Puck Daddy weighs in on the Zubov situation as well.
Zubov earned $5.35 million last season, a number one assumes will be adjusted in his next contract. The notion that the New York Rangers are in the hunt for their former defenseman when you look at the NHL-level defensemen under contract right now. They'd have the cap room as well. The New Jersey Devils were also discussed as an option, although their blue line is a bit more crowded.
If you didn't believe Zubov and the Columbus Blue Jackets weren't a match made in hockey heaven before, you will after reading Rory Boylen's take for The Hockey News. Of course, when you're power play is clicking at 12.7 percent, the exhumed body of Sergei Rachmaninov, let alone Sergei Zubov, would be an improvement.
Adding Zubov for a year on an incentive laden deal is definitely worth the risk. This guy even at 75% would be better than anything we've ever had on the PP -- he is that good even at age 39.
Also keep in mind he's a righty which helps the angles and has played under Hitch in the past. He moves the puck like Mozart wrote symphany..... Have problems getting shots through from the point? Not any more.
...but..but........BUT...... that health.
Look... we aren't going to get the prefect guy.....that I can tell you. Teams don't give those guys up. There will be some risk no matter whom Howson lands at this stage.
If I were a betting man I'd say Howson is definitely making a play for this guy and that Zubov is seriously considering the Jackets as an option.
Keep in mind that no matter whom Howson eventually nabs in terms of a defensemen be it UFA or trade (never mind the posturing as he eventually will nab someone before the start of the season) he is still going to have to unload a winger. That is easier done via a trade to land that d-man than it would be to sign a UFA and then try to unload one. Howson may have to get Bob Ross creative here.
Puck Daddy also takes a look at the NHL schedule:
Among the big gainers of back-to-back games are the Colorado Avalanche (plus-8), the Florida Panthers (plus-6) and the Toronto Maple Leafs (plus-5).
Among the teams that won't have to go back-to-back next season as much as last season: The Columbus Blue Jackets (minus-8), the Edmonton Oilers and the Ottawa Senators (both minus-5).
Rick Gethin from thehockeywriters.com takes a look at the upcoming season.
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Labels: Sergei Zubov