Its all good. Nah. Just sarcastic humor to get through this rough stretch I see ahead of us. All kidding aside, I really am worried that Lou will bring back Gionta and he's a bit in denial about how badly this team needs a facelift. I'm not saying "blow it up". But they need a youth movement infused with better quality talent and our drafting for the past several years hasn't been all that impressive. I would be very upset if Schneider left after next year (due to all the Marty drama and looking over his shoulder) because we had Nikushkin there for the taking. Oh well...it's history. Hopefully MB bows out gracefully after this season and we start putting a strong team around Scneider.
The Devils weren't taking Nichushkin (I believe Conte said so somewhere), and while the next 2 years are going to be great for Dallas, after year 3, Nichushkin gets to name his price. The problem with Russian players isn't that they can leave (although that's no good), it's that they have another league where they can dictate their price. They cost more than other players, and that's problematic. I'd be very wary of drafting Russians high in the draft as a result - if Val likes Dallas, great, they get a good price. If he's not that happy there, they get a bad price. We already saw Kovalchuk do this with Atlanta - he nabbed a huge contract from them coming out of the lockout.
I'm not sure if NJ's under 25 D have ever been better than they are right now. They've drafted a lot of great forwards in their history - Shanahan's a HOFer, Elias should be but won't be, Parise's got an outside shot at it, Guerin, Muller, Rolston, Sykora were all very good players for a long time, etc. - but their D drafting historically is good, not great - it's Niedermayer and a lot of defensive D types. Gelinas, Merrill, Larsson, Severson - none of them may be a star, but all should be NHL players, and then you've got Scarlett and Santini who might be NHLers too.
I don't know why it's terrifying that Gionta might come back. He's a 3rd line player at this point and will be compensated as such. He'll get 2 years/7 million or thereabouts and should be counted on for 15 goals and 15 assists and good defensive play.
Edited by Triumph, 31 May 2014 - 02:15 PM.