Friday, June 12, 2009

Pittsburgh Wins!/ Avs Thoughts

This is not what I wanted to happen for many reasons, but I can be happy that older players like Gonchar and Satan finally won the cup after narrow misses earlier in their careers. Hossa and Conklin look like dopes right now, but at least Conklin can say he couldn't do much more.


To shift to other NHL news, the Flyers announced they have signed Ray Emery (and possibly Robert Esche soon). Obviously, the Flyers felt they didn't have the cap space to sign Biron to the 3.5+ million he'll want, so they signed Emery to a cap friendly 1.5 million. Honestly, this is a good move; Emery's off ice troubles came as a result of playing in a hockey hungry Canada. In Philadelphia, it will be more lax, and Emery's off ice misfortunes should be overshadowed by whichever Flyers player is being suspended on a given week. It's a match made in heaven in my opinion.

Now, with Biron heading for the free agent market, I'd predict the Avs are one of the teams he may sign with. The only teams in the league with big holes in net are Colorado and Edmonton (and Washington, but they're screwed), so I suspect they'll be in the running for his services.

That is, if the Avs fail to sign highly coveted free agent goalie Jonas Gustavsson. In a radio interview, Gustavsson's agent said he'll be visiting San Jose, Colorado, Dallas, and Toronto next week. Each team offers up a different intangible:

- Colorado has a huge vacancy in net. If he signs there, he'll be the starter no questions asked (partially due to cap constraints).

- Toronto just signed a great goalie coach in Francois Allaire, a person Gustavsson has worked with before. Notice I didn't say great history; the Leafs haven't even made the Stanley Cup finals post expansion, so that franchise doesn't scream "win" to me.

- San Jose offers a strong supporting cast and one of the best defenses in the league.

- Dallas offers an good environment where highly coveted Swedish forward Fabian Brunnstrom had a good rookie season this season (still this season until midnight!).

Where he goes, no one knows. My next blog will be the day of his signing, barring some huge news.

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