Pump and Dump
Brewer, Poti, Carter, Comrie, Marchant...............
What do all these guys have in common? Well in my opinion they are all examples of Kevin Lowe's "pump and dump" strategy as a GM. Pimp a guy with OK talent (but flaws as well) by giving him primo ES linemates or defensive partners, big special teams ice time and load up the numbers (that's the pump). The look to deal him when someone actually thinks these numbers mean something outside of the context they were created (that's the dump).
Brewer was the master stroke in this game and Lowe played this for all it was worth. Vic and I spent many a thread ranting about how Brewer was being pimped with insane amounts of PP time that he did squat with and his salary and Team Canada selections were not legit. The payoff for this effort........Mr. Chris Freaking Pronger - nuff said.
Carter is hopeless without linemates to leach off as has been shown numerous times. The Vancouver sisters breathed life into his sorry corpse the same way we did by giving him all that top line ice with Smyth, but any GM who gives this guy a raise and hopes he provides something on his own is delusional. Comrie and Poti were both talented but seriously flawed players that benefited from the Oilers system and lots of love - happy with the return and also happy they're gone. Marchant is the misfire - pimped this guy to a 60 point season but failed to pull the trigger - Colombus did get suckered into signing him for big bucks though so there actually is a sucker born every minute.
Which brings us to the current roster and we can ask ourselves who are the benefactors of "the pump" this season. Basically we can start with anyone playing with Pronger. Let's not kid outselves about MAB. He's an interesting little player (tiny is more like it) and has a world of try in him - but I could look adequate playing beside the beast. We have probably pumped MAB about as much as he going to be pumped and I could see him being dealt over the summer. The other guy is clearly Horcoff. Now I like his skill set, his guts, his ES play etc etc - but playing with Hemsky and Smyth is the reason for half of his points. He's become a darn fine 2nd line player who can jump up to the top line if necessary - but he's not driving the line - he's complimentary. If we can build a package around Horcoff and a serious prospect to pull Richards out of Tampa - then that's Brewer for Pronger all over again and obviously I would be delighted.
Don't get me wrong - I like Horcoff and MAB - but "the pump" has been active this year as well - it's just that we have better pump material than most years in the recent past.