10 Things for 2015

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As opening day in the PBDL’s third season rapidly approaches, I’ve decided to take the opportunity to post some random musings, prescient predictions and off the wall commentary. So without further ado, here are the “10 Things” for 2015.

1. The playoff teams in Gold will be: Tampa Bay Lightning, New Jersey Devils, Minnesota Wild and Colorado. The relegated teams will be San Jose and Philadelphia. Don’t shoot the messenger, but you heard it here first.

2. Every trade in the PBDL should be like the Minnesota/New York trade completed the other day. I love the trade from the Islanders viewpoint as it provides them an infusion of depth and youth that will provide them several cheap years of service which will be important for the Islanders as they work to restore their fiscal health while also moving a significant contract off the books. Given that the Islanders were most likely not going to be fighting for promotion in 2015 and S. James was already 30 years old, this trade is a winner for them. For Minnesota , this instantly upgrades their offense in what will once again be a highly competitive gold division and they did it without giving up any of their top prospects. Best/fairest trade in the PBDL to date?…Yes!

3. The Blues threw caution to the wind in a strong willed attempt to launch themselves out of bronze. Payroll has moved up over 50% from 2014 and they may not even be done yet. But they also lost a lot of players to free agency last year and had to pay a hefty price for some of their free agent signings, net-net, I’m not sure how it will all shake out but it should be interesting to watch.

4. Some of the best off-season signings:
-Toronto - Andrew Patrick (1 year, $268K)
-Pittsburgh - Carl Dunne (3 years, $640K per) 26 yo phenom closer, what a steal!

5. How many home runs will the greatest player in the PBDL hit this year? 25!

6. Will Vancouver move Vince Garrett at the deadline again this year or will team loyalty finally mean something? No clue on either account.

7. What happens to the highest paid player in the PBDL after 2015? With his contract set to expire, S. White will have some big decisions to make. He certainly isn't worth that much, but will his loyalty keep him in a Stars uniform in 2016 and beyond? Do the Stars even want him? For the right price, the guy has some value, but its FAR less than the $1.8 million he's making now.

8. Will Bucky bounce back? We all loved watching Alfredo's triple crown run in 2013, but 2014 was far less flashy. Chicago will need him performing at his peak again to have a shot at the playoffs in 2015.

9. Will the TB Lightning GM ever return? Rumor has it that ever since pulling off the trade of a lifetime, he's been on an exotic island with several attractive women and has left day to day management of the team to his assistants. If he returns, they've got a shot at a gold championship, but an assistant run team could never win it all, right? Actually, the Rangers sort of did in 2013...

10. Will Colorado's pitching staff lead them to a consecutive gold championship. Negative, gold is getting pretty well clustered with top end talent and repeating in that division will likely be tough for the foreseeable future...but that rotation always gives them a fighting chance. The Devils should be pushing hard as their window to win it all may expire soon.