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Trade Deadline Reflections

March 5, 2009

Well, now that we’ve all calmed down after the rush that is NHL trade deadline day, it’s a good time to sit back and reflect on what happened yesterday.

– Ales Kotalik was shipped to Edmonton for a 2nd round draft pick. While the team will miss Kotalik’s mad blasts from the point and wicked backhands during the skills competitions, he probably wasn’t going to be re-signed at the end of the year and so better to send him somewhere and get something for him.

– Tellqvist was acquired by the Sabres in exchange for another draft pick. Everyone needs to take a step back and realize this isn’t a sign that Ryan Miller’s injury is more severe than first thought. It just means the team needed to bring in some goalie depth, a proven veteran to spell Lalime on occasion. (And according to Miller himself, he’s still keeping active while on the DL. I do appreciate that he calls himself a wimp when it comes to tattoos. I’ll make no bones about joining him in that boat. The needles thing is what does me in.) Let’s give Tellqvist a chance before we automatically throw him and the team off the SS Playoff Chance.

– Dominic Moore was acquired from Toronto for a 2nd round draft pick. From what I know of Moore, his style seems like it would fit in with the Sabres, a mix of mucking and grinding and solid dependable play. While he may only be a rental player, let’s give him a chance before we write him off as gone at the end of the season.

– And in probably the most shocking news of the day, the Sabres signed Tim Connolly to a 2-year, $9 million contract extension. It wasn’t the fact that he was re-signed that was the most shocking, it was the dollar amount and length of the deal that caused many an eyebrow to be raised. Most people – yours truly included – thought that Timmy would be signed to a one year deal at a pretty significant discount. The fact that he was given a raise despite playing less than half of the games in his current contract. Darcy has to know something we don’t or Timmy has to have pictures of LQ at the company Christmas party with a lampshade on his head, that’s the only reason for such a wacky deal. Right? I wish Timmy nothing but the best, and pray that he remains healthy for the next two-and-a-half years.

– It will be interesting to see whether Calgary implodes with the addition of Olli Jokinen to its roster. General perception around teh internets is that Jokinen is a locker room cancer. It seems that Calgary is also slightly distressed that Lombardi was sent packing in this deal as well. If the room is already tempestous, how will adding such a volitile player affect the chemistry of the team?

– Just what Philly needs: two more rock-em, sock-em robots in McLaren and Carcillo. And it looks like that Marty to Buffalo rumor didn’t quite come true. Guess we’ll all have to look elsewhere for quotable material.

– I hope that the news that Kotalik is playing with Hemsky and Horcoff results in an uptick in production for all three. I would be quite distressed if Hemsky’s production suffered, as he is one of the leading producers for The Little Honkers. Yes, it is all about me, why do you ask?

– And in other news, sounds like Vanek is in the market for a new road roomie, as Kotalik was his roomie for the past three years. I wonder if Lindy will slot one of the new guys in, or break up an existing combination? And in other roomie news, while at Barnes & Noble last night, I was reading The Hockey News and Andrew Peters mentioned that Kaleta is his road roomie. Peters likes Kaleta since Kaleta lets him control the remote.  Heh. Would you want to go up against Peters over the remote control? I don’t think so.

– Last night’s game against the Habs was beautiful to watch. Gaustad set the tone early with his crushing hit. The team responded and took shots, and charged the net. Gaustad’s excellent tip of Rivet’s shot and his breakaway goal definitely put him as the second star of the game in my book. First star was Lalime for obvious reasons. Sure, he pulled a Miller and let in a goal with less than a minute remaining in the game to give up the shutout, but he was solid as solid could be for the entire game.

– I liked that the broadcast pointed out Rivet’s absolute happiness with Danny Paille during one of the goal celebrations. Joy like that for a teammate is something nice to see every now and then.

– Sometimes I think that Harry Neale exists solely in the broadcast to announce inane trivia like “on the second Tuesday of each month during the full moon, Patrick Lalime has let in two goals against the Montreal Canadians when playing at HSBC Arena.” Alright, so that’s slightly exaggerated, but you get my point. Harry tries to be a font of knowledge, but sometimes it’s not inserted at the right moment of the broadcast.

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