Thursday, August 02, 2007

Penner Poached

About a week after Brian Burke's temper tantrum the Ducks today let Dustin Penner go and took three first round draft choices off the Edmonton Oilers.

(No comment yet from Larry Brooks on why Edmonton GM Kevin Lowe decided not to target Sean Avery...)

Of course, I thought that the Buffaslugs should have let the Oilers have Vanek. Why? Well in both cases, the players receiving the offer sheets were being paid well above their value. And with the Oilers making questionable, at best, moves (including these offer sheets) the odds of the Oilers first round draft pick being late in the first round were slim to begin with. Imagine now if Anaheim ends up in the draft lottery next year? Something tells me, they won't miss Penner that much...

Of course, Anahiem's cap situation is not at all helped by the continuing limbo of Scott Niedermayer (already under contract) and Teemu Selanne (not under contract) between returning or retiring. That may have been the true source of Burke's frustration. While he might not miss Penner that much, he now faces the real prospect of not having Niedermayer and Selanne either.

Though give Kevin Lowe credit. He did much better homework with this offer sheet than he did with Vanek. The Ducks are in a much more precarious cap situation than the Buffaslugs were. Now Lowe is in somewhat behind the 8-ball because he has a bunch of RFA's next year. While the Oilers have plenty of cap space now, a few well written offer sheets combined with some arbitration awards can put the Oilers in their own bind. Gone too is next year's draft class (unless Lowe pulls off some trades to get a first, second, and third round picks next year) which will come back to haunt the Oilers down the road.

However, it is highly unlikely Kevin Lowe will be around long enough to have the chance to clean up the mess he's made.

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