Latest posts by Omar White (see all)
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This morning, the Pittsburgh Penguins got their feet wet in the deadline hype. In exchange for Danny Kristo and 2nd round pick in 2017, the Carolina Hurricanes received Ron Hainsey. Additionally, the Hurricanes retained 50% of Hainsey’s $2.83 million cap hit that expires at the end of the season. The deal makes sense for Pittsburgh who had just released news that Trevor Daley will be out for six weeks after receiving knee surgery. Hainsey could possibly fill that hole that Pittsburgh has on the left side. Now, if Hainsey can get a pick and a prospect, what can Roman Polak get? Last year, the Leafs were able to get 2 second round picks for him from the San Jose Sharks. Although he has his mistakes, Polak has been a key player on the penalty kill for the Leafs. The Leafs should take advantage of the desperation that occurs around the Trade Deadline. With the cap space they have, it’s possible that they could warrant a good return for Polak perhaps retaining salary if they need to.
Battle of the East
Last night, the Florida Panthers, Boston Bruins, and Philadelphia Flyers all lost in regulation. As a result, the New York Islanders are now in the final wild card spot in the East. Yes, the same New York Islanders that were a complete gong show in the beginning of the season. It would be ignorant to assume that any of the positions in the Eastern Conference at this point in the season will stay the same. As much as those three teams losing benefitted the Leafs and Sens, a couple wins could see them lose their spots. Save for Carolina, Detroit, and maybe New Jersey, all teams in the East are in it. It will be interesting to see how this effects the Trade Deadline. It could be argued that the majority of those teams are buyers. Get ready for possibly more cross conference trades to occur than usual. No one should want to help another team out with a trade as it could turn around and cost them the season. We may be the witness of some outrageous deals to occur this year. It’s less than a week away, how crazy could it get?
Then They All Rolled Over and One Fell Out
Tonight’s game will mark the fourth without Mitch Marner. However, after yesterday’s skate with a few Leafs players, the possibility of him drawing back in the lineup as early as Saturday is not out of the question. One problem though, someone needs to come out once Marner gets back in, but who? Some would argue Leivo. Leivo has taken advantage of the opportunity given to him after Marner’s injury. He has gone from playing on the fourth line up to playing with Kadri. Leivo and Kadri have started to develop some chemistry together so it wouldn’t make sense to take him out of the line-up. Unfortunately, the only option is Soshnikov, who despite driving the play of the fourth line, has not been able to contribute offensively as much. Marner will most likely be put back with JVR and Bozak (oh boy will they he happy) pushing Connor Brown back with Matthews? Well that wouldn’t work either because Nylander’s play has been risen to a new level ever since he has returned to that line. With all due respect to Hyman and Brown, Matthews needs some skilly to play with him as well. Babcock is going to have some tough decisions coming up as he needs to assort the line-up in the best way possible for them to get wins. Perhaps a trade makes the decision easier.
What do you think?
Did the Pittsburgh Penguins make a fair deal for Hainsey? Could Polak get anywhere close to the return he got for the Leafs last year? What will the line up look like once Marner comes back? How closely will you be paying attention to the Trade Deadline this year? Let me know with a comment down below.