BIG News and a Recap

Well it is official, this blog will be up in two places, and this site might actually go down (don’t worry, not for a while). I have been in contact with and will serve as their heavily-trafficked site’s San Jose Sharks Blogger. This will also set more binding blog requirements, and you can look forward to at least two, likely more, blogs each week. This also means that you, as readers, have a more public forum for anything you would like posted, any opinions you have, etc., and I encourage comments and discussion over there. I will post the link once the page is up, as I am currently in the process of archiving my old posts over there.

Now for the routine Heatley update that is becoming more of an annoyance than anything else. Last I posted, the Heatley saga was coming to a close. Four days ago (according to Mark Christopher), talks reopened between the Sharks and Ottawa. These resulted in an offer presented to the Senators that did not include Cheechoo, leaving me skeptical in regards to how any possible trade could be fit under the cap. The specific players involved are still unknown, but I cannot imagine how additional trades involving Cheechoo would not have already been in the works and waiting only for Heatley to board the west-bound plane. This offer undoubtedly interested Murray, as it remained on the table until late Saturday before being rejected.

This rejection began two days of silence, leaving many (including myself) to believe the talks had ended. However, late last night, DW presented the Senators with a new, currently on the table offer that included Cheechoo, Vlasic, and two prospects, one of which is most assuredly Coulture, and the other is rumored to be Samuel Groulx. The idea that Vlasic would be involved is interesting, as early in his career he was considered the ‘future of the organization,’ but since has fallen into a role as a solid top four defenseman. As a fan, I am worried by the most recent offers, as they clearly show DW is no longer waiting for a lopsided deal to fall into his lap out of the Senator’s necessity to move an unhappy player, but rather is trying to accommodate Murray (although you cannot be too surprised, as DW often offers too much in trades and signs players to larger salaries than make sense—i.e. Huskins, Clowe). Regardless, it appears as if the Sharks are no longer in the driver’s seat of the negotiations. I will continue to update as more unfolds.

Ehrhoff’s name being left off of the trade proposition is another surprising development. However, at a measly three million dollars per season, it could be in the Shark’s best interest to keep him. He has undoubtedly been credited for more defensive errors than anyone else on the current roster. But one must realize that many of these giveaways and mistakes resulted from other players’ blunders putting him in near-impossible situations. I am by no means an Ehrhoff fan-boy and would much rather see him go over Vlasic, but there are other circumstances that need to be factored in, especially regarding the Shark’s future.

Blake’s body will give out; it is only a matter of time. Sure he looks poised to play at least two more seasons, but he is aging, and a bad hit could end everything. Ehrhoff’s shot and above average skating ability mark him as the clear replacement. Granted, his accuracy, weak passes and inability to get the puck through traffic leaves a lot to be desired, but that can be taught with proper coaching. His awful +/- can easily be attributed to defensive pairings (he spent most of the season with Murray and Seminov), and when he was paired with Vlasic (under Wilson’s coaching) he lead the team in shots and had a high positive rating. What really needs to happen this season (assuming Ehrhoff remains a Shark) is Blake taking Ehrhoff under his wing and teaching him the proper times to be aggressive and how to get a shot through traffic. Once his offensive skills are honed, he will be one of the few offensive defenders in the league whose style of play does not sacrifice defense.

Finally, as I am sure you all know by now, Grier has found himself a new home. On Monday, he agreed to a one-year contract with the Buffalo Sabres (where he played before becoming a Shark).  This is not their first time attempting to reclaim him, as in 2006 he rejected an offer in favor of remaining a Shark. Hopefully, under a different team’s style of play, he can find a way to begin capitalizing on the countless breakaways he is able to generate, and his signing will not be overshadowed in New York newspapers by the Buffalo-native Kane being arrested for his assault and robbery on a taxi driver.


~ by mitchsolomon on August 11, 2009.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: