BUY, BUY BELANGER

Jason Gregor
July 04 2013 12:06PM

The Oilers have placed centre Eric Belanger on waivers for the purpose of buying out the final year of his contract.
When the Oilers signed Belanger two years ago, many felt he was a good addition. He'd help win faceoffs and he could chip in around 30 points. He was great in the dots, winning 55% of his draws his first year and 53% this past season, but he only had 4 goals in 104 games over two seasons. His offence was non-existent.

When he was signed I mentioned the one concern former teammates and organizations said was that he wasn't considered a great dressing room guy. That turned out be accurate. He wasn't a distraction, he didn't yell at this teammates or cause friction, he just had a negative auru about him. You know the type.

That wasn't the reason he was let go, four goals in 104 games was the main one, but the Oilers are trying to "cleanse" their dressing room and they decided they'd be better off without him.

This was an easy decision for the Oilers. I know they don't have a faceoff specialist to replace him, but winning faceoffs didn't result in more scoring chances. Belanger's advanced stats were horrendous despite winning faceoffs.

I don't believe in ripping a player when he leaves town, but I've mentioned for over a year that Belanger was a detriment to this team and this is one decision that I 100% agree with for the Oilers.

QUICK HITS

  • Ray Emery could be a good fit with the Oilers. He's matured the past few seasons, and last year he was outstanding with the Blackhawks. He could push Devan Dubnyk, but he'd be supportive in the back up role as well.
     
  • Interesting situation with the Leafs. They buyout Grabovski ($14.4 mIllion) and the analytics guys hate the decision. Grabovski was overpaid, but not to the point you just give up on him. If they replace him with Bozak and Clarkson I suspect our pals at www.theleafsnation.com might need counseling. The best part is that the Leafs are buying out a guy because he is overpaid, but they will replace him with two players who will also be overpaid. Awesome.
     
  •  Darren Dreger tweeted the Stars and Bruins have a huge trade in the works involving Tyler Seguin and Loui Eriksson. Jim Nill and Joe Sakic have made some significant moves right away since grabbing the reigns in Dallas and Colorado. The next week should be highly entertaining for hockey fans.  

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 Cheesenaka
July 04 2013, 12:10PM
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Not sad to see Belanger go, that's for sure. I think Emery would be an excellent fit as our backup.

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#2 dawgtoy
July 04 2013, 12:11PM
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"Jim Nill and Joe Sakic have made some significant moves right away since grabbing the reigns in Dallas and Colorado."

Hint,Hint...It's time Mr.MacTavish. The cupboards are bare, time to go shopping.

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#3 PapaMike
July 04 2013, 12:13PM
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Does anyone know how many contracts do the Oilers have now?

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#4 Alex Mathis
July 04 2013, 12:16PM
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Good luck, Eric. Hope you'll find a place somewhere else. You weren't the problem, but also not part of the solution. I wonder who's next (Eager, Horcoff).

I'd prefer Jasaon Labarbara over Emery.

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#5 freeze
July 04 2013, 12:18PM
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*Doing a happy dance*

I liked the EB signing at the time, but man, that did not work out AT ALL!

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#6 LinkfromHyrule
July 04 2013, 12:20PM
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that picture made me laugh. I for one am glad I will never see belanger on the ice in oilers silks ever again. It's a step in the right direction of fixing our offensive black hole of a 4th line.

....why hasn't macT done anything yet? He must have something in the works right?....right?!

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#7 OilDieHard
July 04 2013, 12:21PM
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ya, really, dawg, what is MacT waiting for? about time on Belanger too! interesting that Seguin could actually be traded....i like this for the Bruins, who still have enough scoring power and need a replacement for Horton....Eriksson would be a great choice. moves like this are why the Bruins will continue to at least contend every year.

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#8 Tetsutsu
July 04 2013, 12:22PM
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@dawgtoy

There's no doubt that McT is trying to make moves. Right now he's taking some big swings and missing. He just needs to learn how to reel them in then close better. He didn't do himself any favours by telling the world he's an impatient guy. I think other GMs are trying to fleece the rook right now.

I just hope he learns... fast.

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#9 PutzStew
July 04 2013, 12:25PM
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I'm happy for Belanger. He's one of many veterans that have been brought into this organisation and failed. Not sure why he gets all the blame though??? When is the organisation going to start taking the blame??? When was the last time a vet was brought in that succeeded????

Good luck where ever you end up and I'll be cheering for you. Seems you are yet another one of a long list of players who failed in this organisation.

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Would Grabovski be a fit here on the second line at $3.5m/yr? Can you get him that cheap?

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#11 Let's Rebuild
July 04 2013, 12:32PM
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I think the delay in the buy out indicates they will have his replacement (handshake agreement until tomorrow).

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#12 Smokey
July 04 2013, 12:33PM
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Eric was at the end of his career when we got him. Never sounded like a bad teamate or person, but at this point he probably is close to being done in NHL. So does this mean Horcoff stays. Awefully thin at Center.

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#13 JimW
July 04 2013, 12:34PM
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@PutzStew

What? Someone else with common sense? How could this be possible? I couldn't agree with you more.

Until KLowe and his cronies get the boot, this organization will continue to be known for ruining careers.

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#14 WhattaMike
July 04 2013, 12:37PM
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People people people...

it says that no free agents can be signed until starting tomorrow so why jump up against MacT right now/today.

It's tomorrow i want to see nmostly not today..but that being said, it would be cool to see a well structured trade by the Oilers right now today...

Concerning Labarbra is that he does not have the balls to take charge when and if necessary as does like Emery has several times in the past. I understand that it is for back-up duty but what if...what if...Dubnyk has a bad season or that he gets hurt, etc. The Oilers need someone who instills confidence and that he plays well consistently...

This is why I like the risk of getting Khudobin from the UFA ranks more so than La B or Emery. Khudobin has been keeping in line with Thomas and Raask these last couple of years and knows what is needed to move forward...and he will give Dubnyk a run for his money as well..

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#15 Lochenzo
July 04 2013, 12:39PM
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I don't think anybody predicted Belanger's drop off in performance. He was an older player, yes, but nothing in his stats indicated that was a problem prior to his signing with Edmonton.

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#16 jonny94
July 04 2013, 12:41PM
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So would it be fair to say Hall > Seguin?

Thoughts?.... Looking at you DSF

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#17 OilDieHard
July 04 2013, 12:44PM
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Lochenzo wrote:

I don't think anybody predicted Belanger's drop off in performance. He was an older player, yes, but nothing in his stats indicated that was a problem prior to his signing with Edmonton.

but haven't we had similar bad luck with guys like Colin Fraser and Ben Eager? they come here and suck? that's something i really hope can be stopped in the future. or Souray that has 1 effective year and the rest are injury filled? or Whitney, who comes here and plays effective until injured, then sucks?

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#18 Lochenzo
July 04 2013, 12:47PM
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Wow, the rumoured Seguin deal...if it goes through it'll be just as shocking as the Schneider deal.

Feels like Boston is selling low. If the B's are willing to take Loui Erikson plus change, I don't see why Sam Gagner wouldn't be of interest, especially is Sam signs a cap friendly contract. Sam got to the net a lot last year to get his points and that style is consistent with how the Bruins play.

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#19 shifty203
July 04 2013, 12:47PM
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jonny94 wrote:

So would it be fair to say Hall > Seguin?

Thoughts?.... Looking at you DSF

That was obvious before the trade. I don't know why the trade would have any weight for that arguement. Two totally different teams in completely different positions, which is why one in untouchable, and one isn't.

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#20 Spydyr
July 04 2013, 12:49PM
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Sail on into the sunset...... Good riddance.

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#21 HugThePost
July 04 2013, 12:50PM
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Belanger was just one of the many bets that Tambo made that failed spectacularly.

Slowly but surely, MacT is cleaning up the mess. The next week or 2 should be very interesting.

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#22 Spydyr
July 04 2013, 12:54PM
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Lochenzo wrote:

Wow, the rumoured Seguin deal...if it goes through it'll be just as shocking as the Schneider deal.

Feels like Boston is selling low. If the B's are willing to take Loui Erikson plus change, I don't see why Sam Gagner wouldn't be of interest, especially is Sam signs a cap friendly contract. Sam got to the net a lot last year to get his points and that style is consistent with how the Bruins play.

How times have changed. Average players getting traded is shocking.

You know what was shocking back in the day. Gretzky getting sold.

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#23 jonny94
July 04 2013, 12:55PM
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shifty203 wrote:

That was obvious before the trade. I don't know why the trade would have any weight for that arguement. Two totally different teams in completely different positions, which is why one in untouchable, and one isn't.

Totally agree.

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#24 Spydyr
July 04 2013, 12:55PM
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@Alex Mathis

Four goals in 104 games.Yes,he was the problem.

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#25 westcoastoil
July 04 2013, 01:02PM
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Lochenzo wrote:

Wow, the rumoured Seguin deal...if it goes through it'll be just as shocking as the Schneider deal.

Feels like Boston is selling low. If the B's are willing to take Loui Erikson plus change, I don't see why Sam Gagner wouldn't be of interest, especially is Sam signs a cap friendly contract. Sam got to the net a lot last year to get his points and that style is consistent with how the Bruins play.

Funny - I can't figure out why Dallas would want to make that trade. Maybe Seguin is much better than I think, but it'll be interesting to see how good he'd be without all the talent he has in Boston surrounding him.

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#26 Lochenzo
July 04 2013, 01:03PM
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@Spydyr

True dat. But at least we didn't trade Gretzky at age 21. Luckily Sather didn't listen to the fans that called into the radio sport shows complaining that Gretzky doesn't hit or skate fast.

Can you imagine the history of the Oilers without Gretzky in the mid-80s? We could be Vancouver Canucks-type Cup futility.

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#27 John Chambers
July 04 2013, 01:03PM
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The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33 wrote:

Would Grabovski be a fit here on the second line at $3.5m/yr? Can you get him that cheap?

Yes. Budget approved.

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#28 John Chambers
July 04 2013, 01:05PM
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Alex Mathis wrote:

Good luck, Eric. Hope you'll find a place somewhere else. You weren't the problem, but also not part of the solution. I wonder who's next (Eager, Horcoff).

I'd prefer Jasaon Labarbara over Emery.

Jason Labarbera > Emery. Seconded.

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#29 Will
July 04 2013, 01:11PM
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I always find it weird when consistent players move locations and just nose dive. I know the Oilers are not exclusive to this phenomenon, but we have definitely had our fair share in the past little while: Kotalik O'Bryan Cole Belangier Eagre Souray (sort of) Smyth Habby

Of the people I can say were brought here and either remained consistent or excelled were Ryan Jones and Penner.

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#30 WhattaMike
July 04 2013, 01:11PM
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Goodbye, Goodbye, and Goodbye... While not being a supporter of Tambellini, I put the full blame on the players who failed on his watch...

Belanger, Eager, Barker all had very good potential or credentials enough to push the Oilers upwards and yet, they did not...whether it wouyld be attitudes, ethics, and/or injuries. Whitney and Souray became negative with attitudes because of injuries and others playing better as well. The same with Khabby though it was injuries mainly here.

Tamby failed mostly due to several bad trades and non-actions for the right players...but, I also strongly feel that...with the given type state of the Oilers when they came here...these guys never worried at all for their jobs to the point of having to try or work harder...

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#31 HugThePost
July 04 2013, 01:12PM
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When the Seguin deal gets done, Nill will be up 1-0 on macT in the Summer of Bold.

I'm hoping but not expecting anything as drastic as that move for us---MacT will probably end up putting a little bit more expensive make-up on this pig for the coming season.

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#32 Walter Sobchak
July 04 2013, 01:14PM
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I would have thought MacTavish would be in on a Seguin deal...?

That would be huge.

besides the face offs I couldnt tell the difference between Belanger and Lander, with one exception. Lander is a much better teammate.

What times does the stupid season start at mountain time of course?

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#33 Bucknuck
July 04 2013, 01:15PM
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Good-bye Belanger. I thought you were a good pick up, but your offence never made the trip to Edmonton.

Now, if we get a serviceable centre for the fourth line, something interesting might come from that direction.

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#34 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
July 04 2013, 01:16PM
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Very glad we drafted Hall instead of Seguin. He may be a potential 1st line center, but he doesn't appear to push the play and control the pace of games like Hall can.

And yet he's got his name on the cup twice already...

EDIT: meant to say once, I was beyond sure the Bruins were gonna take it this year.

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#35 wigswag
July 04 2013, 01:17PM
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HugThePost wrote:

When the Seguin deal gets done, Nill will be up 1-0 on macT in the Summer of Bold.

I'm hoping but not expecting anything as drastic as that move for us---MacT will probably end up putting a little bit more expensive make-up on this pig for the coming season.

Nill 2 MacT 0 (Gonchar) May not turn out good but is bold.

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#36 Bucknuck
July 04 2013, 01:17PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

I would have thought MacTavish would be in on a Seguin deal...?

That would be huge.

besides the face offs I couldnt tell the difference between Belanger and Lander, with one exception. Lander is a much better teammate.

What times does the stupid season start at mountain time of course?

Who's to say he wasn't, but even if he was not, I'm not surprised. There is nothing on the roster (that is available) which matches what Dallas paid.

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#37 Walter Sobchak
July 04 2013, 01:18PM
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HugThePost wrote:

When the Seguin deal gets done, Nill will be up 1-0 on macT in the Summer of Bold.

I'm hoping but not expecting anything as drastic as that move for us---MacT will probably end up putting a little bit more expensive make-up on this pig for the coming season.

Nill will be 2 - 0.... he took Nichushkin when the Oilers felt he was a risk and let him walk.

If Nill took him then you can bet he just stole that player.

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#38 vetinari
July 04 2013, 01:20PM
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The Belanger Triangle was more like a Pentagram!

Good bye and good luck to the old, bring in the new. I'll definitely be watching the news feeds around noon tomorrow to see who lands where. I suspect that if MacT can't sign many UFA's, he'll try to cash in through the trade market.

The problem with being a rookie GM and a very vocal, motivated buyer is that teams will try to rob you blind until they have no alternative but make a move... patience, MacT... patience....

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#39 DigDeepNBleedBlue
July 04 2013, 01:20PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

I would have thought MacTavish would be in on a Seguin deal...?

That would be huge.

besides the face offs I couldnt tell the difference between Belanger and Lander, with one exception. Lander is a much better teammate.

What times does the stupid season start at mountain time of course?

Lander would/does throw a body check.

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#40 Lochenzo
July 04 2013, 01:22PM
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I think it's relevant to explore the possibility that Seguin can still live up to his billing as a #1b pick 3 years ago. He's 21. We're still a few years away from knowing just how good he'll be. He's playing for Claude Julien, a straight line from A to B type gameplan which is not exactly the place for creative players to flourish. Did Jagr struggle because of this too or did Jagr just run out of gas? He's a centre playing wing. He'll never displace Bergeron and Krejci. From personal experience, I will tell you that I'm a natural centre that sucks at playing wing. I can still put points on the board, but I'm way better in the middle.

So is there a chance that Seguin is being undervalued by the seller? Absolutely.

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#41 Walter Sobchak
July 04 2013, 01:23PM
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Bucknuck wrote:

Who's to say he wasn't, but even if he was not, I'm not surprised. There is nothing on the roster (that is available) which matches what Dallas paid.

Really, you can't offer Gagner + Marincin and 2014 first?

That's a massive upgrade to just what Nill is offering.

If MacTavish was in on the Seguin deal we WOULD no about it.

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#42 HugThePost
July 04 2013, 01:23PM
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I might be wrong, but I think Seguin has been to the SCF 2 times, but won once.

I worry about his hip issues though.

It'll be interesting to see how he does on a team where he isn't as sheltered as he is in BOS. Hall has shown that he can single-handedly control games playing on a consistently undermanned, disorganized team with absolutely zero depth.

Oh man, I didn't even remember all of the other bold things Nill has already done. MacT, with the Bold silence so far!

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#43 Walter Sobchak
July 04 2013, 01:24PM
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DigDeepNBleedBlue wrote:

Lander would/does throw a body check.

Good point, even gets dirty in the crease once in awhile.

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#44 G Money
July 04 2013, 01:27PM
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Belanger buyout - good.

Seguin deal - would have been nice to get in on that (I am in the camp of "he's going to be better then he is now"), but we already have our 1C, and it looks like the price would have been one of our Big 4 wingers ... I'd rather keep them and find a 2L/2C somewhere else.

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#45 Smokey
July 04 2013, 01:28PM
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Bucknuck wrote:

Who's to say he wasn't, but even if he was not, I'm not surprised. There is nothing on the roster (that is available) which matches what Dallas paid.

I think you would have to offer Gagner and Klefbom to match Dallas's offer. Louis Eriksson is way better then Gagner, and Morrrow would have a bit less value then Klefbom.

Its a reasonable deal for both teams. Dallas got a first line player and potential top 4 defenman. Dallas got Seguin and spare parts.

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#46 Smokey
July 04 2013, 01:37PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

Really, you can't offer Gagner + Marincin and 2014 first?

That's a massive upgrade to just what Nill is offering.

If MacTavish was in on the Seguin deal we WOULD no about it.

Marincin and Morrow are comparable minus pedigree. Gagner's never been a 70 point player. Louis done it 4 times, and probably would of put up 55 last year. Louis is two way player, Gagner bleeds chances.

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#47 Fresh Mess
July 04 2013, 01:38PM
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Nill just screwed Chiarelli without even buying him dinner

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#48 Lochenczo
July 04 2013, 01:38PM
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@Smokey

I wouldn't say that Loui is WAY better than Sam. Loui started putting up good, consistent numbers a few years ago. Sam Gagner is just reaching that age where Loui started his excellent play.

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#49 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
July 04 2013, 01:39PM
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Smokey wrote:

I think you would have to offer Gagner and Klefbom to match Dallas's offer. Louis Eriksson is way better then Gagner, and Morrrow would have a bit less value then Klefbom.

Its a reasonable deal for both teams. Dallas got a first line player and potential top 4 defenman. Dallas got Seguin and spare parts.

There isn't a team in the NHL that knows of Gagners shortcomings more than the Dallas Stars. Look no further than the Oilers record against us since Sam became a member of the Oilers. Opposing centers lick their chops when they look across and see Gags. Word spreads like wildfire, the Bruins have no use for Gagner.

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#50 bazmagoo
July 04 2013, 01:43PM
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Dalls - Boston deal seems like a good deal for both teams in my opinion. Boston obviously wasn't sold on what Seguin brought to the table, and got the best player (currently) in the deal in Eriksson. Dallas got a potential superstar #1 centre and a solid checking centre in Peverly. Boston shed some cap space which they likely intend to offer to Alfredsson, and got some solid inexpensive prospects.

Great hockey deal for both teams, time will tell who won.

If Ottawa ends up losing Alfie, does this mean Hemsky ends up in Ottawa for Zack Smith? I certainly hope so.

Zack Smith and Boyd Gordon sure would look good on the 3rd - 4th line centre position on our beloved Oil.

RIP Paul Lorieau

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