A Carolina Hurricanes blog with occasional news about the rest of the NHL.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Edmonton blueline gets even weaker, and some Buffalo stuff

Just a few days after the Pronger trade, the Oilers took another blow to their blueline when Sissy Jaroslav Spacek was signed by the soon-to-be-butt-end Buffalo Sabres. Spacek had 19 points (5/14) in 31 regular season games with the Oil after being traded from the Blackhawks. He also had 14 points (3/11) in 24 postseason games with the Oil. He played a major role on special teams, notching two goals and five assists on the power play during the playoffs. He also was an ice-time monster, putting up an average of 25:52 per game in the playoffs.

At the end of the day, the Oilers have lost their top two defensemen. As the free agents are dropping off in quantity and quality, they will have to orchestrate some trades to beef up their D.

Earlier this week, things looked a little rough for the Sabres defense. They allowed Jay McKee to walk, which seemed like a really bad idea to me. However, picking up Spacek is a great move for them. On the flip side, though, is the fact that there are twelve Sabres who have filed for salary arbitration. Twelve! Three of them -- Brian "Soupy" Campbell, Toni Lydman, Henrik Tallinder -- are defensemen.
I'm not sure what's going on up there, but right now, they only have five players under contract for next season. If I were a Sabres fan, I would be very worried right about now. Obviously it's still very early, but the inactivity has to have the faithful worried.
They should also be worried about the new logo, pictured above. It won't be official until September, but many believe that this one will be the main logo. For myriad reasons, I don't like it. Maybe it's not true, though. Maybe this is a deliberate smokescreen. Maybe they'll surprise everyone by unveiling something completely different. By September, the Sabres will have a logo, and (presumably) some players. In the meantime, they have nothing.

UPDATE The Oilers have just signed defenseman Daniel Tjarnqvist from the Wild to a one-year deal. That's a start.


JP said...

C'mon - you of all people should know that the Sabres can lose a few defensemen and still be quite competitive.

Karen said...

Also, Georges Laraques is now a Coyote.

Amanda said...

Thank you jp. Just because we haven't blown all of our money in the first little bit doesn't mean we don't have a plan. If you were a Sabres fan, you'd realize that our coaching and management built a team that, although beaten up, were one game from the Stanley Cup Finals. We started the season with NOTHING. That says more to me as a Sabres fan than spending a lot of money on a guy who doesn't want to be there. Jay McKee had been talking about leaving during the playoffs... so I wasn't surprised they let him go. It's possible that there's an attitude that we want players who WANT to be a part of a TEAM, and not just get paid big money. I wouldn't worry about it... being that you're not a Sabres fan anyway. Stick to your 'Caniac news. (toot! toot! <-- steam coming out of my ears from you right now).


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