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The Malik Report

Do You Want Joe Thornton?

via Mike Stone of CBSDetroit,

According to Pierre Lebrun of TSN’s hockey insiders the Red Wings are among the teams that have called the San Jose Sharks about the possibility of acquiring Joe Thornton.

He will be 35 next month and is due to make $6.75 million for each of the next three seasons.

I would only be interested in him if the Wings did not have to give away any of their young talent. He is coming off an 11 goal season, and his goals per game was 0.13 which is the third straight season it has dropped. In fairness his assists per game of .079 was the highest since the 2009-2010 season.

Thornton would definitely help this team, but I do not think he is worth the price in both salary and what the Wings would have to give up to get him.

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Comments

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You have to think that if the Wings are making a play for Thornton that a center would be involved. Weiss, Kindl and this year’s first round pick?

Posted by imagolddinosaur on 06/20/14 at 10:35 AM ET

WingedRider's avatar

NEVER ever!! Joe Blows

Posted by WingedRider from Saskatoon, SK on 06/20/14 at 10:36 AM ET

SK77's avatar

You have to think that if the Wings are making a play for Thornton that a center would be involved. Weiss, Kindl and this year’s first round pick?

Posted by MotorCityHoff on 06/20/14 at 11:35 AM ET

Hey, Doug? It’s me, Kenny. I hear you’ve got a lot of pressure to win now, so I was calling to offer you: a significant downgrade at centre, a solid #1/2 defenseman ... for Worcester, and a #15 pick in a weak draft.

Hello? Doug? Are you there?

Posted by SK77 on 06/20/14 at 10:49 AM ET

Lenny's avatar

I would prefer Marleau but neither will end up in Red and White.

Posted by Lenny on 06/20/14 at 10:49 AM ET

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Ok, the idea of a trade for Thornton without giving up ANY young talent is ridiculous.  It’s a non-starter.  And Weiss?  Not in a million years.

If a trade could be made using, for example, Smith and/or Tatar—guys with value and upside, but maybe not all-stars-to-be—rather than Mantha, the 1st, Nyquist, etc.—I think it would be worth considering.  Just considering—the details would be very important.  But the concept of a second line with Franzen-Thornton-Nyquist is intriguing.

I agree with Lenny that I’d rather have Marleau, though.

Posted by captaineclectic on 06/20/14 at 11:08 AM ET

WingFanFormerlyInLA's avatar

Ok, the idea of a trade for Thornton without giving up ANY young talent is ridiculous.  It’s a non-starter.  And Weiss?  Not in a million years.

If a trade could be made using, for example, Smith and/or Tatar—guys with value and upside, but maybe not all-stars-to-be—rather than Mantha, the 1st, Nyquist, etc.—I think it would be worth considering.  Just considering—the details would be very important.  But the concept of a second line with Franzen-Thornton-Nyquist is intriguing.

I agree with Lenny that I’d rather have Marleau, though.

You would give up Tatar or Smith instead of our first round pick?  Wow…..

I wouldn’t give up any of those for Thornton for the record.

Posted by WingFanFormerlyInLA on 06/20/14 at 11:27 AM ET

Mistercristo's avatar

Due diligence.  Nothing more, nothing less.

*Goes to basement to pray to Jobu*

Posted by Mistercristo from Cameron Frye's garage, circa 1987 on 06/20/14 at 11:31 AM ET

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Unless Thornton is reinventing himself as a top pair defenceman I don’t have a clue as to why Holland would even be “kicking the tires” on him. Plus he’s a natural born loser.

Posted by godblender on 06/20/14 at 11:44 AM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Making this trade should get one GM or the other fired. I’d hope that it would be Doug Wilson.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 06/20/14 at 11:47 AM ET

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Brendan Smith is 25 and so unreliable defensively that we tried him at one point as a forward, and for whatever reason he has not begun to produce offensively at his minor league pace and is not trusted on the power play.  He is at best our #4, and the chief goal of this offseason is to push him down to #5. 

Tomas Tatar is a good player with considerable upside, but right now he is an undersized middle-six winger with presumed 25 goal skills.  He is at best our 5th best forward and seems to be replaceable from within. 

I like both of these players a lot.  But to get value you have to give value.  I’d have those conversations before losing the highest draft pick we’ve had since LaPointe was taken, yes.

Posted by captaineclectic on 06/20/14 at 11:48 AM ET

Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit's avatar

Do You Want Joe Thornton?


Do you want herpes? wink

Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 06/20/14 at 12:04 PM ET

WingFanFormerlyInLA's avatar

Captaineclectic, I’d discuss your post but we are at very opposite viewpoints I doubt there is much point.

Smith was played in the top pairing, and was regularly a top 4 dman this season.  He’s only flipping 25 and has shown a lot of potential.  Yes he has gaffs but he has the potential to be a PP QB as well as a good offensive defenseman.  He was played at forward due to injuries, not because he sucked more than Lashoff or Kindl.

Tatar is a top 6 forward for us, and as you say, shows 25 goal potential.  You want to trade him for an aging vet, who is trending down, AND has a huge salary? 

I’d never trade either of those guys for Thornton.  I don’t consider them untouchable and would be willing to move them for someone of value, but that isn’t Thornton. 

At least we agree that we wouldn’t trade our first for him….

Posted by WingFanFormerlyInLA on 06/20/14 at 12:18 PM ET

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I have to agree here…with the previous posters. The red wings seem like we are in a never ending search to roll 4 lines so we keep looking for an amazing Center. However, we got fu-ked with the Weiss deal. Who knows.. maybe he has a good year? WE CANNOT trade away our youth for Joe. Only way I’d make a Tartar/franzen trade is for someone like Shea Weber who is a proven #1 def that can shut down opponents and even add to the score sheet. One of the best D in the league if not THE best. so… Joe? Hell no. I do not see us getting better as a team if we trade anything of value to SJ for Joeblow.

Posted by Pasha1277 on 06/20/14 at 12:34 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

I don’t see why you’d retire one iteration of Todd Bertuzzi to have a second one at greater cost.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 06/20/14 at 12:51 PM ET

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NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!  leave that cursed overrated loser in San Jose where he belongs!!!

Posted by Bay Area Wings fan on 06/20/14 at 01:14 PM ET

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So much stupidity in some of these comments, I’m just waiting for someone to suggest Keith Yandle and Shane Doan are the only hope for the Wings.

Posted by Bay Area Wings fan on 06/20/14 at 01:16 PM ET

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Joe Thornton is a very good hockey player. But for what he’d cost, asset-wise and cap-wise, I don’t think he’s the style of player we need.. I imagine that a second line of Jurco-Thornton-Tatar would make those guys rich though.

Posted by Captain Bob on 06/20/14 at 01:34 PM ET

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I don’t see why you’d retire one iteration of Todd Bertuzzi to have a second one at greater cost.

If Todd Bertuzzi scored 76 points last year he’d be back.

Having said that, I don’t want them bringing it 35 or over players on multi-year contracts.

Posted by Garth on 06/20/14 at 01:46 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

If Todd Bertuzzi scored 76 points last year he’d be back.

Having said that, I don’t want them bringing it 35 or over players on multi-year contracts.

Posted by Garth on 06/20/14 at 02:46 PM ET

Fair point, obviously Joe has more gas in the tank and some better production.  But Joe’s gonna be getting up there soon.  It isn’t a giant stretch to imagine him as a continuation of the “Ken Holland retread”  tradition we’ve all come to know and love.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 06/20/14 at 01:59 PM ET

Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit's avatar

Having said that, I don’t want them bringing it 35 or over players on multi-year contracts.

Posted by Garth on 06/20/14 at 02:46 PM ET


For sure no multi-year deals.I don’t like the idea of bringing in over 35 players, period. I know that is a very narrow view. There are a few older players that are capable, bring experience, and actually still have something left in the tank. But the bulk of them are running on fumes. The game is much faster and the older players just cannot keep pace.

It is a young man’s game. In spite of what is being bandied about.

Lets Go Red Wings!!!!!

Posted by Kate from Pa.-made in Detroit on 06/20/14 at 02:12 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

For clarification sake (not for Thornton’s defense and not for assumption’s sake), by virtue of him being born two days after the cut-off date, Joe Thornton isn’t on a 35+ contract, so him retiring out from under it wouldn’t cause his hit to stay on the team’s cap and him being sent to the minors would allow for more than $100K in cap relief (although not enough to make sending him to the minors anything but a nightmare considering how many things would have had to have gone wrong for that to happen).

He’s still old and on the decline of his career, which still makes a trade for him the kind that I’d have to see be an absolute steal to be worth it, but hey, at least he could retire early and we wouldn’t get screwed!

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 06/20/14 at 03:15 PM ET

@TheJimP19's avatar

Brendan Smith was used at forward last season due to injuries in the lineup.

Posted by @TheJimP19 from transplanted in Nashville on 06/20/14 at 04:21 PM ET

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I think you guys would be surprised how little Detroit would likely have to give up for Thornton.  Yes, he’s signed for a few more years but given his age, his contract length, his salary and that the Sharks are looking to rebuild, I don’t think we’re talking about a blockbuster kind of move.

A #1 and a prospect for sure, and I think Detroit might have an opportunity to move Kindl out as a salary dump depending on the prospect they’re willing to give up.  That’s about it, though.

Not for nothing, but I’d imagine Legwand (or at least his negotiating rights) might be a throw in here too.  He could fit in SJ.

Holy cow, this doesn’t say good things about what the organization thinks they’re going to get from Weiss, though.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 06/20/14 at 05:07 PM ET

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So #1 (this year?) + Propsect (who? Pulkkinen) + Kindl.

If I’m SJ, I’m talking to Vancouver about Kesler or Ottawa about Spezza.

Posted by Captain Bob on 06/20/14 at 05:39 PM ET

henrymalredo's avatar

The Wings have more pressing needs then Thornton (a top pairing defenseman and possibly a scoring winger), but if the Wings don’t have to give up a king’s ransom and find someone to pick up Stephen Weiss, it would significantly improve their offense.  This isn’t a Todd Bertuzzi or Michael Samuellson, this is Joe Thornton.  He’s consistent, he stays healthy, he’s big.  Obviously, with his age, he is in decline, but a guy with his talent is gonna decline that much from 76 pts a season at age 35.  Even with his advanced age and bigger contract, I think he’d be a significant upgrade over Weiss for the next three years.  I think it’s unlikely that he ends up in Detroit (some team will pay more), I wouldn’t mind seeing him here under the right conditions.

Posted by henrymalredo from Lansing on 06/20/14 at 05:44 PM ET

Surfer Ken's avatar

I said it 10 years ago and I’ll say it again, no team will ever win a Stanley Cup with Thorton on their roaster.  He has no heart.  Why did Boston trade him?  They knew it and it sounds like San Jose is finally realizing it.

Posted by Surfer Ken from San Clemente on 06/20/14 at 06:35 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

Sure, I’ll take Jumbo Joe.  One of the best passers in the game, big body, and strong leadership skills.  If he can help us win, I say pull the trigger.

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 06/20/14 at 07:54 PM ET

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Forget about the cost for a second, but who is he going to pass the puck to on our team? We already have one great pass first center in Dats who is without a winger/shooter since Hossa left. So now we will have 2 great passers with nobody to pass the puck to?

JT is a good player, always kills us when we play, but his talent will be wasted here without a shooter to compliment him.

 

Posted by VPalmer on 06/20/14 at 08:04 PM ET

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Forget about the cost for a second, but who is he going to pass the puck to on our team? We already have one great pass first center in Dats who is without a winger/shooter since Hossa left. So now we will have 2 great passers with nobody to pass the puck to?

Zetterberg, Tatar, Jurco, Nyquist

Posted by Captain Bob on 06/20/14 at 08:26 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

  Forget about the cost for a second, but who is he going to pass the puck to on our team? We already have one great pass first center in Dats who is without a winger/shooter since Hossa left. So now we will have 2 great passers with nobody to pass the puck to?

Zetterberg, Tatar, Jurco, Nyquist

Mantha grin

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 06/20/14 at 08:28 PM ET

tuxedoTshirt's avatar

If you can get a hall of famer to bump up the PP% for the price of Franzen and a 1st, or even Sheahan and a 1st (throw in Andersson or Abby maybe)....that sounds like a pretty good deal.  It’s only a 3 year deal and I’m sure he’s got that much left.

Posted by tuxedoTshirt from the Home of the 1937 World Champions on 06/20/14 at 09:16 PM ET

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Zetterberg, Tatar, Jurco, Nyquist

They want Z to play with Dats (although I would play him with Franzen and Nyquist). Tatar might be very well part of the deal. Jurco will be in GR (just because he can and that’s the way KH operates). Nyquist is not a pure shooter to me. Like Franzen he is more effective carrying the puck imo.
If we can move Weiss (and we cannot), I would take JT for him no matter who he plays with, but the way our team is constituted now, the need for a #2 dman and a pure scorer is more urgent. So, if we are talking old Shark players, Marleau is a better fit for our team imo.

Posted by VPalmer on 06/20/14 at 09:16 PM ET

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If you can get a hall of famer to bump up the PP% for the price of Franzen and a 1st

Yes, but no way Sharks are taking Franzen back if they trade JT. Spezza and Kessler are something they should target.

Posted by VPalmer on 06/20/14 at 09:18 PM ET

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If I’m SJ, I’m talking to Vancouver about Kesler or Ottawa about Spezza.

Again, SJ is rebuilding.  If they wanted a 5-6+ mil a year offensive player… they’d just keep Thornton and have done with it.  Kesler and Spezza are, in my opinion, similar question marks as Thornton is overall.

As far as having goalscorers go, Detroit’s got enough to make having a pass-first center useful… and they desperately need a pass first center for their 2nd PP unit.

These were the things Weiss was supposed to provide.  Hopefully next year is a different story for him.

Posted by HockeyinHD on 06/21/14 at 09:46 AM ET

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You might be right, but we just do not know what exactly Sharks want in return for JT.
At least Spezza and Kesler are 5-6 years younger and all 3 guys might need a change of scenery.
As to Weiss, I think he was brought with the expectations to score about 20 goals, get about 30 assists and play strong 200 feet game.
JT scored 11 goals last year. He is pass first, pass second, pass third guy. IMO he is just not on top of the least of our priorities this summer.

Posted by VPalmer on 06/21/14 at 10:21 AM ET

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List of our priorities, not least, sorry.

Posted by VPalmer on 06/21/14 at 10:22 AM ET

Rumbear's avatar

Do You Want Joe Thornton?

Hell NO!.  Next question?

 


LGRW !!!!!

Posted by Rumbear from Top O the Hasek, with 3 fingers of rum & a cigar.. on 06/21/14 at 10:57 AM ET

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I don’t think the wings would make that trade. Everyone has pointed out the short comings and it makes a lot of sense. Legs would probably be a better addition - a hometown guy, good two way center capable of playing on multiple lines and would likely be cheaper than Joe.

As for The Couv, I doubt that’s a real trade for them even though its a positive move for SJ. Those two teams seem to be in similar situations - rebuilding. Taking on an older player giving up a younger, and arguabley better, to a rival is not a smart move in my opinion - unless they get a lot more than Joe.

SJ would probably have an easier time getting Spazzy but would that really be a better situation. HD has sai time and again players over 30 are in decline mode. Jason was never as good as Joe so he’s a down grade even if they get two more years out of him.

What is SJ’s long term plans? Who are they building around?

Posted by howeandhowe from Seattle on 06/21/14 at 01:11 PM ET

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Again, SJ is rebuilding.  If they wanted a 5-6+ mil a year offensive player… they’d just keep Thornton and have done with it.  Kesler and Spezza are, in my opinion, similar question marks as Thornton is overall.

They’re not doing a full rebuild. They want to change things up.
Whether or not they think they need a center to replace Thornton is one thing. But I don’t think SJ is planning to dump everyone and start from scratch

Posted by Captain Bob on 06/21/14 at 05:12 PM ET

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Neither Vancouver nor Ottawa want to trade Kesler or Spezza, respectively, for an aging Joe Thornton. These teams want YOUNG talent, not Joe Thornton.

Posted by VitoLambruski on 06/23/14 at 09:07 AM ET

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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.