It’s nearly 6 AM on a Sunday Morning, way too early to be doing this shit…but here I am….
Let me just say, nothing irks me more than waking up Sunday and there being no milk for cereal. That’s why my dad is awesome. A restless marine, he’s usually awake long before I am on any given morning, and by the time I get up on a Sunday, he’s not only made breakfast, but he’s usually gone to go get milk of some sort and grocery shop. And while he said he’d be home early this morning from his weekend golf excursion to…one of the Carolinas (I don’t even recognize them as different states anymore. I mean…The Cane’s aren’t discriminatory as to geographic location…why should I?) He’s obviously not home early enough and instead of vanilla milk and frosted flakes, I’m having banana bread oatmeal, which I’ve been in better moods about.
Also the fact that I’m wearing a snuggie has got me a little…meh. After having a reversed fever of 97.7 Friday night, I’ve spent more time wrapped up in blankets than any sane/residing under the Arctic Circle person should in the end of July. If you live in Alaska, or are a Penguin (…a REAL penguin) you can have tons of snuggies. I’ll even buy them for you.
I swear to you, there WAS a point to all of this.
In my early wake up call to the bathroom, and battle the outer ear infection that’s been bothering me for the past forever, I tried to do what any normal person would do at 5 AM on a Sunday morning. Read The Hockey News on their Blackberry phone and try to lull themselves back to sleep with thoughts of the upcoming pre-season drifting through their head. This did nothing but really just get me excited, and start to think on some fairly controversial stuff, damn heresy when you talk to any Sabres fan.
The blog I read was titled “What if Thomas Vanek became an Oiler?” By John Grigg. MIND BLOWN. First off, we know why I’d read something like this, my two teams all lined up and ready to do some trades. I don’t know about anyone else, frankly, I don’t think anyone cares…but the Oilers and the Sabres are kind of like secret lovers when it comes to off season trades. There’s a lot of back and forth between these clubs and it really gets me excited. Not TOO much mind you…but there’s a trend of it. Seems that a lot of our best players at one time or another came from the Oilers (I’ve said this more than once…Jochen Hecht and our old pal Spacek were once Oilers…to bring up two)
And holy shit my coffee is bitter. What the hell is up with that. It’s because it’s 6 AM on a Sunday morning. The coffee gods are pissed at me for abusing their gift to mankind.
Anyway. This blog talked about a trade possibility that was rumored in 2007. This was before my time so I had no clue that there even were 30 teams in the NHL and one had manage to draft my favorite player (fuck yeah 89!). Edmonton wanted Vanek, and was planning to shell out for it. The big guy upstairs (not God…Darcy Regier) said that he’d eagerly match anything Lowe gave Vanek.
Well…Shame on Darcy.
Lowe was also, along with shelling out the Benjamins (or…What’s Canadian currency…Bordie’s? And my one Canadian reader leaves the room). They were prepared to shell out draft picks too. In fact, they were shelling out four…draft picks. First round draft picks.
Now since we’ve already broken the fuck barrier, allow me to make this concise. Hold the FUCKING phone.
You mean, first round draft picks from 08, 09, 10 and 2011? The phone…I’m holding it.
You mean…the first round draft pick that Buffalo got from Edmonton in 2008 ANYWAY to acquire Tyler Myers 12th Overall? (12th went from Edmonton, to LA, and then Buffalo traded 13th to LA for 12th). The Same draft year that Edmonton Acquired Eberle? The very draft year that between Sabres first pick at 12, and second pick at 26, two are currently playing in the NHL, Four have won Gold in the world Juniors with, 6, at least medaling in the WJC? Yeah!
Imagine if Buffalo could have retained their 13th pick…and had that 12th. MARVEL AT THE POSSIBILITIES. Jordan Eberle! On the Sabres! WHAT?!
What about…You mean, the first round draft pick in 2009, Where The Oilers selected 10th overall, that Swedish kid…with too many names and too many A’s in them (I know his name really is Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, I just like making fun of his name.) who admittedly I know almost nothing about, but garnered a lot of excitement! A silver and bronze WJC medalist. Averaging 81 points in 74 international games…Oh my god stop me before my heart gives out.
MARVEL AT THE POSSIBILITIES! WE LOVE SWEDES IN BUFFALO! WE DO! ESPECIALLY ONES THAT PLAY…AND PLAY WELL!
Developing that thing with our pick of Zack Kassian?! I can’t look!
But…no…don’t tell me…the first round pick in 2010. That could be ours too? Really? You tease! You lie! Nay Nay!
And what possibilities are open for 2011? Only time will tell what can be done with the struggling Oilers in the regular season…But when your scoring powerhouses of Alex Hemsky and Shawn Horcoff not producing (Admittedly, Hemmer was injured, but 13 goals and 23 assists for Horcoff in 77 games? Tottally unacceptable!) you can wonder if this will change, and how far they really will go. A solid D-squad holds promise, with a trigger happy first line of Gilbert and new recruit Ryan Whitney. The Loss of Sheldon Souray seems almost imminent come October (He wants out and he wants out NOW) but there’s a just as punishing and eager Theo Peckham in the wings ready to move up and take his place on the Physical line with Ladislav Smid. There’ve been changes in Edmonton…but not huge ones that would leave me to really expect a HUGE overhall that would result in a much higher draft pick.
So, say that this trade did go through, you can’t even tell me that this is something to even consider, right? I mean, Vanek would have added SO much to the front end of the Oilers that, well, let’s not even look at this. Sabre’s had no chance of getting Taylor Hall (*nervous/shamed laugh*) Right?
The Oilers wouldn’t be where they are without Dustin Penner. Chances are, without Physical Pens, those 12 and 10th overall picks would have been first overall (ish.) Penner, especially in 07 and 08 was a damn good player, a big body that you could not see around in front of the net. He was the best door (not window) in the west. Pens only came to be after Regier refused Lowe, and he took his money elsewhere (…to Anehiem) and I’m pretty much quoting the article from Grigg word for word here because I had no clue any of this went on, so bear with me.
Apparently, Vanek’s numbers aren’t SO great that Penner’s aren’t totally comparable. And…unless the guy is Ryan Miller and he’s in your net, one man can’t lead a hockey team to greatness on his own. The Austrian Savior is a long shot. Like…100 yards long shot.
So…Sabres lose one of our best forwards…Around 34 goals a season for the past 3 seasons (comparably, Penner was scoring about 24 goals a season, so you see how Vanek wouldn’t have helped the Oilers…MUCH)…Someone would undoubtedly fill in…we’d need another top 6 forward…and….
MARVEL AT THE POSSIBILITIES. ALL UR DRAFT PICKS ARE BELONGING TO ME.
My head hurts.
So…What did I think of this Trade, well, I thought…and thought…and thought…and thought a little more. And tried to find a comparison at 5 AM on a Sunday morning that would make sense…
Phil Kessel. Little Philly from Down the Lane. You make my life so easy sometimes.
In his two preceding seasons before the imminent trade that gave me two fist sized bald spots on either side of my head during a blustery preseason; Phil Kessel scored 19 and 36 goals respectively in addition to playing on the US World Championship team (the team did not do much, understandably…but he was there. For this feisty sniper…ONE first round draft pick and ONE second round draft pick
NOT FOUR FUCKING FIRST ROUNDERS.
I love that I broke the fuck barrier early.
I think what is attractive to me about this kind of opportunity, a low first round pick, is the ability that you can definitely build around it. While most of the time you don’t know until you get on the floor what you’ll end up walking away from a draft with, you can build with a first round pick, tailoring the pick to your game’s style. We can say that Vanek makes our teams style, but sometimes, I truly wonder how much ONE man really makes the style. I think that the flourishing embellished plays of Derek Roy, the close up defense, and the passing is what makes our style. For a team with the back checking power of our forwards…I wonder how Vanek’s eagle eye high on the blue line really works. And while only Lindy Ruff can say what he wants out of his players, it’s not impossible to see how any coach would love to have some new material on their hands, rookies with whom they can mold to perfect team players.
I know there’s a lot of Vano faithful out there, but looking at this trade, you can really find yourself lost in it’s possibilities. The offensive power of four first rounders can easily overwhelm that of one, especially when looking at what could have been expected from the oilers in late 2007. The oilers again fell short that season, granting them the 6th round pick of Sam Gagner. It was the start of a trend…
What do you think you would have done? John Grigg in the end of his post said that he’d make the trade in a heartbeat. Personally…I think I would have done the same thing.
Habs mittens to beg for commissions. Moneys is nice :)