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Thread: And the trades have started

  1. #11

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    I think you will be pleasantly surprised with Debrusk. He just came off of an injury and hasn't returned fully to his game yet but will shortly. He will score crucial goals
    when needed and has a very high skill level. I will miss him in Swift Current.

  2. #12
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    He had a good first period last night but like the Rebels have done often this year they took the rest of the night off and barely squeaked out a win against a sub par team. I see the Rebel's traded a 2016 4th round pick to Portland for the rights to Taden Rattie. I don't know anything about this kid other than he is the younger brother of Ty. He is in the lineup tonight.

  3. #13
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    RED DEER, AB Brent Sutter, General Manager of the Red Deer Rebels Hockey Club, announced today the team has acquired 20-year old forward Adam Helewka from the Spokane Chiefs in exchange for 20-year old forward Wyatt Johnson, 15-year old prospect Eli Zummack, a 2nd round selection in the 2016 Western Hockey League Bantam Draft and a 5th round pick in the 2017 WHL Bantam Draft.
    Wow! Was not expecting that. Helewka was on my wish list of players to get, but am a little shocked that they traded Johnson to get him.

  4. #14

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    Well, we were right about who Sutter might be going after in terms of overagers. Not so much when it comes to which overager would be shipping out. I'm definitely surprised to see Johnson dealt. Helewka is a beast, but its still going to be very tough to see Johnon go. He was a complete professional here and a great team guy. But with the way this team has been playing, I think Sutter probably figured drastic measures were called for. I actually agree, and although I had no wish to see Johnson on the move, in this league you have to give up something to get something. Even with that said, I feel terrible for the kid because as much of a surprise as this is for us, as fans, it had to have blindsided him completely. He's got half a season left in his Junior career that he thought he'd be finishing playing what wold certainly have been the most important games of his life as the team captain of a Memorial Cup club. For that to go up in smoke overnight has to be devastating. I wish him all the best in Spokane and beyond in his career. He can hold his head up high.

    Sutter only had 3 choices on who to move if he was going to bring in a 20 year old. It would have been insanity to move Doetzel for a forward, and Sutter would have had to give up more future assets to use Kopeck in a deal he already paid pretty dearly in. Very tough to see a team guy, a fan favorite, and a very good hockey player go the other way, especially this year, but reality is Helewka makes the team better. Sutter still has a first rounder to deal with, and I would be blown away if it didn't belong to someone else at the deadline.
    Last edited by calcheyup; 01-01-2016 at 02:50 PM.

  5. #15

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    For those interested, here's the Sutter interview regarding the trade. He is absolutely ebullient (by Sutter standards) when he gets talking about Helewka.

    I don't know about anyone else, but it feels like it's been months since this team has done anything to excited about. Looking through the schedule, you have to go back to mid-November to find any wins (Brandon and Moose Jaw) against a good team. Since then, they've been embarrassed by Lethbridge (multiple times), and Calgary, couldn't beat PA at home, outplayed on back-to-back nights by Edmonton, struggled against Regina, and have collected pretty much all their wins against Kootenay (who they've struggled to put away two games in a row) and Medicine Hat (also barely edged them a couple times).

    So, although I feel the core needs of this team are yet to be addressed, picking up a pair of 40-goal scorers in the same week gives me cause for some long-overdue optimism. On paper a top 6 of Nikolishin, Spacek, DeBrusk, Helewka, Bleackley, and Musil should be able to go toe-to-toe with anyone in the CHL. It's a group with all the tools - they can skate, there's a lot of skill there, but it's also not a group that's going to be pushed around. That leaves an awful lot of sandpaper from your other guys - Polei, Pawlenchuk, Kopeck, Rattie, and then a guy like Hagel, who has had an excellent rookie season in the Dub.

    Still, formidable as that forward group should be, if Sutter doesn't get some help in his own end, it doesn't really get them a whole lot closer to the Memorial Cup, I don't think. We will see who's on this team when the dust settles, but for the first time since they beat Brandon, PA, and Moose Jaw on their Saskatchewan road trip (feels like forever ago), I'm starting to feel like maybe this is heading in the right direction.
    Last edited by calcheyup; 01-01-2016 at 06:26 PM.

  6. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by calcheyup View Post
    For those interested, here's the Sutter interview regarding the trade. He is absolutely ebullient (by Sutter standards) when he gets talking about Helewka.

    I don't know about anyone else, but it feels like it's been months since this team has done anything to excited about. Looking through the schedule, you have to go back to mid-November to find any wins (Brandon and Moose Jaw) against a good team. Since then, they've been embarrassed by Lethbridge (multiple times), and Calgary, couldn't beat PA at home, outplayed on back-to-back nights by Edmonton, struggled against Regina, and have collected pretty much all their wins against Kootenay (who they've struggled to put away two games in a row) and Medicine Hat (also barely edged them a couple times).

    So, although I feel the core needs of this team are yet to be addressed, picking up a pair of 40-goal scorers in the same week gives me cause for some long-overdue optimism. On paper a top 6 of Nikolishin, Spacek, DeBrusk, Helewka, Bleackley, and Musil should be able to go toe-to-toe with anyone in the CHL. It's a group with all the tools - they can skate, there's a lot of skill there, but it's also not a group that's going to be pushed around. That leaves an awful lot of sandpaper from your other guys - Polei, Pawlenchuk, Kopeck, Rattie, and then a guy like Hagel, who has had an excellent rookie season in the Dub.

    Still, formidable as that forward group should be, if Sutter doesn't get some help in his own end, it doesn't really get them a whole lot closer to the Memorial Cup, I don't think. We will see who's on this team when the dust settles, but for the first time since they beat Brandon, PA, and Moose Jaw on their Saskatchewan road trip (feels like forever ago), I'm starting to feel like maybe this is heading in the right direction.
    Agreed they haven't played well in a month. in fairness, they have had at least 2-3 top end players out at all times since mid-Nov, and that doesn't include Mahura. Doetzel was over a month, Polei a few weeks, Spacek/Fleury at WJ's, Musil last game. Those are all key pieces. Nonetheless, if someone told me the team would be 25-13 at the new year, i probably would have taken it!

    Starting to get the feel this is a "go all in up front" makeup for the team, given the potential lack of options on the back end or goaltending. I Don't feel they need a top end d, just a bottom pairing guy until Mahura returns, whenever that is.

    Read somewhere that the first round pick they have this year is Regina's. Hope they dont trade it, would be great to pick a top end player in a mem cup year!

  7. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by hockey4 View Post
    Agreed they haven't played well in a month. in fairness, they have had at least 2-3 top end players out at all times since mid-Nov, and that doesn't include Mahura. Doetzel was over a month, Polei a few weeks, Spacek/Fleury at WJ's, Musil last game. Those are all key pieces.
    It's been more like a month and half, actually. And every team in the league deals with injuries and absences of their top players at some point or another. The problem is, even at full strength, they haven't played well, and even with some key guys out, scratching out wins against clubs like Kootenay is just not acceptable for this team.

    Nonetheless, if someone told me the team would be 25-13 at the new year, i probably would have taken it!
    Here is something that may interest you - the Rebels are 10-0 against Kootenay and Medicine Hat this year. They are 15-13 against the rest of the WHL. So that record, for lack of a better term, is really fool's gold.

    Besides, a record like that would be, at minimum, the expectation for a club expecting to contend for the Memorial Cup. It is a very good record, but as I said repeatedly last year, "very good" isn't good enough to win the Memorial Cup and the trades Sutter is making back that sentiment up. I think too many people don't really understand a) that this year is about winning the WHL and the Memorial Cup, and b) how good of a team you need to do it. As it stands, they've feasted on the cellar dwellers and been routinely pounded by the heavyweights of the division. Red Deer has done nothing to indicate this club is anywhere near ready to make a serious playoff run, nevermind win the Memorial Cup. Acquiring DeBrusk and Helewka definitely moves them in the right direction, but it's not enough to put them over the top.

    Starting to get the feel this is a "go all in up front" makeup for the team, given the potential lack of options on the back end or goaltending. I Don't feel they need a top end d, just a bottom pairing guy until Mahura returns, whenever that is.
    Again, I'm going to have to completely disagree here. A top 4 defenseman is an essential need for this team; there's no way they can go into the tournament with Bobyk playing in the top 4. He has a lot of value offensively, but defensively he's a wreck. A good stay-at-home defenseman to pair with Nogier would be a huge boost, and it would take a lot of the pressure off Bobyk playing against guys he can't handle. Lastly, relying on Mahura to come back and make a huge impact is asking a ton from a 17-year-old with 50 games of WHL experience who has just missed 6 months. I definitely feel the position needs to be upgraded; not necessarily with a blockbuster, either.

    Read somewhere that the first round pick they have this year is Regina's. Hope they dont trade it, would be great to pick a top end player in a mem cup year!
    On the contrary, I hope they do trade it and I'm fairly certain they will. Because this team is not ready for the Memorial Cup right now, even with Helewka and DeBrusk. For better or worse, it's about winning the whole damn thing this year.
    Last edited by calcheyup; 01-01-2016 at 08:07 PM.

  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by calcheyup View Post
    this year is about winning the WHL and the Memorial Cup, and b) how good of a team you need to do it.
    There have been some mixed reactions to the moves that have been made already, and I am sure there will be mixed reactions to the rest of the moves made before the deadline. Sutter isn't setting this team up for future success, he is working to set them up for success immediately.

    As it stands, they've feasted on the cellar dwellers and been routinely pounded by the heavyweights of the division.
    They have also beat pretty good Seattle and Victoria teams, Kelowna, Brandon, and split games with Prince Albert and Calgary in the first half. The only teams they have struggled with so far, are Regina and Lethbridge.

    I'm going to have to completely disagree here. A top 4 defenseman is an essential need for this team; there's no way they can go into the tournament with Bobyk playing in the top 4.
    I agree. Bobyk should be on the 3rd pairing, and inserted in for the powerplay, and only substituted into the top four if they are down a goal or two. And he should NEVER EVER be out for the penalty kill.

    A good stay-at-home defenseman to pair with Nogier would be a huge boost, and it would take a lot of the pressure off Bobyk playing against guys he can't handle.
    I wouldn't mind a guy like McNulty out of Moose Jaw.

    Lastly, relying on Mahura to come back and make a huge impact is asking a ton from a 17-year-old with 50 games of WHL experience who has just missed 6 months.
    I was discussing this with some people on Twitter today, and made the same point. It would be fantastic to go into next season with guys like Mahura and Strand ready to step in and lead this team, but with the moves they are going to have to make to upgrade the defense and goaltending, I have a hard time seeing both Mahura and Strand on the team past the trade deadline.

    Quote Originally Posted by hockey4
    Read somewhere that the first round pick they have this year is Regina's. Hope they dont trade it, would be great to pick a top end player in a mem cup year!
    Well, Regina has been improving as they have been getting healthier, and will likely be somewhere in the middle of the pack by the end of the season if nothing goes horribly wrong there. I don't really know if picking 15th-18th overall necessarily guarantees you a top end player or not, it would be better than our own pick for sure, but it probably won't be a lottery pick. I think that everyone would like to have that pick come the draft. It would also be great to keep every one of their promising young players and prospects. The reality is however, that they will likely have to move a lot of these assets, to transform the team into one of the best teams in the CHL, in a span of like, two weeks.

    I have to say, I am pretty on board with most of the trades they have made this season, with one exception. Can anyone explain to me why they gave up a third round pick for Braden Purtill? I don't think he has completed even a single pass out of his zone to the neutral zone since arriving in Red Deer, with every one either being intercepted, or about waist-high by the time it gets to the recipient. He is adequate defensively in his own zone, but has no measurable offensive skill, and puck-moving skills that have been detrimental to the overall success of the team. With the recent moves the team has made, it is clear that there must be some upgrades coming for the blueline, where exactly will Purtill fit in after these moves?!? Does he become an extra forward? Do they just eat that third round pick, 15 or 16 games after dealing it?

  9. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by SectionNDeserter View Post
    They have also beat pretty good Seattle and Victoria teams, Kelowna, Brandon, and split games with Prince Albert and Calgary in the first half. The only teams they have struggled with so far, are Regina and Lethbridge.
    They are actually 1-2 against Calgary and have had trouble with them every game, but aside from that you are absolutely correct, and I'm glad you brought it up - because that version of the Red Deer Rebels deserves credit. However, I was referencing their play over the last month and half, because quite frankly, I haven't seen the team that went into Kelowna and dominated (albeit in a loss), or the team that knocked off Brandon, PA, and Victoria in their own barns, in at least that long. The team we've watched since mid-November has had its hands full just beating Kootenay and Medicine Hat. That's the incarnation of this club to which I'm referring, and it's the same one that has prompted Sutter to make some huge moves. I can guarantee he didn't put the "C" on Johnson with the intention of using him as bait at the deadline - if that doesn't spell "desperation," I don't know what does.

    It would also be great to keep every one of their promising young players and prospects. The reality is however, that they will likely have to move a lot of these assets, to transform the team into one of the best teams in the CHL, in a span of like, two weeks.
    Spot on. Also worth noting is that Sutter will have the pieces to recoup the picks he loses next season, if he should so choose. If guys like Bleackley, Nikolishin, and Nogier end up playing junior again as overagers they will command a price at the deadline, and even if they don't, there are other guys on this team that would bring back a healthy return of picks and prospects.

    I have to say, I am pretty on board with most of the trades they have made this season, with one exception. Can anyone explain to me why they gave up a third round pick for Braden Purtill? I don't think he has completed even a single pass out of his zone to the neutral zone since arriving in Red Deer, with every one either being intercepted, or about waist-high by the time it gets to the recipient. He is adequate defensively in his own zone, but has no measurable offensive skill, and puck-moving skills that have been detrimental to the overall success of the team. With the recent moves the team has made, it is clear that there must be some upgrades coming for the blueline, where exactly will Purtill fit in after these moves?!? Does he become an extra forward? Do they just eat that third round pick, 15 or 16 games after dealing it?
    Agreed, Purtill doesn't look like he should even be in the lineup and a 3rd for him was a huge overpay by Sutter.

    Regarding the recent blockbusters, outside of my empathy for Johnson's situation, I'm fine with them. We all knew there was going to be a steep price to be paid to make this team Memorial Cup champions. Look down at your tickets - there's no asterisk beside where it says "ALL IN" that qualifies, "IF we can build a Memorial Cup team without sacrificing our future." It's just "ALL IN," and it should be treated that way. This opportunity doesn't come often enough to half-ass it.

  10. #20

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    So who does Brent make the captain of this team now? I can't believe that he takes the captaincy away from Bleacks and trades the guy he replaces him with. If there was even a chance that Johnson was going to be traded this move should have never been made. I complete slap in the face for a heart and soul guy. I know it isn't personal, it is all business but if I were him and I would have told Sutter where to go and slammed the door on the way out after being told this. Funny....as the two guys on the team who I would consider the guys who played "Sutter hockey" are the two that are gone. Replaced by two more skilled guys who now will be expected to play a defensive system that a lot of skilled guys have struggled with the last few years.

    Do Helewka and DeBrusk kill penalties as I seen two areas that needed to be addressed the most, goaltending and penalty killing. We just traded two guys who were a main part of our penalty kill so it will be interesting to see who those minutes are filled by.

    Maybe Sutter changes his game philosophy totally to more of a run and gun style now that Red Deer has all this skill up front. I can't see how our goaltending tandem isn't going to give up 4 or 5 a game against these other top teams so maybe the solution is scoring 5 or 6. Somehow, I don't think the philosophy will change, and I just hope we don't have to watch two more offensive talents erode trying to figure out how to play the "right way".

    As an aside, I thought it was the Sutter system that was causing Fluery all his issues the last couple years, but after seeing how he played in the World Juniors, I don't think it is. Lots of TSN turning points in the Finland game, but maybe none bigger than giving up the goal in the first period with 11 seconds left in what was otherwise a perfect period. None other than #4 the guy who needed to shut down the play and didn't. In all fairness to Fluery, maybe the worst team Canada has sent to the World Juniors in recent history. Marginal goaltending, poor coaching decisions at times, poor choice for the leadership group and the guy who gets loaned from the NHL team failing to show up = huge disappointment.

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