OK gang, camps are opening, so call me presumptious, but I figure it's time for a new thread dedicated to the new season.
Not a lot of roster spots up for grabs in LA this fall. The goalie picture is solid for the first time in the organization's history. Alec Martinez played well after being called up last season; I wouldn't expect to see any changes to the D-corps. The off-season moves have bolstered the top two lines and Ethan Moreau should secure a spot on the third line filling the role vacated by Wayne Simmonds. Brad Richardson may have to fight off a youngster like Linden Vey, Tyler Toffoli or Brandon Kozun to keep his spot, one of the few compelling battles for a roster spot during this camp.
Ducks have arguably the best top line in the league, an aging and inconsistent second line, and not much established in the bottom six forwards, so it will be interesting to see what plays out in camp. This camp represents an enormous opportunity for a lot of the younger guys like Bonino, Palmieri (who absolutely torched the AHL the last two monts of last season), Belesky and even a couple of the guys who are still eligible to play in juniors like Emerson Etem and Devante Smith-Pelley. Ducks D corps is nothing spectacular, but pretty much set in stone. I'd be surprised to see anyone other than Beauchemin, Fowler, Visnovsky, Sbisa, Lydman, Foster and Brookbank on opening night. Here's to Hiller's recovery being complete...
I don't follow the East and the Flyers much, so I'd be interested to get Grumpy's take. Camp will be interesting with all the new faces. The team had nice forward depth before all the off-season action, and they inked Jagr to a comeback contract, so the pieces are likely already in place to ice three solid lines, leaving the creation of a fourth line as the only major offensive project in camp. Kings fans will be keeping an eye on the development of Brayden Schenn as the long term assessment of the Richards deal starts. The D-corps also looks pretty solid and likely only the seventh man/spare part slot up for grabs. With the money he's making and the moves the team had to make to get him, Bryzgalov is your unquestioned #1 goalie. Bobs will back up, but might have to be moved if further roster moves are needed at any point since this team has zero cap space.