Keep Filip Kuba

- March 13th, 2012

There is no question in my mind the Senators should bring back Filip Kuba next season. Not at the $3.7 million, he’s making this year.
Not a chance. But he should be brought back if he is willing to take a large haircut and is affordable. Don’t agree with me. Listen to coach Paul MacLean singing his praises after practice Tuesday.
MacLean said Kuba has had a strong bounceback season.
“Filip has been outstanding for us,” said MacLean. “Without the play of Filip Kuba, I don’t think Erik Karlsson develops into the type of player that he is. He’s a partner for Erik that gives him a bit of a safety net and a real dependable guy that he knows will help him out. (Kuba) takes care of things if Erik’s not around. My feeling coming here was he was going to be a good player for me. He’s done nothing to disappoint me at this point.”
We’ll see how Kuba does in the playoffs but it sure sounds like he’ll get consideration for a return.

Categories: Hockey

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20 comments

  1. OD99 says:

    Well I don’t usually do this but I am going to say I told you so.

    Last season was set up for Kuba to have a terrible year – started with injuries and got worse from there with poor team play and horrible goaltending. I said there was no way he could be that bad again (same with Gonchar) and very early I hoped we would resign him.

    He is exactly as advertised and although it is frustrating that he doesn’t play more physical he has been very good for this team since we traded for him (last year being the exception).

    Plus, who would fill the void? Even if Boro-cop or Gryba were ready to move up to the NHL they couldn’t take his minutes and be nearly as effective – we need vets for at least one more year, if not more.

    BTW Bobby, I will take your bet for a beer! You have to believe and I think this team could really surprise…if they make it out of the first round they are going to the Conference Finals at the very least (unless we face the Pens – they will probably be the Eastern rep).

  2. Bobby Goodman says:

    You are on Davey-boy! They very well may surprise me but it is my contention the team’s defencemen are not physical enough and can be victimized in post regular season play. I have read a couple of stories that Smith was sat down but have no idea as to why? From what I have witnessed, this makes no sense to me. The other paper and one writer had Smith pegged as a “Dud”…why…not for what he did or didn’t do but because he didn’t play very much in the 3rd. I guess, to him, that qualifies as journalism. Why do Obrien, Condra, Foligno, Konopka, Klinkhammer all get rave reviews while Smith (who has scored 14 goals, plays hard, drops the gloves and competes every game) remains an easy target for criticism?

    Toronto’s new coach has only one win in 6 games. But…he has restored the teams compeitive edge. Greg Millen is hard to stomach at the best of times but last night was one of his worst. He suggested Ashton was the best Leaf but he wasn’t of course. Grabovski and Kessel were the best. I felt bad for Ashton. I am sure he feels a great deal of pressure. He ran a round, running the opposition and then predictably, was challenged to fight. He did not look good. His legs were collapsing all over the place, he flailed away with his arms/fists and looked like a kid with little experience dropping the gloves. It was obvious he was trying to live up to Burke’s description of him (unfare). No matter what business you may be in, stick to your core skill-set (problems arize when you venture out to become something are not). Rosehill got smoked…again…the truculence will have to come elsewhere…I guess.

  3. PaV says:

    Bobby, Ill take that beer bet as well mate. OD99, I have to agree with you. I was pretty hard on Kuba last season… but he has proven him self this season.

    Bobby, TO is done. Wilson wasn’t the issue 100%. Its the product on the ice. Burke is a blowhard who only has ears for his own praise. That team needs a new re-re-build next season. 2004 is a long time ago…..

  4. Tom says:

    It would be nice to get him for 1 year. But I assume in free agency that a couple of teams would be interested. This is the second time that he’s played well in a contract year. Give him one year at the same dollar value. The Sens have tons of cap space, and it keeps him motivated.

  5. Bobby Goodman says:

    Three free beers…giddyup! I hope I lose…and if I do, the price would be a small one compared to the company I would certainly enjoy! Maybe we could convince Potts to join us. He doesn’t say much…but when he does, it is relevant and profound!

    We may be very entertained tonight; with White seeing more icetime and the acquisition of Staubitz, the team is playing some inspired hockey (it is amazing how some toughness can rub off). Even Subban is playing better! Do you guys know if Price is playing tonight?

  6. Bobby Goodman says:

    So Timmie signs another US College kid, another one that was never drafted. Why? I see the signing got Don’s approval and he rationalized it by saying Daisey the Air Rifle would be playing if he wasn’t hurt and Butler and Da Costa may pan out yet! Lets start with Daisey the Air Rifle; what is there to like? Was it his 3 goals his first year here? Perhaps it was his 2 goals in 09-10? Could it be his break out year of 4 goals in 10-11 and are we all encouraged by his 2 goals in 28 games this year. Is it his speed, physicality, playmaking? Does he intimidate? The answer of course is no and to make matters worse, Daisey the Air Rifle is brittle and he’s in his 29th year! Da Costa and Butler are more of the same you get with Condra and Gilroy; all are as soft as cashmere. I would wager that Schneider is yet another one. It may come as a shock but there are very good reasons they they go undrafted.

    It took the Coach a many games to make the call on Da Costa and even more to finally decide to sit Butler; how many games will it take to sit Daugavins down. The Dog has 4 goals in 59 games and is -4. He brings absolutely nothing to the party. He and the very soft Condra were -1 yesterday (so was the offensively minded Gilroy…who is on pace to equal Lee’s output with the team). I feel bad for Smitty, he has to play with these two guys. I will concede that Obrien works hard but he has only 2 goals after 17 games; Klink, inexplicably playing alongside Turris and Alfredsson has but 1 assist in 7games. Konopka has only 3 goals in 53 games but he will fight (although, very selectively). How many ham and eggers does the team really need?

    Wouldn’t it make more sense to have Foligno in the middle on the 3rd line (in the Foligno, Neil, Obrien configuration)? Really, does it make any sense at all having Obrien there? Personally, I would have Smith on the 3rd line and put Obrien on the 4th with Klink and whoever. Foligno arguably played his best hockey as a pivot; although he is slow, he sees the ice, is creative, can be elusive and he can do far more with the puck than the laborous Obrien (I get tuckered out just watching him…he spends a hell of a lot of effort to go from point A to point B)!

    It looks to me like Rene Bourque doesn’t want to be in Montreal. I was expecting him to do a lot better after the trade. For a guy with size and speed he certainly doesn’t show it. Bourque didn’t finish one check last night…not one!

    Steve Simmons is the only writer in Toronto with a pair. His article on the Maple Leafs is acurate; I don’t understand why so many are offended. If I were a fan, I would be challenging the MLSE to do better. I have to assume that Leaf fans, although loyal, really don’t know their hockey very well. How else might you explain their total support for the contracts awarded to: Connolly, Komisarek, Phaneuf, Armstrong, Wilson/Carlyle, Schen, Lombardi, Brown, et al. A 100 pt team indeed…good luck with that!

  7. Daniel Murphy says:

    Bruce, I thought the Sens were going through a 2-4 year re-build. Don’t you think keeping the likes of Kuba, Gonchar etc…is counter-productive and retards the rebuild? Now that we have done so much better than expected, a high draft pick is out of the question. So for the 50th time, what is the next step in the rebuild? Do we continue to drop / trade off the older geezers for draft picks or minor league prospects? Do we stand pat and see how the team develops and grows with the status quo? Signing Kuba makes no sense to me when we could be developing a younger more hungry defenseman who simply needs a chance.

  8. Mike8888 says:

    Bobby,
    The college free agent signings are a gamble and don’t always work out, but essentially, it is obtaining an asset or potential asset for nothing. There are many current and ex NHL players who were overlooked in the draft. With your way of thinking, Adam Oates wouldn’t have had a chance to play in the show. I believe the jury is still out on Dacosta and Butler. Winchester has become a useful role player. Gilroy seems to be improving game by game as he settles in with the Sen’s.

    Hey, what ever happened to Kevin?

  9. Potter says:

    No convincing required: Potts is IN! Fair odds to get past the first round, and 100% chance of enjoying the result, whether I pay off or collect.

    As to the signing, the question is not Why, but Why not? No draft picks or prospects surrendered, reasonable contract. Throw enough __ against the wall and see if some sticks!

  10. bruce.garrioch says:

    Good point Daniel.

  11. Bobby Goodman says:

    …see what I mean everyone…again, Potts hits the mark…relevant and profound. I will have to plan for a cab…4 free beers.

    Mikey, you say Gilroy is improving? I know the Coach says that but what do you see? I see yet another soft, smallish defenceman who, i9f he stays on his current pace will have the same numbers as Lee had before his departure (29 games). Winchester is useful? I wouldn’t have him cutting oranges ‘tween the periods and would trade him for a soiled jock strap. He is useless. How many Daisey the Air Rifles does the team need? What does he do that can not be done by the other ham and eggers: Konopka, Klink, Obrien, Dogauvins, Condra? Da Costa and Butler will pan out? Again I ask, how many soft forwards does this team need? The Sens are soft and getting softer and that is the reason I will be drinking all the beer for free! I don’t believe in a short bench in the post season and those who can effectively/confidently roll the 4th line in the rotation keeps the skilled players that much fresher. Smith is the 4th line the other two are along for a free ride (much in the same way Greening is on with Spezza and Michalek).

    Schnieder cost the team nothing…so we got requisite value…but I ask why? Whatever assets are invested, wouldn’t be an asset because the asset is not an asset going forward!!! KnowI’msayin’? Bingo is in last place in a 30 team league and I thought the Murray’s inherited a baron farm system. He has been GM for 5 years now? I like only two players on the team and I am not hearing all the chirpin’ about Gryba, Wiercoch, Da Oates-like Costa. I took Bruce’s advice to be patient but have yet to get answers to so many questions. Why isn’t Timmie telling us what is going on with Zibby? Whether he be on the 3rd line or not, 5 goals is 5 goals and that isn’t very good.

    We are not hearing from Kevin because he hasn’t got a lot to say in support of his team. It is too bad. Kevin is a smart hockey guy and very witty. I liken Toronto fan support for Burke to the North Korean’s fanatical support for the now deceased Ping Pong…they only know what they are told and the phenomina defies logic.

    Dan has a very good point…but if he parts his hair a little more to the left, you wont see it.

    Oh yes, does everyone agree with Obrien centering Neal and Foligno? Do you like the Missing Klink with Turris and Alfredsson?

  12. Daniel Murphy says:

    Bobby, I don’t have enough hair to part. Trying to read your blogs left me scratching my head until my hair fell out.

    Any rumours floating around on what really happened to Anderson and his pinky finger?

  13. Bobby Goodman says:

    Dan, you gave me a shot there I think…I meant nothing bu the remark…just needed an excuse to throw out the line! Are you going to participate in the “Big Bet”!!!! I have already won 4 free beers from Mike, Dave, The Pavinator and…Potts! I don’t know about the pinky thing…but for a silly little incident, everyone seems to be very tight lipped (I am not losing sleep over it though). Oh Mikey, Lee has 4 points in 7 games with Tampa. I suspect he is very happy with the trade! He went to a place where he knows he’s wanted and rewarded with icetime. He is bigger and better than Gilroy (a weaker, more worser vergin of Corvo?). Gilroy is another Hobey Baker Award winner (the best of the best in NCAA) who like Lombardi in Toronto has amounted to nothing. I will take a Canadian boy from Major Junior Hockey any day of the week!

  14. Kevin F. says:

    You are not hearing from Kevin because the moderators choose to moderate at a confusing level. I contribute to a dozen or more forums, music, politics this is the only one who is so controlled Why?

  15. bruce.garrioch says:

    I don’t know. I have to moderate my own comments.

  16. Kevin F. says:

    If you don’t know who does?

  17. bruce.garrioch says:

    I don’t know. Don and I have tried.

  18. Daniel Murphy says:

    Bobby, I did indeed take a cheap shot at you but all in jest. I was roaring over your shot at me. I am up for meeting you guys for drinks. I remember however being left at the alter last time. I think the Sens have as much of a chance to get through the first round as anyone. Let’s be honest, the Bruins are only as good as Thomas will take them. The Rangers are not a scary team and we (Ottawa) have not had any problems with them. Philly’s goaltending will likely let them down. The only team right now that one might be scared of is Pittsburgh.

  19. Bobby Goodman says:

    Great…so are you in on the bet? I am either going to buy the first round for everybody or drink all night for free…either way, it will be a hoot (I’m only good for 3 beers maxipad). The Bruins have been in the dolldrums since Thomas put himself before the team (to him, there is no “I” in “Me”). If the Sens meet the Bruins, it will be nasty, especially if the 4th liners and Horton are healthy. Ottawa will not be able to compete with them physically. The Rangers, under Yosemite Sam, need Lundquist. With all that talent, the Rangers don’t get a lot of shots or goals and can be a real bore (sad, really). Philly has been fabulous recently…the graduate from the University of Mars (Bryzgalov) is playing great ‘tween the pipes. I saw them beat Pittsburgh on Sunday (toggling between that and golf). But, the class of the East and perhaps in the entire league is Pittsburgh. I made the call a couple of months ago they would emerge as the top seed in the East, and they will. Letang is something very special. He has magic hands, great vision, big shot, can skate like hell (we saw that in the Allstar Game – backwards and forwards) and he is physical. Had he been healthy, he would have been hands down favourite for the Norris. Engelland is way more than than the best pugilist in the league, he is big, strong, extremely physical and reliable defencively. Neil, Gino and Kuniz are the best unit in the NHL. Then they have Crosby and the supporting cas of: Staal, Dupuis, Cooke, Kennedy, Sullivan (he is old but can still bring it) and of course Fleury. Yep, they are the team to beat for sure!

  20. Visitor - Pierre D. says:

    Bobby is on fire again!

    RE The Leafs:

    Fans have been calling for Burke’s head and previously Wilson’s for at least a year. Read some of the Leafs blogs, forumice and PensionPlanPuppets are great and you’ll see they are more than aware of their team’s deficieincies but team that respond to fan panic are teams that go on downward spirals. The Marlies, once a moribund team have clinched their division and look good…in the AHL. Unfortunately, Burke has a blind spot toward Kadri, who creates something whenever he is on the ice. Connolly and Lombo are stopgaps and will be gone this summer. As Pierre McGire said, five years minimum to rehab that baby.

    RE: The Senators

    Kuba and Gonchar need to go. Murray needs to stop with the half and half rebuild he’s doing. On the one hand he is playing young players but on the other hand the lineup is laden with veterans at the end or middle of theii careers. This just isn’t conducive to long-term success or a Cup winning team. We already have too many average and overpaid D here. Replace Kuba with Borowiecki next year or a cheap veteran. 3.7 is too much for someone average.

    Konopka needs to go. I know Don is in love with him but all he does is start momentum-killing fights or take dumb penalties. Surely there is a player in the NHL or AHL that can take faceoffs AND play hockey too? Also, if this team is modelling itself after the Red Wings there wouldn’t even be a Konopka or Neil here, just sayng.

    Carkner, is he even useful here? Rarely plays, makes somewhat of a difference where he was. Fee-good signing from Murray that took another roster spot away from someone younger and more skilled.

    The plethora of grinders, don’t get me started.

    Here is what the lineup should look like post-lockout:

    Michalek-Spezza-Silfverberg
    Zibanejad – Turris – Greening
    Noesen – Smith – Winchester
    Daugavins – X – Condra

    Karlsson – Cowan
    Borowiecki – Phillips
    X – X

    Lehner
    Bishop

    Nowhere close to the cap but free of a lot of veterans and finally some youth top to bottom. Not a talented roster by any means, but it is “getting there.”

    Oh, a few last things…I see the team’s style as anathema to playoff hockey. Leaving the barn doors open constantly will not win you four rounds and it might not even win you a single round. But we shall see.
    If the Senators do not make it past round 1 or two over the next few years it should be bye-bye Murrays toot-sweet and bring in a GM and coach that will preach a defense-first mantra, that is playoff hockey from day one.

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