Sunday, June 1, 2008

Stanley Cup Finals, Wheeler is UFA and Rumors

Four games down in the Stanley Cup Finals. Detroit is up 3-1.

Detroit came out strong in the first two games. The Penguins entered unfamiliar territory at Joe Louis Arena. These teams did not meet once this season (I am so glad the schedule is changing next year) and the Penguins were definitely not prepared for the Wings. Crosby and Malkin were invisible the first game. Crosby came back in the second, but going into the fifth game, Malkin is still pretty much MIA. He is not the force he was during the season.

Osgood denied the Pens any goals those first two games. And he also did some damn good acting (Holstrom did some pretty good acting too)! Once at home the Pens seemed to wake up. Their first home game, they played a physical game and really beat down the wings. They were able to solve Osgood and pull of the win. The second home game for the Pens wasn’t nearly as pretty. They got the first goal, played physical and then died. They can not keep up with the Wings for a full 60 minutes (not many teams could this season).

The series moves back to Detroit. Based on what I have seen, the Pens just aren’t going to be able to pull this off. I would love to see this go to seven games and the Pens win, but that’s not going to happen.

Brooks Orpik is a monster. He has hit any wings player that moves. I swear to god. I have actually found someone on the Pens that I enjoy watching. I also like his name. I read on that his dad wanted to name his Herb (after Herb Brooks) but his mama vetoed it and they settled on Brooks. That is just a cool story!

In Coyotes news…Wheeler has opted for free agency instead of signing with the Coyotes. It seems he wants his choice of where to play and not the money (as Coyotes are the one team that can offer him a ton of money because of the old CBA). A lot of people are very angry about this and hoping that he gets his ass kicked. I just hope he doesn’t go to a division rival and end up being an amazing player in a year or too. A lot of people also think he wants to go to the Wild. From what I have read that is just speculation since he is from Minnesota. Other speculation is he wants to go to a worse team the Coyotes in order to have a shot at the NHL right away. Here he would have a lot of competition and have to fight for a spot with the big club. I would have loved to have seen Wheeler in a Yotes uniform but I guess that won’t be happening. L I wish him well and hope this turns out to be the right decision for him.

There was an open house the other night. The usuals were there, DMo and Fuhr. I went but only to check out some stuff at the den and talk hockey with some people. I was going to talk to Ryan about my season tickets, but that boy is always busy! He is definitely one of the more popular ticket reps, along with Neils. I didn’t get a chance to say Hi to him either. I did get a free pop, hot dog and popcorn though! I was about to fall over by the time I got there.

Here is good article. It’s an “as told to” by Daniel Carcillo. So, fighting in his own words!

Some Rumors that interest me:

Looks like the Preds may have another fire sale this summer…(from Eklund, not the most reliable):
Dan Ellis The Senators are the likely team that will sign Ellis who is quite the commodity right much so that the Preds may be out of the bidding soon. Don't rule out the Red Wings as well who got a very good look at Ellis these playoffs.Shea Weber or Gary Suter Speaking of the Preds......Shea Weber talks are very heated reportedly. I do expect the Preds will get Shea signed, but if they can't long term look for them to trade his rights prior to July 1. If Shea is signed, the Preds will likely move Suter....

I’m thinking he means Ryan, not Gary. Gary would be Ryan’s uncle, similar style but different players. Ellis was phenomenal for the Preds this year (I would die if he became a wing! I could handle a senator but then I’d never see him). I would love to see him stay there. And Ryan should stay too unless he comes to Phoenix!

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports the Senators could buy out goalie Ray Emery as soon as within 48 hours of the end of the Stanley Cup playoffs but if they pass on that would have to wait until the buyout period of June 15-30, and because he won't be 26 until September, Emery's buyout would be at one-third the remaining value rather than two-thirds. Garrioch cites sources claiming the Sens have tried to shop him but received only mild interest from one or two teams and it's doubtful any club will take his full current salary.
SPECTOR'S NOTE: It'll be surprising if the Senators don't avail themselves of the opportunity to buy him out for one-third his remaining value of his contract. No team will take him off their hands right now.

I would like them to buy Ray out, have another team give him a small contract and see what he can do. He may just have had an off year because of his wrist surgery and apparently some personal problems were involved too.

BOSTON GLOBE: Kevin Paul Dupont reports the impressive physical play of Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik could make him an attractive target in this summer's UFA market by teams seeking a physical presence on their blueline. Dupont suggests the Penguins might not be able to re-sign him and Orpik could command up to $5 million per season on the open market.
SPECTOR'S NOTE: At 42 Roberts could opt for retirement, and if the Penguins win the Cup I believe he will retire, preferring to go out a winner.Orpik is in the prime of his career and will attract a lot of attention as a UFA this summer. It doesn't appear as though he'll be re-signed as it's believed he's clashed at time with head coach Michel Therrien.

Holy crap, if we can’t get Suter maybe we can get Brooks! That is too funny that I found that after espousing my new found love for him!

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