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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Sutter Lays Down a Monster; Flames Fans Call Him "Mr. Son of a Beetch"

I like to think the Flames fans worldwide reacted this way after hearing the rumored trade involving Olli Jokinen (p.s. no need to go beyond 1:27, but if you do, I understand; Teddy KGB is priceless):

This one had been in the works for a while; the Rangers faithful really got put through the grinder, from too-good-to-be-true (Jokinen for the combined dead weight of Farmer Higgins and Kotalik?) to potentially kiboshed by Kotalik's no-trade clause (sour grapes, perhaps?).  But Old Slats had a little Activia up his sleeve (or in his Fridgidaire) to ease the movement and, voila.

Rangers get:
- Olli Jokinen
- Brandon Prust

Flames get:
- Ales Kotalik
- Chris Higgins

I'll keep the commentary sparse.  The Rangers are making off like bandits on this one.  Jokinen might only be a rental, but a rental for nothing (literally, nothing).  It's like taking candy from Pierre-Marc Bouchard.

I will say what I've said all along about this; Jokinen and Gaborik are great to have, but should not be together.  Jokinen is at his best when he is the featured shooter on his line (in other words, a scenario not played out since Florida for him).  He's not your classic, play-making center.  In my perfect world, you keep the duo of Prospal and Gaborik intact but plunk Avery with them to net a goal here and there but also provide protective grit (because let's face it, Gaborik is an easy punching bag).  Give Jokinen the second line with Dubinsky and Callahan; two hard workers for Jokinen to get him the puck, throw some people around, and provide solid back-checking.  Naysayers might recall his past two seasons have involved a talent clash between Jokinen and his team's top shooters (Doan in Phoenix, Iginla in Calgary).  Let's just put it this way: with 300 shots Jokinen has 35-goal potential and Gaborik has 45-goal potential.  Would the Rangers want either to sacrifice 100 or so shots just to be on the same line (as Jokinen has the last two years)?

P.S. If you need proof that Flames fans are unhappy, here you go.

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