Once again, our Agent Insider has taken some time from his busy schedule to answer all things NHL for us, including some trade possibilities, the business side of the game, and a few predictions about the future. So, without further ado, lets get to it.
1. The Carolina Hurricanes currently leading the Southeast division, and Cam Ward recently ruled out for 6-8 weeks, logic would tell us they would make a move to acquire a true number one goaltender. Who do you see being the possible trade suitors? Washington does have a well touted goaltender who hasn’t seen playing time in the past nine games…
I do not see the Hurricanes making a move. Dan Ellis is a very capable goalie, who has been a starting goalie in Nashville and is having a better season statistically than Ward.
2. Last time we spoke, you picked Chicago to win the Stanley Cup over the Pittsburgh Penguins in six. That prediction isn’t looking so bad right now, eh?
Chicago has the ability to roll out 4 lines with no lapses. I have been pleasantly surprised with former first rounder, Michael Frolik. He has turned into a great two way player and a solid penalty killer. Pittsburgh is hurting on the blue line, but as long as Crosby is healthy they are a dangerous team.
3. What has led to the amazing start for the Anaheim Ducks? What happens with their big three come trade deadline/summer?
Bruce Boudreau has turned this team around. Everyone is contributing, from Koivu to Bonino, everyone in that line up has come up with big goals. The addition of Sheldon Souray has been huge, his ability to get pucks to the net has allowed the big bodies of the Ducks to put away juicy rebounds.
I see Perry being traded at the deadline, with Ryan and Getzlaf staying with the Ducks. I also think Teemu comes back for one more season.
4. With a 48 game season comes close competition, including seemingly (almost) every team still strongly contending for the playoffs (sorry, Columbus). TV ratings and attendance are up across the majority of markets, and fans seem to have forgotten all about the lockout. Have you heard anything from the player’s side about how they feel about all of this?
No one wants to talk about the past, the NHL is set to make an estimated $2.4 Billion for a 58% length season. Everyone should be happy.
5. Does re-allignment go through as planned?
Yes, I believe it will
6. The Washington Post’s Neil Greenberg recently wrote that the Caps should look into trading Mike Ribeiro come deadline day. How do you feel about this? Could they also be buyers in 30 days?
I think the Caps will move him. He is having an incredible season by his standards, and he is a pending UFA. If the Caps don’t resign him at reasonable deal, I say he gets moved. I don’t think the caps will make the playoffs, so no buying.
7. Finally, should the Caps find themselves in playoff contention in a month, what are the chances of us seeing Flip Forsberg skating in the Verizon Center?
I don’t think it is worth burning a year off his deal to have play minimal minutes trying to adjust the NHL game. I would rather see him at the Worlds and then come in with Tom Wilson and battle for a spot in camp