Well I’ve rattled two names off that I would want to see wearing the burgundy and blue, but I’d like to pose to you, four more names that just might be going under the radar so far. Perhaps backup options or more so, depth options we’ll say.
Kevin Labanc – Pending RFA
After taking a ridiculous off-season team-friendly option of $1 million with San Jose after a breakout season, Labanc may just be wishing he’d, ya know, made bank. It’s a disaster in San Jose and it’s not going to get better, not for a looooong while. I’m sure Kev is sitting back thinking ‘did I really leave money on the table for this?’ In what is an ocean of bad contracts and aging stars, Labanc has been a glimmer of hope over the last two seasons. So why would the sharks trade him?
The Sharks are at a stage where they have next to zero prospects of note, nor a 2020 first round pick. Labanc, 24, who is on track for 42 points this season is a pending restricted free agent, who holds arbitration rights. If I am Doug Wilson, I don’t think i am in any position to overpay anyone else, nor deal with a holdout. That sexy $1 million average annual value that Labanc currently sits on could be the best chance he has to gain more picks and attempt to re-tool the roster.
How often do you see Sharks dangling bait ?
Josh Anderson – Pending RFA
Yes, he’s injured and doesn’t really have a timetable on a return. But he’s from Columbus? The Jackets are slowly seeing a HOT HOT HOT patch cool way off. They have lost key guys to injuries and need to make a push to find rentals to fill the void in order to stay in the playoff race. The only problem is, they haven’t a second or a third in 2020 or a second in 2021 and the prospect pool is the team as we speak. It’s s bad situation.
Does an injured Josh actually help Columbus? Not right now, he’s hurt. He’s skating but he is nowhere near ready for contact. The Avalanche have injuries too, but are in a much better spot than Columbus. Would Jarmo move his big-versatile winger for some picks to flip on the quick? He’s bat shit crazy and I wouldn’t put it passed him. The Avs have weathered injuries before, could they wait out on a guy like Anderson to be impactful later than sooner?
He’s only a season removed from 27 goals. He’s tough as shit. Skates like the wind. Josh Anderson is a hockey guy.
Chris Tierney – Pending RFA
Ottawa are in interesting one to watch. They’ve got themselves within a gnat’s appendage from looking at two potential top-five picks, but also have a host of restricted free agents they need to decide on. Personally, they’ve exceeded their own expectations this season, they have blooded some youth and helped move some development along. Where there is youth however, you need experience and depending on what they do with Pageau and Duclair, Tierney could be on the move if one or both ink new deals.
A dependable, what you see/what you get guy, Tierney has proven he’s capable to perform up and down the lineup, playing pivot or wing. He’s what i call a gadget guy, someone who is a smart hockey mind that just gets the game and plays his role well.
Coming off a 47 point season last season, he’s on track for 40 this time out. A solid effort on an atrocious team. At just 25, coupled with his on-ice flexibility, I can see him as a player that can provide not just short term bottom-six depth for a playoff run, but also as a piece moving forward.
He’d be a better 12th or 13th forward than some people(s) who currently just aren’t cutting it.