Monday, March 08, 2004

Deadline looms!

Well it's kind of hard to try and focus back on hockey after the mess at GM place Monday night, but Deadline day is always a hotly debated day for the NHL. So we'll give it our shot.

Calgary seems to be making some serious moves to bolster their lineup as they strive to make the playoffs for the first time in eight years. Adding Chris Simon will bolster their squad, adding some toughness in a division that seems on the brink of some kind of mob war. Simon who had a pretty impressive debut with the Flames will apparently be used as a shotgun rider for Flames star Jarome Iginla, a brilliant move by the Flames. Simon's size and toughness should finally free up some room for Iginla to get some points in the playoffs. Earlier today the Flames added winger Marcus Nillson to their roster, the former Florida Panther now yet another important piece of the Flames puzzle.

The Panthers continued on with their moves by sending Valeri Bure to the Dallas Stars, adding some scoring to the Stars lineup as they prepare for the playoffs.

Bobby Clarke continued to tinker with his lineup, taking time out from whining about goons from Ottawa, to bring Vladamir Malakhov into the fold, Shoring up his defence and giving Sean Burke one more body to lean on should things get hectic in front of the Flyer net.

Yapping Matthew Barnaby will take his vocabulary and that chip on his shoulder to Colorado joining the Avalanche (God help us should the Avs and Canucks meet in the playoffs!), the Avs seemingly answering the Flames move of picking Simon up Saturday.

Anson Carter packs up the U haul again, this time he's off to Los Angeles to shore up the scoring for the Kings, who have suffered far too many injuries this season to remain a contender, yet they plan on giving it a shot.

Still out there apparently are some gems. Is Chris Pronger on the block? Some say yes, some say no. Reports have it that Pronger would like to go to a contender, possibly Ottawa, though his salary should scare off even the Sens, despite their sudden willingness to spend money.

Martin Rucinscky is also on the block, San Jose or Vancouver a possibility for him, though what Vancouver does after tonight is up for question. The Capitals who must be down to offering up pucks and Zambonis are still floating Olaf Kolzig and Brendan Witt's names, both may end up in Ottawa, Witt's name not a surprise but Kolzig to Ottawa is a new development.

Mark Messier's name makes the rounds, incredibly one rumour linking him to Vancouver again, don't expect that to happen. In fact, Messier says if he were dealt at all to any team , he probably wouldn't report.

As the deadline ticks closer and closer, the rumours get hotter and hotter. Will Philadelphia, Toronto Ottawa, Detroit, Dallas and Colorado continue to load up, do any of them still have room? The answers arrive shortly, it all begins at 9 am eastern, 6 am on the West Coast. By noon hour Pacific, the landscape of the contenders for the Stanley Cup could be significantly different. This is a deadline like no other, teams seem to be willing to pony up the cash for a chance at the Stanley Cup. With the ever increasing impression that there will be no hockey at all next year, many teams are looking at this season as the one where a Stanley Cup challenge has to happen. Television lives for Trading day, Sportsnet, TSN, the Score all have Deadline day shows planned, the sports radio stations will cover the events completely, no rumour will go unheard. Six hours on Tuesday, they could dictate which teams are contenders or pretenders.

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