Kings very unlikely to be able to resign Penner

Is there an update on any negotiations with Dustin Penner that you’d be able to provide?

DL: It’s one of those cap things, and I guess it’s safe to say I have a limited amount of cap space left, and there certainly isn’t going to be enough to – I mean his requirements. I talked to him the other day, and I just told him. I talked to his agent a couple days ago and [said] ‘This is where we’re at. I’ve only got X amount left.’

http://lakingsinsider.com/2013/07/11/lombardi-on-development-camp-penner/


35 Responses to Kings very unlikely to be able to resign Penner

  1. leafy says:

    I heard the Oilers are interested in trading for Dion Phaneuf.

    Bill Watters himself said it, but no word on what the Leafs get back.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      If it’s true, it doesn’t surprise me Leafy. Phaneuf to Edmonton is something I have been suggesting for a while. I would think Nonis wants from D, either J Schultz or Smid and from Forward probably high end like a Yakupov or Eberle.
      It may be a Scultz/Yakupov, Hemsky, pick/prospect for Phaneuf, lower pick/prospect kind of thing. Either way, I think we will have to take Hemsky to make it work.

      On another note, If Fraser gets awarded too much, I could see the Leafs letting him walk and signing ex-Oiler Peckham to take his place or go with Brennan.

      • leafy says:

        Yakupov would be amazing if it happened.

        I too hope the Leafs don’t over pay for Fraser. The playoffs showed he’s too slow to handle the quick Bruins forwards, as good as he played in the regular season. Looking forward to seeing Brennan.

  2. kessel_leafs81 says:

    i dont think dion lands that package, hemsky still has some value to him i dont see him being a salary dump hes still a decent player. i dont see it making much sense for us to trade phaneuf unless a dman is coming back in the deal. do we need another schultz? top 4 possibly next year could be schultz gardiner reilly franson.. wheres the defence ? sure thats really exciting but we’d have to rely on winning games 6-5.. the bright side would be reimer wouldnt get that big of raise because despite him playing outstanding, hed just be left out to dry and nonis will say “look at your stats, your lucky we’re resigning you”

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      Dion is not a true shut-down defenceman either. The Oil have been basically trying to “dump” hemsky for a while and Mac T has already said that Hemsky and Horcoff have likely played their last game as Oilers. He dumped Horcoff, If he could get Phaneuf and dump Hemsky, he would look at it. With the 4 D you mentioned, we have good puck movement and possession. The D would be cheaper and Hemsky is a UFA end of season. Add a couple defensive defencemen to that 4 and the Leafs look good, or you could trade one for a very good top 4 defensive defenceman.

  3. razer1818 says:

    Since the original post was about Dustin Penner ill mention that lol. I think adding Penner as I have said before to the LEAFS roster would be a huge boost. Especially at the right price. He plays his best hockey under Randy Carlye and is a 45 Pts / year guy Perfect fit to go with Bolland and Kulemin.

    As for Oil Town trading for Dion Ok im in Ill laugh all the way to the Rink and shake Nonis hand for getting rid of him for what ever, even better if its Yakapov or Shultz

  4. DannyLeafs says:

    You have to feel for Dion. Guy takes so much crap for being a very good player just because he hasn’t lived up to the Norris buzz of his first couple of seasons.

    Phaneuf is a very good top pairing defensemen and a legimate number one, but he will always need another very good top pairing defensmen to play with if he is ever going to cover his weaknesses.

    Phaneuf is one of the best two-way defenders in the game, but he isn’t elite level in either end of the rink, so he under heavy scrutiny his flaws will always show up. Seriously, try and name 5 defensemen that are better both defensively and offensively then Phaneuf. He had the hardest defensive assignments of any defender in the league last year, he played more minutes against the highest level of competition then anyone, and after those first 12 games, he handled them very well (+6 rating, 27 points in the final 36 games). The thing is it never looks pretty when you take a guy who isn’t the leagues best defender, but play him like he is supposed to be. There are probably 20 guys in the league who could handle those minutes better than Phaneuf, and of that there are only a handful that could do it while putting up reasonable offensive numbers, and you could also argue that save Webber, Suter, and Ekman-Larsson, none have any chance of doing both better.

    The problem with the media in Toronto is that they don’t really recognize his offensive talents because they see him as standing in the way of Gardiner getting more PP time, so it’s as if his contributions actually hurt the team. Realistically the Leafs need the defensive aspects of his game more than they need the offensive, meaning that him not being ideally suited for the role causes a lot of scorn and backlash. All that being said, I wouldn’t hate trading Phaneuf, not because he isn’t valuable, just because in a cap league, an ideal fit becomes more important. If in the long run his offensive ability becomes less and less valuable to our team, I wouldn’t want to keep paying for it. But we would need an upgrade on the defensive side of things, something Edmonton doesn’t have to offer. Edmonton could use Phaneuf, he brings a little of everything they don’t have to the back end. He would be an upgrade defensively, but also, he brings a big shot and little more offense from the back end, something that could help them immensely. Throw in a mean streak, PK ability and a few big hits, and he would fit quite well.

    If there was any team where Phaneuf would absolutely thrive, it would be NYR. That defensive core is built for a guy like Phaneuf. He would face 2nd lines in 5-5 situations, where he won’t be overmatched often, number 1 PP time, and an all round contributor in other situations. He has that brash on ice attitude and chirpiness that Rangers fans would embrace, while having less pressure over all. I am not saying this as a potential trading partner, as the cap would never work, but as a team that Phaneuf would fit really well on, and maximize his overall contributions.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      I agree with most of that Danny. Great evaluation on Dion on the overall. He is not the best fit for Toronto right now, when you take into account his games and cap hit.IMO Many disagree and that’s fine, but I agree with your overall evaluation of Dion and I think he would fit Edmonton better than Toronto at this time which is why I have felt for a while the Oil would be calling on him.
      The Oil do have a D-man that Nonis would/should want and that’s Smid. Not saying 1 for 1 deal, but Smid is a Defensive defenceman, plays over 20 mins a night, good size and good cap hit. That fit Toronto better considering we have Gardiner, Franson and Reilly. The Oil would have to add something of value (not Hemsky)to the deal. I just don’t think the Oil will move Smid, but the thought of getting Dion back would be something for MacT to think about.
      The Leafs could save as much as $3mil in cap space with a deal revolving around Phaneuf and Smid that they could use elsewhere.
      Maybe something like
      Phaneuf and Holzer for Smid and Petry. Toronto still saves about $2 mil in cap space which could allow them to bring in another veteran D if they like or get a Penner type for the third line. It helps both teams.

      The other thing about Dion is how many claim playing his off-side hurts his game. Defensively on the backhand, Yes. Offensively it helps him though. Many goals from Dion are scored from the top of the circle coming in from the right point because his stick is in the middle of the ice for a pass instead of board side. Or one timers that wouldn`t exist if he played the left side. It`s a disadvantage in one end, but an advantage in the other that helps him put up points.

      • DannyLeafs says:

        I don’t disagree that a trade could be made there, but I think if the Leafs are to move Dion, it should be with the intention of bringing in a better defensive zone defender, and I don’t think Smid, or anyone on Edmonton fits that bill. The East is home to the best offensive players, and if we are going to use one guy as our go to defensive guy, he needs to be better then good, he really needs to be elite. Dion played a lot of minutes last year against Crosby, Malkin, Staal, Stamkos, St. Louis, Giroux, Ovechkin, Backstrom, and Tavares. None of those players have left the conference, but now Stamkos and St. Louis was brough into our division along with Datsyuk and Zetterberg. Throw in the puck possession games of Boston and Montreal, a Healthy Spezza and Bobby Ryan, and you have got some very tough defensive mintues to play on the Leafs back end.

        I wouldn’t be comfortable moving Phaneuf out unless we got a guy that could handle those minutes better than Phaneuf, or a tandem. Those guys are hard to get. The way the East looks next year, with more teams fighting for the same 8 spots, I would like to bring in more defensive help, not move Phaneuf just for the sake of a cheaper fit. It would need to be a trade with a lot of upside, or because we were bringing in a more pure shutdown guy (possibly in a seperate trade).

        It will be hard with so many teams against the cap (Toronto included after their signings) to force anything right away, so I think we will have to go into the year with the D as is. That doesn’t mean he won’t make a move, but I think he would like to evaluate what we have a bit. We could potentially improve from within on the back end, with Grannberg and Rielly looking close to NHL ready, and Franson and Gardiner showing they can be the defensmen we saw in the playoffs, they could trade Phaneuf for potential that isn’t an immediate upgrade, but I don’t believe that Nonis would do that without getting a better look at what he has.

        • leafy says:

          There is no doubt that trading Phaneuf will leave a hole in the blueline.

          So I would hope the Leafs have a plan to get another reliable D elsewhere if they move Phaneuf. Unless Gardiner and Reilly suddenly turn into Ray Bourque and Brian Leetch in one season, which seems very unlikely.

          • nordiques100 says:

            the other thing i forgot to mention was I think Bill Watters is not a friend to Brian Burke.

            Dion of course was Burke’s golden child. Watters, hating everything Burke has a hate for Dion as well.

            I don’t think Watters being let go from doing leaf stuff on AM640 or sportsnet was performance based but more Burke getting him canned. He was quite Leaf negative at times.

            So i suggest taking Watters stuff with a grain of salt.

            • LN91 says:

              It’s not simply getting Dion out for the fun of it…It’s something called the cap, and Nonis is realizing that he has made some signings and he needs to begin managing it well from now on.

              Phaneuf is not going to be worth the type of money he will be demanding, and Nonis knows it. It’s not simply signing Phaneuf…It’s more “How am I going to re-sign Gardiner, Kadri, etc. in the future”. He gets a greater deal now, then letting him go next summer and he know’s it.

              So, as many of the articles are saying…Nonis is choosing between Kessel and Phaneuf? Who do you get rid of? If you look at the prospects, it’s Phaneuf. Toronto has great depth forward prospects, but no one that can bring Kessel’s pedigree to the team.

              In terms of Phaneuf, Toronto already has 2 D-Men (Gardiner and Reilly) that have the skill set to be far superior then anything Phaneuf could bring to the Leafs.

              So, blame the cap…Not Nonis for wanting to get rid of Phaneuf.

        • realistic_leafs_fan says:

          You’re forgetting I have Petry in the deal as well. Petry is a very good puck moving and skating D-man who plays against the other teams best in Edmonton. He plays over 20 mins a night arguably against tougher competition than Smid and can also add some offence. He is a RH shot which we could use. Petry and Smid played together a lot so we would be getting a familiar pairing. Petry is very underrated and at 6′ 3″ 200 lbs, he has decent size as well.
          For the record, I am not saying Nonis is trying to get rid of Dion, he is valuable to the Leafs, but nonis has to consider the cost of acquiring a D-man that Dion can play with effectively(cap hit as well) and the cost of re-signing Dion.
          No different than what Anaheim had to do with Ryan or Boston did with Horton. They were both valuable guys, but in Anaheim’s case they felt they could get more assets and cheaper assets with a trade, while in Boston’s case they felt they had other holes to fill(sign Rask) more than re-sign Horton.
          The Leafs have good young d-men coming up who can add offence. For $6.5 mil per, (Dion’s cap hit), the Leafs could possibly add a top 4 defensive defenceman to play with the Gardiner’s/Franson’s/Reilly’s AND a 5-6 D-man with size who plays a physical game.
          Dion brings a lot to the table in T.O. But is he the best fit with the young players coming up? That is the real question. Most people on here have said they feel Gardiner, Franson and probably Reilly are not good fits with Dion. For Dion’s cap hit, we may be able to find partners for two of three of those guys compared to spending more for a partner for Dion and maybe still not having the best partners for our young up and coming D-men.

  5. LN91 says:

    Did anyone see the Minnesota Wild signing of ‘Jonathan Blum’ and say…”Man, this franchise is starting to get it…”

    • 93killer93 says:

      For 650k I would have given him a 1-way deal and put him on the 3rd pairing. I said in a past thread, the Leafs should have signed him and Peter Mueller to cheap 1 year deals to fill out the roster. With the amount of cap we have committed we could have used a few of these low risk high reward signings.

      • mojo19 says:

        Ya, Blum and Mueller would have been good, low money gambles. Oh well.

        As for Phaneuf, we should definitely trade him to Edmonton for Smid and the Nuge. Nords back me up on this one.

        Oh and we throw in Biggs and whatever else…

        • LN91 says:

          Smid is a solid, mobile D-Men with a mean streak…He can be a ‘Marc Mehot’ to a Morgan Reilly or Jake Gardiner in the future….As Methot has done to Erik Karlsson’s game.

          • realistic_leafs_fan says:

            Love that trade Mojo. MacT will be all over it.LOL
            And you’re right LN91,Smid is underrated on here a lot.

            Suppose the trade I suggested went through…Phaneuf, Holzer for Smid, Petry. What does Toronto have

            Smid($3.5, shutdown D) Petry($1.75 puck mover, good in own end with upside)
            Gardiner($1.17 offensive puck possession game)Franson($3 big, puck mover with upside) Gunnarsson($2.2 defensive D-man)Lilies($3.875 good skating puck mover)Brennan($.6 physical defensive D-man)Fraser($1 physical defensive d-man)
            Total cap hit $16.095
            contracts due next season-Gardiner, Petry, Brennan

            Compare to status quo

            Phaneuf($6.5, solid all around D, some inconsistencies)Gunnarsson($2.2 defensive D-man)Gardiner($1.17 offensive puck possession game)Franson($3 big, puck mover with upside)Lilies($3.875 good skating puck mover)Brennan($.6 physical defensive D-man)Fraser($1 physical defensive d-man)Holzer(defensive d-man little upside)
            Total cap hit $18.132
            contracts due next season-Phaneuf, Gardiner, Brennan

            Breaking down both D`s
            with trade…Leafs have a shutdown D-man, good puck movement and possession D-men, have gotten cheaper and younger, lack some physicality and leadership on backend. Petry will cost half of Phaneuf to re-sign.

            Keep D As is…No shut-down D, a little less puck movement and possession, better physicality, experience and leadership. A little older with less upside from young D. Phaneuf will cost double Petry to re-sign. Over $2mil more at current cap hit.

            To me, and everyone has their own opinion, it is easier and less expensive to add to the first group because there is more balance and a lower cap hit to start with, as well as no BIG contracts due for likely a couple of years.

            For those who want to keep it as is, I understand the reasoning but I also see the reasoning for moving Dion for a different type(s) of D-man(men) that cost less and play a different style.

            • realistic_leafs_fan says:

              WOW! How perception changes from one teams fan’s to another’s.
              With all the Phaneuf talk to Edmonton I thought I would look up what Edmonton fans think of the idea.
              The general consensus was that they would do Schultz for Phaneuf…sorry, that’s Nick Shultz, not Justin.lol
              Most would not move Smid, J.Schultz or Petry to acquire Dion. They worry about his locker room problems reputation and his contract is too rich, especially that he is UFA at end of Season. They think he would be a good fit, but not at the cost of a Smid, J. Schultz etc.
              Most said N Schultz and maybe a pick(not high) they would do.
              One other was N. Schultz, Curtis Hamilton and Linus Omark for Dion.
              I’m not posting this to knock Dion. I just find it interesting how many Leafs fan put little value on Smid, Petry etc, yet Oiler fans do. Conversely, many Leafs fans put big value on Phaneuf and Oiler fans don’t put much value on him. Nothing like home team objectivity I guess.LOL

              • DannyLeafs says:

                Don’t get me wrong, I like Smid, I will admit I knew little about Petry before looking up some stats, which were more impressive then I would have thought.

                My issue is I don’t think either are as good defensively as Dion at this point. Edmonton was not great defensively despite the fact they played in the lowest scoring division in the league. That’s a lot of games against teams who don’t score often, so the level of offensive competition wasn’t as high as Dion faced, or more importantly will face next year.

                Like I said, I would just be weary of deals that don’t strengthen our defense immediately, unless we had a back up plan. I would rather go into the season with Dion and see where things are at the deadline then trade him for guys who might not be able to do what he does.

                I think the trade deadline we would have a better idea of what we have in guys like Franson, Gardiner maybe even Rielly, and also maximize value for trading Phaneuf.

  6. It’s 50/50 on Dion. A lot of people don’t put value on him or stats like playing against teams best players every night – when in reality that’s a hard stat to to pick apart because on many nights, teams top lines aren’t their best lines.

    Being on the outside, I don’t see Dion landing a Justin Shultz, Hopkins, or Yakupov. I’m glad all the oiler fans are talking about him being a UFA because it’s something I mentioned. He’ll be a rental for now and that takes away some value. His locker room reputation does not go unnoticed by other teams. When there’s so much talk about finding the right partner for Dion, or taking away some minutes and maybe playing against teams 2nd line – the value kinda’ drops. The goal is to trade Dion to upgrade your defense, well if he’s a very good all around player, who can you honestly expect to get back that’s going to be an upgrade, and why would teams trade a better player away for him with his cap? IMO, the way to do it is send Dion away for a package deal. Not getting the best player back, but getting valuable players back. Keeping it with the oilers – Smid, prospect, player. I don’t see it being Smid w/ J Schultz/hopkins/eberle/ or yakupov.

    • realistic_leafs_fan says:

      I totally agree with you TGWL. I was not surprised by Oiler fans reaction to the rumours, more so, how each side sees it so different. I agree with your assessment on trade value as well, which is why I said to land a big player, we have to take back Hemsky for sure. Otherwise it was Smid& Petry for Phaneuf and Holzer…although we might have to take Smyth as well. That is more reasonable value.
      Oil would have
      J Schultz Phaneuf
      Ference N Schultz
      as a top 4 which is better than the current top 4…more balanced.
      Funny thing is, No one, Leaf fans included want to pay a big price for a pending UFA…but expect big return if we trade one. Makes sense.lol

    • Steven_Leafs0 says:

      Definitely will not be getting a J.Schultz, Eberle, or one of the 1st overall picks for Phaneuf. The + we add into the deal would have to be a lot.

      That being said though, anyone who thinks trading N.Schultz for Phaneuf is a fair deal is an idiot. Phaneuf brings everything to the game you want in a top pairing d-man. And if his locker room attitude was such a problem why aren’t the Leaf fans who mostly hate the guy bitching about it everyday?

      I think Phaneuf can easily get a return similar to what Jordan Staal got. Both UFA at season’s end and both have a connection to the team that would help him re-sign there (Staal had his brother, Phaneuf is from Edmonton).

      Personally I wouldn’t take any less than:

      – Hemsky (large cap hit and a decent rental for our 3rd line or trade bait to floor teams)
      – Nurse (7th overall pick – similar to Pouliot)
      – Prospect (get the best one you can. Ask for Klefbom (no chance in hell), settle for a Marincin or Pitlick or whatever).

      Edmonton likely laughs at this offer and walks away but realistically they should consider it. Hemsky they want gone anyway and only take on 1.5M in cap, the prospect is par for the course when trading for the best player, and while Nurse is the biggest loss, Edmonton at best will hope that Nurse turns into a player that can play 20+ minutes a night (Phaneuf).

      If I wanted to dream about the best possible (realistic-ish) return for Phaneuf it would be:

      Phaneuf
      D’Amigo
      mid-level prospect or pick
      conditional pick for Phaneuf to re-sign (or make the deal conditional that Phaneuf signs an extension with the Oilers)

      for:

      Hemsky (they retain half the contract or the Leafs flip him elsewhere for cap relief to sign our RFAs)
      Smid
      Nurse

      The Leafs end up with :

      JVR – Bozak – Kessel
      Lupul – Kadri – Clarkson
      Kulemin – Bolland – Hemsky
      McLaren – McClement – Orr
      Colborne

      Smid – Gardiner
      Franson – Gunnarsson
      Fraser – Liles
      Holzer
      Rielly?? (earns a spot to allow us to trade Liles or Juniors)

      Oilers:

      Hall – RNH – Eberle
      Perron – Gagner – Yakupov
      Smyth – Gordon – Jones
      Eager – Lander – Brown

      Phaneuf – Petry
      Ference – JSchultz
      NSchultz – Belov
      Klefbom?

      Looks pretty good to me. Maybe I’m reaching with the deal from an Oilers perspective but I wouldn’t take a group of maybes and futures for Phaneuf. I would much rather re-sign him at 6-7M, trade Liles and someone else and play our youth in the 6/7/8 slots.

      What do you guys think?

      • realistic_leafs_fan says:

        No, N. Schultz and a mid prospect/2nd or worse pick for Phaneuf is not fair.lol
        I don’t think the Leafs take Hemsky unless it’s a definite win, so your second suggestion looks like something Nonis might due…but I doubt MAcT would.
        Phaneuf and Holzer may not be enough to land Smid and Petry, but if it was Phaneuf, Percy for Smid, Petry and Smyth might be. Edmonton’s big thing is not taking on more salary. With Gagner still unsigned and not a lot of cap room, they really need Hemsky gone though.
        Toronto doesn’t want to take on contract either, they would like to shed (ie Liles). It is tough to figure out a trade that benefits both teams and fulfills cap requirements.
        Plus, I don’t think picks and prospects are what MacT is after unless it`s in exchange for taking a contract they don`t want. So the prospects and picks parts are not big to MacT IMO.

      • toronto77 says:

        I do bitch about Phaneuf everyday, just tired of repeating myself.

        With Nurse’s age compared to Phaneuf they can’t make this deal.

        This team is nowhere near competing for the cup, so why trade for Phaneuf now?

        This deal for the oilers would be like the Kessel deal for the leafs, in the sense that they made the Kessel deal too early into their rebuild. This is not the right time for the Oilers to make a deal like that for Phaneuf.

        I can maybe see the oilers offering one of erberle or gagne and some 1st and 2nd round draft picks for Phaneuf, but Hall, RNH, Yakupov, Nurse and maybe Schultz are untouchable.

        • Steven_Leafs0 says:

          I understand the argument about Kessel there but lets say we don’t pick up Kessel then, there is not a single Kessel level player available this season and if I’m remembering right, there hasn’t been anyone of his caliber available since. Bobby Ryan being the closest I can think of.

          Anyway my point is when a big player becomes available you don’t say “I’d rather wait 2 years to trade for a Phaneuf”. Edmonton isn’t at the start of their build either. Their top 6 is 100% ready, they have a goalie who could pull off a season like Crawford did (in theory), they are just lacking NHL ready, top end defense.

          That being said I do agree that Edmonton shouldn’t give up Nurse + Smid for Phaneuf, I just think if the Leafs are going to trade Dion, they have to either get overpaid with top name players/prospects or throw in a piece or 2 and get a huge upgrade.

          • toronto77 says:

            Also, when the leafs traded for Kessel he was like 21 or 22. Phaneuf would be around 28 or 29. I guess that would be ok, similar to the leafs acquiring 29 yr old Clarkson.

            Just saying that trading Nurse would be stupid for Edmonton.

            I don’t think their top 6 is 100% ready yet., maybe their top 3 is.

            I agree if the leafs trade Dion, they should ask for some sort of top name prospects. Problem is… Edmonton has nothing Toronto needs.

            The leafs don’t need Schultz with Gardiner and Rielly in the system, and the rest of Edmonton’s defence is no different than what the leafs can promote in their system.

            Other than Hall and Eberle, the rest of their forwards would not perform great in Carlyle’s system.

            So keeping it short, I hope the leafs do not trade Phaneuf to Edmonton, they have nothing we need!

            • leafs_wallace93 says:

              Schultz is pretty overrated. If Mac T wants Phaneuf then you make him pay. Trading Phaneuf should treated like Kaberle was, you wait for a GM that thinks they have a gem (debates about Dion aside), you don’t trade Dion to a GM that is lukewarm for him, you trade him to the guy that thinks Phaneuf is the piece needed to take their team to the next level.

              Patience and really Nonis doesn’t need to trade Phanuef.

  7. DannyLeafs says:

    Thisgamewelose basically hit my rationale for not shopping Phaneuf right now right on the head. The reason many Leafs fans are over valuing Phaneuf right now, is because we need him more than most of the teams we would be trading him to.

    The Leafs just made the playoffs, and right now you can argue that there isn’t one part of their team that shouldn’t be at least marginally better (assuming all the d-men get reisgned) then it was last year. I really feel the Leafs would be taking a huge step back if they missed the playoffs next year, so without getting guys who can play those hard minutes at least as well as Dion back in a trade, we can’t move him.

    There’s the problem. The list of better defenders than Dion is not long, the list of better defenders then Dion who would be available to us by trading Dion is pretty much non-existent. So as I said, I would be all for upgrading on Dion, but the truth is he is in a rare position. He isn’t nearly the perfect shut down guy, but better shut down guys are not really available. Throw in a falling cap and Dion’s 6.5 million salary and there isn’t much we can do right now.

    I think we would be better off going into the season as is (or see if we can swap Liles with a more pure shutdown guy making similar money on a team that could use a puck carrier). We could go into the season and gauge how much of a step forward our younger guys take. At the deadline it won’t be nearly as hard to move Phaneuf, the Leafs will know where they stand in terms of getting a deal done at a reasonable price, they will have a better idea of how our team could do without him, and with any luck maybe we would be in a good enough position that we could gamble on moving him for anything at all and not be as concerned about replacing him with a good defensive defensemen immediately.

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