Roster Talk 2. Captain Options, More Potential Trades

Posted: November 13, 2011 in Roster Talk

UPDATE: MILAN HEJDUK HAS BEEN NAMED CAPTAIN

One of the reasons I think the Avs are struggling right now in my opinion is because they don’t have any vocal leadership in the locker room. No one is going to call anyone out for their play, and no one is going to be a guiding influence for the young guys. I will give you some options for the captain and the pros and cons of each.

I was under the impression that Hejduk and Stastny were going to be the A’s all year, but I like this move. It means that maybe they will give it to Landeskog. (See below)

Ryan O’reilly: Right now, he is the easy choice. He has worked hard the whole year and honestly, he is one of the few that looks like he cares out on the ice. Would anyone be surprised if you woke up tomorrow morning and read that he was named captain? I doubt it. The only reasons I can think of why he should not be captain is because of his youth and in a few years it will probably be Duchene’s team.

Matt Duchene: Like I said, in a few years it will probably be his team, and one way that he could quicken the process would be to show the leadership that being a captain takes. I think he has been doing that on the ice recently, by going 100% and not accepting anything but the best from himself, but I can’t say if he has off the ice just because I’m not around the team off of the ice. I will say he showed leadership earlier in the year when he apologized to the team for him poor effort and results at the beginning of the year. Once again, if you woke up tomorrow and read he say been named captain, would you been surprised? Maybe a little, but not really.

Erik Johnson: I thought at the beginning of the year that Johnson should be captain. From what I had heard he worked very hard in the offseason, and wanted to be a leader, but I have just not seen that leadership on the ice. I’m not seeing much emotion, good or bad from him, and I think he should show it. Get mad at teammates, get mad at yourself, just show us something. I still think that eventually Johnson is going to be a very good defender, and I will be curious to see what the Avs think he is worth at the end of the season. Knowing Sherman though, it will probably be around $11 Million per year. But that’s a different story. Again, if you woke up tomorrow and read that EJ was captain, would you be surprised? A lot more than Duchene or O’reilly, but overall, not that much.

Gabriel Landeskog
: A name that maybe has not been mentioned much, but maybe should get some consideration. Obviously he can’t be captain this year. You just can’t have a rookie as your captain, but why not ride this year out without a captain and name him captain next year? I think we all can see he is going to be a special player. He was the captain of his OHL team at 17, and only the second captain in the OHL who has been from Europe, so clearly he has so special leadership capabilities. Give him a year to get his feet wet, and then give him the C. Crosby was named captain at 19, so was Vincent Lecavalier, so why not Landeskog? Honestly, this is the situation I am hoping for the most.

Now for some more trade options. In my opinion, it is clear the Avs need to make a trade. Not only to get the offense that they need, but to shake things up and say that how they are currently playing is not acceptable. They did the same thing last year with the EJ and Anderson trades, and they should do it now, so here are my proposals:

Avs Trade: Paul Stastny, Ryan Wilson

Predators Trade: Shea Weber

It’s not that I don’t like Stastny, because I really do, but within the next year or two, if not already, he is the third best center on the team, and I think it is time to trade him when we can get the most for him. And I love Wilson, but I think the Avs would have to part with him to get Weber, and I think it would be worth it. The Predators get a very good center, which they have been looking for, for a while, and a solid defenseman to help replace Weber. And Stastny for Weber gives them about 900K more cap space. We have the money for Weber, and could you imagine a Weber-Johnson top D pair for the next 7 years? That would put us right there with the Kings and Doughty-Johnson pair. And Weber could also be a captain, and provide leadership that the Avs need. Not to mention a bomb from the point and at least 40 points from a defenseman.

Avs Trade: Jay McClement, Brad Malone

Lightning Trade: Ryan Malone (Ha. I just realized they are cousins)

I’m not sure the Lightning would go for this, but I am going to try and convince them. McClement is a guy who can play at any point of the game, and is a good penalty killer. Brad Malone had a very good camp this fall, and honestly, I would be surprised if we didn’t see him at some point this year, and he has good size at 6’2”, 207lbs. R. Malone would give the Avs a big body for the powerplay who is not afraid to hit people or go to the dirty areas. I also think he would be a good role model for some young gritty players on the team. The only down side is he does have an injury history.

Avs Trade: Peter Mueller, Cameron Gaunce

Jets Trade: Andrew Ladd

I know, I know, I love Peter Mueller too, and I would be really sad to see him go, but I’m just not sure that he can be effective with the Avs anymore. As sad as it is, and I hope I’m wrong, I think a change of scenery might be good for him. And Ladd, who has gotten off to a slow start this year, could once again help with leadership, but he also scored 59 points for a Thrashers team last year, that really lacked any talent at forward. I think he could fit in nicely on a line with Duchene and Jones.

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