Last night was the first two rounds of the NHL 2008 Entry Draft. It took place up in Ottawa while I was at the Coyotes draft party in Scottsdale. Hey Wayne, there was way more than 9-10 fans there! Our group alone was 9-10 people. But it was nice to hear a shout out from the Great One. *edit* I guess Gretzky actually said 910 am or something similar. He needs to work on his enunciation. That and we were all clapping and cheering for our team, so it was difficult to hear.
So before the draft even started a trade was announced. When I saw the first part of the trade, I was happy. We were all screaming and clapping. Then I noticed what we gave up and I was just in shock. We traded Keith Ballard, Nick Boynton and I believe the 49th (or 39the) pick to Florida Panthers for Olli Jokinen.
Ok, so we got a great center. His stats from last year:
GP G A Pts +/- PIM GWG Shots
82 34 37 71 -19 67 5 341
Ok, so he has a lot of points and he shoots a lot. But what about that -19? That worries me a little bit as the Coyotes expect their offense to be defensive minded too. And what else worries me, now we only have 2.5 true NHL defensemen. (I count Jovo only as a half, as he is not the most defensive defenseman. He tends to have a lot of turnovers). We have DMo and Z. Then there is Jones and Yandle. No way in hell do I want those two on the team full time next year!
I keep going between emotions on this trade. I am not upset about Boynton, even though I like him. I am just so upset to see Ballard go. I will miss his hipchecks. I’m glad I got my pic and autograph. I will probably be upset again come training camp and preseason. We will be missing an important aspect of the team.
So, leading up to the draft Maloney talked a lot about we were going to draft defense. Instead we trade away two d and draft a forward with our 8th pick! Granted all that was left was Myers and no way in hell did we want him but what the hell. Are we just going to spend more time in the other team’s zone? Yah, we may score a lot more goals but with no defense, we are going to let the other team score a lot more!
Maloney better have something up his sleeve, either another trade or a big UFA defenseman signing. And it better not be Campbell. He did jack for the sharks this year. I am hoping for Orpik. The guy’s a checking machine. We will need at least two more defensemen though. We don’t have enough NHL ready defensemen in our closet! I don’t think Ross is ready, maybe the Swede, maybe Stephenson.
It looks like we drafted three d in the later rounds. They definitely won’t be NHL ready this year. They may never be NHL ready. We also took the last of the Staal brothers.