For those of you under a rock all day, the Caps signed Fighting Sioux defenseman Joe Finley to a two year entry level deal good next year, and brought him up to the Bears for playoffs.
Also, in light of Neuvy’s quick exit from the game last night, which according to the Patriot News was illness, not injury, Braden Holtby of the Saskatoon Blades has also been summoned to the Town of Chocolate. Sometimes all I have to do is suggest these things…
With these addictions, there are a few questions forming in my mind, the foremost being who sits out?
Our blueline is already packed, what with Bryan Helmer, Tyler Sloan, Sean Collins, Karl Alzner, Dean Arsene, Sami Lepisto, and Staffan Kronwall, and those are just the guys on the clear day roster. Add in Greg Amadio, Darren Reid, Grant McNeill and Patrick McNeill, and it just starts getting ludicrous. Of those, whos spot is Finley going to be slotting into?
Most places I’ve seen praise his skating skill and his ability to control plays on defense, but it has to be noted that he’s also got quite a few PIM to his name as well. Is this going to be the defensive end answer to a Beagle, who can go in and hold players off pucks in the corners? Is he going to give a suddenly short sounding 6′4″ Osala clues on how to go in as a big guy and have his way with things? This guy is 6′7″, where ‘Big Mac’ Chris Macallister was last year.
And for goalies, Cheez is already on the Clear Day ‘in residence’ list, but found his salvation in Brent Johnson’s injuries keeping Neuvy or Varley in D.C. With Johnny able to get back out on the ice recently his return looms imminent, obviously sending whichever Bear is warming the goalie seat here back to Hershey. With four there, then, who gets the top two slots? And who just gets to sit?
I also have a nagging worry about chemistry as well. I know a majority of the hockey world believes it’s bunk, but I can’t help but think there’s something to it. If you Motzko* a bunch of players onto a team right before postseason, is there any resentment to be had? I think if I were Patrick McNeill out toiling there for the entire regular season only to be told I was a Clear Day scrub and then see Joe Finley waltz out of North Dakota to get a solid spot, I’d be pretty peeved. Granted, there’s more to it than that, and the clear day roster isn’t a “you’re never playing again this season” death card, but still….
* from Joe Motzko, meaning “to barely help a team’s season and still get hardware for it” as Joe Motzko played three games with the Ducks and got a Stanley Cup, then after being picked up by the Bears and summarily traded to the Wolves, won the Calder with them.