Better the devil you know than the devil you dont!/Short List of available UFA&#

It’s hard to say whether or not the Ottawa Senators need another forward for the upcoming season! Sure they have that amazing big 3 on the first line, but they still need to take up that secondary scoring up a notch!  Vermette and Fisher are talented players, but they aren’t top-end goal scorers! Despite their acquisitions in the off season, they were unable to replace Cory Stillman. Veteran guys like Kelly, Neil and Mcammond can pitch in a few, but rookies like Foligno, Lee and Bass are all gonna have to step up to pick up some of the slack. So how about bringing in someone to help them out! Someone who can help them develop, to serve as a guide, someone who loves the city, and someone, ironically, who’s been here before!!

How about bringing in UFA forward Brian Smolinski!! He’s got the leadership and determination the club’s been looking for and he’s just that type of player they need. He plays with heart and gives 100% every time he’s on the ice. Not only that, but think about the chemistry!! I remember when he first got traded from the club to Chicago, it was reported that he had asked GM John Muckler If ever he was going to be back?! If I remember correctly Muckley said if ever he’d have the room he’d for sure make a pitch for him! I know now Murray took over the job and I don’t know whether he’d want that or not but since Smolinski’s available do you not think he’d be worth giving a shot?! The guy loves it here and I’m sure he’d be willing to come over at a bargain price!

It’s hard to say though at this point with so many young players that will push for a spot at forward at training camp. Taking a look at some of them, Alexander Nikulin, Ilya Zubov, Jesse Winchester, Josh Hennesey, Peter Regin and a few more from Bingo will be driving in hard to take a spot in training camp!! Not sure what Murray’s got planned but all these kids have great potential in the coming years and could very well steal a spotlight!!

As for they’re Defence, If they can pen Meszaros under the ink, they’ll be fine! Despite the loss of Redden and Commodore, they aren’t that shaken up! With the addition of Smith and with Lee and Nycholat ready to make the Jump, they shouldn’t have any major issues! Goaltending, well, as for Martin Gerber, he will again have to try and prove he can take the No. 1 job, which doubts are still anyone’s guess!

So what do you think?? Should they go out and sigh a free agent. Smolinski doesn’t have to be the answer. In my opinion he’d be a great choice, but lets not rule out anyone of the other available UFA’s. There’s still a few out there but which one’s would fit in most with the sens current needs at a reasonable price?! I’ve mad a quick list of some of the most notable ones still available with their point totals from last year:

Stu Barnes, Centre/Wing, 38 yrs old, 23 points in 79 games with Dallas
Mathieu Darche, Wing, 32 yrs old, 22 points in 73 games with Tamba
Martin Gelinas, Left Wing, 38 yrs old, 20 points in 50 games with Nashville
Jeff Hamilton, Centre/Wing, 31 yrs old, 24 points in 58 games with Carolina
Jan Hlavac, Wing, 32 yrs old, 35 points in 80 games with Tamba/Nashville
Glen Muray, Right Wing, 35 yrs old, 30 points in 60 games with Boston
Mark Parrish, Wing, 31 yrs old, 30 points in 66 games with Minnesota
Randy Robitaille, Wing, 33 yrs old, 29 points in 68 games with Ottawa
Martin Rucinsky, Left Wing, 37 yrs old, 16 points in 40 games with St-Louis
Geoff Sanderson, Left Wing, 36 yrs old, 13 points in 41 games with Edmonton
Josef Strumpel, Centre/Wing, 36 yrs old, 20 points in 52 games with Florida
Josef Vasicek, Centre/ Left Wing, 28 yrs old, 35 points in 81 games with the NYI
Stephane Yelle, Centre/Wing, 34 yrs old, 12 points in 74 games with Calgary
Mike York, Centre/Wing, 30 yrs old, 14 points in 63 games with Phoenix

Now I know some or alot of these guys probably won’t have a team to report to come September 20th, but I thought they’d be worth mentioning! (Hope I didn’t miss any)

… There is of course Sundin, Sakic, Salanne, Forsberg, and Shannahan … but we’ll stay away from them!!!…

Lets not rule out the possibility of a trade as well. Rumours have been going around with names from Afinogenov all the way to Gaborik!! But who would Ottawa have to give up? What do do you think?! Would this better or Worsen the team?! Are they Better off left like this?! Those were my thoughts, now lets hear yours..

22 Responses to Better the devil you know than the devil you dont!/Short List of available UFA&#

  1. HABSSTAR says:

    The Sens need goaltending!  They always have, and it seems like they worry about everything else but do their best to ignore the elephant in the room! 


  2. leafy says:

    I couldn't agree more.  Without goaltending, you're simply not going anywhere, regardless of how good your team is.  Yes, it is still the most important position.

  3. HABSSTAR says:

    Whoa, whoa…WHOA!  I'm not sold on the most important position thing…I've seen many a post on here that has convinced me that the #4 D-man spot is THE MOST IMPORTANT position in hockey. 

    Apparently, according to some of the learned persons on this sight,  it's the reason the Habs didn't win the cup last year. Also, unless they address it this year are doomed for EPIC FAILURE! 

    Mark my words…#4 D-man…..HUGE!  


  4. Mr-X says:

    Apparently we signed Auld cause he was cheap and cause Murray drafted em in Florida!! .. Not impressed!! We could've got Kolzig for almost same thing!! And honestly I really hope the Khabibulin Trade happens! There's not much out there we can trade for I think he's the best bet!

  5. leafy says:

    lol.  Yeah the no. 4 D…that's the ticket.  And don't forget the 3rd line left winger!

    I felt the problem with the Habs against Philly was general team defense or team positioning.

    Examples: I lost track of how many times Philly had a 3-2 rush while skating at top speed through the neutral zone.

    I lost track of how many times Philly was allowed to gain the blueline unchallenged on a routine 3-on-3.

    I also lost track of how many times the Philly point shots were left unchallenged and allowed to reach the goalie…high risk for screen shot or tip in….many of Philly's goals were of this variety.

    So it was more team positioning that killed the Habs.  The experience from last year should help them for this year though.

  6. HABSSTAR says:


    Also Philly was all over the Habs' skilled players.  They were relentless and never gave the Canadiens any room…..then they shit the bed against Pitt.

    Had they played the same style against Pitt they would have had a much better showing, maybe not win the series but a much better showing for sure. 

    Anyhow I don't think Montreal really needs to add anyone to improve off of last year.  I think they'll be just fine.  If they get Sundin then that's bonus. 

  7. Kramer says:

    My sources could not confirm or deny any of the Sundin rumors.

  8. Rickler says:

    I've mentioned it before on HTR… But Stephane Yelle is a beaut. I'm really surprised this guy hasn't signed with anyone. As a third or forth line center he can really shore up a teams penalty killing unit and set an example for younger players. This guy sacrifices his body night in and night out.
    What's the knock on him?   

  9. Freak says:

    I think Mike york already signed with Columbus.

  10. cam7777 says:

    I'm sure this is blasphemy to Sens fans, but if the team can't put it together early on in the season, I think they should consider moving Alfredsson this year.  His value is huge right now, and his contract is very affordable.  If the team is going to continue down the path they started on last season, trading Alfredsson could completely revitalize the team.  Not only that, but I think trading him would pay huge dividends in other ways.  Heatley and Spezza would be forced to take the reigns of the team.  It seems they are futile without their captain, so get rid of the captain and they'll become their own force in time.  Plus, it allows the Sens to avoid the risk of Alfredsson pulling a Sundin down the road. 

    And yea, as someone else said, goaltending….

  11. Plekanec says:

    I think Your absolutely right, good point, thats who the Habs should sign plus he has a lot of playoffs experience.

  12. pezzz says:

    too much ! here. try putting some more .

    on another note, Stephane Yelle would be good for depth, at 1 million, but that's if we move Kelly to the second line. otherwise, we don't really need Yelle.

    Darche has signed in Buffalo, Hlavac in Europe, same for Robitaille, Rucinsky, Stumpel and Vasicek. Mike York is in Colombus. anyway, these guys are no more than 3rd liners. what the Sens need is 2nd liners.

    I'd look for a top 4 puck-mover more than a forward. Mike Van Ryn could be interesting, but I doubt Jacques Martin will trade with Ottawa.

    Someone has mentionned trading Alfredsson. I agree, IF we start a complete rebuilding. Otherwise, at his price tag, Alfredsson is the better player of the NHL. so we must keep him if the goal is to make the playoffs. If we trade Alfredsson, then Spezza, Phillips, Meszaros, Fisher, Heatley and Neil must also be traded. Keep Volchenkov, Lee, Vermette, Schubert, Kelly, Foligno and build around them, with Smith, Donavan and McCammond as the veterans to guide them.

  13. oilcountry88 says:

    I think Stephan Yelle is a very good fit in Ottawa! great face-off man too

  14. Kramer says:

    The Leafs need a big trade to move up in the '09 draft.

  15. leafy says:

    I greatly admire Kolzig because he's endured many years on a usually lousy team (before Mr Ovechkin arrived).  But he's not the goalie he used to be.

  16. paulieplatypus says:

    I know a dog named Sam that could give you more relevant information than your current sources do!

  17. Kramer says:

    The Olympics are too short.  They should be 4 weeks long.  There should be more events.

    I'm gonna write a letter to Jacques Rogge, saying that road hockey to be added to the Olympics along with darts and demolition derbies.

  18. Rickler says:

    I was thinking a hot dog eating contest……

  19. Jenkinstein says:

    Spezza and Heatley both have no movement clauses for the next six years, so there's no way to move them. 

  20. LeafsNation91 says:

    Okay, Okay.

    None of these free agents can help the Sens.

    The Sens are in HUGE trouble.

    Their is zero talent in the tank, Foligno will probably be a third/second liner at best, and he is your top talent.

    Give them a few years, and they are the next Toronto Maple Leafs.

  21. RedSENS says:

    I think the idea of Smolinski is ok but other than that not one of these guy's are the right. Get the Khabibulin trade done and resign him for 3-4 million for two years. and the LA Kings send a top six guy and Kopitar is the building block up front so don't think of including him in trade proposals. And Frolov has the most value of fowards I think the Kings are willing to trade. send him to the Hawks. ANd Ottawa sends Gerber and Phillips for a desperately needed veteran on d-fence and we get Preissing to help replace Redden and Gerber is better than what they've got in nets. But Ersberg statistically look good and Labarbera is a good goalie but he had no D-fence.
    BUt in the end the Sens MUST FIRE MURRAY!!! I've not been comfortable with him since Muckler was sacked He failed to keep a winner going in Anaheim. ANd he drafts not good enough for the Sens needs and Foligno
    is no more than a 2nd liner.
    And Kramer keep the jokes coming thats some lmao material.

  22. senators101 says:

    We need a top 6 forward… that's it.  No more bottom 6… we already have too many.

    Foligno is going to be playing top 6 minutes as it stands right now.  The best thing for Ottawa is to sign Meszaros, keep the cap space, but schubert on defense, give a rookie a chance, and trade for someone sometime during the year to sign a big name player.
    We already have Kelly, Bass, Ruutu, Neil, Donovan, McAmmond, and any of the rookies that are ready to make the jump.  I don't see a need to add anymore bottom 6, especially if we can't get rid of any of the ones we have.

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