Transitions occur often in dramas and real life. You win or lose a job, hit a goal, or what have you. In big money sports, you have the added bonus of real life reality TV to go with your sport of choice. ( and I get it fans of other sports, but ours is the best when it comes to character and players just being "good guys"...no offense ). Not all the times though. That would be boring.
Sometimes, for whatever reason, the same dramas that we all have in our lives at times occur in the lives of our sports heroes and combatants for our tribe becomes almost instantly hated adversaries. Such is now the story here in Vancouver. In fine, almost cloyingly Kadashian storylines at times, was the last season and the fallout from it. It gets draining in that there was always something going on last year, and the divas action got a bit hard to take. But then again, Canucks have almost as much daily media as Ms. AnyExposureIsGoodExposure , now Mrs. West anyhow. So, context...
In the fine Movie of the Week style that The Kesler Show became in the end, there is all sorts of stories, including these two ( Botch and Spector ) that detail the "less than upset reaction" at the move of the teammates, and the bit about him giving up on them when it got bad with The Dog Whisperer was enough for me. GTFO when it gets so bad you want to go. #ItIsWhatItIsReally
That is a long and slightly sadder story for another day, and there is little doubt to me that the four years Kesler gave the team will be fuel and a standard for some in the fanbase for the Triumvate of Trader Jim, Trevor Linden and Willie Desjardins to measure up to every divisional matchup that goes through the O.C for the next couple of years at the least. Myself, I think that four years is a little much, and found the exit interview, and the handcuffing of the team on trade options in the first place disparate with the ideas and sentiments the man put forth in the media. As was his agent calling and yelling at the new ( and no doubt old GM, and past teammate Linden probably was on blast to boot ) GM as soon as he walked in the door and multiple times daily until today. While I acknowledge his talent, contributions here, and value to the Ducks in the short term, in the end, I was quite happy with the return Trader Jim got back, considering the restrictions he had.
The 24th pick, Jared McCann, ( Not a Tiger ...yet ) seems to want to become the second coming of Ryan Kesler. That he fell will motivate him in much the same way as his idol was by Mike Richards and the others in that 2003 Draft. ( and Ritchie would have been nice at the 10th if he could have been got, but that pick also was what Ottawa wanted for The Spaz', and he is still sitting at home on that deal. ) Their "distraction" at the least, maybe more as it sours later situation now festering a bit more ...", and is never is a good thing ( sorry Ottawa ). It is kinda kismet to have this kid be the one to come as part of the return for the disgruntled Kesler.
Add to that Nick Bonino and Lucas Sbisa, and the picks and such that were parts of the deal (s ) that saw Jason Garrison a Bolt by the end of the day, bringing Derek Dorsett and Linden Vey as parts of the haul, are exciting when viewed in their totality. It is certainly easy to see the sharp focus that once was on our best player doing that slow rerack of focus and move up through the new guys one by one...
Bonino had almost as much production as Kesler last year, is excited to be here, and seemed to be a Mr Clutch for the Ducks at times throughout the season and playoffs. Sbisa is supposedly an excellent quote according to the O.C hockey writers, and obviously a fun guy, in addition to being a pretty solid defensive defenseman that can move the puck and put up points a little bit, and definitely stands up for his guys when you search his name on Youtube. Both are younger as well.
We all know how the camera loves youth....
IT'S NOT YOU, IT'S NOT ME, IT IS US NOW, "Save The Drama For Yo Mama..."
Let's put all that drama behind us, because we all know we will gorge on it every time next year brings the Ducks onto the tube or into The Rog' next year anyhow. Trader Jim did very well with what he had to deal with, and then went out and gave the Canuck an entirely new l
Let's take a closer look at some of the new guys that will be challenging for spots next year and in the near and farther out future.
THE KESLER TRADE GUYS
- The Ducks 24th pick ; Jared McCann. ( Not a Medicine Hat Tiger Yet ) It is funny in this town when it comes to hockey, and our introduction to this young man was a classic example. Social media fuels these things, of course, but the way folks had a tizzy when he answered a question on TSN that was probably meant as two questions in Duthie's head was ...interesting. I am more excited by the reports of him idolizing and modeling his game after the guy he was traded for.
- The Two NHLers ; Nick Bonino and Lucas Sbisa. The first a replacement for Kesler in both the American quotient of the team make up ( from Hartford, go Whalers ), and maybe on the ice as well. Sure, some of the breakout production he had last year ( 77 games and 22 goals, to go with 27 assists, a 13.8 shooting %, and those 7 PP goals and 2 GWG's look good. He is 26, and depending on the makeup ( 18 million to spend in the next week or so folks, and Trader Jim only has to sign about 4-5 more players ), a replacement second line centre, or a kick ass 3rd liner that makes a power play rock on both the 1st or 2nd units. Really happy to be here too...
Lucas Sbisa is definitely interesting. Born in Ozieri Italy, but a Swiss national at WJC, World Championships, and Olympics while still being only 24 ( right on the cusp of the age where defensemen seem to have it click ) the one time 19th over all pick for the Flyers in 2008 has produced a bit of offense ( his first year with the Ducks, he had 5 goals and 24 points in 2011-12 at age 22 ), he is a perfect example of the underlying motivators making a player desired in a trade. Still young, past production in the NHL, and physical and coming inot his own as a defender ? Did I mention that Nick Bonino is signed for 1.9 million over the next three, and that Sbisa is only 2.175 for the next year anyhow, and thus we could easily get the "contract year bounce" with him ? ( It is as an opponent in Lethbridge, but Willie Desjardins probably remembers this kid, so The Medicine Hat Tigers Connection I
- Working The Phones, The Medicine Hat Connection II ; As part of the Kesler trade that brought back the three pieces already detailed above, the Ducks and Canucks flipped their 2nd round picks. Trader Jim then took the third he got from the Ducks, and turned it around and dealt for Derek Dorsett. Reading here, he is another very happy to come. At 1.63 schmil, he is a bit more expensive than the resident facepuncher, but then again, the 6'0", 193 lb middleweight actually fights above his weight class. And can do way more than Tommy Boy anyhow. Check that production a the bottom of Kooz's story on how he found out while out skeet shooting with family the day before his wedding. Likrd it almost as much as the quote about being hated in every rink but the home one.
THANKS ANYHOW GARRY. STILL LIVE HERE IN THE OFFSEASON THOUGH, RIGHT ?
- Working The Phones Redux and for the week to come... ? ; We learnt from the Panthers that Vancouver had offered Jason Garrison as part of a deal to get the # 1 pick and pick an Ekblad or Reinhart. That did not go, but Garry was enough of a stand up guy ( and a smart enough one to know that his game is better suited to what Tampa is doing by a bit than the grind of the West that had taken out of his game success wise, so as to have his deal labeled "a bad one" to some, ( I think it stands a chance to be a good one for Stevie Y' if he can get back his Florida Shot ) Anyhow, Garry went to Detroit's last guy to wear # 19 's team, waiving the NTC that he did not use as a cudgel like the last two guys who let the feelings thing get in the way of a good thing...seeing he was not in the plans at home in the Florida gambit. The deal was called a "salary dump" on TSN, showing how far Garrison had fallen in a few eyes, but he is only 29, and even with the Jeff Costello and next year's 7th ( all for a SECOND this year to use, are you kidding ! ) Yes, but reeking of clearing salary is only a par of this one. Clearing contracts means filling them too, and there will probably be more less spots in the pipeline for what those two would have brought anyhow. , The 18 mil that this deal did help contribute too is a big plus in a year where a bunch of teams planned for a Cap of anywhere from 71 to 73 million, and who are now scrambling to deal with it being 69 million. Trader Jim is someone I would not play chess with.
- The Medicine Hat Connection III ... Anyhow, T.J, decided that the real deal was to trade that second to another Pacific Division rival ( Because F*** You, that's why. #WhyNotWithYOURCastoffs ?) It is more satisfying and fun along the way to boot ! and deal for Linden Vey, a kid who was literally named for the current Canuck Prez, and who is only a victim of the numbers that come with having a deep team like our rivals the Kings. He was the Jeff Carter between the two wingers on That 70's Line in the AHL, and even had some NHL production in limited minutes. The more I watch stuff like this here and here, I'm like, "OK, trust in Trader Jim and take a deep breath Twitterati..." Botch called it his "best deal of the weekend" here. He definitely looks like he will be challenging for minutes in training camp. Dude is already on the Mothership under "roster", not prospects, and he is another guy that played at the Medicine Hat Tigers. Like, coached him in junior, and wanted him bad enough to push for the 22 year old who was a 2009 4th rounder ( 96th ) who exploded for the Monarchs in Manchester N.H. this year, to the tune of 22 goals and 67 points in 74 games, with an eyebrow raising 5 GWG's. He shot at a 16-17 % clips over 242 shots over the past two years, and has 9 total game winning goals while playing in a lot of situations at the Kings' AHL affiliate.
Big deals, and I did not get to all the drafts ! Here is the clips and trips though the lineup of stories that I only touched on here. So much happened, this week we have a two parter this weekend !
This Classic has been viewed on Youtube 39 million times +...with good reason...