The team that made the 2015 Stanley Cup champions sweat the most just keeps getting better.
The Anaheim Ducks added another piece to their war chest on Monday, signing Mike Santorelli to a one-year contract. Anaheim didn’t provide financial details, but ESPN’s Craig Custance reports that it’s worth $875K.
Jonathan Toews said the Ducks were the toughest team his champion Chicago Blackhawks faced during the 2015 postseason, and it seems like the Ducks are trying to cover every conceivable reason why they fell short of beating the ‘Hawks.
By adding Carl Hagelin and now Santorelli, 29, to the mix, Anaheim is a much faster team; they also boast a fleet-footed defense and fellow speedster Andrew Cogliano.
The Ducks’ mix now boasts a little extra beef and experience in bringing in Chris Stewart, Kevin Bieksa and Shawn Horcoff.
Remarkably, the franchise still boasts a ton of cap space, so they can make a splash at the trade deadline next season if they identify a missing piece.
Speaking of trade deadline pickups, Santorelli was part of a deal that didn’t really work out for his most recent team. The Nashville Predators gave up a boatload of assets for Santorelli and current UFA Cody Franson, yet neither really fit the bill.
Getting acquainted with linemates during training camp could be a big difference-maker for a quality depth forward like Santorelli, however, and it’s a pretty low-risk move for the Ducks.
Many are quite excited about the work GM Bob Murray has done this summer, by the way:
Indeed, it’s a pretty intriguing mix in Anaheim:
Would you pencil the Ducks in as the Cup favorites at this point? If not, where would they belong?