Scorched earth

22Jun07

Holy crap

The Nashville Predators have traded goaltender Tomas Vokoun to the Florida Panthers for a first-round pick and two second-round picks.

Nashville fans, you guys have my sympathies. This is totally playing out like Major League. Where’s Pedro Cerrano when you need him?

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9 Responses to “Scorched earth”

  1. 1 birdhouse in your soul

    And in a related move…

    The San Jose Sharks trade Vesa Toskala and Mark Bell for 3 draft picks (first, second and fourth round varieties).

    It’s hard for me to fully decide if I like this deal, but I “think” it might have been the best the Sharks could do.

    In a way, I see this as two separate deals considering the players being moved. A year ago the Sharks traded a solid young D in Tom Preissing for Mark Bell. At the time, the deal seemed to make sense, but Bell obviously had a rough year in San Jose. Whether he’ll turn it around remains to be seen, but given his (ancient history) production in Chicago, he is a valuable chip to have and I think worthy of a #1 pick (but, I think I’m ok letting him leave in exchange for a #1).

    This then means you’re trading Toskala for a #2 and #4. Not too bad considering you said you wanted to move a goalie.

    All this being said, though, I still to this day take umbrage with the Sharks awarding Nabokov with the huge contract mid-season in a year he wasn’t playing that well. I’m glad he had a good playoff run last year, but am still not convinced that he’s the best guy to have taking up $5M/year for the next 3-4 years.

    I also suspect that other teams felt the same as I about him, meaning that the Sharks only option was to trade Toskala.

    thoughts?

  2. 2 Mike Chen

    Check out my stuff on the Tosk/Drunkie trade at Battle of California: http://battleofcalifornia.blogspot.com/2007/06/report-toskala-to-toronto.html

  3. 3 MrFrisby

    Vokuon has been having too many health issues. He barely played half a season. The Preds are trimming the payroll, yes, but they still have a great (and more reliable) goaltender in Chris Mason. I wouldn’t start crying ‘scorched earth’ just yet. The Predators will still be a competitive team next season, just more cost efficient.

  4. 4 Mike Chen

    MrFrisby, the more I think about it, the more I agree with you. Sure, the Preds would have been better if they could keep Hartnell, Timonen, and Vokoun (or just Hartnell/Timonen and let Mason take over), but it is what it is. There won’t be as much depth as last season but they’ve still got a good core.

    If Sullivan and Arnott get moved, then you know it’s time for Pedro Cerrano and Rick “Wild Thing” Vaughn to move in. I do think that Zidlicky will get moved, though.

  5. 5 MrFrisby

    I will agree with you there about Sullivan and Arnott. The only other thing I would watch for is, if they make any attempt to keep Kariya.

  6. 6 Ian

    Whether he’ll turn it around remains to be seen, but given his (ancient history) production in Chicago, he is a valuable chip to have and I think worthy of a #1 pick (but, I think I’m ok letting him leave in exchange for a #1).

    This then means you’re trading Toskala for a #2 and #4. Not too bad considering you said you wanted to move a goalie.

    I think you may have these flipped. Bell at this point isn’t worth a 1st round pick. A 2nd plus a 4th, sure, but he pretty much played himself into being a reclamation project for Toronto. After Jeff O’Neil’s failure, I’m not sure why they took a flyer on Bell, but it’s not our problem anymore.

    Toskala is the one that got dealt for the 1st, and that’s a reasonable return, when you have Nabby, and the Sharks draft and development history. As good as Toskala is, he needs to prove he can be ‘da Man, and he gets a good shot at that in Toronto. Best of luck, Vesa.

  7. 7 birdhouse in your soul

    Yea… I’m good with flipping the story and having Toskala for the #1 (which I still think is an excellent return given that everyone knew a goalie would be moved and Toskala hasn’t been a #1 goalie for an entire season).

    The thing I would love to know (but, probably never will) is what sort of offers if any the Sharks received for Nabokov this offseason. I wasn’t happy with the huge contract he received and felt that even more so as he lost the #1 spot to Toskala that season. Granted, he’s now coming off a solid season, but the Sharks have him signed to an expensive deal for a few more years now. “If” another team had wanted to take on that contract and offered something of value, me thinks I would have preferred to keep and sign Vesa to a smaller and shorter contract than Nabby received.

    thoughts?

  8. 8 Ian

    I, too, would have kept Toskala over Nabby, but the Sharks had their hands tied with his no-trade clause and his expensive contract. Plus you have a number of other similar goalies in play: Manny Fernandez, Tomas Vokoun, maybe even Ilya Brygalov and Martin Gerber. And then you have a limited number of teams willing to trade for goaltending: Los Angeles, Toronto, Boston, Phoenix, Florida. The Sharks just didn’t have the leverage to dictate which goalie they could move.

    The number of quality goaltenders has increased over the last few years. Nabby used to be a top-5, now he’s middle of the pack. I think his stumble the year before and parts of this year has hurt his value as well. I’m not disappointed in keeping Nabby, as he’s shown he can be a playoff performer before, but now he’s just one of a number of really good, but not great, goalies.

    Even if we could have kept Toskala, the Sharks would be facing the same issues. Tosk and Nabby are not the kind of goalies that can steal an entire series, like Giguere, Kiprusoff, or Luongo. The Sharks brass think they can challenge for the Cup with good goaltending, strong defense and consistent offense, a la the Hurricanes and Tampa. I’m concerned that Nabby, like the Sharks overall, has played just well enough to lose when it’s all on the line, rather than dictating the outcome. Against Detroit, whenever the Wings needed a goal, they got one.

  9. 9 Mike

    “Are you saying that Jesus Christ can’t hit a curveball?”

    “Hey, let’s not start a holy war here fellas”


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