Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Hemsky's Spectacular Play of Late Could Have Lombardi Bent Over a Barrel

(Pictured Above, LA King's Prospect Brayden Schenn)

If the asking price for Ales Hemsky was high before, it has to be out of this world at this point in time. With a lot of media and fans alike thinking that there is no way in hell that the Oilers could pull off a Hemsky for Schenn deal, IMO they need to think again.

Hemsky was the NHL's third star last week and he has been buzzing around the ice and creating for himself and his linemates in spectacular fashion and in bunches. While the Kings struggle to find the back of the net, Hemsky has been on an offensive tear undoubtedly teasing NHL scouts and GM's with his stickhandling, passing, skating, and shooting skills.

The Kings prized forward, first line center Anze Kopitar is well off of last years goal totals and he has lit the lamp a paltry 4 times in his last 27 games and for the cherry on top of the sundae he hasn't scored a power play goal in 32 games, that's more than a third of a season! Besides the fact that the Kings want to get into the postseason and try to make some noise they must also be mindful of keeping their franchise forward confident and happy.

The Kings have defensive depth, however guys like Teubert and Hickey aren't exactly big returns for a player of Hemsky's caliber. The Kings are all but forced to pony up if they want Hemsky, do they decide to move Schenn and keep their prospect depth so that they have a steady supply of ELC's to keep a strong team under the cap? Or do they hold onto Schenn and take a significant hit to their prospect depth and lose players like Clifford, Forbort, Toffoli, and their 1st round pick? Either way they stand to limp away from this potential trade much improved on the big club, but much weaker in the system.

Tambellini is holding out for Schenn, he should be, however he must have back-up plans if he plans on moving Hemsky for sure at the deadline. We cannot afford to get a Smyth-esque return or a Doug Weight type of a return. The Oilers could use a 1st line center, top pairing defenseman, possibly a #1 goalie, and some toughness that can play a regular shift. If Schenn is deemed to be too much for Lombardi to give up straight up for Hemsky, perhaps a mega deal is what is needed?

To LA: Hemsky, Gagner, and Vandermeer
To Edmonton: Schenn, Clifford, Forbort, LA's 1st, and Ponikarovsky (salary dump)

To Buffalo: Penner
To Edmonton: Kassian

To Nashville: Smid
To Edmonton Blum

The first trade would give us an eventual upgrade at center, add size and toughness, and a pick to add to our organizational depth. The first and second trades would change the culture of this team almost immediately from a team full of wimps, shrimps, and pushovers to a team that initiates physical play and is looking for the rough stuff.

Next Season:



Two Seasons From Now:



Three Seasons From Now:



Our metamorphosis from one of the smaller/easily pushed around teams in the league to one of the bigger/tougher teams in the league would be complete in year three. The beauty of it is that we have size, speed, and skill, that's how you build a team!

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