Monday, September 1, 2008
Who Will Make The Team? Part 2.
As I try to kill time before college starts Wednesday (gag), I'm going to do the second part of my thoughts on who will make the Avalanche roster next season. Gee, I sure waited long, huh?
Offense: Sakic, Smyth, Hejduk, Stastny, Wolski, Svatos, Tucker, Arnason, Laperriere, Guite, Jones, Ledin, McLeod, McCormick, Parker, Willsie, Hensick, Stewart.
Sakic, Smyth, Hejduk, Stastny, Wolski, Svatos, Tucker, Arnason, Laperriere, and Guite are the no brainer shoe ins. Hate Arnason all you want, but he won't be demoted or traded- yet.
Now, we're left with 4 roster spots for 8 players, so this is where things get dicey. Right off the bat, I'm going to say Parker makes the team. He only played 25 games last season (0 points), but the teams record with him in the line-up was 17-5-3. I'm not a big Parker guy, but I still say he makes it. I don't see FG re-signing him (the first player the Avalanche singed this summer, I believe), just to put him on waivers.
McCormick, Stewart, and Hensick won't be making the team. I'd like to see McCormick make it as the Avalanche 4th line center, but the four center openings are solidified. Stewart is pretty self explanitory; he couldn't even crack the line-up last year, even with all the injuries, and he won't be taking time away from a player like Svatos. Hensick, right now, is a poor man's Arnason. They're equally as useless defensively, but Arnason is going to generate more offense, so Hensick can look forward to alot of time with Lake Erie this coming season.
After that mess, we're left with 3 roster spots, but four players to fill them. Per Ledin, who won a championship in Sweden last year, is going to make the team. Ledin won't have to pass through waivers if sent down, but I believe he'll make it. Unlike the signing of Hlinka (bust!), Ledin is known as a gritty winger with a nose for the net. In fact, the first thing I ever heard about Ledin was "he's the sweedish Sean Avery". In other words, he's not going to lose his hardworking ways just because he's coming to the NHL. I think he may be one of the underrated signings this offseason.
The next person I think will make it is Willsie. Yes, I think Brian Willsie will still be on the Avalanche roster come opening night. This goes along with my "why would he be signed logic", but honestly these last three players are a toss up. McLeod is the other person I think will make it, based on last season. To me, David Jones is a poor man's Svatos; with Svatos in the line-up, we don't need him. However, I expect Jones to play 60+ games this season. I just don't expect him to be there opening night.
Smyth - Sakic - Hejduk
Wolski - Stastny - Svatos
Ledin - Arnason - Tucker
McLeod - Guite - Laperriere
Willsie - Parker
Hannan - Liles
Clark - Foote
Salei - Leopold