Rolling the Dice on the Rolling Ankle: Peter Forsberg is traded from the Flyers to the Predators for Scottie Upshall, Ryan Parent and two draft picks. Response from Philadelphia.
posted by SummersEve to hockey at 04:36 AM - 36 comments
Some other analysis, CBS Sportsline calls it a "steal" for Nashville. Scott Burnside from ESPN.com is a bit more realistic, as is Bob McKenzie. From a Philadelphia perspective, I think it's a decent move for the Flyers. Hate to see Forsberg leave town, but with his status for next season up in the air he was of little value here. Seems like quite a gamble for the Preds. Not knowing a great deal about the players they're sending to Philly, it just seems like there's so much riding on Forsberg's goofy ankle.
posted by SummersEve at 05:40 AM on February 16
What a mess. Philly's history of trades is a joke. I like the picks, but how good will they be with Nashville predicted to go all the way. I wonder if this is one of those, "we'll let ya go have a chance at the cup if you promise to come back" type deals. Note the main issue behind the trade is that PF wouldn't agree to return to Philly next year. Smoke Screen?
posted by Bishop at 06:17 AM on February 16
upshall will never be more than a grinder on the 3rd or 4th line, parent has some upside but is very young, the picks are not going to be spectacular. i like this trade; nashville's added to the present without really taking a whole lot from their future. to be perfectly honest, i'm surprised that philidelphia couldn't drag a future star out of someone for him.
posted by dfleming at 06:52 AM on February 16
Even though I don't follow the NHL as much as I used to, I like what Nashville has done here. They see this year as their shot at winning it all and feel that Forsberg will put them over the top. He's a proven playoff performer and even though nothing is certain (health or otherwise) it's a good gamble. Now, how will the Wings respond?
posted by drose92264 at 08:26 AM on February 16
to be perfectly honest, i'm surprised that philidelphia couldn't drag a future star out of someone for him. You mean like Philly did the 1st time they traded him? Or Hextall, Mike Ricci, Chris Simon or Iverson, Barkley, Malone, Chamberlin. The city of Philly always gets stars like Jeff Ruland, Andre Miller, Tim Perry...etc in return. Philly fans are NOT surprised. Ever!
posted by Bishop at 08:28 AM on February 16
I'm pretty shocked that David Poile made this trade. It's the biggest gamble in Predators' history. I can understand why they did it though. Last year they had a pretty good team too, but lost in the first round in 5 games. Hopefully, Trotz won't mess up the chemistry that the first two lines have already developed and stick Forsberg on that third line with Hartnell and Radulov. I wonder if this is one of those, "we'll let ya go have a chance at the cup if you promise to come back" type deals. You mean like how the Penguins traded Recchi to the Hurricanes last year? I think it may have been, what with all the meetings between Forsberg and Holmgren. It was probably just a matter of finding a team that Forsberg was willing to go to.
posted by MrFrisby at 08:49 AM on February 16
I think this is a can't miss for the Preds. They have no fans. They have no hockey history. They are a dying franchise. To even be able to pull this off is great - it's low risk, because this team could be in Seattle or Winnipeg in a year's time. They gave up none, NONE, of their front six best players for a guy who could go down with injury or could lead them to the most unappreciated or acknowledged Stanley Cup win in history (thank you Gary - Nashville, huh? Nice move, fuckstick. Now I'm embarrassed again). It's a can't lose - they're already a good/great team that no one pays attention to. As for Philly - I think they like the picks package best and Upshall is serviceable and still in the early part of his career. There is also the chance that Forsberg resigns in Philly in the off-season. Remember, though Forsberg is good (no longer one of the best it would seem) he is the very definition of a rental. He is going to free agency or back to Sweden by all accounts.
posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 09:03 AM on February 16
Wait, is "Winnipeg" an actual city name? I always thought it was some inside joke.
posted by yerfatma at 09:32 AM on February 16
Poile took a page from Rutherford's play book; make a big splash, because this is your big shot at the Cup. And good on Poile for not parting with Radulov, which was rumored the last day or so. Poile didn't take a page from Regier's playbook; stand fast and blow a great chance at winning the cup. (I'm honestly thinking Buffalo's shot was last year....and Regier blew it.) Poile tried that last year, and it didn't work. It's somewhat of a nice karmic twist that Forsberg is giving back to the city he could've given so much more to. And Clarke isn't responsible for getting back what he gave away.
posted by garfield at 10:04 AM on February 16
Poile didn't take a page from Regier's playbook; stand fast and blow a great chance at winning the cup. (I'm honestly thinking Buffalo's shot was last year....and Regier blew it.) Yes,it was Darcy Regier that gave Tim Connolly a concussion, broke Henrik Tallinder's arm, injected bacteria into a cut on Jay McKee's leg, pulled Teppo Numminen's groin, and did something ( I forget) to Dmitri Kalinin's leg. At the time of the trade deadline Buffalo was healthy and had depth at forward and defence. However no team can survive 4 of their top 5 defencemen going down with injuries in the playoffs
posted by GOD at 11:39 AM on February 16
So 4/5/6 defensemen were extinct leading up the the trade deadline last year? No one is blaming Regier for not being able to see into the future. But I am blaming him for not loading up for a big run at the Cup. He knew he couldn't keep this group together for much longer, and he did nothing. I respect the idea of keeping Biron around for depth in the crease, but prospects and picks could've been utilized to add depth elsewhere. The Sabres have been in bunker mode for years now. They have organizational depth to spare. And yet Darcy didn't spare any of it. You can play cheap the entire game if you want to win the big pot. At least it seems that way in the new NHL. Unfortunately with all the injuries Darth HAS to do something this year.
posted by garfield at 12:29 PM on February 16
I dunno - half the time the additions don't do squat, or backfire. Look at the litany of teams that made moves last year that didn't get them even close to Buffalo's finish. Remember when Colorado traded for Bourque? That didn't work. The year after it did - but that wasn't the point of the deal. Calgary added players last year. Toronto added 3 HoFers pre-lockout and couldn't make it into the second round. And Detroit famously did nothing the last time they won a Cup.
posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 12:36 PM on February 16
I agree Weedy, pre-lockout was a different beast. Team building could be accomplished in the off-season, or very very late in the season, without regard for salary. And I also agree whenever a player changes teams you can't count on performance to remain steady. But smart adds tend to work out, and you have to add for it to turn out to seem smart later on. Teams did trade for depth last year, but which teams made the best trades? I'd say Carolina and Edmonton did. Weight and Recchi? Roloson and Spacek? Or Arnason and no goalie? And I'm not really considering every team that made the playoffs, just the ones with realisticially high expectations. But apart from my criticism of Darth Regier, do people think Forsberg will fit in with Preds' style of play. Frenetic is how I think of Nashville, and Forsberg doesn't fit with that idea to me. Maybe he will be able to mesh, but in Philly speed was near the bottom of the list of descriptors of his style of play.
posted by garfield at 12:56 PM on February 16
Duhatschek on rent-a-player history.
posted by garfield at 01:36 PM on February 16
I think it will work insofar as Forsberg will make hay with the speed on those wings. He'll make the power play better too. Nashville is pretty fast but I think Trotz has them working very well as five-man units. They are disciplined. But this team is going as far as Vokoun takes them along with their Defense by committee strategy. Hey - worked for Carolina and Buffalo. This improves the Preds for sure. All the way to the Cup? Too hard to tell with these teams like Nashville and Detroit. They've been beating up on the shittiest teams in the league for the whole year - so their records tend to be a little inflated. Teams did trade for depth last year, but which teams made the best trades? I'd say Carolina and Edmonton did. Weight and Recchi? Roloson and Spacek? Or Arnason and no goalie? I think it's hindsight that makes those deals the best. Who thought Roloson and Spacek was a Cup-running deal when it happened (The Oilers were a fucking 8th place team!)? It turned out that way - but the Arnason/Theodore deal involved what was commonly thought to be the better players. I think Weight and Recchi were terribly unnecessary deals. No - I think deadline moves are sexy, but are really total crapshoots. You think your team has plugged a hole - maybe, maybe not. The best deals are the ones made before the season. Like Nashville getting Arnott. You're now going into the playoffs with Forsberg and Arnott as your top pivots - not to mention the career year that Legwand is having. That's not just deep - that's talent.
posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 01:47 PM on February 16
Nashville seems to be doing ok against very stiff competition, so the Central Division argument doesn't sway me. Though, like the SE, the Central doesn't offer stiff competition all season long like other, tougher divisions, which provides them an easier path to the play-offs. I don't know about the hindsight rosiness though. Theodore is crap. I suspect it is partying. Being seen with Paris Hilton revokes your elite hockey player status. And dropping E isn't going to help your focus. Arnason? Not exactly what I'd call a key cog for playoff success. Of course, neither was Roloson. Though the Oilers were an 8th place team with the shittiest goal-tending by far all season long. So even being is 8th had to tell you something about the skaters. Spacek was just a depth add. Recchi and Weight were for experience. Recchi, a career ppg guy, was performing at high level on a shit team, so he was going to help. Weight was there to make the safe play, so that Laviollete didn't have to rely on his team's youth in important situations. Wieght didn't really contribute, but Recchi's prescence was definitely felt. Forsberg and Vishnevski add great adds. Sure, they are sexy, but I don't think it is a total crapshoot. A gamble, for sure. But I like Nashville's odds alot more now. Barring major a disaster you can pencil in the Preds for the West finals. I'm all over the place today.
posted by garfield at 02:38 PM on February 16
Weedy touched on a very important point there. With the new NHL schedule, Nashville and Detroit get to beat up on St. Louis, Chicago, and Columbus a total of twenty four times! You only have to go back as far as the Wings last season to put it in perspective. There is no denying that there is quite a bit of talent on that Predators team, but very little playoff character, even with Forsberg. There's PF, Kariya had one magic year with Ahaheim, and Arnott, who was integral to the Devils run in 2000, but is hardly a franchise player. Their inflated point total now might make them a sexy pick to win it all, but wait until they start playing a bunch of consecutive games against teams like Calgary, San Jose, and even Dallas. Their lack of experience will be glaring as they make, at best, a second round exit.
posted by tahoemoj at 02:40 PM on February 16
I mean Vitali is really hot. stupid edit timer. tahoemoj, go check Nashville's record against those teams you mention.
posted by garfield at 02:43 PM on February 16
Unless I missed something, I'm coming up with 4-3. Not exactly a striking stat. You can point to the recent drubbing of San Jose at home, but one game, especially when it's a few games into an eight game roader for the Sharks, doesn't show me much. Garfield, you obviously have quite a bit of knowledge about hockey, so I'm sure you'll readily admit that the playoffs are a different animal. I'm not saying that the Preds are incapable of matching up with the west's elite any given day, just that they really aren't going to be able to sustain it when the schedule gets more grueling for them.
posted by tahoemoj at 02:57 PM on February 16
And how have they been doing against Anaheim so far?
posted by tahoemoj at 02:58 PM on February 16
Yeah, their record isn't that telling. Though they shutout both Anaheim and San Jose already this month. The Preds have done very well against the league's best so far this year. They aren't dominant, but they hold their own. Very readily. And I'm not 100% convinced Nashville's formula of speed and quickness will work through four rounds in the playoffs. But I plan on not discounting them.
posted by garfield at 03:11 PM on February 16
Recchi and Weight were for experience. That sounds like Poile's reasoning: "We have only one player who has won a Stanley Cup, and that's Jason Arnott," Poile said. "This is a huge addition with Peter Forsberg the player and Peter Forsberg the Stanley Cup champion." And how have they been doing against Anaheim so far? 2 wins and 1 loss by my count. 2-1 vs Sharks 2-1 vs Vancouver 2-0 vs Calgary 1-2 vs Detroit 0-2 vs Dallas Also, they game I went to against St. Louis the Preds won in the shootout, so its not like every game against Chicago, St.Louis, and Columbus are guaranteed wins.
posted by MrFrisby at 03:12 PM on February 16
Now that I look into it, Nashville lost thier first 3 games against the Blackhawks this season.
posted by MrFrisby at 03:24 PM on February 16
So even being is 8th had to tell you something about the skaters. Actually, I think it underscores the value of Pronger. 'Cuz they have all those skaters this year... Plus Lupul and Sykora and they can't buy goals lately and are is real danger of missing the playoffs. Look, Nashville is good - but let's not go crazy yet. They don't have a lot of playoff experience, and they play in the worst division. However - they do have a very good coach, very good depth, don't take a lot of penalties and have good goaltending and goalie depth. If the formulas of Carolina and Buffalo are to be believed then this Preds squad looks a lot like them. I put them in the conversation - but I still like San Jose and Calgary more. At least, today I do. Well that and the fact that Forsberg could be out for the year tomorrow if he wakes up funny.
posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 03:25 PM on February 16
They do have a winning record against the current westerm playoff teams (8-6-2), and I don't see how adding Forsberg can hurt that, but experience is a huge aspect of playoff success. If Erat, Legwand, or someone else steps up in the playoffs, along with Vokoun getting hot, of course they'll be tough to beat. And if they wind up getting to the conference or even the Cup finals, I'll be the first one to wipe the egg off my face and say that I underestimated them!
posted by tahoemoj at 03:51 PM on February 16
Pronger is a huge part of it. My intent was to include him in consideration of the skaters. But Jussi and Conklin were shit. Lowe improved that position by 15%, to grab a random percentage out of thin air, and the Oilers were a much more formidable opponent. Pisani scoring goals every time he shot the puck didn't hurt either. Add to the list of Predator assets team consistency. They have been "staying the course" since they entered the league. I think Trotz has been there since day 1. Team cultural consistency shouldn't be ignored. Atleast if a winner is to be built, not bought.
posted by garfield at 04:02 PM on February 16
Now that I look into it, Nashville lost thier first 3 games against the Blackhawks this season. In their defense, the Blackhawks were surprisingly decent at the start of the year... until Havlat got injured. And, well, the Preds started off a little slow.
posted by mkn at 04:15 PM on February 16
The thing I like about Nashville is that they seem to have a solid goaltending situation. Vokoun is a monster, and Mason has proved that he can hold his own. The one knock is that neither one of the two has much playoff expirience, and I think it has been proven that it takes a good goalie to go far in the playoffs. I think this move should be good for Nashville if Forsberg stays healthy. That is a gigantic if. That is the big reason why I wasn't entirely sold on the idea of the Wings possibly trading for him.
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 04:27 PM on February 16
The one knock is that neither one of the two has much playoff expirience, I really think that makes NO difference. It takes a hot goalie to take you through the playoffs, not one with a lot of experience. Cam Ward and Roloson weren't exactly experienced playoff veterans last year.
posted by mkn at 05:51 PM on February 16
That is a good point. However, I do think that some expirience in the big games can be a whole lot of help. If I were to choose between two goalies of relatively equal skill to start in the playoffs, I'd probably go with the more expirienced one (provided it wasn't a man made of glass like Hasek).
posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 07:35 PM on February 16
I wonder if this is one of those, "we'll let ya go have a chance at the cup if you promise to come back" type deals. My question to the hardcore hockey folks: Any chance of Toronto doing with this Sundin? I heard rumors that is was a possibility, but nothing specific.
posted by mullacc at 08:29 PM on February 16
My question to the hardcore hockey folks: Any chance of Toronto doing with this Sundin? I heard rumors that is was a possibility, but nothing specific Sundin doesn't go anywhere. As long as the Leafs are within sniffing distance of a playoff spot, they won't trade him. If they did trade him while still within shouting distance of a playoff spot, the fans would burn the ACC to the ground...while paying $175 a seat to be in there while it burns.
posted by grum@work at 09:26 PM on February 16
Upshaw 2 Forsberg 0
posted by SummersEve at 04:09 AM on February 20
Upshaw? Willie Upshaw? I'm sure you mean Upshall, but then again......
posted by tommytrump at 07:20 AM on February 20
No, Gene. And his leash. Yes, Upshall. Hooked on Phonics, you know.
posted by SummersEve at 08:16 AM on February 20
Did you know they're cousins? Willie and Gene I mean.
posted by tommytrump at 09:14 AM on February 20
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