Update (1:58pm) - As reported on Silver Seven, Lee has been sent down. That answers the question below, right? Wrong! Erik Karlsson has been called up as A-Train will still not be ready. Can anyone take a stab at explaining this move? I thought Lee was going to be the odd man out, but why bring Karlsson up only to likely be sent back when Volchenkov's ready? Or, does Murray think that Karlsson's ready to take the next step and Picard is the odd man out? More defensive puzzles on this fine Friday...
First off, I already feel like to owe Jesse Winchester an apology. Before the season started, I played a little fortune telling on the expected production from our forwards. I won't bother adding the link as I don't want to easily expose my mistakes...and I certainly made some. I expected Spezza to fly out of the gate and have his best season ever, while I didn't expect Fisher to finally get his act together and become a "Scoring Machine". Oops. But, hey, mistakes happen! Right, Nic Cage?
The one prediction I'm feeling bad about this week is that I said Winchester couldn't make it full time in the show. I expected him to play well in Bingo but never get a good enough chance to be called up and make a valuable impact. Double oops.
After watching the past two games, it looks to me as if Winnie belongs. He's playing great! Working hard, winning battles and creating chances. After being injured at the beginning of the season, I figured he would never claw his way back to Ottawa's competitive 3rd and 4th lines. But, he's easily fitting into Clouston's system and making the best of his opportunity with the club.
I love what I'm seeing! Keep it up Jesse! And, I'm sorry...
With Winchester's recent play, it's going to make it hard for early season fan fave Chum Donovan to make it back in. That's a ways a way, so no need to start that debate.
Segue into the more looming debate!
A-Train should be, should be, back soon and hitting every rookie in sight. I for one, can't wait. In his absence, the Sennies have played very strong hockey taking them to 1st in the NorthEast (well, at least for today). Does this mean Volchenkov will have a tough time getting back in the line up? Will the Leafs make the playoffs? Is Duff better than me? The answer to all the above is obviously no.
So what happens with #24 is ready to come back? There needs to be an odd man out, but who? For me, it's a death match between Picard and Lee. I almost added Campoli's name to the hit list but I feel like he's coming around after a sluggish start, I don't want to see him go. Typically, I'd be ready to send Picard back to the buses, but I'm surprising myself when I think he's played well enough to deserve an extended chance. (Not to mention, he could be a nice addition to a trade, so long as he doesn't completely stink it up). And so, I'm left with choosing our blonde wonder to take the trip back to the Bingo hall, er, Binghamton. I still don't want to give up on Lee, but patience is growing thin.
As we welcome back Volchenkov (whenever that may be), who do you think should go? Do you agree? Disagree? Or should Murray pursue a trade?
You're the GM today...GO!