Bobo is back and we've got some serious crowding in the lobby. So let's open the door!
I agree with you. I believe the players would absolutely need to get earlier access to arbitration and free agency with this contract. Instead, they settled for the pre-arbitration pool concept. That's something, especially combined with the increased minimum salary, but it hardly changed the dynamic. The owners will continue to exploit the less experienced players as cheap labor. The players did free up more spending room under the competitive balance tax, so a few big-spending teams will throw some more money at a few high-end players.
Good for them, but the Coyotes will continue to sell off talent as they prepare to move into a sub-AHL caliber arena. It will be a long, long time before that franchise is relevant again.
College basketball has the same issue in close games, albeit with much lower scores. Timeout, foul, free throws, timeout, foul, free throws, timeout, foul, free throws . . . the only good news is if your team is good at free-throw shooting, fans can get a head start on the ride home from the arena while all this playing out.
I'm a big Kostin fan, as chat regulars know, and I love old-time hockey within reason. So that scuffle was well-received in this corner of cyberspace. But Kostin is getting pushed by fellow Russian Alexi Toropchenko for the physical winger role. Alexi is a big hitter, like Kostin, and he has shown a knack for drawing penalties instead of taking them.
Well, Berube just got a contract extension, so the one-man campaign for John Tortorella fell on deaf ears.
Whoever coaches Missouri basketball will run a program that is looking up at Kentucky, Auburn and Tennessee every year. Alabama will be strong as long as Nate Oats is there. Arkansas will be strong as long as Eric Musselman is there -- and that fan base would make the job attractive to a LOT of coaches if Musselman jumps. LSU will keep doing what LSU does until the NCAA slaps its wrist, which could be years away. Texas A&M has and, it seems, the right coach in Buzz Williams. Florida will finally miss the NCAA Tournament under Mike White, and that may be enough for that traditional power to fire a very good coach. So that's the top half of the SEC. A lot of good coaches will come and go at the other SEC schools trying to climb that ladder.
O'Reilly is playing 19:22 per game, which is a big workload for a forward, but not extreme. He played 20:46 per game in 2018-19 and that season ended well. None of the other players you mentioned shoulder a big workload.
As I noted last week, Jim pressed the issue with the team -- but the team is trying to proceed business as usual and stay out of the fray. The Russians are playing well are in good spirits, as we saw against the Rangers. Buchnevich didn't play because of that head shot he took from Austin Watson, but the rest of the guys look fine. If this conflict escalates and the sanctions worsen, then that could lead to myriad issues. Will the players have their assets tied up? Will they be able to return to Russia to see their family? What measures will the NHL take to protect the ability of current players to work? This could become a story at some point.
That's how I would play it. Husso has be feeling good after that performance and the Chief knows that he can go right back to Binnington to keep him on his comeback trail.
It's always interesting to where the two sides are lining up and how the dynamics are working, But, yes, the owners and players didn't get into serious bargaining until games were canceled. Both came into the fray willing to feel pain to inflict pain.
MLB is picking up its schedule on April 7, so that will be business as usual. As for Wainwright starting the home opener, that would make sense if he were healthy. Obviously the same goes for Molina. Let's how the abbreviated spring training plays out.
Well, we'll see. As we'll note in every chat from here on out, the roster is not frozen. Even after the trade deadline there can be some internal tweaking that can make a difference. Certainly the DH and bullpen could both be fluid this season.
Adam has been resigned to that fate for some time now. No more hitting when he pitches, so more random pinch-hitting assignments when the team runs out of pinch-hitters. I'm OK with all of this, since most pitchers are uncompetitive at the plate.
I believe Mark Stone is legitimately injured, given his struggles before shutting down. But that team did make some crazy contract decisions, like marrying itself to Robin Lehner. The Eichel trade could cause all sorts of long-term havoc. The Golden Knights were great because they had a lot of good players who played with spirit. But then came the coaching change and the impulsive roster moves. I like the Sharks analogy.
Husso had a nice game last night for sure. But Ville also allowed 16 goals in his previous five games, which was classic regression to the mean.
I believe Ronnie DeGray III can be a valuable role player. He needs to tone down his Mitchell Smith imitation with that 3-point shooting, but he is an effective inside player despite his size. Amari Davis could be OK if the team played with more tempo. I like him in the open court. He can get to his mid-range jumper against higher competition, but he can't hit those shots consistently. Whoever coaches this team needs to add a dynamic point guard, a Javonte Perkins-like scorer and sturdy 4/5 player to support Brazile.
Binnington has allowed six goals in his last four games. That's a nice upturn and a clear indication that he will get plenty of work down the stretch. Odds are either he or Husso will make Berube's playoff decision for him with their play. The tough games ahead will test them both.
Here we go ahead, with the chat infighting . . .
Given his low pay, experience and value to the team chemistry, I do not see Bozak going anywhere. He picked up his play after doing his time as a healthy scratch. And with Sundqvist hobbled and some of the the young fourth-line options displeasing the Chief with their inconsistency, Bozak still has a place here.
I'm glad to see Drew Lock escape Denver, which has long been a brutal market for young QBs. I'm not sure he will ever emerge as a high-end starter, but he could have a Blaine Gabbert-like career. As for Wilson, I don't know how he has left in the tank. But he will bring some gravitas to the QB room.