Wednesday, June 23, 2004

Kickin' the tires on a slightly used Hasek!

The Senators are getting down to the nitty gritty details of bringing Domenic Hasek into the Sens goal. Word out of Ottawa has it that the Sens are just awaiting a clean bill of health before signing the Dominator, a move which apparently set the annual NHL goaltender carousel in motion.

Hasek is asking for between 2.5 million and 4 million dollars a year, plus a 2 million dollar bonus should the Dominator lead the team to a Stanley Cup. Pretty hefty numbers for a guy that only managed to play 14 games last year before hanging up his skates for the year. But it is less than he was making in Detroit, an arrival that seemed to set that team back in their plans to win Stanley. Hasek, who injured a groin while with the Wings, is in the process of testing for the Sens doctors to show that his chronic groin difficulties are a thing of the past. The upside of a Hasek signing is that he has something to prove having been a bust his last visit in Detroit. The downside are some well documented tendencies to be a disruptive influence should things not go well for the Dominator. He’s been known to look after Dom first, should things go south for him, leaving the team in the lurch at a key time. It’s something the Sens should keep in mind, while they bounce the numbers off the accounting department. However, time is apparently of the essence, should they delay too long in getting Hasek on a dotted line there is the chance the mercurial goaltender may look to other sutiors. The other point to sign him quickly is that it then gives the Sens a bargaining chip in the form of Lalime at this weekends amateur draft.

Should Hasek sign with the Sens, it’s expected that Patrick Lalime will be moved possibly to Broadway where the Rangers have apparently expressed occasional interest in his status.

Other goaltenders rumoured to be possibly filing change of address cards are Chris Osgood in St. Louis, Montreal’s Mathieu Garon and Dan Cloutier in Vancouver. Although the Canucks’ may have put a bit of cold water on that rumour today, with an offer sheet provided to Cloutier, who will most likely instead go to arbitration. That more than anything else, will probably determine if he’s to remain a Canuck. Should he leave Vancouver, the Rangers once again appear on the radar screen apparently waiting to see how he fares on the coast.

Of course should the league and its players not reach a labour agreement soon, it will all be a tedious exercise in math. Without a contract and some hockey to play in September any numbers passed around are purely of the Monopoly version.

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