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Panthers Trade with Phoenix II .... Steve Reinprecht Signs 3-Year Deal ... Stefan Meyer to the Desert Dogs

Reinprecht Pantherland is all a-Twitter this morning after the team sent out a cryptic message that big news is coming soon.

The big news: Drumroll....

Florida trades Stefan Meyer to Phoenix in exchange for the negotiating rights to center Steve Reinprecht, a pending free agent. The Panthers then signed Reinprecht to a three-year deal.

''He's a speed guy and we wanted to increase our overall team speed,'' acting GM Randy Sexton said on a conference call. ''Nathan Horton did a good job for us at center last year, but that was an experiment. We had mixed results. Rein2 He's a shooter, not really a set-up guy. We needed another center to go along with Stephen [Weiss]. He's a bonafide NHL center and will help guys like Horton, Frolik and Cory Stillman. He'll get them the puck.''

Reinprecht, 33, has been with the Coyotes for parts of the past four seasons. He scored 14 goals with 27 assists for the Yotes last season. In 552 career games, he has 120 goals and 214 assists. He's also a career plus-24.

The Panthers aren't going to give out the numbers, but I hear he signed for an average of just over $2 million over the course of the deal.

"We've upgraded our team,'' Sexton said, adding that Keith Ballard had nothing but good things to say about Reinprecht. ''He adds a lot of what we need. We feel strongly that he's going to be able to help us.''

According to Sexton, the deal with Phoenix was completed on Thursday, with the Panthers working with Reinprecht's agent last night to get the contract done.

Reinprecht is vacationing off the coast of Spain but should be back within cellphone range early next week.


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An in-house signing, ie Booth? I don't know how free agent signings work via trade and negotiation rights and all that before July 1st, so you gotta think it's Booth, no?

It's Booth.

Dreger is reporting its a trade for Reinprecht and that he's signed a 3 yr deal with FL.

TSN says we traded for Steven Reinprecht from the Coyotes and signed him for 3 years!!! Great move Panthers!

Seriously? Reinprecht? Awesome, another 2nd\3rd line center who's never broken the 20 goal mark... I know we need a center, but I'm worried about what we traded...

Stefan Meyer - a perennial AHLer who wasn't going to make the Panthers ahead of Kreps and Matthias. We gave up nothing basically in return for a bona fide NHL playmaker. Reinprecht isn't going to score a ton of goals, but if he can set up Horton or Frolik with his playmaking skills those guys will do the scoring.

Panthers got a center to win faceoffs and a good character guy. Good move in getting a center. As Big Slap Shot Bob says we gave up a AHL player for a center.

Fair enough, BSSB and Bo. Hearing we only gave up a "prospect" is certainly a little comforting. Not exactly the move I was hoping for, but it looks like Sexton is doing what he can to show that he wants\deserves the full time gig.

Rhino is a good player to have on your team. As Bo said, he's a good character guy (though his face-off skill is arguable...)

He will be missed in the Phoenix dressing room and an asset to the Panthers to provide some guidance to their younger players.

I've said it before and from what GR has said, the next 2 weeks are Sexton's audition for the GM job. Now let's see what he does with Bouw's rights and the draft...

I thought I read Rhino's face-off % was above 50%? That's pretty decent.

Big Slap Shot Bob,

His FO% last season was 46.3% which, while not great, is not bad for a Coyotes team that was pretty pathetic on faceoffs last season.

Giving up Meyer doesn't affect us at all. He blows. Sexton saying that this guy we got is going to be our 2nd line center bothers me a lot. This def means we will not go after a top line center. Sorry boys but Weiss is a 2nd line center at best. Please don't argue and make yourself look stupid because he's not a 1st line center.

Please I hope they smarten up and trade Vokoun away and sign Anderson so we can save some money and spend it on a top winger. PLEASE!!!! SMARTEN UP!


His FO was 50% the year before - that's not bad. Only Weiss would be better on the Panthers. Still a good move overall.

I think the Panthers are just getting started Brian from CT. The lines will be 1A/1B so the whole 1st line center thing doesn't really matter if we have 2 solid, scoring lines. We're never going to sign a Class A free agent, so unless we have one develop through the draft this kind of move compliments what we have and what we need.

If George is correct, Steve Reinprecht will be earning the same amount of money next year with us as he did last year with Phoenix. Overall, I think it was a good deal. We get rid of AHL-caliber Stephen Mayer and his salary and we acquire a dude who is better, and better than Brett McLean, so it may not be the most exciting deal, but its all good. I just hope this signing does not preclude us from getting a 1st line center.

This is Randy's show now. If he does well at the draft and after July 1st, he'll make the case for himself that he deserves to be GM. Basically, I think it's his job to lose. Let's see what he does with JayBo.

I can't wait to heckle JayBo when he returns with another team. I think my 5,000 friends at the BAC and I will really throw him off his game.

EJ I can't wait to heckle JayBo when he returns with another team. I was thinking the same thing, will get the low lowerbowl seats so I can yell "Traitor." Hope he goes to Philly so we see him and not a Western team.

I'd rather he went to the West. He's an asset to any team and if he has to make a team better, I'd prefer it be one the Panthers play a twice a year max.

It'll be fun to see his hometown get on him after a few years. I think his no-hit style will wear thin.

Bouw is actually very physical...he's not an explosive hit kind of person but he is very punishing in the corners and along the boards. I hope we keep him, but i doubt it.

so we get another 30 plus player on the downside of his career to replace a 30 something player on the downside of his career

Pick the year when an executive of the panthers says the following:

"this is the best group of young players the panthers have ever had"

" this player brings us speed and character"

is it:

2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 or all of the above

if you picked allof the above you are correct, welcome to a continuation of the Cohen years or is it Groundhog day again!

I agree with STH since day 1.

They do this time and time again. 30 year old player on the downside. This guy is 3rd line talent but the organization keeps bringing up that he won a cup and that he would be a 2nd liner. They did this with Zednik and we all know he's a 3rd line winger at best. We are in the same position as last season - our BEST dman.

I truly hope we get Lupul and a pick for Bouw's rights at the draft. If not then we just wasted our future, our 3rd overall pick that was suppose to build us towards a championship.

Just another step back in pantherland. What else is new?

Reinprecht is a good, affordable signing at $2 million per season, who can fill the role of a No. 2 center, but is probably better suited as a No. 3.

Looks like it's a race to see how many 3rd and 4th line players we can sign and shove into 1st and 2nd line positions, to me. When is this group gonne realize that Weiss isn't a 1st liner. In my opinion, Horton can be a 1st line RW, but without a 1st line C or LW, it doesn't matter.

Brian from CT,

Some of those guys have a Stanley Cup that ours have only seen in pictures WITH OTHER TEAMS!!

He might in the latter part of his career, but he is better than a 19 year old kids who knows crap from crap. We need veteran players.

Bouwmeester would be nice too, but I can't blame him for not wanting to stay. We have nothing to offer him except for a "maybe next year".

The negativity here is truly amazing. Stop looking at the past so much. This is a different team with different management and different players from the early 2000's. We missed the playoffs via a tiebreak last year. We just improved our offense, which desperately needed it. We all know losing Jay Bo is going to be a step back on defense, but we still have an extremely solid defense, and you're kidding yourself if you think we're not going to bring in another defender. Save all the second rate organization garbage. This team is changing for the better.

THANKYOU ANDREW FROM WPB!! you totally summed up what i'm thinking!...

The only thing I have to say against you, Andrew, is our defense. We're losing Bo. We're probably losing Boynton. Skrastins is a free agent. We have Ballard, McCabe, and Allen (who missed last season). Assume Skrastins comes back, and that's a decent top 4, but hardly what we had last season. Steve Eminger and _________ to fill out our top 6? I know the scouts have a lot of faith in Keaton Ellerby, but someway, somehow, Jay's 30 minutes a game are going to have to be spread out. We'll see what free agency brings...

That said, the Reinprecht move is a good one, no question.

No you're right Karl, the defense is going to take a step back, no matter which way you slice it. If we do re-sign Tins, I think that is an enviable top four already (you think the Bolts wouldn't take it? heh). However, I also believe we will pursue somebody like a Mattias Ohlund to play on the second line of defense, meaning we'll only need one of Ellerby or Garrison to step up, and that's if we don't retain Eminger. I think we're going in the right direction here.

Andrew from WPB,

you are dead wrong about this team. Yea they were tied for 8th but failed to qualify. We are losing our best dman, a guy who never misses a game and is top 5 every year in the league in ice time. You can't replace a guy like that at the most important position in hockey. This team is a 85 point and below team for next season. They will take a step back. Their drafting has been awful. Repik wont be up next season, Ellerby certainly cannot fill Bouw's shoes, Matthias was a -29 (something like that) in the AHL, so im calling the bum a BUST!

What happened to Olesz? why give him a 6 year deal when he's proven nothing? That truly shows how clueless the organization is. Olesz will never get over 30 pts in a season. Now we will have to over pay for Booth because of Olesz's contract. Booth will never get to 30 goals again because he's just like horton, too inconsistent.

sorry to say, but negativity is the only expression you should have about this organization and this team.

Now Brian from CT, that is exactly the kind of attitude thats NOT required here...and im becoming tired of the needless negativity coming from fans - this team finally needs some belief and positivity from supporters, not negativeness!
i have no problem with you putting across your point of view, which you are obviously entitled too. But the manner in which its coming across from too many people is still showing the CONTINUED NEGATIVITY that has been around the team for too long. whats worse is that because of this, it seems to be spreading to more and more of us.
this is precisely what the franchise does not need, no matter what state it is perceived to be in. what this team DOES NEED is some belief from its faithful supporters, and i hope that this can finally be shown next season!
hope some people can see where im coming from :),

Booth is not inconsistant he is one of the few players on this team that you know is going to show up game in and game out

As far as the management changing while the GM has changed the management has not changed

The team is still owned by Alan Cohen and run by Yormark.

Until we put money into player development and scouting we will not be a good team,

I am not a negative person but with this organization you hear the same thing every offseason and then we miss the playoffs again.

When the GM says the goal is to make the playoffs and not to win the cup then there is a problem.

When 2 of the minority owners become minority owners of the Tampa Bay Lightning and say that they did it to have a chance to win the cup there is a problem.

When you get nothing for Bure and next to nothing for Luongo and now next to nothing or nothing for Bouwmeester there is a problem.

When management says that they scout players by watching video instead of watching them live you get to pick the wrong guy year after year.

Sorry if I am not getting excited about a center who was a healthy scratch (for about the last 1/3 of the season) for a team that is not as good as the Panthers, who is 33 years old in a league that the good teams (Pittsburgh/Washington/Philadelphia) are getting younger. So he replaces another 30 something, is he better than McLean maybe (he has more speed) but when McLean came here it was because he added character and speed even though he was a third line center in Colorado.

This team has come so far since the Bure and Luongo crap. The GM who made those deals isn't even our most recent GM to leave. Saying that this team is going to take a step back next season is beyond pessimistic.

The last 2 or 3 years, the biggest negative on the team was inexperience. We've been relying on Weiss, Horton, Booth, Olesz... when they were kids! Last year, Booth obviously stepped up huge. I think it's a sign of the player he will be, not just a quick flash in the pan. Horton showed he is learning, and get him back on his wing instead of trying to teach him how to play center during the season, and he'll continue to grow. Frolik showed our development progrma is improving. Repik, Matthias are coming up and will get a chance to actually grow into the NHL, not just 1 or 2 game stints at a time. Stillman and Reinprecht are character guys you NEED to have to win.

Yes, obviously we could use a top line scorer. Obviously, no one player is going to step in and replace J Bo, but putting together solid, balanced top 4 D-men is a good step. We'll see what free agency brings and the moves they make, then you can start the naysaying... but I don't think the Reinprecht deal was a bad first move. We gave up a career AHLer for a true NHL player (who was healthy scratch most of the time because their team was awful and they were letting some kids from their minor league team get ice time)

I just think the pessimism is a bit premature... for now. It's not 2005... this team is making positive moves for the first time in a few years.

My point is that Cohen approved both the Bure and Luongo trades, Martin was involved in the Luongo trade

Weiss and Horton are not kids and this team has more experience than Washington, Chicago and Pittsburgh who were all behind the panthers when Martin came on board.

Hershey wins the AHL Rochester finishes near the bottom.

Changing half your defense is not making positive changes.

This team has made two right moves in 10 years, hiring De Boer and having Torrey instead of Cohen lead the GM search.

At the trade deadline they stood still and watched as Pittsburgh added two forwards that helped lead them to the cup (Pittsburgh was behnd the panthers in the standings at the trade deadline).

Horton needs to be more physical and play in the areas on the ice where scoring chances are made.

I like Frolik's game and attitude, Matthias was terrible in the AHL and could not make a team that was extremely weak at center.

Weiss is a 2nd/3rd line center

Booth is a hard worker who will get you 20 something goals, (if Horton worked as hard as Booth he would be a superstar).

You don't take away your best defenseman for nothing a guy who has 30 plus minutes of ice time and think that the team will be as good.

I was in the room when the Panthers said don't worry that we didn't get anything for Bure we will use the 10 million we save on two great players instead of one superstar. I expect the same thing to happen with the 7 million we save with Bouwmeester

I received the e-mail from Martin saying that the Luongo trade makes us a better team.

I have been watching every year when we add a 3rd or 4th line player saying the player brings character to the room.

In the NHL today, there is not much difference between the 7th best team and the 24th best team.

How many years are you going to wait for Horton to grow up (he is nowhere near Staal)

I agree that we should see what happens with free agency and the draft and the trade of Bouwmeester (expect a mid round pick or possibly a player that a team is trading to lower their cap hit)

At the deadline, there were as many people who applauded standing still with Bouwmeester as those who said trade him. At the time, I thought it was the right move. Other teams made deals and fell on their face (Calgary jumps to mind.)

Chicago, Washington, and Pittsburgh have probably the 5 best young scorers, if not best players period in the league. Yea, they're going to do better than us. I couldn't agree more on Horts and Booth.

And trust me, I'm not arguing against the team's history. I just think there are reasons to be optimistic about the future, which is something that hasn't been said during an offseason in years... hopefully July 2nd I'll feel even better and not worse, but that remains to be seen.

Cmon Nik Antropov

I agree, most were cool with not trading J-Bo a few months back. That's the way the Panther's cookie crumbles...

We keep waiting for the signing of a 'Sidney Ovechkin'..........and waiting...... ;)

A lot of rehashing going on here...My point is that if enough of us are finally realizing that Horton is not the player he was supposed to be, then why don't we agree that the should at least entertain offers(secretly) to see what we could get in return? While I believe we dropped the ball on this and the J-Bo thing, they have to start realizing their mistakes and stop spoon-feeding us this crap that certain players NEED to be faces of the franchises and that we can't win without them....

Also on a positive note and more to the point of the article, I do see the Reinprecht thing as a positive...Maybe we stole him because they are in financial distress and maybe they really think Mayer has more potenital, but either way they need to do more of these deals, and stop sitting around waiting for guys to reach a potential that really isn't there... So good job picking up a decent roster player whether he's a 2nd line center or 3rd liner, but we obviously need a lot more of these transactions to try to at least keep up with the pack...

Stay away from big-money contracts. It's not worth it to chase Heatley, Sundin, Lupul,etc contracts, especially when you have a lot more work to do building a complete franchise...You only lose value if it doesn't work out and teams realize that you need to trade one of those players to get them off your payroll... Then they don't offer anything in return, and you're stuck with them eating up $$$$ towards your salary cap....

I do like Antropov. That's more the type of guy that isn't too expensive, and the risk wouldn't be too great if it didn't work out... It would've been nice to see us bidding on him last year at the deadline....Just like Jussi Jokinen. Not just because he played over his head in the playoffs, but the fact that they hardly gave up anything in return--LESS RISK.. Now there's no way Carolina lets him loose. Oh and top of that, he's one of the better guys on SHOOTOUTS....Those are some of the forward-type thinking moves that hopefully somebody has the nuggets to start delivering HERE pretty soon....

Here's my positive post (rare, but here it is):

Simply put, it's all on Sexton and the organization to have an A+ offseason. Reinprecht was a decent sign but not for the 2nd line. I agree with most of you that Antropov would be an ideal signing because he would be our 2nd line center no doubt. This would obviously put a lot of pressure on Weiss to be that #1 center (which I still don't think he can be but we'll see). He needs to live up to his draft selection so does Horton. Again it will be a season of waiting and seeing if these guys can grow up and be the guys we thought they would mature into.

Frolik is by far the most exciting player on this team right now. I believe his sophmore season will be better than last year and I think #1 winger is in his near future.

Olesz, well this is a positive post so I will not speak on him at all.

So basically what I'm saying and everyone else is saying is that we need another top C signed before the seasons starts. I'm thinking it might not happen though since Matthias might be that guy. I wouldn't do that but it seems like the organization is going to go that way. I think its too early since he had such a bad AHL season.

Repik is the one guy in the system I'm excited about. It didnt make sense that he was sent back down when he was the only one to score in the game he played in. We needed scoring but maybe he'll get his shot sometime in Dec.

Go Panthers, do us proud at the draft and during FA pleaseeee!!!!!

What I'm saying is there are specific people in the organization that have led to the horrible product that was here for a while, and nothing set us back as much as the Luongo trade. Mike Keenan is gone, and since then, this team has improved and improved. Peter DeBoer knows what it takes to get these guys motivated and playing well. If it wasn't for the learning curve last season, we would have been solidly in the playoffs. I'm very much curious to see how an entire season under DeBoer's system works with these guys.

Also, don't forget how much of a shutdown d-man Allen is. We didn't have his services all of last season. He's no Bouwmeester, but he's very good in his own right. Don't forget how badly Bouw played last season after the trade deadline. I get the feeling that we might have better chemistry with all players that want to actually be here.

I think, if anything, we'll go after a Leopold type to replace Bouwmeester rather than sign a guy like Antropov. I think we're set with our top 6 after reading Sexton's comments on the Reinprecht signing. It's going to up to guys like Matthias, Repik and Frolik to step in and take this team to the next level, not some free agent signing.

I think Frolik is already our most talented winger, whether he's on the 1st or 2nd line. Horton should take a good look at how hard the kid works on the ice.

I wouldn't trade Horton. His production was down because he was moved to center. That was only because JM didn't go out and get a real center so DeBoer used what he had. Sexton did what was needed and got Reinprecht, yeah he is no Crosby but he is reasonably priced and decent. I would like to see Panthers sign UFA Mike Knuble. http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/teams/players/bio/?id=1464 He won't break the bank but he will add goals and we just lost 17 goals from Zednik. I hope I am wrong but I don't see Olesz filling the void. Antropov - like him. I agree Allen is an excellent defenseman, love his bonecrushing checks. If he is healthy he will be the shutdown D. Matthias had a rough year in the AHL so my expectations are not high for him, maybe he will rebound. Repik could make the team. This years draft is strong the first pick could make this team.

Why should people stop being negative? Chicago is the perfect example of the team should be the ones who change the negativity into a positive, not the fans first. Chicago's games were on PPV until, the owner (Bill Wirtz RIP) died and his son took over. The AHL team had a higher game attendance then the Blackhawks. The Blackhoawks went out and drafted some awesome youth, developed prospects, and made some wise trades and signings. The brought optimism and positivity back to the city by producing. They didn't deserve it from years of ineptness and empty promises.

As for the Rhino signing and situation at center. Many of you don't believe Weiss is a first line center, but neither was Yzerman for much of his career or Brendan Morrison when he was playing with Naslund and Bertuzzi and that line was producing massive amount of points. Taking Horton off of Weiss' wing was a stupid move, regardless of the reasoning. I've said since he was drafted in '03 Horton belongs on the right wing, before he even played a game and its documented on former posts of mine on Hockey's Future. Weiss is a solid centerman, that needs linemates, as does anyone except for the superstars, to produce. Rhino tho is an underrated centerman. He was playing Pho's top line before the influx of youth was brought in. While he'll never reach the status of a top line centerman consistently, he can play a good second line position, with good linemates.

I could go on and on about the negativity that this organization deserves since Keenan returned in the package deal with Martin, and Martin was to fault in that. Coaches should never be the one naming who their GM will be, a mistake that happened with Keenan and Dudley, as Keenan recommended Duds over all the rest. The only truly positive thing this franchise has done since the dismissing of Dudley was hiring Deboer. Now they just need to get rid of Cohen and upper management, and maybe this team will produce again.

Weiss is not a 1st line C at this point in his career, and with the duability issues surrounding Booth(and Weiss, to a lesser extent), you can't depend on that line(Booth, Weiss, Horton) to be the 1st line that other teams fear, IMO. This hockey team NEEDS a legit 1st line C, first and foremost, or else we'll be looking at another consistant "middle-of-the-pack" season down here. They have the money under the cap, they have a good mix of young talent and proven veterans from the 2nd line down, they still have the like of Ballard, Allen, and McCabe on defence(with a talented kid like Ellerby developing), they have good goaltending, now they just need a competent GM, and an ownership group with some stones to do what needs to be done.

You guys are really gonna like Ellerby when he's ready. He has great speed and puck handling abilities. As soon as he figures out how and where to use them, he will be a great asset on the blue line.

Repik will be a decent forward too, but like Keaton, needs a bit more work at the AHL level. He has a good nose for the net and a real sneaky shot. He disappeared for a long stretch last season, but rebounded well at the end. Needs some stamina and he also needs some time in the weight room.

I agree Weiss is not a 1st-line center, but with tight-budget teams like the Panthers, he probably has to be... I think the strength of a team that has a limited salary due to lack of a fan-base has to be in DEPTH...That means the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th liners have to outplay the other team, until you can build a consistent product to spend closer to the CAP ceiling like the powerhouses....

Wasting money on big-contract guys like Heatley, Spezza, Gaborik, Hossa, etc is foolish when you still have to rebuild the rest of your team....A cash-strapped team can't afford to pay for those type guys. They have to develop some of their own younger franchise players(Mike Richards, Ryan Getzlaf, Milan Lucic, Ryan Kesler,Dustin Brown, Brendan Morrow,etc)...Then you pay to keep guys here long-term...They don't have the $$$$ to throw around and take too many gambles because it's too hard to get rid of bad contracts....

I think their D will have to work itself out. I'm not crazy about Allen, but hopefully he can fill in as Boynton's replacement. They need to resign Skrastins, Eminger should be fine as a 5th or 6th, hopefully you can get 60+ games out of McCabe(who will end up being trade-bait at the deadline). Ballard's not flashy, but solid. So maybe one Dman in free agency or a trade because I don't think the young guys are ready for the NHL yet...

I say sign or trade for some reasonably priced wingers. If they could get about 3, and let's hope at least 2 out of 3 play above their value...Then things could look brighter...I think Frolik may be slightly overrated and could hit the sophomore slump, but Booth and Weiss are solid. Please trade Horton, maybe for Phil Kessel, or anywhere for that matter.. I like the rumor of Colton Orr, mainly for energy and excitement, but something this team desperately needs...Other names I've seen as being available: Marco Strum, Nik Antropov, Ales Kotalik, Saku Koivu, Chad Larose...

It's hard to call the Panthers a "cash strapped" team when their payroll last year was right in the middle of the league, 16th highest, and actually higher than 4 playoff teams, and right on par with the Devils. And if you want to look at a team screwed over by horrid contracts, just look at the money the Rangers have tied up in guys who hit their peak 3 seasons ago... with the salary cap and the way the NHL is now, it's all in getting a balance on the ice, not just 2 or 3, $6 mil a season guys and a bunch of scrubs (think Lecaviler\St. Louis, and then the rest...)

And I don't think anyone "fills in" for Bo either. It's going to have to be a collective effort from the top 6, and maybe even then some. No one on our roster is going to play 29+ minutes a game.

Friday should be fun...

And a shameless plug; http://floridapantherstalk.blogspot.com

Trust me, you don't want Ales Kotalik. Another player who takes games off.

Word is the Rangers are hot on Heatley too. I don't understand how in the heck they can afford to sign everyone and their mothers at their salaries? I guess if they get rid of Drury or Gomez in the deal it would work but Ottawa would be stupid to take on those contracts for lesser producing players.

George, you've been awfully quiet since the Rhino deal was announced on Friday...what gives? Working on something big? ;-)

Allen fills in for Boynton, not J-BO...Yes we'll have to fill J-BO's minutes, so a decent pick-up and the other guys kicking in a little extra will have to happen... Find a team deep with D like Chicago, or someone up against the cap and take advantage(like the Kings got Quincey from Detroit last year)... The Olli trade doesn't look as good as last year considering it looks like Boynton is gone. It's too bad because I'd rather have him than Allen personally, but it doesn't look like they ever got over the disruption from last year. So another reason JM should've dished him before the deadline. The Panthers aren't a team that can afford to let decent players walk away for free.

Salary-wise they may have been middle of the pack, but $2million of that was paid for McCabe by Toronto. Also, Olesz and a few others were a bit front-loaded. The way they're cutting staff I tend to think of them as cash-strapped, so I would expect to see them in the bottom 21-30 for the next few years...Yes they will have to pay Booth and probably will hang on to a pretty big contract in T-VO... Hopefully if they're out of it, they use T-VO and McCabe for something decent before they lose them for nothing...

As a Sabres follower, yes I know Kotalik is a bit frustrating and hard to get going...But I'd take him as a solid replacement for Zednik anyday... Neither one of them is physical but for about $2.5 million, he'd be a good 2nd or 3rd liner, plays the point on the PP, and is definitely one of the better guys in SHOOTOUTS...And if PDB can somehow miraculously get these guys in a playoff run again, they could use all the extra points they can get...

I think they should re-sign Dvorak, if the money is right, as the 3rd line RW(with Rhino and Olesz as his C and LW, respectively). He did a great job IMO. Doing EXACTLY what a 3rd line player is supposed to do(bring energy, play a role on the PK, and chip in the occasional shorty or even strength goal). Not sure if Frolik is ready to assume the 1st line LW duties, but it looks like(from what I currently see on the roster) that's where he's gonna be penciled in, with Stillman on the RW, and the infamous "TBD" at C. The way I see it, they will need AT LEAST 2-3 FA defencemen if Ellerby isn't ready. Skrastis was VERY good for us last season, considering what he is, and was asked to do on a nightly basis, but both he and Cullimore are getting a bit long in the tooth, IMO. The Cats may need to go in another direction. In terms of players currently signed and on the active roster, I see the lines shaping up like this:

Frolik "TBD" Stillman

Booth Weiss Horton

Olsez Reinprecht ???(Dvorak)

Campbell Kreps Stewart

Ballard McCabe

Allen ???

??? Eminger

Apparently you missed Sexton's quote that Rhino is our 2nd line center and Weiss is #1, or in actuality it's lines 2A and 2B.

Please don't do that to me Bob. Please don't ruin the fantasy of competency. We know about the reality, and it stings, so please don't ruin the fantasy, LOL. You make a good point with the 2A and 2B reference, cause there sure as hell ain't no #1 on this team yet.

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