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Why "star" laidened teams rarely win the Stanley Cup


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#1 ABNuck

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 07:45 AM

With Minny picking up both Parise and Suter, some have wondered if they are now a stacked team. Well in reality even a stacked team isn't necessarily the team to beat. We only need look at the 2000-2002 Rangers stacked team when they brought in a whole hockey sock full of superstars (Messier, Fleury, Lindros, Bure, Kovalev, Rucinsky, Holik etc.) and failed to even make the playoffs. But this is the Cap-era...so let's break it down capwise (the top player's salaries are the combined figure of the highest paid 6 forwards, 4 dmen and starting goalie):
2009-10 Champs (Chicago)
Top player's Salaries: 43.725m
Players making 6.0m and above: 1 (Campbell)
2010-11 Champs (Boston)
Top player's Salaries: 44.455m
Players making 6.0m and above: 1 (Chara)
2011-12 Champs (LA)
Top player's Salaries: 47.607m
Players making 6.0m and above: 2 (Doughty, Kopitar)

2012-13 Minnesota Team
Top player's Salaries: 51.755m
Players making 6.0m and above: 5 (Parise, Suter, Heatley, Koivu, Backstrom)

2012-13 Vancouver Team
Top player's Salaries: 47.85m
Players making 6.0m and above: 2 (Sedins)

It has been stated over and over again...star-laidened teams don't win Cups, teams with depth win Cups. Not to say that Minny won't have a good year, just saying that we, with our deep team, should not be all that concerned with them.
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#2 CanucksFanMike

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 07:52 AM

I like our depth... the only thing that needs to happen is come playoff time all our players need to be playing well just like how all four lines for the Kings were producing offence
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#3 Ghostsof1915

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 08:15 AM

I like our depth... the only thing that needs to happen is come playoff time all our players need to be playing well just like how all four lines for the Kings were producing offence


Exactly. That's why trading away the farm to try and land Weber may not be the best move. I love Weber as a player, and would love to see him playing here. But not at the price of sacrificing our future and depth for one cup run.
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#4 Langdon Algur

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 08:25 AM

It's funny how you stoped just before the years Pittsburgh and Detroit won the cup, just saying

also each of those teams you mentioned had one at least one all-star level Dman, we may have that already in Edler (or even Hamhuis or Garrison) but if none of our current D steps up to that level this is something the team needs to address.
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#5 biznasty

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 09:07 AM

You can be a star and not make 6 Mill. I would say Kane, Towes, Byfuglien, Keith, Niemmi all played like all stars in Chicago's run.
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#6 TimberWolf

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 09:22 AM

Chicago had a glut of stars, they were just a year off the big paydays while still on their young deals.

Pens had a ton of stars, Detroit had a bunch that take discounts. The past dynasties were star powered, Rangers beat us by buying a cup.

Edited by TimberWolf, 06 July 2012 - 09:22 AM.

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#7 etsen3

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 10:00 AM

I agree that depth is very important, but those two teams has stars. Just because you're making less than 6 mil doesn't mean you're not a star. For example Chicago has Toews, Kane, Keith, Seabrook, and Hossa. Also you conveniently left out Detroit and Pittsburgh, two of the most stacked (AND deep) teams in the league who won the Cup.
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#8 suolucidir

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 10:07 AM

This is a salary argument, not a star power argument. Boston might have been the most balanced in that regard, but all the rest had serious talent that wasn't being paid to their ability at the time. This is a known factor, which is why MG is trying to have some young talent in our lineup. Unfortunately we have no stars out performing their ELC's right now, and that's unlikely to change. Luckily we do have a lot of journeymen and veterans who are paid well under their market value.
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#9 elvis15

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 10:18 AM

It's funny how you stoped just before the years Pittsburgh and Detroit won the cup, just saying

also each of those teams you mentioned had one at least one all-star level Dman, we may have that already in Edler (or even Hamhuis or Garrison) but if none of our current D steps up to that level this is something the team needs to address.

^This.

Datsyuk, Lidstrom, Rafalski all $6M and up, and Zetterburg on a value contract for Detroit. Crosby for Pitts with Gonchar and Fluery on $5M deals, Guerin at $4.5M and Malkin still on his ELC.

You can be a star and not make 6 Mill. I would say Kane, Towes, Byfuglien, Keith, Niemmi all played like all stars in Chicago's run.

The point that should be made is not that teams don't win with superstars, it's that they win with stars that aren't being paid massive contracts yet. In a cap world you have to balance payroll and talent and it helps if your getting contributions from both support players and young prospects coming into your system.

Edited by elvis15, 06 July 2012 - 10:25 AM.

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#10 Venom52

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 10:59 AM

Well obviously cap management is important when building a cup contending team, but for most of those teams, they'd have players over 6m, but they are signed to long term deals (Richards, Carter, Hossa, Keith, etc)
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#11 7thMan

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 01:05 PM

The 2007-08 Red Wings had Lidstrom (7.6), Datsyuk (6.7) and Rafalski (6). That was only $50 million as opposed to the $70 million it is, now.
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#12 avelanch

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 01:10 PM

because brett hull is a cheater; that's why.
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#13 ABNuck

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 01:53 PM

Very good points made by all above, but some of your arguments do support what I was trying to imply. Just like some of the stars on those other teams being paid less than their production worth, we essentially have that too with most of our stars taking the homer discount. However Minny cannot say the same thing. Will Heatley and Parise perform this year as 7.0mil plus players...I doubt it. And if we went out and got Weber at 8mil would that guarantee us a Cup more than what we have now? Again, I doubt it. My point was that we have no need to fear Minny (yet, anyways). No more so than we do Edmonton who really DOES have a bunch of future stars currently underpaid compared to their worth. I think Minny will finish second in the NW with us first again. But I also feel that this year is the pivotal year for GMMG and company. If we want to continue our dominance of the NW Div (5 straight titles) and therefore guarantee us some extra hockey in April...we will need to make some moves coming up next off-season. And sadly, in this F/A market we've seen thus far, we might actually HAVE to lay out some big coin to keep pace with team's like the Wild and the Oil (who will be handing out some star-worthy contracts soon). Maybe we'll see a first line in a couple of years of Sedin-Sedin Eberle (or Hall)? Then soon after it might be Jensen-Kesler-Eberle (or Hall)...who knows?

Edited by ABNuck, 06 July 2012 - 01:55 PM.

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#14 Moonshinefe

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 03:09 PM

You can be a star and not make 6 Mill. I would say Kane, Towes, Byfuglien, Keith, Niemmi all played like all stars in Chicago's run.


Yeah I'm with you there, I think Chicago had a pretty damn stacked team the year they won. It's just a lot of their players weren't established that well yet and didn't make the big bucks.
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#15 Jaku

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 05:14 PM

I like our depth... the only thing that needs to happen is come playoff time all our players need to be playing well just like how all four lines for the Kings were producing offence


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#16 ajhockey

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 08:42 PM

What I learned from your post is that teams that overpay free agents don't win the Cup. We don't hand out ridiculously overpaying deals to over-hyped Free-Agents.
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#17 Bieksa's Quote

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Posted 06 July 2012 - 11:23 PM

This is a salary argument, not a star power argument. Boston might have been the most balanced in that regard, but all the rest had serious talent that wasn't being paid to their ability at the time. This is a known factor, which is why MG is trying to have some young talent in our lineup. Unfortunately we have no stars out performing their ELC's right now, and that's unlikely to change. Luckily we do have a lot of journeymen and veterans who are paid well under their market value.


This.
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#18 hockeyfan87

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 04:19 AM

You can't cherry pick the Rangers from pre-lockout and fail to mention who was actually winning Stanley Cups back then. It was star laden teams like Dallas, Detroit, Colorado, New Jersey who had more than three times the payroll of the Canucks.

Sakic, Forsberg, Blake, Roy, Foote, Hedjuk - Colorado

Modano, Hatcher, Hull, Belfour - Dallas

Yzerman, Federov, Lidstrom, Shanahan - Detroit

Brodeur, Niedermayer, Stevens - New Jersey

Richards, Lecavalier, Khabibulin, - Tampa Bay

Those were the Stanley Cup winners from '95-'04. A small number of teams who were stacked with top end talent.

If you want to make a point you can't ignore information which refutes the point you were making. A lot of the teams since the lockout that have won Cups had players on rookie salaries (e.g. Blackhawks, Ducks) which you fail to mention.

Arguably the most dominate win since the end of the lockout were the Duck in '07 who had Pronger, Niedermayer, a fromer Conn Smythe winner in Gigeure, and a young group of talented forwards supplemented by Mcdonald, Selanne, Pahlsson, etc. They didn't have much depth if any on defense but it didn't play much of a factor when they were able to have either Pronger or Niedermayer on the ice at all times.

You also equate salaries with a players star power, which is not necessarily always the case. Luongo, Kesler both have under 6 m cap hits and are considered stars league wide. Same with players like Getzlaf, Perry, Tavares, Kesler, etc.

The salary cap has increased so dramatically year to year that comparing one year to another is also difficult.

Do I think Minnesota is going to win a cup anytime soon? Nope but they definitely improved and it's an exciting time for their franchise. Suter is completely overrated and he will be exposed for his true ability on a weaker team. Parise is a star player though.

Having top end talent is a necessity to win cups, we have it, but the real question is for how much longer.
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#19 Losing With Pride

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 07:29 AM

BUT the Oilers had Gretzky, Messier, Kurri, Fuhr, Anderson, and so on and so forth.
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#20 SterlingArcher

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 09:28 AM

I thought the answer was "cause this isn't the NBA"
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#21 Phil_314

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 10:54 AM

"Star" or not, all that really matters at the end of the day is how the play happens on the ice. Of course, the odds to succeed SHOULD improve when the team has the big name chips, but if the team (and I use that to mean a cohesive group) doesn't gel, nor does it fire on all cylinders then that's when expectations fall short.

Think about it-- 2010 Russian Olympic men's hockey team (I believe it was 2010, correct me if I'm wrong), the team had all the marquee pieces on its roster: Datsyuk, Malkin, Ovechkin, Kovalchuk, Semin, Gonchar, Radulov... yet because that team didn't pass but tried to do everything individually that's when the team falls apart and fails. Conversely, look at the Spanish men's soccer team: tiki taka (the Spanish soccer tactic) involves skilled players working in groups to make plays with high levels of cohesion and high pass success rates that allow them to quickly penetrate the opposition's defense. Success comes as a group, and failure comes when they fail to come together as a group.

P.S. salaries do not define the "star" status (remember Scott Gomez and Wade Redden?), so as mentioned above the star argument should be made based upon the player's own ability to elevate play when it matters most (since we're talking playoffs here). e.g. Ruslan Fedotenko all those years back in 03-04 season, when his scoring stepped up and brought the team success. Fernando Pisani in the Oilers' run, they were stars, for the time that they were contributing, even though they didn't earn the big bucks; this year, guys like Trevor Lewis and Bryce Salvador come to mind.
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#22 DownUndaCanuck

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 11:01 AM

This is only a recent trend. Even look at the New Jersey Devils, particularly their defence - not one star on the blueline, and only Kovalchuk and Parise up front who are bonified NHL stars (all do respect to Elias but he's past his prime).

The reason for their success is solid team coaching and everyone playing well, from 1st liner to 3rd pair defenceman. Everyone bands together much tighter without a true star to carry them, as did the Devils' defence last playoffs against some high-powered offences.

As for the LA Kings, I would say they're ripe with stars who were just underperforming until the playoffs. In my mind, Kopitar, Doughty and Quick are NHL stars, while guys like Carter, Richards, Brown and Mitchell are more of the subtle hard-working stars similar to the Bruins team who won the Cup.

All you need is the perfect mix of hard-workers to skilled superstars nowadays, and I feel the Canucks have that with our top-6 mostly powerforwards apart from the only 2 superstars in the Sedins. Minnesota still lacks these hard working powerforwards and has too much skill right now.
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#23 Zamboni_14

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 11:21 AM

would this thread exist if the Nucks magically landed both players? no

Obviously landing two major star players doesn't mean you have a walking path to the cup. You still need for those players to work as a team AND you'll still need some "puck luck" along the way (every team benefits from that.. or at least benefits from not having "bad" puck luck.)

Not to derail the thread, but many of you fail to understand the significance of those two signings.
- Parisie will make those around him better because those other players should have more room to do things
- Suter should also make those around him better, and with a defensive core that is still very young, this will help confidence
- it proves that Pitt and Detroit don't have the market cornered on players that "want to win the cup." Actually this offseason is probably going to signal the end to Detroit being one of the top teams (unless they suddenly find some diamonds late in the draft.)
- These two players agree that our prospect crop is going to make us a contender in the next 5 years (but that's also going along with the thinking that they wanted to "just win")
- This current ownership group isn't afraid to actually spend money
- This is the biggest FA signing in our state's history of sports (no MN team has ever landed the "big fish" FA players that could have gone elsewhere.)

ok but back on topic a bit... let's say we do go with the OP thinking. Yes they rarely win a cup... just like the 8th seeded team rarely wins the cup... but it has happened, so don't just think we're only "1 step" better and will be a doormat for whoever we play in the playoffs.
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#24 hockeyfan87

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 01:08 PM

would this thread exist if the Nucks magically landed both players? no

Obviously landing two major star players doesn't mean you have a walking path to the cup. You still need for those players to work as a team AND you'll still need some "puck luck" along the way (every team benefits from that.. or at least benefits from not having "bad" puck luck.)

Not to derail the thread, but many of you fail to understand the significance of those two signings.
- Parisie will make those around him better because those other players should have more room to do things
- Suter should also make those around him better, and with a defensive core that is still very young, this will help confidence
- it proves that Pitt and Detroit don't have the market cornered on players that "want to win the cup." Actually this offseason is probably going to signal the end to Detroit being one of the top teams (unless they suddenly find some diamonds late in the draft.)
- These two players agree that our prospect crop is going to make us a contender in the next 5 years (but that's also going along with the thinking that they wanted to "just win")
- This current ownership group isn't afraid to actually spend money
- This is the biggest FA signing in our state's history of sports (no MN team has ever landed the "big fish" FA players that could have gone elsewhere.)

ok but back on topic a bit... let's say we do go with the OP thinking. Yes they rarely win a cup... just like the 8th seeded team rarely wins the cup... but it has happened, so don't just think we're only "1 step" better and will be a doormat for whoever we play in the playoffs.


I think you're getting the wrong impression from Canuck fans here. It was an exciting and huge moment getting the two top UFAs for Minnesota. They improved greatly and have a lot of young top end prospects in the system from what I understand so there will be a certain level of expectation. Add to that they were the top team in the league for the first 20 games last year and experienced a significant amount of injuries in the last half of the season and people will have much higher expectations for the team.

All that being said this level of commitment from ownership hasn't been constant. I read the letter that was posted on the Wild website from the owner earlier this week after the signings and can't say I'm really impressed. To have a franchise be successful for an ongoing basis the owner needs to be committed 100%, not just dip his toes in the water when he can make a big splash. Teams like Buffalo and Tampa Bay have made huge off season splashes in recent years and have followed it up with disappointing seasons. I don't think this will be the case here, Minnesota is a better hockey market than those teams I mentioned, but expectations for the franchise have to be tempered.

Minnesota needs to just make the first step of playing in playoffs, and yes in my opinion (trying to be objective) Minnesota is still several moves away from make it two rounds or more in the playoffs. Even competing for the Cup five years from now is unlikely given the young talent in the northwest division on opposing teams. Minnesota took a huge step forward but they won't suddenly be Cup contenders either.
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#25 Zamboni_14

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 03:12 PM

I think you're getting the wrong impression from Canuck fans here. It was an exciting and huge moment getting the two top UFAs for Minnesota. They improved greatly and have a lot of young top end prospects in the system from what I understand so there will be a certain level of expectation. Add to that they were the top team in the league for the first 20 games last year and experienced a significant amount of injuries in the last half of the season and people will have much higher expectations for the team.

All that being said this level of commitment from ownership hasn't been constant. I read the letter that was posted on the Wild website from the owner earlier this week after the signings and can't say I'm really impressed. To have a franchise be successful for an ongoing basis the owner needs to be committed 100%, not just dip his toes in the water when he can make a big splash. Teams like Buffalo and Tampa Bay have made huge off season splashes in recent years and have followed it up with disappointing seasons. I don't think this will be the case here, Minnesota is a better hockey market than those teams I mentioned, but expectations for the franchise have to be tempered.

Minnesota needs to just make the first step of playing in playoffs, and yes in my opinion (trying to be objective) Minnesota is still several moves away from make it two rounds or more in the playoffs. Even competing for the Cup five years from now is unlikely given the young talent in the northwest division on opposing teams. Minnesota took a huge step forward but they won't suddenly be Cup contenders either.


how else am I supposed to take it when people were gushing over trying to get either Parisie or Suter a few months ago, and now suddenly people are saying; "oh well he'll be exposed as not being good" or other remarks making it sound like they didn't want to see either player land in Vancouver?

Actually if you look at the recent track record of the Wild front office... they traded away their only "top" player to San Jose... then they traded another "top" player to San Jose.. and just to make sure they weren't done they unloaded yet another defenceman that's been around almost since day 1. You think those aren't bold moves? And you know it's not just Fletcher making the calls on these moves either... they need an owner saying "yes" to spending all of this money. Now I'm not saying getting the top FA players will be the "norm" from now on, but what I can say is that you can't just "assume" the Wild won't go after big name guy and have a shot at them if they have cap space (and that those players won't seriously consider coming to MN.)

I do agree that Wild fans (like me) shouldn't just assume that we are a lock for a top 4 seed... but at the same time, I think this is the first time Wild fans can honestly say; "hey, crazier things have happened." And that's because this team is (on paper) better than the team that made their run to the WCF (and yes they got hot at the right time and caught teams with their guards down.)
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#26 bd71

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 03:31 PM

Anyone else concerned that the Kings have their entire team locked up next year (and core long term) and still have almost $9M in cap space? They could be a cap era dynasty. Especially if they get a break and have a delayed season. That to me is how you build a team. Long and slow with homegrown prospects then add some big names to the mix.
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#27 Zamboni_14

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 03:38 PM

Anyone else concerned that the Kings have their entire team locked up next year (and core long term) and still have almost $9M in cap space? They could be a cap era dynasty. Especially if they get a break and have a delayed season. That to me is how you build a team. Long and slow with homegrown prospects then add some big names to the mix.

no because 8th seeded teams rarely win the cup :bigblush:
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#28 Caboose

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Posted 07 July 2012 - 03:40 PM

Anyone else concerned that the Kings have their entire team locked up next year (and core long term) and still have almost $9M in cap space? They could be a cap era dynasty. Especially if they get a break and have a delayed season. That to me is how you build a team. Long and slow with homegrown prospects then add some big names to the mix.


This model is proven to win cups.

Pittsburgh: In the crapper for years, managed to draft players such as Crosby, Malkin etc.

Chicago: Drafted Kane, Toews, that team could barely get 3000 people to the games before recently.
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#29 hockeyfan87

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 02:12 AM

how else am I supposed to take it when people were gushing over trying to get either Parisie or Suter a few months ago, and now suddenly people are saying; "oh well he'll be exposed as not being good" or other remarks making it sound like they didn't want to see either player land in Vancouver?

Actually if you look at the recent track record of the Wild front office... they traded away their only "top" player to San Jose... then they traded another "top" player to San Jose.. and just to make sure they weren't done they unloaded yet another defenceman that's been around almost since day 1. You think those aren't bold moves? And you know it's not just Fletcher making the calls on these moves either... they need an owner saying "yes" to spending all of this money. Now I'm not saying getting the top FA players will be the "norm" from now on, but what I can say is that you can't just "assume" the Wild won't go after big name guy and have a shot at them if they have cap space (and that those players won't seriously consider coming to MN.)

I do agree that Wild fans (like me) shouldn't just assume that we are a lock for a top 4 seed... but at the same time, I think this is the first time Wild fans can honestly say; "hey, crazier things have happened." And that's because this team is (on paper) better than the team that made their run to the WCF (and yes they got hot at the right time and caught teams with their guards down.)


The Vancouver Canucks are the big thing here so there are a lot of dumb fans that get sucked in and are hypocritical. That being said I'm sure its the same in Minnesota for the Vikings. Fans everywhere want one player, then when he goes elsewhere do a 180 and say things like he will be exposed.

To be honest though I think it's an argument that has some merit. If Parise was on the Canucks he would most likely play on the second line with Booth and Kesler, thus avoiding the top shutdown D pair on the other team. Nashville is a truly remarkable franchise with does a lot with very little, they used unwanted pieces from other teams to continually be a competitive team. How much did Suter benefit from playing there alongside Weber? I think quite a bit.

Parise and Suter will be the go to guys on the Wild. Suter is going to be playing with a worse defensive partner on a team that isn't as good defensively. He's an elite puck mover though and he will have better players in Parise, Koivu, and Heatley to pass to than he did in Nashville. Parise I think will remain constant and there won't be any drop off.

You can call getting Heatley a bold move, which maybe it was, but it wasn't a good one. Heatley is a poor playoff performer, has brain damage based on the size of his pupils, and is a guy who lacks integrity. One of my least favourite NHL players.

Despite what I've said I'm not trying to rain on Minnesota's parade, they are a much better team, I don't remember the last time one team made such a big splash in free agency. Gomez and Drury going to the Rangers a few years back comes to mind but I can't see this turning out like that.
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#30 Bodee

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 07:32 AM

You can be a star and not make 6 Mill. I would say Kane, Towes, Byfuglien, Keith, Niemmi all played like all stars in Chicago's run.


As I recall Chicago had quite a few "stars"

Byfuglien, Kane, Campbell, Hossa, Keith, Ladd, Seabrook, Sharp, Toews, Versteeg. Niemi, Brouwer,



I think the OP is mixing up stars with high salaries...........that's like saying Burrows is not a star.

Edited by Bodee, 08 July 2012 - 07:41 AM.

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