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Stealing Vinny

August 18, 2009, by

With the signing of Vinny Prospal occurring while I’m pretty much isolated from the outside world (not a bad thing, surfing in San Diego is really fun), it takes me a little while to catch up on all the news. Hell, I didn’t even know about the Vinny Prospal signing until I checked my phone (which I’m not allowed to carry while I’m here) at around 9pm that night.

Anyway, Prospal officially signed for $1.1 million, which is an absolute steal, as Prospal is pretty much a lock for at least 40 points. It really makes you wonder what the hell Slats was thinking when he signed Ales Kotalik to that $9 million deal over three years to maybe put up 40 points (he’s only done it three times). But what’s done is done, and let’s focus on the positive here: Prospal is a minimal cap hit, a consistent contributor, plays two positions, isn’t committed to a long term deal, and is easily traded should the right deal arise.

This is also an insurance policy in case Brandon Dubinsky can’t handle the rigors of first line duty between Gaborik and Higgins/Avery/Prospal. In the best case scenario, you have Prospal-Dubinsky-Gaborik as the top line. It’s not exactly intimidating, but it will get the job done. Should Dubinsky be unable to perform on the ice, Prospal can switch to pivot, and you can move up any LW not named Donald Brashear.

It provides much needed cheap flexibility amongst the top two lines. As much as I hated the Ales Kotalik deal, is as much as I love this deal. This is one of those deals that will fly under the radar, but provide huge results.

And did I mention that he comes ridiculously cheap?

Categories : Analysis


  1. Scchask says:

    The reason Sather signed Kotalik, which isn’t talked about much, was to help Drury pick up his game. They were really good together in Buffalo a few years back – watch them play on the same line.

    • Dave says:

      That’s flawed logic. You don’t commit to a player for $9 million just to get someone else going.

  2. jurgenno88 says:

    there is no downside to this move. Cheap, proven and with a point to prove. It also allows people like Grachev to develop at the right pace (in the A) as too often in the past we’ve rushed youngsters and ruined them (Lundmark, Maholtra anyone?!)

    Worst case scenario he bombs and gets waived for 500k(ish)….

    I’ll never be Sather’s biggest fan but this is a solid (at worst) off-season for him. Those fans that are criticising this move simply dont like him and cant see the move for what it is.

  3. Matt H. says:

    While I would never look at Sean Avery and consider him a 1st line talent, he always seems to fit best on that first line with a big time scorer (Jagr, Gomez) and he’s always played well with Dubi.

    I’d love to see him start the year with dubi and gabby. So flip him with Prospal and thats the way I’d roll the lines out.

    • jurgenno88 says:


      i too think Avery would line up well with gaborik. If only to divert attention and add some sandpaper effect to that line.

      I do find it funny that you put Gomez in the same bracket as Jagr as a big time scorer though!

      If only! 🙂

      • Matt H. says:

        haha, I kind of wrote that knowing it would generate that kind of reaction.

        While he didn’t perform as our ‘big time scorer’ he was supposed (key word) to be that guy…

      • Dave says:

        The thing is Gomez was never a big time scorer. He had a career year, and just rode that to the big payday. He’s very fast, but he is more of a 15-45-60 guy than a 20-60-80 guy.

        • Matt H. says:

          Yes, I realize that, but I always think the Rangers signed him to be that guy…