directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Say it ain't so!

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Say it ain't so!

From a Pens blogger:

According to a source a announcement could be made tonight that the Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired the rights to Ryan Malone. Minnesota is making a late push and has offered their 2nd round pick/Veilleux but apparently Columbus might be willing to offer their 1st round pick (19th overall) to strike a deal.

Okay first off this better not be true.

Secondly if there is an ounce of truth to it your telling me that Howson wants Malone so badly that he's willing to move the 19th overall for rights for a winger that has scored no more than 51 points over his 4 year NHL career?

Remember the Flyers used the 23rd overall last year to land Kimo Timonen and Scott Hartnell - two players that could be argued are just as good as a guy like Malone.

Yes I realize the market for negotiating rights has changed since then but that much?

On top of that its reported that the Jackets are willing to shell out 4.5 to 5.5 million for this guy.

Overpaying is one thing but to include the 19th would be a horrible deal for the Jackets.

What happens then to trying to address our center and d-men needs? We just parted with a valuable asset that could have been used to acquire a player that fills a much bigger hole on our roster.

If this move went down you'd have to think they would play Malone at center b/c Hitch and Howson know this better than we do. As fan I was just shooting a little higher than a guy who has played his most effective hockey as a wing the past two years.

The Jackets can certainly use doubt about that...but they are going to need a whole lot more....and if Howson is parting with the 19th to sign one soon to be UFA then I'm really at a loss as to how and what he's prepared to do to fill the other glaring holes on this roster.

I'm sure he's got a plan....right?

Of course before I get waaay ahead of myself here lets see if what this blogger says comes to pass. I have yet to see any kind of official announcement and I would think the Dispatch would be the first to break this deal if it goes down.

Stay tuned.

Update: Looks like we can put any worries about Howson moving the 19th for rights to Malone to bed - from the Pitt Tribune-Review:

"We will not talk to anyone until July 1," said Malone, who will become an unrestricted free agent on that date.

Update: From Puck-rakers:

Ryan Malone has told The Dispatch tonight that he plans to test the free agent market on July 1, that he's not going to negotiate with any club -- Blue Jackets, Wild, anybody -- before free agency.

Here's his explanation: "I don't want any team I go to to give up a possible teammate. So we will wait till the first."

I asked Malone point-blank if he would consider the Blue Jackets on July 1: "Yes. Yes I would. I am considering other teams as well."

Portzline also speculates that Malone sounds pretty peeved at the Pens and doesn't want to help them out.

His answers strike me more as just good PR.

I don't blame Malone though, if I were in his position I would also want to hear the offers from every team that is interested in me out there.

If Howson wants this guy I would recommend making some moves at the draft for some signed players thus making this team more attractive to UFAs. Then revisit overpaying for Malone on July 1st. He certainly knows the Jackets are interested.

If it doesn't work out then move on to some other wingers -- they may not be as perfect of fit as Malone but that position has the most depth of this UFA class and there are some other talented guys projected to be available.



Neal said...

I agree completely! While I wasn't overly excited about the thought of paying Malone 5 mil a year, giving up the #19 just to be able to pay him 5 mil a year seems like a very, very bad deal.

Sean said...

I just can't imagine what I would need to know that I do not currently know in order to understand this deal. The 19th pick seems like it has more value, esp. the day of the draft. Maybe he's got a trade worked out with Zherdev for a "big time" center that doesn't involve the 6th pick and he's just trying to get another winger in the building before he let's Zherdev go?...

Neal said...

no deal, thankfully!

Skraut said...

It ain't So!!


I like the idea of getting Malone, just not at THAT price in both dollars and picks.

LTL said...

Thanks for the update guys - I am also relieved.


Anonymous said...

I am not relieved...although all hope is not lost there is still July 1. A 19th round pick for Malone is a good deal to me and a deal worth making. Unfortunately we won't get that chance.

Not getting a player of Malone's
character/competitiveness isn't a good thing for the jackets at all. Sure, we could still land him at July 1, but I would imagine his price will go up.

He has been in the league 4 years--one can say that his best years were at wing, but one can also say that he is just starting to understand what it takes to be a player in this league. As a natural center, I am sure he could figure out how to be effective at the position he grew up and turned pro playing.

You always tend to overpay for FA's and with the cap going up, teams will continue to do so. Going up against other teams and getting a bidding war isn't in the jackets best interest. As many quality players as we can get via trades is optimum and a 19th pick for Malone would have been a good start for the jackets.

You overpay for Malone now you leave yourself less money in the coffer for other free agents. Redden is going to July 1 as well and the jackets would be idiotic to not go after him. I highly doubt we are the only team in need of a puck moving d man, therefore, we likely will have to overpay on either money or term or both.

Now, you have spent 2 million extra dollars and what about Huselius and another center or winger or d man? Overspending in any arena is going to cost a mid-low budget team like the jackets at some avenue. 2 million dollars can get you a pretty decent checking/depth player. Overpaying in dollars could/might bite us down the road.

If I were Malone, I would test free agency as well, however.

I want solid NHL players and I view Malone as that, hopefully we can lure him and Scott really comes up with some creative maneuvering for us.

wizworm said...

You had me so worried!!!!

I just got home from the bar, I'm (semi) drunk and I read this first part of the blog thinking Howson must be drunk too! The 19th pick just for the RIGHTS to negotiate with Malone is crazy!

I like Malone, I think he could be a valuable assest to the Jackets but the 19th pick overall in a deep draft is nuts! Not to mention the speculation that he'd be signed for $5 million plus! No way do I think he's worth that. I was about to puke (not just from the Canadian beer) until I got to the update you posted.

Please Howson, don't make such a deal. Go after Malone when he's a FA and don't sign him to more than 3.5M... 4M MAX! Use that 19th pick if you have to in a package to land a center!

Anonymous said...

He is a center.

He will likely get more than 5 mil. as of July 1st which is why he is going to test it.

The 19th isn't going to get a top flight center anyway.

Had we traded the 19th for his rights and didn't get him signed we would have gotten it back.

I think people are dreaming in thinking we are going to get more than Malone for that 19th pick.

LTL said...

If we are going to overpay for someone then lets overpay, be it assets or dollars, for a guy who has played center once over the past two seasons.

Lets go out and get a top flight guy.

Right now we are ready to overpay for a winger we hope can move to center.

Not good enough.

Quite frankly I'm not ready to let our season ride on that solution.

I like Malone and think he could help, but he does not fill the biggest needs on this roster.

If I have to go into the season with a question mark then I'll take my chances at wing.

Chances are Malone we have as much interest in signing with the Jackets on July 1st as he does now.

Quite frankly if Howson does his job and makes a big acquisition or 2 at the draft Malone may have a lot more interest in the Jackets come July 1st than he does now.


Anonymous said...

Some, like myself, don't consider the 19th for Malone an overpayment. Who would be 'a top flight guy'? Marleau? Jokinen? Those guys are less desirable than Malone, imo.

Quite frankly if Hitch and Howson felt like he would have been someone worth getting for that pick, I believe them. If they feel like he could easily handle the transition from wing to center, I am pretty much going to take their word for it. His positioning in our lineup is the LEAST of my concerns.

I also don't think he was their 'solution to this season', but he would be a hell of a start. We have very few competitive, edgy players in our top 6 and the 19th pick for one of those type of guys is a good deal.

Malone as our only acquisition? No, not ideal, but Malone as part of the solution? No doubt about it.

People keep talking about how Scott could do better than the 19th for Malone, but how the hell does anyone know that? If this was, in fact, a deal the jackets were trying to make obviously it was the best deal they could have made.

You saw the post by Aaron that spoke of the 1500 names on the board in Scott's office. He is prepared, he has done his research.

Just because we WANT to get more for those picks doesn't mean it is possible nor should Howson be criticized because of what we think he SHOULD be able to obtain. We have no CLUE who or what has been thrown at him.

This guy is in the hot seat big time and will be doing everything he can to get the best deal possible.

LTL said...

I'm basing the value of the 19th off of previous draft day trades which I think is fair.

Last year two starting goaltenders were moved for deals centered around first round picks (one the 13th overall and one an unknown this year) and a couple of later round picks.

I just think we could do better based off past history. No way of knowing for sure what's out there but I think we would be selling our assets short in this case.

You and I agree on most but looks like we aren't gonna here :)


Anonymous said...

We also got a first rounder for Adam Foote which I fail to recall anyone thinking that we didn't STEAL that first rounder.

I could be mistaken, but I don't recall reading anywhere where they people said: 'yeah, that is about right for him'.

If Foote is worth a first rounder, Malone most definitely would be worth the same.

Bottom line is, there was some merit to the willingness of the jackets to make that deal. If there were better ways to manage their assets I am most certain they have been considered thoughtfully. They obviously didn't feel like had they made the Malone deal they would have been hampered in other areas.

As much as I am worried about Howson adding to our roster, I really have a hard time believing anyone has thought of anything that he hasn't thought of.

If the only way to add to our roster was to deal our 19th for a contracted player and then buy Malone via free agency then yes, it definitely makes sense to do so. I just don't believe that that was the only avenue we could travel down.

If that was the case, and all of our resources/plans would have been exhausted on that one transaction, then the whole lot of them should be fired!