Friday, June 20, 2008

Pre Draft Notes

We were going to do an update on the Entry Draft when this one arrived via email from the IIHF regarding a report in the today's Toronto Star:

Although the International Ice Hockey Federation does not usually issue statements following unsubstantiated media reports, the IIHF finds it principally important to address the newspaper story (Toronto Star, June 20) that reports about the Russian league allegedly preparing an offer to Pittsburgh Penguin player Evgeni Malkin, who is under contract with the NHL-club.

“Although there will be no imminent Player Transfer Agreement between the IIHF and the NHL, all involved parties are in principal agreement to honour each other’s contracts,” says IIHF President RenĂ© Fasel. “The NHL has informed the IIHF that this will be the policy of the league during the period without a PTA, and conversely, the IIHF has obligated its member national federations and leagues to do the same in its relations with the NHL.”

We would view any signing, from either side, of a player under a valid contract, who does not have any legally valid out-clause, to be a clear violation of the mutual understanding and existing principle. It would potentially be punishable with suspended national team eligibility and suspension from all competition or activity organized by the IIHF or any IIHF member national association. This would include events like the Olympic Winter Games, the IIHF World Championship or international club competitions like the Champions Hockey League."

"Given this, we are confident that the report is not substantiated."

We really do feel bad for the good people at the IIHF as they are caught in the middle of a mess created by the NHL and the European members. They (the IIHF) seem to be the only ones who actually want to work out a Player Transfer Agreement that works for both sides.

You get the sense that they were expecting this kind of rumor to start when the talks broke down and the agreement expired. Now the IIHF is left playing firefighter having to put out rumors that would further polarize both sides.

Not a good position to be in.

Rumors and other stuff

When we were wanting to learn how to scout those who were kind enough to play the role of mentor to us also explained to us how some teams operate on draft day. It is not as if it was higher advanced chemistry or working towards one's PhD but rather it when you boil it down to the brass tacks is simply a wish list of goals.

Everyone knows what everyone else needs, everyone knows who the other guys have scouted and everyone knows what everyone is looking for. The game becomes fun when you try to use that knowledge to your advantage.

As we have repeatedly said here nobody is 100% sure who they are going to draft (other than the owners of the first pick) until the previous pick has been made. Really that is the reality of the draft since while you think so and so is going to take this player; until they actually make the pick then you do not know for sure.

If it was so cut and dried then each team would not need forever to make a selection and the draft would be dreadfully boring. Think about it strip everything away and it should only take 2 hours tops to draft 7 rounds.

That being said we believe that the Rangers have a very short list of players (3-4) who they would use the 20th pick on. If those players are gone then we believe the Rangers will trade down for get extra picks.

Unlike last year where the draft lacked depth this one we believe is 4 rounds deep for quality, we are also hearing that the Rangers are looking to stockpile so a couple of players might have new addresses next year.

We also expect that NHL teams in this kind of draft where talent is everywhere will not gamble on those consider problem children or too green so expect Kyle Beach to drop deep as well as Colby Robak

We will be bouncing back and forth here and the Blueshirt Bulletin

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