Monday, July 2, 2012

Free agent fizzle

Yesterday's beginning to free agency had about the same effect as a guy on the 4th of July sending bottle rockets into the sky.

The big fireworks just weren't there this July 1. And the two free agents who could make the loudest bang, Zack Parise and Ryan Suter were said to be sleeping on it.

Even in the trade department where Rick Nash moving could have added a shower of excitement was non-existant except for one trade. It involved Nash's Blue Jackets sending D Marc Methot to Ottawa for F Nick Foligno.

Ridiculous contracts, the essence of the July 1 "free agent frenzy," were present but minimal. Sure, Sheldon Souray's 3yr./$11M contract with Dallas and Mikael Samuelsson's 2yr./$6M contract did raise some eybrows. But even those two weren't as crazy as Paul Gaustad's 4yr./$13M or Dennis Wideman inking a 5yr./$26.25M contract with Calgary, two ludicrous contracts signed on the days leading up to July 1.

Let's face it, the last two "free agent frenzies" have been a collective bust.

Last year Brad Richards was the lone marquis name, he landed in NY with the Rangers. The rest of the free agents were pretty weak and this year it's pretty much dejavu all over again.

It behooves the Sabres to lay off Parise and Suter. Both are said to be entertaining offers of 10-12 year contracts for $80-100M dollars. It's said that Philadelphia offered $100M conracts to both players. Some things never change.

Personally, I'd love to see Philly get Parise. They'll remain a powerhouse up-front with holes on defense and questionable goaltending. And they'll also probably be out of the Bobby Ryan trade scenario.

Ryan looks to be moved before the season and the Sabres are said to be very interested.

As for Buffalo, discretion is the better part of valor this July 1. Sure, Terry Pegula has oodles of money to throw around, but it doesn't mean he should.

At 6'8", newest Sabre John Scott
towers above nearly everyone
else in the NHL. An original free
agent signing by the Minnesota Wild,
Scott comes to Buffalo via
the NY Rangers and Chicago
There's really not a lot out there for the Sabres to better their team with.

They did make a move yesterday signing behemouth F/D John Scott to a 1yr./$600K deal.

Scott is 6'8 270 lbs and will fill the role of enforcer. He does not have any game to speak of but is one of the most feared pugilists in the league, which may come in handy for some 20-30 games over the course of the season.

Sure, it would have been better to get an Aaron Asham-type player who can legitimately skate and play the game, but the Sabres will need to take what they can get.

Other than that--yaaawwwwwnnnnn!!!

The 4th of July is coming up and barring any rainouts, we'll get a chance to see some real fireworks.

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