There are gossip writers – probably one interested in country music – who would provide a different reason for the Nashville Predators acquiring Mike Fisher.
Yet beyond appeasing Carrie Underwood, there are actual hockey reasons that explain why the Predators traded their 2011 first round pick and a conditional 2012 pick to the Ottawa Senators for Fisher.
TSN explains that conditional pick this way: the Senators receive a third round pick if Nashville wins one round in the playoffs or a second rounder if they win two or more rounds. That’s pretty steep, but considering the fact that the Predators have never won a single playoff series in their franchise history, it might be worth it.
Actually, the trade makes plenty of sense for both sides.
Fisher provides the Predators with at least a piece of what they lost when should-be top (or second line) center Matthew Lombardi went down with concussion problems. Fisher seems like he should transition smoothly into the Predators fold as a strong defensive forward with some offensive ability. The only drawback is that he came at a price of top picks and a considerable “real” price tag: Fisher brings a $4.2 million annual cap hit through the 2012-13 season.
The Senators get to save some cash and kick-start their (obviously needed) rebuilding process. Getting a first round pick in 2011 and possibly a second or third rounder in 2012 is a heck of find for Fisher, a forward far more useful to a contender than a pretender.
The last time the Predators traded futures for a pivotal center, it was a failed experiment with Peter Forsberg. Yet Fisher is only 30-years-old and is a more seamless match for the team’s defense-first mentality.
If it’s possible for both teams to “win” a trade, this could very well be an example of such a scenario.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.