Friday, May 18, 2007

Sopel is probably the odd defenceman out

On the Waiting For Stanley poll that asked which Canuck player you would like to see leave this summer, 37.8% of you picked Brent Sopel, 33.3% said Markus Naslund, and 22.2% said Brendan Morrison.
I can nearly guarantee you that Markus Naslund is not going anywhere and will play out his final year in Vancouver. Naslund's efforts in the post season earned him Alain Vigneault's respect. I thought his on-ice leadership was pretty decent as well. No, he's not worth $6 million, but why complain about something we can't change?
Morrison has one year left that pays him $3.2 million. I think he is the biggest waste of cap space on the team for obvious reasons, injured or not. Perhaps Nonis will try to trade him.
But the real cluster comes on defence, and this is where we will probably see Brent Sopel let go. Currently, Sopes makes $2.4 million per season. I am quite sure he did not play well enough after the trade deadline to earn that amount this coming season in a Canucks jersey. I know, he was so happy to be back here playing but this isn't a damned charity.
We can't afford him and are too close to the cap as it is. Somebody on D has to go to shed some salary, and that obvious choice is Sopel. I wonder how much of a pay cut Sopel would take to play here, and if it would even matter if he did take one. Probably not.
It appears that Alex Edler is ready to make the jump to the big team right away. He is better than Sopel already.
I wouldn't mind seeing Rory Fitzpatrick stick around. His price tag is $525,000. Cheap. I think he is a steady guy at the back end. Is Rory going to want a fair-sized raise?
However, a lot of attention will be on Luc Bourdon and how much he has matured as a player. Bourdon should be getting a lot more chances with the Canucks this year, and hopefully he is ready to prove himself. He is currently signed for 2 more years at $850,000 per season.
We have so much depth on defence that Sopel is an easy choice as the odd man out.

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3 Comments:

At May 18, 2007 at 4:32 PM , Blogger The KEMPNER's said...

Sopel for sure is the odd man out. You are so right when you said he didn't play well enough after the deadline to make that kind of $.

Bourdon is the key guy...you don't waste a 1st rd pick on a top rated D and don't get him some more opportunities.

Morrison was great. This year he didn't pull his weight (not that he as much lbs). We need to send him packing and not in disrespect we love him and all but his time in Vancouver is done. He needs to turn it around somewhere else. The greatest thing he did this season was shoot out goals and a couple playoff goals. But we could find a free agent for $3.2 mil who could do that and more.

Go Canucks!

Nonis did well last yr picking up some key guys for cheap but needs to continue making wise gambles. Pyatt 20 goals? Linden performing like he did? Moving Bertuzzi for an elite goalie? He did well. We want the Cup but it comes in strides. This year I am asking for more than a 1st rd win.

 
At May 18, 2007 at 4:42 PM , Blogger Zanstorm said...

"but needs to continue making wise gambles"

Oh yes. And he will!

 
At May 18, 2007 at 6:41 PM , Anonymous Temujin said...

Yeah, what a shame. $2.4 mill for what amounts to our fifth D-man is three times more than we want to be paying :-( That's a credit to our defensive core, and not really a knock against Sopel.

I can't see him taking a 50% salary cut, and there are plenty of teams that will pay him two million. He'll also get more ice time and an increased role on a team like Chicago, Atlanta... or even Pittsburgh! Imagine if he goes to Edmonton? They certainly need help on the blueline.

I don't think Edler is "better" than Sopel, but I remember one playoff game where he and Fitz sure impressed the hell outta me.

 

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Waiting For Stanley was created in June 2006.