Morning Free Association: Defense

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We’re one day away from the start of free agency. The market for left shooting defensemen was already going to be bad considering they’re a rare breed. But this year, teams will have to really overpay. I guess Mike Reilly will be happy about that.

When we last heard from Don Sweeney, he said two things about his defense: while in constant contact with Mike Reilly (an LD) they weren’t close to a deal and that he planned to aggressively pursue 1-2 D-men in UFA. Presumably he knows that they have to be left shooters or at least be capable of playing the left side. Perhaps that’s why the Boston Bruins and the Toronto Maple Leafs became trade partners yesterday trading the rights to RFA left defenseman JD Greenway (brother of Jordan) for future considerations.

I know that future considerations is equivalent in today’s hockey speak to a bag of pucks. However, Kirk Luedeke seems to think highly of the 6’5″ former Maine Black Bear’s skills.

Mark Divver seems to think this is a good get with some issues that can be corrected in with the Maine Mariners (ECHL) or the Providence Bruins (AHL).

Regardless, he was basically free. Can’t be much more low risk than that.

Still, Sweeney needs to fix the LD issue now. So who is out there?

Well, Alec Martinez isn’t. While nothing official yet, it looks like he’ll stay in Vegas.

Jamie Oleksiak is a Seattle Kraken. At 34, Niklas Hjarlmarsson is looking to retire in the desert.

The top two left shooting D on Cap Friendly’s site are both recent buyouts: Ryan Suter and Keith Yandle.

Keith Yandle is all but a Boston Bruins at this point since he’s been rumored to want to play for his hometown team for a while. And fans have always wanted that. I mean, it makes so much more sense now in the twilight of his career.

It will probably come down to term, At 34, Yandle is still an iron man when it comes to playing games: he’s (922) second behind Doug Jarvis (964) for most consecutive NHL games played. And he wants that distinction. He could do it this season. Besides that, Yandle still has power play effectiveness and could shore up what was lost when Torey Krug signed with St Louis.

Ryan Suter is a different case. Again, he can still eat up giant minutes at age 36 and play the power play. However, he is looking for term, reportedly 4 years. I’m not sure the Bruins would be interested in that much term.

There are many other names that are out there like Jake McCabe (BUF) and Derek Forbort (WPG).

It’s time for corrections:

Don Sweeney changed his mind and decided not to qualify Ondrej Kase and Nick Ritchie, making both of them UFAs.

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the german hammer

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Anonymous
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Anonymous

Pretty obvious now that Keith Yandle has never had any desire to play for the Bruins

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

OH FOR CRYING OUT LOUD CANES!! I LIKED YOU AND THEN YOU GO AND DO THIS?!?!

IntentionallyWidenberg
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IntentionallyWidenberg

The Habs were reportedly chasing that turd as well.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Ovie (short for overpaid) signs for 5 years $45+ MILLION. Wow. No hometown discount there

IntentionallyWidenberg
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IntentionallyWidenberg

So the AAV on that is something like $9.5M? I mean, if I were the Caps, I’d probably pay that. That team still revolves around him.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Also, what the hell is going on in Philly? Were things that bad?
Blackhawks also retooling like crazy… just traded for MAF

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

We’ll see if MAF actually ends up playing for Chicago. He said he’s going to go over it with his family. Retirement could be a possibility. Also poor guy found out he was traded from seeing it on Twitter.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Also poor guy found out he was traded from seeing it on Twitter.

Brutal

Anonymous
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Anonymous

On the bargain side of left defensemen, there’s Luca Sbisa. Veteran left d at $750 – 800K per season over the last two seasons. Big body, minute eater….. the Bruins need depth.

The London Bear
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The London Bear

Oh that’s the Swiss guy. I’ve seen a bit of him in the world championships – a while ago, mind. Only 31, should have a few years left.

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

Moring all. Hope everyone isn’t suffering too much with the poor air quality. I am very much this tweet:

The London Bear
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The London Bear

Haha! Yeah a lot of the sports that rely on judges’ scores do that to me.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Speaking of, was Leah excited to see GB win bronze in gymnastics?

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

Anonymous medals!

The London Bear
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The London Bear

Very! She watched the whole thing. The coverage was heavily focused on the Americans and Russians, but it must be hard to direct a broadcast like that – I think she said there were four apparatus going on at the same time.

There’s a kids TV show she loves called Gym Stars that follows a group of up-and-coming athletes hoping to get into the Olympic team and one of those was in the squad who just won the bronze, so she loved that!

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

That’s one of the things that amazes me about gymnastics and the level of concentration they have. I can’t imagine trying to do my event while there’s so much other stuff going on like music for floor routines or people cheering vaults, etc.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Same! If someone distracts me, I just lose half an hour trying to remember what I was doing! Imagine, people are cheering for other events around you….NOOO!!!!

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

Haha! I’m very much the same! I’d be hanging on the uneven bars looking around like “wait, what happened? I wanna see!”

The London Bear
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The London Bear

Morning.

Shame things didn’t work out with Kase. I was quite surprised when it was reported he had been made a qualifying offer.

Yandle was on the Cup-winning Bruins side I assembled in NHL 16 on the Playstation a few years ago, so that’s a good omen!

Two days of work left after today is done, then very sporadic working in August. Looking forward to a break.

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

London Bear for GM!

IntentionallyWidenberg
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IntentionallyWidenberg

Oh, are we doing the ‘Yandle to the Bruins’ dance again? It seems like every other year we go through this.
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I’ll believe it when I see it.

Satan 81's Sister
Editor
Satan 81's Sister

The only certainties in life: death, taxes, and Yandle to the Bruins rumors.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

The rumor mill!!! It’s been churning out Yandle to the Bs forever!!! Probably won’t happen til he’s 42.

Anonymous
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Anonymous

Good morning!
Boy, the Kase thing hurts. Ah well, let’s move on to the D. Yandle would be great, should have been done ages ago. There are some guys further down the list that might suffice. Kulikov has been on my radar for some time. On the right side, I feel Cody Ceci could replace Kevan Miller. Not quite as tough, but a better skater. The Sweenius will know what to do… right?
Four more days of work for Jo!!!! We’re both pretty tired of living apart during the week. Friday she’s coming to Monrovia to stay!! She pointed out that we already have more friends here than we ever had in CT…..

Satan 81's Sister
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Satan 81's Sister

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IntentionallyWidenberg
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IntentionallyWidenberg

Boy, the Kase thing hurts.

Yeah, they gave up a lot to dump a bad contract and get a middle-six guy as a post-season rental. But, you aren’t going to get that pick back, so the cost is already sunk, and you have to make the best decision moving forward.
And that decision is to move (on from) the forward. He’s not likely to suddenly turn into a threat to Craig Smith’s roster spot.