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Tracking the Storm

Take it Easy, Calgary

Wednesday, 03.04.2009 / 1:08 PM / Tracking the Storm
By Paul Branecky
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Take it Easy, Calgary
It appears that the Calgary Flames fancy themselves as a serious Cup contender, as they’ve made the biggest noise so far with two trades, most recently acquiring Olli Jokinen from Phoenix in exchange for Matthew Lombardi, Brandon Prust and a first-round pick.

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I wonder if Calgary is aware of Jokinen’s career stats against the Hurricanes heading into Friday night’s game at the RBC Center? Although the former Florida Panther is scoreless in two games against the Canes this season, he put up 52 points in 50 career games against Carolina prior to that. Caniacs will certainly appreciate the timing of that move.

Things are starting to heat up a bit around the league, as moves are trickling in a little bit faster now, and likely will continue to do so as we approach the 3 p.m. cutoff. 

Buffalo did end up adding a goaltender, Phoenix back-up Mikael Tellqvist, in exchange for a fourth-rounder in 2010. Patrick Lalime will probably still be their guy while Ryan Miller is out, but Tellqvist gives them an experienced fall-back option that they didn’t have this morning.

In other goaltending news, former Cane Martin Gerber moved across Ontario to Toronto, as the Leafs grabbed him from Ottawa on waivers.

Q: Any thoughts of trading an offensive defenseman (Corvo, Pitkanen, Kaberle) knowing that Bryan Rodney is in Albany, and Kaberle is on the Healthy scratch list?  I would think one of those players would have some value to playoff bound teams that have trouble scoring.  Perhaps we could find a large defensive defenseman to shore up the back end?  Are there any of those types of defensemen rumored to be available? - Paul K

Q: Given the fact the Canes were hurting on D last year, then found themselves with a ton of D-men, and yet still struggle there this year - any insights as to what may happen? - John in Winterville

A: A lot of questions about the defensive end so far. As opposed to adding a defenseman, I think the more likely scenario (although I’m still not sure I see it happening) is actually shipping one out. 

The Canes wouldn’t mind parting with Kaberle – he’s been on waivers twice, so that’s no secret – but his contract doesn’t make him an attractive asset for other teams. He’s still got one year left after this one, but it does become more likely that a team will swoop in for him as time goes on, since they would be on the hook for less and less of his remaining deal.

Of all the defensemen on the Canes’ roster, Dennis Seidenberg may actually be of most interest around the league since his contract is up at the end of this year. A contending team needing depth could add him at a reasonable price with no commitment to next year, although the Canes may not want to risk losing depth of their own at an important time of the season.

As far as a bigger move involving a Corvo and Pitkanen, even if the Canes wanted to do that, there’s no pressure to do so now as both are under contract through next season. The team would probably be better served doing that in the summer, if at all.

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