What Now

The Hawks re-assigned Ryan Potulny and Ben Smith to Rockford today.  With Dave Bolland on Injured Reserve and his earliest return date being Saturday and Marian Hossa being unable to participate in contact drills at practice, it’s safe to say at least one player will be recalled before Wednesday night’s game. 

There was some debate awhile back on the process of how Potulny is called up and then sent down.  While some parts of the Collective Bargaining Agreement are fairly straight-forward, the waiver process is not.  From what I’ve been told after asking around, Potulny is exempt from waivers for the rest of the year because he cleared at the end of training camp.  I wasn’t 100% sure this was the case until Potulny was simply re-assigned to Rockford today without having to clear waivers.  Same thing goes for Jassen Cullimore when/if he gets sent down.  He cleared at the beginning of the year, therefore he can go up and down without having to clear waivers again.

Either way, unless the Hawks want to give Tomas Kopecky a chance to best his -5 from last Friday, I anticipate them calling up someone who can play center.  So Potulny, Brandon Pirri, and Evan Brophey are all options.  With Pirri playing exceptionally well so far and no timetable on Bolland’s return, he could be given a legitimate shot to nail down a roster spot.

–Speaking of Rockford hopefuls, this is a fairly interesting article about the budding relationship between Igor Makarov and Ivan Vishnevskiy.   It is a little bizarre, however, to read about Vishnevskiy as though he’s some 33 year-old journeyman like the article makes him out to be.  He and Makarov are nearly the same age.

–I think I’d like to challenge Stan Bowman’s memory here.

“I’m happy with our depth,” Bowman said. “Last year we had a pretty good year [health wise] other than toward the end.”

Ben Eager, Adam Burish, Dave Bolland, and Marian Hossa all missed significant portions of the first half of last season.  Burish and Bolland missed nearly the entire season.  The Hawks never missed a beat with any of those guys out. 

This year, they’ve been without only Brian Campbell and just recently have lost Bolland and Hossa for any length of time.  I don’t think anyone will say things have gone swimmingly to this point. 

But to say their depth is fine and then re-write what happened last year is comical at best, insulting at worst.

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19 Responses to What Now

  1. Dominic says:

    To act as if we came out of the gate 14 – 1 last year is comical as well. The over romanticizing (however you spell it) of last season, especially the beginning is not real productive as well. If I recall, Andrew Ladd and Big Buff had quiet starts last year as well. And has been noted, we are only 1 game off of last years start with more injuries and a more demanding schedule.

    No doubt there are many places to improve, but I think a new focus for fans should be the focus of Q, and that is getting the guys on the same page. Last 2 games, looking much better. Knock Skille and Stahlberg for their shortcomings, but Skille has to lead the league in drawn penalties. Assuming he gets the scoring gorilla off his back as Brouer did, he should only get better.

    Jake Dowell, has been better than Colin Fraser at the beginning of last year as well. Anyhow, don’t want to seem combative, as I look forward to your posts and insight, but expecting perfection each day is an exercise in futility.

    Lets enjoy this new cast of characters and how they come together. The lack of success, the points left on the table this year is not because of lack of depth, but lack of killer instinct by the leaders. It has been Kane, Keith and others who have been on the ice for the dumb goals and momentum breakers. They are the guys on the ice when the opportunities come to take a 3 goal lead or more. That is the next step for this team. Yes it is a tough league, but finishing teams off is what is important. That is not done by third and fourth liners, its done by your stars.

    Thanks for the chance to speak. Go Hawks

  2. John says:

    Who is expecting perfection? I think you’re taking a lot of frustration from things you’re reading elsewhere and spilling your guts out here. All I was stating was that the Hawks had more injuries last year and they still had a better record than now. Bowman, apparently, forgot about that.

  3. Dominic says:

    I will agree some of my frustration is from the broader scope; however, last year they started the season knowing Hossa on the shelf. He was a new/unknown commodity at that time. Bolland was a known commodity and his injury was there from day 1. This year, Campbell drops week before season, Ham sandwich suspension, Sharp a game, Kane a game, Kopy a game…far more disrupting in my humble opinion.

    Integrating depth, which is there, is one thing; assembling and reassembling 3rd and 4th lines each week is another. Anyhow, truce, tonight we play our best game of the year.

    Still stand by my last paragraph above. The leaders of the team need to take the focus off of the new guys and carry the load giving them a chance top succeed. It is hard to remember sometimes we still are very young.

  4. John says:

    I didn’t take any of that from what Bowman said. He said they were healthier last year at this point. That is false. Let’s also not forget that Toews missed a handful of games at this point too with his concussion. They had just as many injuries/issues. The difference is no one was using it as an excuse.

    Assembling/reassembling 3rd and 4th lines is a product of their own doing. They didn’t have to re-assign Potulny and Smith. They chose to so great depth forwards like Pisani, Scott and Hendry could play on the 4th line.

  5. dominator says:

    I’m still scratching my head over this Pisani/Scott/Hendry fourth line

  6. Dale Halas says:

    Everything I understand about the waiver process is that Potulny had to clear re-entry waivers since he played in too many NHL games last year.

    Cullimore did NOT have to clear re-entry waivers because he did NOT play in enough NHL games in either of the last two years.

    Once you are up you have to play in 10 games or stay up for 30 days cumulative before you have to be waived again to go down. Its not waiver free for the rest of the year.

    You are, however, totally correct in that the waiver part of the CBA is a really “icky” read. And it is very possible that I am missing something because of it, but I still think the above information is correct…

  7. John says:

    Potulny cleared nothing on his way up. It’s impossible when you think about it. The Hawks called him up on Saturday and he was in that night’s game. For him to have cleared re-entry waivers, 1) it would’ve been news that he was on the waiver wire and 2) it would take 48 hours before the waiver process was complete as every team would have a chance to claim him. He and Cullimore both had to clear waivers at the end of training camp when they were assigned to Rockford. Their games the previous year have nothing to do with it. It’s based on career games.

  8. Dale Halas says:

    A Player who requires Regular Waivers may not be Recalled
    without first clearing Re-Entry Waivers

    The Re-Entry Waiver procedure will not, however, be applicable to
    Veteran Minor League Players defined as follows:

    (ii) for defensemen and forwards, Players who have: (A) played in 320 or more professional games in North America (NHL, AHL and ECHL), and (B) not spent more than 80 NHL games on NHL roster over the prior two (2) seasons or more than 40 NHL games on NHL roster in the immediately prior season.

    Again, I could be missing something but I don’t see how Potulny could bypass re-entry waivers. I do see and stated why Cullimore didn’t have to though…

  9. feyer says:

    Regarding the waiver confusion, remember rules are different for regular waivers (on the way down) and re-entry waivers (on the way up). Regular waivers are based on age and number of NHL games played, and as has been correctly stated, you only have to clear those once a season. Re-entry waivers are based on the type of contract the player has. If they are on a one-way, then they will have to clear re-entry waivers each and every time. Unfortunately, I have not found a definitive source that lists which players have a one-way, so we can only guess, but it certainly comes into play whenever Stanley is negotiating contracts that aren’t entry level.

  10. John says:

    Except Cullimore did have to clear waivers at the end of camp. And something is missing because Potulny was not on re-entry waivers nor did he have to clear waivers when he was sent down yesterday.

  11. John says:

    @feyer Potulny and Cullimore are both on two-way deals for what that’s worth. And only one person here is confused.

  12. Dale Halas says:

    The Veteran Minor League exemption is only for re-entry waivers, not regular waivers.

    As feyer says, kids who haven’t played enough games are exempt from waivers. Everyone else pretty much needs to be waived going down. So yea, Cullimore and Potulny had to be waived down.

    Did Potulny come up under the Emergency Recall section? That is the only thing I can see on how he didn’t go through re-entry waivers. That also might explain why Potulny got sent back down. Though if that was the case, I would have thought he would have had to go down when Campbell came off IR.

  13. Cam says:

    I figured the Hawks might need time to gel with all the new parts, but right now they just look…bad. Slow and lackadaisical defensively, soft on the puck on the forecheck, confused on the PP.

    I don’t get it.

  14. Cam says:

    Although one thing is for sure: they have too much dead weight.

    Last year, a case could be made that every player on the roster was a legit NHL regular. This year, a case could be made that 3-5 aren’t.

  15. Cam says:

    If there have been 10 D-men worse than Duncan Keith this year, I’d like to hear a roll call.

    Oh, and the goaltending is just good enough to lose.

    How many times is Turco going to give up a bad goal late to break a tie?

  16. Cam says:

    I’ve never seen a player win a major trophy and be so bad the following year as Keith has been.

    It’s hard to believe.

  17. Dale Halas says:

    @Cam: You know last year, the Hawks 6th D-man was paid 2.5M. This year they are trotting out an entire 4th line with 3rd D-pair (all five guys) for almost the same cap hit. You simply can’t expect the same level of performance as last year…

  18. Lou says:

    another piss poor mailed in effort

    the 4th line that we skated tonight was an absolute disgrace.

    Send on o fthe d-men down and play a competitive team. just a freaking disgrace.

  19. Cam says:

    Yes, Dale, I do understand that, although Sopel was not really worth $2.5, but nonetheless they shouldn’t be playing THIS bad over this long a period.

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