Tuesday, September 02, 2008

McCabe's Molasses-esque Move

Hey kids, Bryan McCabe finally got traded-- ta-da!!

The move that was a month in the making finally happened, with McCabe and a 4th-round pick in the 2010 draft went to Florida for defenseman Mike Van Ryn. McCabe's hold-up was to collect the $2M owed to him on September 1st from Toronto. When you have all the cards on your side-- with a no movement clause and all-- wouldn't you stall the hell out of a move if you had to collect money??

The move indicates many things to many people. Mostly, people believe this is a safety net move if Jay Bouwmeester decides not to re-sign with the club this summer. Others think this is the Panthers' goodwill gesture to Bouwmeester incidicating they are willing to spend some money to rebuild this failing team. For a club who dealt away Olli Jokinen and Roberto Luongo in the past three seasons, something needed to be done to show one of the franchise players that the wheels are in motion and things are happening.

McCabe has been knocked around plenty by the Toronto media and fateful for one reason or another during his tenure in Toronto, and it really was a matter of time before he had enough and needed to move on. Not only does he move on, but he moves so far out of the limelight that he'll need to make awful puns like so much David Caruso to get some kind of pub in the Miami area.

His defensive play was brought into question post-lockout as his +/- dipped from a +47 three years leading into the lockout to an even rating three years out of it. Though is production in those three years picked up, it makes you wonder how his defensive game got so craptacular. It shouldn't get any better in Florida, either-- unless McCabe decides to work on his defensive game more.

For the Buds, the acquisition of Van Ryn not only make Tomas Kaberle the go-to-guy now, but it also keeps the rebuilding movement alive. Van Ryn is an affordable pick-up. Of course, injuries have been an issue at times for Van Ryn, but he can't do much worse on the blue line than the departed McCabe, and could pick up some steam should he apply himself to it.

All in all, the move helped out both sides in terms of the fact that it got McCabe out of a horrible situation and out of the limelight and allowed the Leafs to get a younger defenseman and dump a bigger salary to make some more additions, should they need to. Maybe a certain Swede is coming back to help the Leafs......or not.

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