Here are a couple of things I’ve been thinking about while awaiting the release of the 2010-11 NHL schedule at noon:
I cannot stress enough that these are sheer thoughts out of my own mind and not at all a reflection of anything I’ve been told by sources or front-office types. These are not rumors, just my random ideas.
•I Tweeted about this last night and the more I thought about it, the more it made sense. The Bruins want to deal Tim Thomas ($5 million for the next three years) and add scoring, Philadelphia has to deal Jeff Carter ($5 million cap hit next year) to make room in order to upgrade its goaltending and sign Dan Hamhuis, and Florida wants to deal Nathan Horton ($4 million cap hit for next three years) and add a top-line center. Does this just make too much sense for these three teams to get something done.
Even if Philly would rather have Tomas Vokoun ($5.7 million cap hit for next season) instead of Thomas, the Panthers could throw their veteran puck-stopper into the deal and could use Thomas to tutor prospect Jacob Markstrom in his first season in North America. Maybe Boston could take back Scott Clemmensen as part of the package to back up Tuukka Rask. Maybe you get the No. 3 pick involved, maybe not. Maybe other players, picks or prospects. It seems like these three teams should be able to figure it all out.
•Yesterday I analyzed a few potential landing spots for Thomas. Barring the above-mentioned three-way scenario, I really like the idea of Boston getting something done with the Islanders. Isles general manager Garth Snow has shown a willingness to trade down in the draft in recent years, and a swap involving Thomas and the No. 15 pick for a package including the No. 5 pick seems to make sense to me. The Bruins could take back Dwayne Roloson as Rask’s backup and Isles head coach Scott Gordon could reunite with Thomas. Gordon knows Boston’s prospects as well as anyone no longer in the organization, so maybe he’d want a Vladimir Sobotka or Matt Hunwick to add to his young team. The Bruins could use the cap savings to improve the offense via another trade or free agency.
Now I go back to waiting to find out what I’ll be doing and where I’ll be doing it this winter.