We covered Mike Smith in great detail in the previous article. I did say I would pay just over the league average for his services and must take the system under Tippett and Burke when judging his success.
His back up Jason LaBarbera is also available to test the market. If you can get him cheap I would consider it, but I think it has more to do with if Smitty re-signs. If Smitty stays I see Chad Johnson as the every day back up and maybe eventual starter. I really think the days of both Smitty and Barbs are over.
The pair that will be our first priority this off season will be Mikkel Boedker and Lauri Korpikoski. They are both restricted free agents so a deal should be done with both and should be considered before messing with any goalies. Michael Stone is young enough to most likely come back and not be a big concern as he is restricted and will return next season.
Onto the question marks. The unrestricted free agents that are not superstars but very vital to the team. Face off guru Boyd Gordon will be there for the taking but should not receive a ton of offers to steal him from the Coyotes. One fan favorite is Rob Klinkhammer who shows a ton of potential. I hope we re-sign him and get him on the 3rd or 4th line permanently. I love this kid and the fact he plays with reckless abandoned.
The gritty Kyle Chipchura may be a piece worth keeping as he has provided everything Biznasty has and then some. I like his overall game and with the loss of Raffi Torres it is much needed toughness we lack at times. Tired of seeing Ollie get beat up with little protection. The Captain Shane Doan cannot do it all. We need an enforcer.
A few minor leaguers round out the free agent dilemma including Andy Miele and David Rundblad. Let’s not forget the Johnsons, Nick and Chad. Let’s hope we get our boys under contract and can afford to bring in some talented help.