Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Yashin Resurfaces Like Godzilla - Various Cities In Panic

Just for the sheer hell of it, and for the sake of some much needed mid-summer conversation, can you imagine if the "one NHL contract offer" that agent Mark Gandler said his client Alexei Yashin has been tendered was from the Ottawa Senators? Strangely, is there a team more in need of a second-line centre than the locals in red and black?

Obviously, this is about as outlandish as the search for Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster and Rupert Murdoch's moral integrity, but stranger things have happened in the NHL.

Signing Yashin would completely fly in the face of the organization's focus on youth and rebuilding, and that is probably the biggest clue that the Senators wouldn't go near their former franchise player, but his skills must remain tempting for some general managers.

Jaromir Jagr is coming back. Nicklas Lidstrom is still playing. We await word on Teemu Selanne. Yashin is now 37 and is years removed from the NHL, but I have no doubt he could play well in this league with a modest contract and lower expectations.

My main curiosity is how Senators fans would welcome him onto the team. Would there be more of those "Nobody Paid Me To Be Here" signs from the fans? Would they cheer for him? Would the NAC send out a donation card and promise to hire his family for real this time?

These are the kinds of stories you can actually mull over for a while in the summer.

What's Alexandre Daigle doing lately?

If this "one NHL offer" is legitimate (and I'm not about to accuse Gandler of lying due to his sterling reputation in the business*), then it may just be a GM trying to:

a) desperately hit the cap floor
b) catch the all-time Hail Mary pass of risky signings
c) or trying to prolong Mike Milbury's psychological torture

If you had to guess the team, who would you take in a money bet?

I'll take the New York Rangers. Yashin could be an upgrade on the departed Vaclav Prospal. Glen Sather is weird enough to try it. My pal said it would be the Capitals.

Dark horse? How about Dallas.

The sure bet? It won't happen at all.


hambown said...

I'm betting on the Isles. Doug Weight retired so they could use an older semi-scoring centre. Yashin probably still has Islanders money coming his way, it would be easy from a financial perspective. And yes, they need to hit the cap floor. Gotta be the Isles.

Brian5or6 said...

Yashin is the best. I'd sign his used fart bag and it would still be our 2nd line center

Anonymous said...

I remember seeing a Glen Sather interview on one of those Dave Hodge specials, a few years ago. Hodge asked him what he thought of Yashin, and Sather said "I admire him".

Add to that that Sather has a penchant for grabbing super talented malcontents (Jagr, Kovalev, Lindros, Bure, Klima, etc ...) and I think that it's a good bet that Yashin suits up at MSG.

I also agree with Hambown, in that Yashin is still getting paid by Charles Wang and they still have a good relationship, by all accounts, so it wouldn't be surprising to see him land there either.

As for Ottawa, I'm probably in the minority in that I'd be ok to see him with the Sens if he could still contribute. I've got no problem with the dude.

His last season here, his body language said "get me outta here", but he still scored 40 goals and put up 88 points. Quite frankly, I'd rather the whole team be sour and score 40 goals, rather than "really want to be here" and have a tough time scoring 15. Something tells me that Murray prefers the "really want to be here" crowd.

The guy didn't like his contract, he challenged it, he lost, he pouted and produced, and we got a great return. Life goes on. I got no issue with the guy.

Anonymous said...

I prefer him to Spezza, personality-wise. At least Yash will stay here in Ottawa not to bolt to THAT city during the summer.

Still our highest goal-scoring and point-getting (?) centre...I`d dust off the 19 sweater for him for sure, and he could provide us a good 60 points at not too much money?

Anonymous said...

Actually, Spezza's or leading point getting center, and he should pass YashIn in goals next year.

I liked Yash, but I'd take Spezz over him any day.

hambown said...