Friday, August 6, 2010

Off-season winners and losers - 2010

Unlike Kyle Wellwood, the road was signed.
August is traditionally the dead zone on the NHL's calendar, and this year seems to be no different. While we're still weeks away from the start of training camps, it's fair to say the most of the off-season action is long gone.

That makes this a good time for some reflection. With the draft complete, several trades in the books and most of the major free agents signed, the league's teams have had plenty of opportunities to reshape their rosters. And as always, some did a better job than others.

Let's take a look back at some of the NHL's biggest winners and losers from this summer.


New York Rangers - Their annual "free agent signing which everyone agrees was the most outrageously over-priced mistake of the summer" ended up being a lot cheaper than usual this year.

Calgary Flames - Signed free agent Olli Jokinen, finally filling the "over-paid third line center" void created by the deadline day trading of Olli Jokinen.

Washington Capitals - Moved quickly to address the biggest reason for last year's crushing post-season disappointment by somehow convincing the Montreal Canadiens to trade Jaroslav Halak to the Western conference.

Atlanta Thrashers - Acquired several players from Chicago's Stanley Cup-winning roster, ensuring that for the first time in sports history a Google search for "Atlanta" and "Hawks" and "championship" will not yield zero results.

Buffalo Sabres - Didn't allow trivial distractions such as trades or free agency signings to sidetrack them from what was really important: Calling Ryan Miller every day to ask "Just checking, but you're still our starting goalie, right?"

Ottawa Senators - Announced the hiring of 51-year old Rick Wamsley as goaltending coach, immediately making him the best goalie in franchise history.

Columbus Blue Jackets - Acquired winger Ethan Moreau who, as a former Edmonton Oilers captain, will no doubt provide his new teammates with invaluable feedback on what not to do.

Detroit Red Wings - Boosted their offensive depth chart with the signing of free agent center Mike Modano, who is presumably the son of that guy who was really good for the Minnesota North Stars back in the early 90s.


New Jersey Devils - Foolishly based entire free agency strategy on the assumption that the specific terms of the CBA would be adhered to.

Toronto Maple Leafs - Their savvy acquisition of Brett Ledba to fill the role of seventh defenseman was offset somewhat by the fact that their first-line center on opening night will also be Brett Lebda.

Chicago Blackhawks - Were forced to part ways with nine regulars due to the salary cap, and now face the daunting task of somehow defending their championship with only Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith, Patrick Kane, Marion Hossa, Patrick Sharp, Brent Seabrook and a half-dozen other stars.

Florida Panthers - Despite best efforts, have likely not done enough to satisfy the expectations of their die-hard fan.

Vancouver Canucks - Lost backup goaltender Andrew Raycroft to free agency but have yet to find a replacement equally skilled at stopping NHL shooters, such as a wet sheet of paper mache.

Los Angeles Kings - In hindsight, attempt to boost employee morale by giving entire front office staff the summer off may have been a mistake.

Boston Bruins - Short-sightedly drafted future franchise player Tyler Seguin with the top two pick acquired from Toronto, leaving virtually no room on roster for franchise players available with Toronto's top two pick in 2011.


  1. You better watch out DGB, I could get used to this multiple posts per week thing.

    And nice work as usual

  2. Loved it! Brett Lebda line had me cracking up, and the Flames one was great too.

  3. Wet sheet of paper mache = loud snort drawing the attention of office staff.

    Totally agree with Kary. Love that the new gig is giving us even more DGB goodness!

  4. Um..I don't think washington had anythign to do with Montreal trading Halak....

  5. I first read the picture caption, scrolled to the bottom and gave this post 5 stars. Went back and read the post. The whole post was great, The Modano comment was a Beauty!

  6. OOOhh! This is a HUMOUR site! NOW I understand...please disregard my comment from 9:52 AM.
    Sometimes I'm such a blonde.
    HEE HEE!

  7. Two blogs in and I think your work is absolutely hilarious!!!

    The Capitals' one was my favorite!

  8. Hey, I'm no hockey analyst ... but I highly doubt Washington convinced Gauthier to move Halak.

  9. Wait. No. I get it now.
    My comment at 10:29 was before I put my brain in.

    It's supposed to be funny! Wow what an accomplishment. I have to go now and finish my parents' laundry....

  10. How DO the humour-impaired manage to read an entire DGB post and still come away with the idea it's a serious take on hockey?

    Wait - I answered my own question.

    Still no Wellwood jokes. Hmmph.

  11. Awesome again Sean. Lovin' the multiple posts per week. Keep it up (even if it brings in new readers who don't get the jokes...I'm looking at you-Anonymously stupid).

  12. It's sad how true the Rangers comment is. We all know Boogaard's salary and term were extensive, but after what's happened in past summers, Rangers fans will take it.

    Good stuff.

  13. i think the anymous comments are making fun of yesterdays anonymous post.


    I hope atleast.

  14. I'd like to agree with you elseldo, but I really don't think you're right....

  15. Okay, I'm confused - now that I have to support you on TWO sites does that mean I have to leave comments on both as well? (or can I just alternate the site I read each post on and send you a cheque for a penny a click that I missed at the end of the year?)

    ...and somebody needs to tell the Post not to mess with your pics and captions - how can they bring you on board without recognizing the hidden gems in the captions???

    (oh yeah, and I'm with anonymous x2 - there's no way the Caps influenced the Halak deal - please, please help me to understand the joke here ;)

  16. Needs more Wellwood.

    Scratch that, there's too damn much Wellwood.

    Need to get you on another Puckcast, hoss.

  17. So at this point I'm pretty sure you have to be calling Marian Hossa 'Marion' on purpose. It's happened way too many times for it to be otherwise.

    Also, is Bloge dead?

  18. excellent work... for a leafs blogger. great as always!

  19. dgb your winners and losers were so off mark i wonder whether you've actually even watched an nhl game before. Calgary Flames being winners because of signing Olli Jokinen, are you out of your mind I've never seen such an underperformer that was acted as the Black Plague in that organization. The Vancouver Canucks being losers because they "haven't secured a backup", this really solidified my thoughts that you clearly know nothing of hockey and the NHL. They have Corey Schneider the best young goalie in the AHL not to mention one of the top goalies in the league in Roberto Luongo. How about the acquisitons in Ballard, Hamhuis and Malholtra. The next time you put a list like this together spend more than 15 minutes on it.

  20. Oh jesus...Patrick, go back and read the last...I dunno..month or so of posts. If you don't get it yet, email me and I'll explain it to you

  21. This is hilarious, one of your best DGB.

  22. At this point I'm coming here half for the post, half for the clueless comments. QUALITY.

  23. Patrick, you might be legally retarded.

  24. Sorry guys.
    My mistake. I was searching for another kind of "brown" and came here. I thought this was a Duck Paddy blog where I should take everything I read as serious. Please don't hurt me.....
    //"HEY! Get out of my house!
    Hey what are you doing? Put that dow...sdrgsagfffffffffffffffffffffffffffffff"

  25. This was by far one of the best I have read in a while, very very funny. I woke up the roommates with a big laugh. Ov's definitely breathing a little easier, Ha Ha, Great stuff!

  26. Dear DGB,

    You must now, apparently, put a flashing red banner at the top of your site for the comedy- impaired, "WARNING: This is a HUMOR blog. You nimrods."

    Once again, mining the league for comedy gold.

    And so, so true about the Rangers. I thought they'd at least snag Gonchar or Guerin if they were going for over-the-hill.

  27. Patrick's comment was almost as funny as the post itself.

  28. wow how can you mis this being a humor blog??
    buncha maroons.
    lol on hte jokinen

    and props for remembering madono going to the wings!!!

  29. I'd have to argue that comment about Wamsley being Ottawa's best goalie. Have we all forgotten the tie that was used when Emery was kicked off the ice?

  30. How the hell do you read that whole post and just have a problem with Jokinen and the Canucks if reading for seriousness. Sad, sad people

  31. I know you can do better than this, DGB.

  32. Will this list be revised if Kovy's contract is upheld?

  33. Swedish club Färjestad turned down the opportunity to sign Vesa Toskala, but due to the fact that he would cause the club to go over budget. In reality the reason should have been that they actually want to win games instead of losing them due to Toskalas absolute inability to keep anyting the same size, weight and color as a puck.

  34. Hot damn, this was amazing; I probably should stop reading your site late and night, cause I'm probably causing the rest of the house to wake up due to my laughter

  35. Rick Wamsley as Senators' goalie coach.

    If he ever shows a video of his career performances, I hope he doesn't show the goal he allowed as a Habs when he tried to stop the puck with, you know, his legs "behind" the goal line (Canadiens vs Nordiques, game 5, Adams division 1/2 finals, 1982). The Nords surprised the Habs big time with that series winning goal.