A fun summer time thought experiment.
It wasn’t the strongest UFA crop the NHL has ever seen this off-season, which is why guys like David Clarkson were cashing in with major long-term contracts. Complicating matters is a dropping salary cap that has caused a few teams to buy-out NHLers and a few others not to shop too seriously for bodies.
As a result, even though there wasn’t a lot of elite talent available, there is actully more than a few useful NHLers still looking for work. There’s so many, in fact, that you could probably build a whole team out of them that could at least compete on a nightly basis. Take a gander:
C: Grabvoski, Antropov, Wellwood, Lombardi, Steckel
LW: Prospal, Morrow, Raymond, Gagne, Cleary, Latendresse, Ponikarovsky
RW: Mueller, Boyes, Brunner, Knuble, Kobasew, Larose
D: Gilbert, Kuba, Redden, O’Byrne, Murray, Fistric, Zanon, Martinek, Kaberle, Eminger, Eaton
G: Bryzgalov, Mason, Garon
Let’s build some lines:
- Raymond – Grabovski – Boyes
- Prospal – Antropov – Brunner
- Morrow – Wellwood – Mueller
- Cleary – Steckel – Larose
- O’Byrne – Gilbert
- Zanon – Kuba
- Fistric – Eaton
That’s not great. The blueline in particular is underwhelming. Still, Im willing to bet we’ve seen a few worse line-ups put together on purpose by NHL GM’s in the past few years. Added amusement: this roster would probably struggle to make the cap floor as well.
Build your own rosters in the comments.