YAKUPOV SUNDAY

Today, Nail Yakupov flies into Edmonton to meet the men who will decide a big part of his future. Will the “best player available” be an Oiler later this month?

Nail Yakupov’s performance at the NHL combine this week answered the only real remaining question about him: he’s recovered from the knee injury, he’s an impressive athlete and (we already knew) the most explosive and productive player in the draft.

You never know about these things and as Jim Matheson’s latest article suggests this thing isn’t over yet. However, I think it’s reasonable to set the stage for the draft and this summer. Among the subjects the Oilers will present to us in the next month, I predict the following story lines:

  1. Oilers draft Nail Yakupov
  2. Taylor Hall–center.
  3. Trading back up into the first round for a defenseman, possibly Olli Maata.
  4. An expose on Ryan Whitney’s impressive progress.
  5. Renewed attention to Martin Marincin from the Oilers media machine.
  6. A trade for an NHL defenseman.

The big names coming to Edmonton this summer are pretty much known to us this morning: Nail Yakupov (with a small voice in our brains whispering “Murray”), Ryan Smyth and someone like Matt Carle or Fedor Tyutin.

Welcome to Edmonton, Nail.

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57 Responses to "YAKUPOV SUNDAY"

  1. ashley says:

    There is much being made about Matheson’s article re: Murray in the last thread. I had a chance to talk with one of my colleagues from training who currently works in the organization.

    When Tambo took over, a strict media policy was introduced. They have been quite successful with most leaks we read about intentional. The exception is the TreenasOil thing, apparently. This has left Matheson and company out in the cold which may also explain why Jones has become so ornery in the past couple of years.

    So I wouldn’t read much into the Matheson article. He is reaching in the dark, literally. His words likely reflect his own bias more than anything else. Just like Larsson last year.

    I also learned that no formal decision has been made on the #1. A trade is highly unlikely based on calls to Tambellini so far. The much rumoured trade partner, the leafs are felt to more likely trade #5 for an NHL centerman on a current roster than they are to trade up.

    There is speculation that CBJ is really sore about losing the lottery, and are playing games with the “Murray love” leaks knowing that the Oil scouts think highly of him. There is some feeling that this may be a back door to drafting Yak at #2 if they can make Edmonton think Murray is a hot enough commodity.

    The Oilers are looking again to get another top 10 pick (asking price has been too steep in the previous two years). There is some feeling that if CBJ is blowing smoke, Murray could easily slide to the 5-10 range where they would be happy to select him, or failing Murray, Reinhardt.

    There you have it on a fine Sunday morning.

  2. Semenko and Troy says:

    I think those are realistic predictions LT, but with Whitney I’ll have to be convinced by game day performance that he has the mobility to compete as an NHL calibre player again.

    I’d like to add that if we can trade and raid for Dubinsky and Prust respectively, it will go a long ways towards having the team compete for a playoff spot.

  3. franksterra says:

    Yak- check
    Hall to C- not 100% sure, but why not…check. Don’t put him with Yak as the RW though, either Ebs or Hemmer on RW. Maybe Yak-Hall-Hemmer
    Another mid-range 1st rounder for a D man- check
    Trade for NHL d man- check (and a ufa while we’re at it)
    extensive coverage of Whitney’s progress- pull the other one, it’s got bells on
    exciting profiles of Marincin- whadevuh

    I thought Dubinsky was a bit of a fading player? Was meant to be a Bolland or Callahan type and never reached that potential, and is now surplanted by Boyle, Callahan…is Dubinsky really a player of interest to us?

    How about #1 OV for M. Staal, Boyle, and NYR’s 2012 and 2013 firsts…

  4. Lowetide says:

    Ashley: I think there’s enough evidence to suggest (as you mentioned) a decision hasn’t been made, but there aren’t really any arguments against drafting Nail Yakupov that I can see. The Oilers will have to stand up and say “we drafted for need” and have that echo down the canyon for decades.

    Big balls, that.

  5. russ99 says:

    @ Ashley:

    There is a nice group of defenseman this year at the top woth not much to seperate them.

    i’d love to see the Oilers draft Yakupov and also trade up and get one of the top 6 defenseman.

    But what would such a move require? I don’t see the Oilers dealing next year’s first rounder or Klefbom, and surely the kid line is off limits. Despite the need and quality available, I’m not sure if trading Gagner or Paajarvi for a kid who will take 2-3 years to become an NHL regular is worth it.

  6. ashley says:

    russ99,

    What would it take indeed. I got some ideas about what they are willing to part with for such a pick, but the information is too sensitive to post publicly. Needless to say, I don’t think we need to be worried. The Oilers brass seem to have a good handle on the value of their assets.

    I also got some juicy bits about several current Oilers roster players including the Smyth contract melodrama (again). Perhaps if we all meet for a beer sometime, I can be more forthcoming. ;)

    @LT agreed. I think your post is dead-on. Yak will go #1. The Oilers are unlikely to trade it unless MTL comes late with something too difficult to pass up.

    I think CBJ is bluffing on Murray and will take Gal. MTL Grig. NYI who knows, but not D. And that leaves Murray still available at 5. If the big 3 forwards are gone, TOR will trade, and the team that gets #5 may take Murray. My guess.

  7. bookje says:

    I think the biggest asset that the Oil will offer to get a second pick this year is next year’s first round pick. Teams in the 4-8 range might be willing to do a straight up swap with the notion that the oilers will still suck next year and the draft will be richer.

  8. oilersfan says:

    AShley

    Could you give us your opinion on Whitney’s ankles at this point? How much can we reasonably hope for him toi mprove this season and longer term? Or is it just going to get worse?

    thanks, and thanks for that post above

  9. Zack says:

    Thanks for the good read LT and the juicy information Ashley! I wonder what we could offer that would entice a trade for a top ten pick, not too much I’d think. We wouldn’t trade any of the big three, or the first overall it sounds and below the depth chart on that I’m not sure too much can be done without taking a backwards step.

  10. steveb12344 says:

    Nice blog LT! You’ve nailed excactly what i think they will do.Yak will most likely be a stud, and there is other ways to adress needs other than drafting an 18 yo d-man and expecting immediate results.

  11. ashley says:

    OILERSFAN,

    Yes, I heard about Ryan. It sounds like he is doing reasonably well and working like a dog to get his feet/ankles into shape for next season. As I have posted before, the prognosis for the injuries he has suffered is not good, particularly in a professional athlete. If joe-fulltime-deskjob, men’s-league-weekend-warrior presented with this problem, the advice would be to stop all weightbearing sports activity/exercise forever to slow the progression. Unfortunately for Ryan, taking up cycling and swimming doesn’t pay the bills.

    The stats and natural history of the disease are against him, but as with any medical condition, there is always a spectrum of severity. Like all of you, I am hoping that he is on the good side of “how bad”, and cheering like hell for him to pull through with a few more useful years. There is a lot to like in Whitney’s game.

    LT’s prediction of a positive Whitney article in the coming weeks is a certainty, but take it with a grain of salt. Working out, skating, doing drills won’t tell the tale. There is no way to know how hard he will be able to compete until he plays real games at full intensity. And even then, we are unlikely to get any real information released about how he is feeling. Just like we didn’t get any last year, and he obviously wasn’t doing very well.

  12. Travis Dakin says:

    Please, again, what are you seeing in Hall’s game that makes you keep suggesting he move to centre?

    I just don’t see it. Again, Eberle seems to me like the logical move to C (if anyone has to leave their position. )

  13. LP says:

    Seems very reasonable LT, as usual.

    ashley:
    There is much being made about Matheson’s article re: Murray in the last thread.I had a chance to talk with one of my colleagues from training who currently works in the organization.

    When Tambo took over, a strict media policy was introduced.They have been quite successful with most leaks we read about intentional.The exception is the TreenasOil thing, apparently.This has left Matheson and company out in the cold which may also explain why Jones has become so ornery in the past couple of years.

    So I wouldn’t read much into the Matheson article.He is reaching in the dark, literally.His words likely reflect his own bias more than anything else.Just like Larsson last year.

    I also learned that no formal decision has been made on the #1.A trade is highly unlikely based on calls to Tambellini so far.The much rumoured trade partner, the leafs are felt to more likely trade #5 for an NHL centerman on a current roster than they are to trade up.

    There is speculation that CBJ is really sore about losing the lottery, and are playing games with the “Murray love” leaks knowing that the Oil scouts think highly of him.There is some feelingthat this may be a back door to drafting Yak at #2 if they can make Edmonton think Murray is a hot enough commodity.

    The Oilers are looking again to get another top 10 pick (asking price has been too steep in the previous two years).There is some feeling that if CBJ is blowing smoke, Murray could easily slide to the 5-10 range where they would be happy to select him, or failing Murray, Reinhardt.

    There you have it on a fine Sunday morning.

    Ashley, very interesting information. Since last year’s draft, I’ve believe Treena is privy to some inside information and you are confirming it. The age of the traditional journalist’s privy info with the Edmonton Oilers is apparently over.

    Interesting couple weeks ahead for Oiler fans.

  14. fuzzy muppet says:

    I don’t understand the rationale of trading up into the first round in this draft.

    The depth of defensemen is such that the guy picked at 31 is likely on the same level of potential as the guys in the 10-20 range. They are so closely lumped together. Factor in the fact that time and again defenseman are usually long in developing, why waste additional assets to move up and take one??

  15. LP says:

    Travis Dakin,

    Speed, speed and more speed.

    Hall is bigger, more physical and his skating down the middle would open up the game more than placing Eberle at centre would. Of course, Hall also has to learn *not* to go through everything, otherwise injuries will pile up.

    I too see the advantage of moving Hall to Centre. But that ain’t done yet and a lot of things can change between now and October

  16. Ryan says:

    Great stuff Ashley.

    Stauffer interviewed Whitney about a month ago. Whitney talked about having to changie his game and not being able to do certain things anymore. He certainly sounded like he accepted that he’ll have permanent limitations that he’ll have to work around though he didn’t say it explicitly.

    I heard from a distant source that the Oilers are leaning towards a younger read ahl coach for the vacant position. Obviously not much substance there, but I had previously assumed Sutter was a foregone conclusion.

  17. Ryan says:

    Travis Dakin,

    Well, it’s partly roster based particularly if they deal Gagner. Hall didn’t look too bad at centre in the brief experiment during his rookie year. On the other hand, moving hall to centre would require signing twin top six lw’ers… We already need one more.

  18. LP says:

    http://thehockeywriters.com/overtime/justin-schultz-and-the-art-of-controlling-your-own-destiny/

    Very interesting article on Schultz and the CBA loophole used to become an RFA.

    This should settle that pissing contest a while back between some posters on the CBA articles and how it affects Schultz.

  19. LP says:

    (but I did find it somewhat amusing. lol)

  20. Ducey says:

    Moving to Hall to center this season probably isn’t in the cards.

    He will be recovering from surgery and isn’t expected to be ready for the beginning of the season. Throwing him into center with no chance to get ready for it the pre-season and at less than 100% would be a poor decision. Plus faceoffs are pretty hard on the shoulder.

    Maybe you try him there in September 2013. At that point they should have a better idea of whether Samwise is a 45 pt player or can develop another gear.

  21. bookje says:

    LP:
    http://thehockeywriters.com/overtime/justin-schultz-and-the-art-of-controlling-your-own-destiny/

    Very interesting article on Schultz and the CBA loophole used to become an RFA.

    This should settle that pissing contest a while back between some posters on the CBA articles and how it affects Schultz.

    That explanation only explains why the team loses their right to the player, but does not explain why the player becomes a free agent instead of re-entering the draft. It’s actually not a good explanation at all.

  22. Traktor says:

    There is a lot of good quotes in the HF Yakupov thread from various scouts and NHL executives claiming that Yak is a future star. Bob Mac says that Yakupov is “clearly” the best player in the draft.

    I’m fine if Edmonton drafts Murray as long as Tambellini puts his job on the line. He is either the smartest guy in the room or he is fired.

  23. stevezie says:

    Traktor,

    I’d say he’s already done that by firing the coach.

    Anyone else read the post-combine quotes where Nail said the bike test was “easy”? I enjoyed that.

  24. Cactus says:

    LT, your predictions are interesting as ever, but I’m curious why you didn’t take the “Hall to centre” and “trade for a d-man” ideas to their logical conclusion. If both things were to come to pass, it likely means Gagner is out the door in the trade as he would end up as the number three guy. While they could always try to run the mythical three scoring lines, flush Belanger and make Horcoff the highest paid 4th liner, I don’t quite see that happening.

  25. speeds says:

    Cactus:
    LT, your predictions are interesting as ever, but I’m curious why you didn’t take the “Hall to centre” and “trade for a d-man” ideas to their logical conclusion.If both things were to come to pass, it likely means Gagner is out the door in the trade as he would end up as the number three guy.While they could always try to run the mythical three scoring lines, flush Belanger and make Horcoff the highest paid 4th liner, I don’t quite see that happening.

    They have a bit of versatility, in that even if they moved Hall to C, they could try moving Horcoff to LW, or Yakupov/Hemsky to LW and Gagner to RW, etc, etc.

  26. Cactus says:

    stevezie:
    Traktor,

    I’d say he’s already done that by firing the coach.

    Anyone else read the post-combine quotes where Nail said the bike test was “easy”? I enjoyed that.

    It’s funny, we really should be talking about this more when we speak about Tambellini and management’s plan. By not renewing Renney’s contract, Katz, Lowe, Tambellini, etc. gave us one of the clearest looks into their thinking that we’ve had in years.

    Katz clearly understands that they weren’t going to make the playoffs last year (else, Tambellini would be gone too), but they certainly wanted more improvement in the standings than they got. Part of it was bad luck (the Oilers’ goal differential was actually 23rd and much better than teams like Columbus or the Islanders), but for management, part of it was not getting the most out of the roster he had. To me, at least, that seems like a somewhat positive sign – they’re not content with a lottery finish anymore.

  27. Cactus says:

    speeds,

    Speeds, the Gagner at RW seemed to be a pretty big flop – I would think they’d want to avoid that mistake again. I do take your point about moving Horcoff around, but I guess you only do that if you really don’t think winning faceoffs is important.

  28. DSF says:

    Cactus: It’s funny, we really should be talking about this more when we speak about Tambellini and management’s plan.By not renewing Renney’s contract, Katz, Lowe, Tambellini, etc. gave us one of the clearest looks into their thinking that we’ve had in years.

    Katz clearly understands that they weren’t going to make the playoffs last year (else, Tambellini would be gone too), but they certainly wanted more improvement in the standings than they got.Part of it was bad luck (the Oilers’ goal differential was actually 23rd and much better than teams like Columbus or the Islanders), but for management, part of it was not getting the most out of the roster he had.To me, at least, that seems like a somewhat positive sign – they’re not content with a lottery finish anymore.

    The Oilers goal differential last season was deceptive for a few reasons.

    Scoring 9 goals and 8 goals in two games against Chicago are huge outliers for a team that scored 2.52 G/G including those two games.

    During Khabibulin’s out of body early season performance, the Oilers gave up 16 goals in 12 games played, or 1.33 GA/G compared to a season average of 2.83 GA/G.

    I doubt that is anywhere close to repeatable.

    Also worth noting, the Oilers were 29th in shots/game, at 26.7, a hair ahead of the Wild at 26.5 while they were 20th in G/G.

    I’d be looking at a market correction next season.

  29. Traktor says:

    stevezie:
    Traktor,

    I’d say he’s already done that by firing the coach.

    Nah, Renney wasn’t all that great.

    Horcoff + Belanger = combined -36

    Gagner + RNH = combined +3

    Common sense tells us that the veterans were failing hard yet Renney didn’t change their role or hold them accountable.

    On the other hand if Renney would have played Horcoff and Belanger under 10 minutes it would reflect badly on Lowe and Tamebellini. I guess Renney was fucked either way.

  30. Traktor says:

    Cactus:
    speeds,

    Speeds, the Gagner at RW seemed to be a pretty big flop – I would think they’d want to avoid that mistake again.

    Gags had 10 points in his final 25 games and he played C with pretty good wingers.

    Gags also had his best season offensively while playing RW with Cogs as his center.

    He’s just inconsistent no matter what position he plays.

  31. Lowetide says:

    I think Gagner played much better on the wing this season, don’t think it would be an issue moving forward.

  32. spoiler says:

    Hall at centre means he will be the last forward to leave the zone, negating his speed. And if you’ve been watching during the playoffs, most teams are keeping their Cs very high in the offensive zone, almost like a 3rd defenseman, back early covering opposing rushes etc–again negating some of Hall’s effectiveness.

    I do not see Hall as a good fit at centre. Neither did his Junior coach, or his NHL coaches. He hasn’t mastered wing yet at this level for pete sakes.

    That there are 6 invitees to the City of Champions Tour is interesting. Have they really not made their mind up yet? Is there really that many players in play for #1 when there’s a clear consensus top pick? Or does this indicate how determined the Oilers are to trade into the top 10? Unlike Bookje, I can’t see next year’s 1st being in play (it might be, but I would be surprised), so what would be going the other way?

  33. Lowetide says:

    spOILer: I think the Oilers make it a point not to put their final final list together until right before the draft. If we could sneak a peak at MBS’ computer though I think we’d know now.

  34. spoiler says:

    Magnificent MacGregor’s interview Friday with NHL.com.

    …which confirms your thoughts, LT.

  35. gogliano says:

    Ashley: For a tight-lipped organization, they seemed to give you a lot of info. :)

    But if I wasn’t sold before that interview with Yakupov really sealed the deal for me.

    I think LT is right that we’ll pick Yak and they’ll try Hall at center again. Not sure how he’ll do but I don’t see the loss in trying.

  36. Ribs says:

    Ashley – Matheson has been plugged in lately. He’s had articles with direct quotes from people in the Oilers org. (including Kevin Lowe). I agree that he could be framing the Murray issue in that article but I think we really need to be paying attention to Matheson again. He went a long time getting nothing out of the Oilers and now he’s suddenly back in the know.

    Tambellini extension signed yet?

  37. Lowetide says:

    Nope. Klefbom contract unsigned too.

  38. ashley says:

    gogliano:
    Ashley: For a tight-lipped organization, they seemed to give you a lot of info.

    Well there were a few bottles of wine consumed into the night, so maybe he said more than he should have. Also, he’s on the medical team, so he is a degree or two removed from the guys really in the know. Still, I don’t think I’ve revealed anything earth shattering. I’ll keep that stuff to myself. ;)

    I was thinking I can see why CBJ want Yak badly. They are almost certainly going to trade Nash draft week or before. Columbus is still trying to sell hockey in their town. Yak was probably seen as the offering to the fans to keep the tickets sales from falling off the cliff after trading away one of the best players in the NHL.

    Murray doesn’t have that dynamic cachet, and may not even play in the NHL next year in an apolitical organization (ie one that doesn’t feel they have to keep him in the NHL to prove something to their fans). Let’s face it, picking Murray may serve a team well in the grand scheme of things, but the pick screams BORING. That is why I think if we pick Yak, CBJ will take Galchenyuk for the season ticket drive.

    They got robbed at the lottery, and don’t want to have to give up assets to get what they thought was theirs.

    Pure speculation on my part, but I don’t think Murray goes before #5, but both CBJ and TOR are praying he does so CBJ can land Yak and TOR one of the big 3 forwards (Yak, Gal, Grig). TOR will have a trade set up before the draft if those guys are off the board for a center (Stastny?) in exchange for #5 and some other throw ins.

  39. speeds says:

    ashley,

    Interesting stuff Ashley.

    Sure, COL could trade Stastny for draft picks, but man do they have a ton of cap room to fill already and dumping Stastny (cap hit of 6.6 mil) for a guy who’d have a cap hit of ~2.5 mil wouldn’t really help them get to the floor. I guess you can always do that picking up poor contracts on a short term, or signing UFA’s to rich short term deals.

    http://www.capgeek.com/charts.php?Team=12

    True, they’ve got a bunch of guys to sign, maybe they’ll be after Parise and/or Suter?

    Or maybe trading for Thomas’s cap hit after July 1?

  40. speeds says:

    BTW LT, I haven’t firmed my list up, but I was musing today that it’s not inconceivable someone (probably not me, but someone) could have a top 5 with 5 F’s, which would be kind of strange in a draft talked about for its D strength.

    OTOH, maybe I just think that’s possible because of my general preference for F’s at the top of the draft?

  41. Lowetide says:

    speeds: Yeah, I think this draft has so deep in defensemen a team in the top 5 (like Edmonton) may feel there will be an opportunity to trade into the 17-24 range and grab a falling defender. On the other hand, the 2008 draft had 4 out of the top 5 selections go to blue.

  42. spoiler says:

    I think a mock draft is more likely to have a top 5 of all forwards than a prospect ranking (except for Speeds’, of course). After Edmonton, the next 4 teams all want/need forwards and can justify picking that way by using the “danger drafting defenseman defence”. And those forwards are quality too. Ashley makes some very good points on how this might all pan out.

    I’m guessing:
    1. Yak
    2. Galch
    3. Grig
    4. Forsberg
    5. Wants a C, but might go totally off the board and take Subban. Other than the non-Burke-like Teravainen, all the good players available are defenseman.

    If Howson wanted Yakupov bad enough, would you accept their 1st and 2nd rounders for 1st overall? Then see if you can parley the 31 and 61 into a mid 20s pick and get a guy like Hertl. Hope for Samuelsson or Wilson with the 30th. I know that’s not taking BPA (Yak), but that doesn’t look like a bad draft. More useful than Yak plus Samuelsson?

    Or–and this would cost more–there’s definitely room to trade in and get one of Murray, Rielly or Reinhart. One of those guys might still be there 8-10. And Ceci, Maatta and Trouba still there after that. But then you are probably giving up a player to get that pick. Does Belanger or Jones or both get you that pick? Not likely. So that would mean a younger player along the Paajarvi lines, possibly more. What would it take to get a 5-10 pick? Have to be a forward. Gagner to Anaheim, who are burning years on their top line forwards? But then we’re playing whack-a-mole again (unless they draft a C instead of Yak).

    And not that any of that solves any of our present defensive issues. Even Murray is going to take some time to get up to speed… At least a half season of heavily sheltered minutes.

  43. sliderule says:

    The person who told me that oiler scouts like Murray over Yakupov Is a really old radio broadcaster that you would all know.

    Unless Lowe and Tambo go against their scouts they are taking Murray.

    I do think that when they picked Hall Lowetambo influenced Stu to switch from Seguin to Hall so it isn’t beyond reason that the same could happen with Yakupov.

    I will now sit back and be silent till the 22th of June .

  44. spoiler says:

    sliderule:

    I will now sit back and be silent till the 22th of June .

    Inconceivable!

  45. spoiler says:

    spoiler: Inconceivable!

    Yes. That’s all I’ve got left for “Steve Smith” set-ups.

  46. Lowetide says:

    Sliderule: I’ve heard the same thing (although not from the person you heard it from).

  47. Lowetide says:

    where in HELL is Steve Smith? I hope he’s okay.

  48. Marc says:

    speeds:
    BTW LT, I haven’t firmed my list up, but I was musing today that it’s not inconceivable someone (probably not me, but someone) could have a top 5 with 5 F’s, which would be kind of strange in a draft talked about for its D strength.

    I don’t think it would be that surprising if the five forwards with elite skills (Yakupov, Forsberg, Galchenyuk, Grigorenko and Teravainen) go in the top seven or even five picks. Minnesota, Columbus, the Islanders and Anaheim were all amongst the lowest scoring teams in the league last year and Toronto and Montreal have organisational needs for big centers.

    It’s a actually a scenario I’d like to see. Carolina is probably the team that needs a forward from the draft the most though, given how poor their top six depth is (they only had three players with more than 40 points and 1 with more than 50). They are also pretty deep on D with Ryan Murphy on the way. If there is any team that might trade a top ten pick for Gagner/MPS it would be Carolina. And if 5 forwards have gone in the top 7, then at least two of Murray, Dumba, Reilly and Reinhart will still be there.

  49. PunjabiOil says:

    I wouldn’t read too much into rumours.

    Every Edmonton sports media and his mother thought we were drafting Seguin in 2010.

    After the draft, Lowe said they had made their decision on Hall in mid-may, and the rest of it was a smokescreen.

    I think they take Yakupov.

    It just doesn’t make sense otherwise.

  50. speeds says:

    My guess is that the Oilers will likely take Yakupov if they stay at 1, but they are giving enough consideration to trading down that they want to make sure they are really informed on the other players if they move down.

  51. stevezie says:

    I would think MPS would get you the 8. He’s a former top ten pick who has already shown that he can play in the NHL, and even though his develoment has been uneven he’s still shown more at a higher level than anyone in picks 5-10.
    If we had to sweeten the deal we could offer to flip picks in the second round.
    I think the picks are overvalued (especially after 4), but I think we could spare MPS so I guess I could live with it.

  52. Lowetide says:

    I don’t think Paajarvi gets you #8 overall. There’s enough questions about his offense at this time, and added to spending time in the minors he’d fall short of being full value imo.

  53. DSF says:

    Lowetide:
    where in HELL is Steve Smith? I hope he’s okay.

    He’s looking for the clause in the CBA that isn’t there.

    Drives him crazy.

  54. regwald says:

    DSF,

    And that is why they call it a loophole ….

  55. jb says:

    Lowetide:
    Sliderule: I’ve heard the same thing (although not from the person you heard it from).

    May I ask who you guys heard that from? Are you sure it wasn’t just the scouts like Murray… and not the scouts like Murray over Yakupov?

    I’m certain Ashley is bang on here. Like she said though, nothing earth shattering..

    and seriously, after the Seguin thing, you should simply dismiss what the majority of the MSM blabber on about unless your really bored. Even then, don’t take what they say as truth.

    I don’t think LT always realizes the correct info usually makes it’s way to this blog…

  56. Lowetide says:

    JB: Mine was more like there’s a difference of opinion internally and it came from a media source that I consider to be very credible. NOT the fellow SR referenced, though.

  57. spoiler says:

    !

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