Two Ducks Fitted For A Different Set Of Wings

Discussion in 'HFNHL Talk' started by HFNHL Commish, Mar 8, 2006.

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  1. HFNHL Commish

    HFNHL Commish Registered User

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    This morning, Ducks GM Matt Gledhill confirmed reports coming out of Detroit that LW Brian Rolston and G Sean Burke were traded to the Red Wings yesterday. In return for the two popular veterans, the Ducks received LW/C Todd White, G Jussi Markkanen, D Staffan Kronwall, and prospect winger Antti Miettinen. The deal was contingent upon Rolston's agreeing to a contract extension with the Red Wings.

    In White, the Ducks get a player that brings many of the same attributes to the table as Rolston, although White isn't quite as good as Rolston in any one category, and he clearly doesn't possess Rolston's phenomenal wheels nor his booming shot. Nevertheless, White seems to fit the Ducks current mold of forwards that can play a variety of positions and fill a variety of roles.

    For the short term, Markkanen gives the Ducks an option in net that's younger than Burke and that can split time with Boucher. Over the long haul, Boucher and Markkanen both clearly have a long way to go towards establishing themselves as true #1 goaltenders, so it seems reasonable to suspect that the Ducks might not be done dealing for goaltenders just yet.

    One clear winner in this deal is young defenseman Staffan Kronwall. The younger brother of Ducks prospect and Swedish Olympian Niklas Kronwall, Staffan is bigger and a bit more of a stay-at-home blueliner than Niklas.

    Last, but not least, high-energy winger Miettinen gives the Ducks another two-way forward who figures to be jostling for time on the third and fourth lines as early as next season.

    Obviously, this deal represents a step in a different direction for the Ducks, who just last season made a run to the Stanley Cup Finals. While a lot of fans will be tremendously upset with the departure of long-time favorite Rolston, the consistent message coming from management in recent weeks has been that it was time to stir the pot a bit.

    Sources close to Gledhill have indicated that the GM doesn't believe his team can contend this year, and possibly not even next year. That said, it would be out of character for Gledhill to scrap the entire roster and go with a kiddie corps. Expect more deals like this to come, where the Ducks take a step back to get a little younger and a little cheaper in order to buy time for prospects like Cammalleri, Johnson, and Kronwall - Niklas - to make an impact.
     
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