Rumors, innuendo, speculation… It’s loomed since before the 2018 NHL trade deadline and now it’s on the forefront during the NHL offseason. Days after the start of the free agency season, Ottawa Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson’s name started making headlines again. Karlsson is available on a revamping Senators franchise that is also a marred object by way of owner Eugene Melnyk. (Sinuate: Senators fans – We’re expansion brethren and I sympathize with you over ownership issues; the Tampa Bay Lightning have been there, believe me).
That little statement there dropped the bomb on which franchise this post is about: Les Bolts de Tampa Bay are tied rampantly in speculation at the end of the first week of July. In fact, yesterday (July 6) you could have come to the conclusion the deal was final and done and just had to be announced with details fully disclosed. That’s how much chatter was on Twitter and other means. A third party franchise (or many?) was supposed to be involved in order to manage contracts and move bodies to get things squared away all right and good.
You wouldn’t know this if you checked some of the Lightning blogosphere.
Oh, there’s stuff about this in Raw Charge’s link-dump / Twitter rehash daily post of Quick Strikes, and I can tell you right now that Raw Charge contributors and other major members of the Lightning blogosphere (Bolt Prospects namely) have been talking about things on Twitter.
But we’re talking blogs here and there’s shit in publication.
There’s no statement of how much the Bolts need Karlsson, or how much of a crown-piece Karlsson is supposed to be on a well-performing roster like Tampa Bay’s is at the moment. There’s no counter-argument but how the Lightning don’t need a major cog as-so-much a final piece of the puzzle that compliments what is already in the system and non the roster (and doesn’t raid the Tampacuse system to acquire). What you can find is more knee-jerk reaction fan fodder that states the want, the need, the hatred of (insert most members of the Tampa Bay Lightning hockey club’s NHL-level roster and most prominent prospects) and how the club would be better off without them and how Karlsson would be so so much better.
Is that disrespectful? Oh, yeah. And all too common for most successful and unsuccessful pro sports teams. Knee-jerk stupidity is knee-jerk stupidity. I’ll move back to the subject at hand, though.
Hell, maybe my reaction here is knee-jerk stupidity to the silence of the Boltosphere where I expect speculating and opinionizing on the potential acquisition of Erik Karlsson? Then again, I’m a long, long time blogger and I’m someone who has gone on the record stating things both agreed with and disagreed with: Opinions, viewpoints, speculation, and simply news that the fodder is out there.
Raw Charge is lost planning for the “Top 25 Under 25” series that is annual and common on SB Nation in the off-season. It’s a little out-of-place at the moment with those under-25 player (any number of them) departing the franchise in a Karlsson transaction. As the co-founder of Raw Charge, I can tell you the “Top 25 Under 25” isn’t a forced series, it’s just something of a summer tradition on SB Nation hockey blogs to fill the off season. Morning link dumps aren’t a forced parameter on the network either; it’s just something to draw eyeballs and community members married to the sites.
And as a blogger, I can tell you player assessment or news-only posting is not blogging. Ranting like this very blog post? Different story.
Someone might react to this reading and just say “You should go over there and write!” It isn’t going to work. I won’t give details on that but it’s just not there. Some things this blogger adheres to are no longer welcome in approach, let alone is the content management system (the back end) a friendly place for putting together content.
I already have expressed my own thoughts on a potential Karlsson deal…on Google + of all places. I could have just gone on a rant on Twitter about it, but Twitter is not a good platform for expression nor is the knee-jerk reaction sentiment. I’ll repost it here in full, with some grammatical corrections included.
I don’t know if I’m the only one participating on here at the moment… maybe so because G+ isn’t so popular. That and it being the off-season adds to it.
Yet with rumors swirling about Erik Karlsson and the Lightning, I’d think Bolts fans would have something to say about all this. I know I have a thought and I’m likely in a minority. I’ve been there since the trade deadline: They don’t need to go for the huge huge bounty at the big cost, they need to find the pieces that compliment the system.
The development pipeline known as Tampacuse (look up the #Tampacuse hashttag on social media) has shed a bounty at forward. The plan for the Bolts to let talent gestate and develop in juniors and the minors has paid off compared to the traditional rush-job, only-if-he-lives-up-to-his-reputation stuff you see in this sport. To raid that bounty, to hinder the top-level team that’s been a contender and contrasts Tampa Bay sports history (the Bucs are losers – that’s a verb, not an adjective) for one player, on defense?
Okay, any Karlsson deal won’t likely be for just Erik. I still don’t dig it. It’ll be forwards, defensemen, prospects and draft choices on the table for a guy whose reputation is big as the centerpiece, raising expectations on what he does.
The Lightning failing in the Eastern Conference Finals was not over defense lapses. The Lightning getting as far as it has hasn’t been by way of defense alone. It’s a team game, it’s a team sport. Forced upheaval by way of a blockbuster trade is likely to hinder things for the upcoming season…or at least I fear it will.
The one outside point I’ll make here is “hinder things” at least for the start of the season, up until the new balance is found. How well Tampa Bay would play under the new balance remains to be seen… because no Karlsson trade has happened, and may never for that matter.