assessment of the relative value of assets for the short and long-term. In my opinion there is no way that any critical audit of the Flames roster could defend keeping players such as Iginla, Cammalleri, and Tanguay (not to mention additional long-term free agent signings) while maintaining that they are in a rebuild.

Those players all have value, but the value they have would work against the franchise if the team's goals were to add quality young players and prioritize the draft. As you have said, "being bad and sucking" as a part of a rebuild isn't usually the initial goal, but it is an understood consequence of the action.

If a team can figure out how to draft high and not suck, they take it. It just rarely ever happens.

I think I (or the rebuild process? not sure which here) have many more critics than just yourself. I imagine that you speak for many others on this forum who simply don't have the time to write out their arguments. For every one person that speaks out there are usually four or five that agree in silence.

Thanks for reading all the series thus far. The Oilers article is next with the Flames one last. I have tried to make the Flames article the most thorough and balanced of the series, so I welcome your, and everyone else's, opinions on it.

Avatar
#56 BurningSensation
September 03 2012, 01:53PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@RexLibris

Here's the thing, I think Feaster has been charged with two, nit mutually exclusive tasks;

- keep the team competitive - rebuild the core group of players

Complicating matters is that mgt, and Iginla aren't interested in trading him for picks, preferring that he remain a Flame till he retires.

Which means that Iggy will leave the 'core' by being replaced by a better player, or with his exit into retirement, but not (likely) by trade.

Here's why I say we are in the midst of a rebuild;

- Regehr (core player) traded - bad contracts (Kotalik, Bourque) jettisoned (with Babchuk and Stajan likely to follow) - rebuilt scouting department and talent aquisition methodology - reemphasis on acquiring draft picks to stock the talent pool (Feaster has drafted more times in the 2nd than Sutter did in his entire tenure) - Exploration of non-traditional options for talent (Cervenka, Rammo, etc)

Is Baertschi ready to bump Iggy from the core? Maybe no this season, but I think it's a fair bet he will eventually. Will Cervenkabe good enough to join the core? Don't know yet, but it's worth a shot. Is their a marked Improvement in the talent coming down the pipe? Definitely. Guys like Baertschi, Gaudreau, Jankowski, Sielof, Rammo and Brossoit will be core players moving forward.

Is the rebuild on? Definitely. Will it appease the 'bottom out' crowd? Unlikely.

Avatar
#57 suba steve
September 03 2012, 05:25PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@BurningSensation

Except, what you are calling a rebuild, some of us are just calling management 101. They are now trying to do some of the things they should have been doing all along, but were not.

1. Put more resources into scouting and drafting and developing players. Hopefully the last 2-3 years will bear some fruit. The reason Detroit could hold on to and retire Yzerman/Lidstrom is because they had Datsyuk/Zetterberg to help replace them and continue the winning tradition.

2. Search the earth for potential players (Cervenka, Rammo, Sarich-haha). Never mind the reason that they got Cervenka is that the team is in serious need of skill, AKA they suck. They basically offered him a guaranteed spot in the top 6.

I will agree with you that these are welcome changes, but I will not classify it as a rebuild. Just basic preventive maintenance that had been neglected for quite some time.

Bottom line is by not tearing down the existing structure, the rebuild will take more years and more money to complete. I will still be here cheering either way, but I will never be able to agree that it is the correct way to do it.

Avatar
#58 BurningSensation
September 03 2012, 06:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
suba steve wrote:

Except, what you are calling a rebuild, some of us are just calling management 101. They are now trying to do some of the things they should have been doing all along, but were not.

1. Put more resources into scouting and drafting and developing players. Hopefully the last 2-3 years will bear some fruit. The reason Detroit could hold on to and retire Yzerman/Lidstrom is because they had Datsyuk/Zetterberg to help replace them and continue the winning tradition.

2. Search the earth for potential players (Cervenka, Rammo, Sarich-haha). Never mind the reason that they got Cervenka is that the team is in serious need of skill, AKA they suck. They basically offered him a guaranteed spot in the top 6.

I will agree with you that these are welcome changes, but I will not classify it as a rebuild. Just basic preventive maintenance that had been neglected for quite some time.

Bottom line is by not tearing down the existing structure, the rebuild will take more years and more money to complete. I will still be here cheering either way, but I will never be able to agree that it is the correct way to do it.

Yes, it may be management 101, and that it was long overdue, but the fact is Feaster has started this very necessary process and he deserves credit for doing so.

I also totally agree with your point #1, having a productive talent pipeline is essential for success.

As for your point #2, Feaster didn't create the hole at center (the Nieuwendyk trade did that), but you have to give him credit for being creative in trying to fill it.

As for your 'bottom line', what structure exactly is it that needs to be torn down? We have a large influx of new players, including rookies, we have an elite goalie with a NMC, and a declining legend with a NMC.

If tearing down means dealing Kipper when the NMC comes off/trade deadline (to maximize value in return), I'd probably agree.

But if you are betting/hoping they move Iggy, I think you haven't understood the reality of his situation.

Avatar
#59 suba steve
September 03 2012, 10:03PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@BurningSensation

Yes, I have high hopes that the Flames drafting/development team is on the right track now, fingers crossed. I also am cautiously optimistic on Feaster, time will tell.

Criticising the Nieuwendyk deal that brought Iggy to Calgary? Interesting argument, you seem like an Iggy supporter so I didn't see that one coming. Wow, but they may have been better off not making that trade. There has certainly been no championships under Iggy's rule. Of course there have been ample opportunities in the years since to draft another impact C, all squandered.

Kipper's NMC expired this summer (on July 1, I think), yes, I would trade him before the season starts if possible.

Regehr's was in full effect when he was asked to be and accepted a trade to Buffalo. I like to think Iggy would agree to a trade (to the right team, under the right circumstances).

As for who is not understanding the reality of the Flame's current situation, let's agree to disagree.

Have a great week.

Avatar
#60 Kevin R
September 03 2012, 11:36PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
suba steve wrote:

Yes, I have high hopes that the Flames drafting/development team is on the right track now, fingers crossed. I also am cautiously optimistic on Feaster, time will tell.

Criticising the Nieuwendyk deal that brought Iggy to Calgary? Interesting argument, you seem like an Iggy supporter so I didn't see that one coming. Wow, but they may have been better off not making that trade. There has certainly been no championships under Iggy's rule. Of course there have been ample opportunities in the years since to draft another impact C, all squandered.

Kipper's NMC expired this summer (on July 1, I think), yes, I would trade him before the season starts if possible.

Regehr's was in full effect when he was asked to be and accepted a trade to Buffalo. I like to think Iggy would agree to a trade (to the right team, under the right circumstances).

As for who is not understanding the reality of the Flame's current situation, let's agree to disagree.

Have a great week.

My thoughts as well on the Nieuwendyk statement. The deal brought Iggy, the deal got Dallas a Cup & Calgary a future core player. Its the cycle of life man, its time to do that very same thing with Iggy & I do think we can get a future core player & a 1st rounder for him.

Rex: I dont think trading Iggy & Kipper would really be construed as a rebuild, changing of the old guard maybe. Yes they are core players but they are also 35+. But if Iggy & Kipper, coupled with JBO & Tanguay & Cammi get moved for picks & high end prospects as well, then I think that is a bonafide full fledged burn it down Alberta style rebuild.

Burning Sensation: I dont think what Feaster has done is rebuild, but it is certainly setting the foundation for one. No point in trading important players for high end picks & prospects before your scouting & drafting staff are in place & had a test run. Your farm system is in place for proper development & you are comfortable with getting that return. I think Feaster is kind of walking both sides of the fence, he's trying to be competitive but is preparing for the inevitable.

Avatar
#61 BurningSensation
September 04 2012, 03:07PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Kevin R wrote:

My thoughts as well on the Nieuwendyk statement. The deal brought Iggy, the deal got Dallas a Cup & Calgary a future core player. Its the cycle of life man, its time to do that very same thing with Iggy & I do think we can get a future core player & a 1st rounder for him.

Rex: I dont think trading Iggy & Kipper would really be construed as a rebuild, changing of the old guard maybe. Yes they are core players but they are also 35+. But if Iggy & Kipper, coupled with JBO & Tanguay & Cammi get moved for picks & high end prospects as well, then I think that is a bonafide full fledged burn it down Alberta style rebuild.

Burning Sensation: I dont think what Feaster has done is rebuild, but it is certainly setting the foundation for one. No point in trading important players for high end picks & prospects before your scouting & drafting staff are in place & had a test run. Your farm system is in place for proper development & you are comfortable with getting that return. I think Feaster is kind of walking both sides of the fence, he's trying to be competitive but is preparing for the inevitable.

I wasn't criticizing the Nieuwendyk trade at all - merely pointing out that we havn't had #1 pivot since he departed.

I agree with pretty much everything else. The rebuild is already underway, not yet complete, and will include an attempt to not lose ground in the standings as it progresses.

Comments are closed for this article.