- What should be recognized is that we have one less headache than we did yesterday morning, and that headache is named Joffrey Lupul. Nothing against the person or the player, but specifically trying to hit a good contract amount and length was going to be a real pain. Now we only have four RFA headaches: Andy McDonald, Ilya Bryzgalov, Vitaly Vishnevski, and Chris Kunitz.
- Don’t get me wrong. I feel horrible for Edmonton fans, who rightfully feel snubbed by their franchise player. Don’t think I haven’t felt similar pain, though. Remember when Paul Kariya decided to take a $1.2 M deal from the Avalanche rather than take $8 - $9 M to stay a Duck? That also occurred soon after a G7 loss, and it felt then like we were giving Colorado another Cup. The only differences, really, are that we didn’t get anything for Kariya and that we still have to pay Pronger a reasonable salary.
- So now it becomes an internal struggle for good ol’ #44 with Chris "don’t piss me off or I’ll make you trade me tomorrow" Pronger and Rob "hey, my brother’s pretty good too" Niedermayer? Thank goodness we didn’t make out in the Arnott sweepstakes.
- Randy Carlyle has a tough decision to make also: should he pursue a 6th defenseman or are those minutes likely to be easy enough for him to play them himself? Or should the Ducks pursue some sort of radio contest where a lucky Anaheim fan gets the 6th d-spot?
- It will feel very weird to be ‘better on paper’ than a lot of teams. I might have to go to sports self-esteem classes to handle writing about a team that is actually expected to be a force on the ice. I've spent my whole career commenting on underdogs, and am woefully ill-prepared for this 'powerhouse' status.
A few extra notes:
By Earl Sleek