Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 06/26/12 at 11:55 AM ET
from Dan Rosen of NHL.com,
The next couple of weeks could be extraordinary as GMs look to reshape their rosters. There are no definitive answers yet, but there are plenty of lingering questions how this will play out and what the ramifications of each move will be. Here are 12 biggies, because, well it’s 2012 and the number 12 makes sense:
12. Will a team gamble on Alexander Semin and his extraordinary, yet sometimes masked, talent?
He’s arguably the most skilled forward who will hit the open market Sunday, but Semin also comes with a lot of baggage, including his penchant for failing to show up in the big games. For example, Semin is averaging 0.42 goals per game in the regular season but 0.29 per game in the postseason. He is averaging 0.87 points per game in the regular season, but 0.67 in the playoffs.
The Capitals paid Semin $7 million on a one-year deal in 2011-12 and he answered with his worst season of his six-year career with 21 goals and 54 points in 77 games. He had 54 points in 2010-11 as well, but at least that was in 65 games. However, there are teams in need of offense (the Rangers?) that might bank on Semin becoming a 40-goal scorer again.
10. What happens if the Devils don’t re-sign Parise?
This is a loaded question with no definitive answer because they’d have to sift through the rubble before executing a Plan B. Parise is the Devils’ first priority and only priority. He’s the captain of the team, the face of the franchise, and the first-line left wing. He is so important that after years at left wing, Ilya Kovalchuk moved to right wing last season—and he did so willingly because he knows how good and important Parise is.
The Devils could look at the free agent market if Parise leaves, but they would not recoup their losses there because no one else on the market is like Parise. They could try to use the money they would have spent on Parise and get Ryan or Nash, but they’d have to give up a lot to get them as opposed to only giving up money to keep Parise. It would be a crushing blow if Parise leaves.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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