Monday, February 25, 2008

Deadline Predictions

As I write this, we are a mere 25 hours away from the NHL's trading deadline. The only hard news to materialize thus far is the signing of Trent Hunter to a 5-year, $10M extension. Last year Hunter was far and away my favorite player on the team. While his play has slipped a bit this season, at that price the signing can only be classified as a "no brainer". Plus, my Hunter jersey will not be obsolete for the foreseeable future!

While nothing is ever certain when it comes to the deadline, the one thing I can say with reasonable confidence is that the Islanders will not make the same kind of splash they made last year. And frankly, that is a good thing. Still, despite the cloud of secrecy every GM in the league is operating under, why not look into the Islanders 360 Magic 8 Ball and get some predictions?

Just to give everyone some perspective, here are some of the things in the past that my Magic Ball has accurately foretold:

- The contents of Al Capone's vault
- The ending of "The Sixth Sense"
- The precise date and time of Andy Hilbert's first goal this season

So clearly there's some mojo floating around inside this orb o' mine. Now, onto the predictions:

Will anyone else get re-signed prior to the deadline?
Garth Snow will convince Mike Comrie to stay on Long Island and sign for "2nd line center" money. This will happen prior to 3PM on Tuesday, making Garth's #1 offseason priority a top-line center. There will be no other extensions prior to the deadline.

Will anyone be traded?
Garth is no Mad Mike, but he still needs to make a little bit of noise at the deadline. So of course the answer is YES! With so little talent available, Miro Satan is one of the hottest commodities in the league at the moment. Garth will convince him to waive his no-trade clause for the chance to play for a true contender, and in return the Islanders will get at least a first-round pick in the upcoming draft. Garth will also attempt to move the streaky Fedotenko, and at the last minute will accept a deal that most fans will consider unfavorable.

Will Bryan McCabe come back to Long Island?
Here, the outlook is fuzzy. It all hinges on just how desperate Leafs GM Cliff Fletcher is to clear some cap room. Given the lop-sided nature of any deal that Snow would (hopefully) require to take on that cap hit, I just don't see it happening. If this deal does happen, I predict that it will either be hailed as a stroke of genius or an unmitigated disaster, depending on how the specifics shake out.

Will the Islanders be a better team after the deadline?
As far as this season goes, no. Moving one of our top scorers in Satan will not improve this year's results. Sadly, the 8-ball predicts that the injuries on our blue-line, the loss of Sillinger, and the trade of Satan will keep us on the outside looking in for this year's playoffs. However, with two first round picks in next year's draft, the development of Comeau and Okposo, and getting a healthy D corps back, we will be a more successful team in 2008-2009.

There you have it. No need to follow the news for the next 25 hours, this is how it'll all go down. And hey, if I'm wrong...well, there's a first time for everything.


Jim McGlynn said...

Hey Mike, great read. I do hope they move Satan and stock up on some promising youth/ picks. He's too damn streaky. Hope we'll see you Friday at the party.

w0lfpack said...

Think your dead on... would not be surprised if they re-up Vosichek, as I know they were still high on him before he went on his recent tear. I would also not discount the playoffs this year; though a long shot, this team might just have something to sneak into the first round. Losing Satan will not hurt that much as I think his recent production was more a sign of Bergie's improved development. Now losing Sili, thats a more complicated problem.

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