Tracking the former players was an idea one of our fine readers suggested this summer. When it was suggested, it sounded like a real pain in the butt for absolutely no return. After all, who in the world was going to miss Antti Miettinen? No one, that's who.
Now nearly a month into the season, it is clear that there are players no one will miss, and the guys the fans are going to miss are going to be sorely missed. Today, we come across the first example of when one of these guys is a critical loss to the lineup. If you read the title, you know who it is.
Now, make the jump and let's look to see if anyone else deserves to be missed.
#88 / Defenseman / San Jose Sharks
Mar 09, 1985
|2011 - Brent Burns||8||2||1||3||3||0||1||0||0||25|
The scoring paced has slowed a bit, but the pure presence of Brent Burns is missed on the Wild's roster. Clearly the return for Burns was a windfall of talent, but with the current injury situation, it sure would be nice to have that pairing of Schultz and Burns back on the ice. Our friends at Fear the Fin certainly like him, which is always a good sign.
Now... can he suit up for the Wild tomorrow night?
#9 / San Jose Sharks
Apr 19, 1981
|2011 - Martin Havlat||4||0||5||5||2||4||0||0||0||9|
Uh-oh. Five assists in only four games. Clearly the Wild should have traded Koivu and kept Marty.
#13 / Defenseman / Edmonton Oilers
Apr 04, 1986
|2011 - Cam Barker||10||1||0||1||3||10||1||0||0||14|
So Kobe found the net, huh? Can't wait for the follow up of not being able to stop the next 16 odd man rushes from occuring.
Creeping up a bit with seven points in 15 games. You know, as a former top line NHLer playing against a much weaker KHL. But hey... I guess someone somewhere misses him.
#15 / Left Wing / Chicago Blackhawks
Aug 24, 1973
|2011 - Andrew Brunette||9||2||2||4||-3||0||2||0||0||12|
Four points, nine games... just more Bruno being Bruno. Those two PPGs are looking pretty sweet right about now, though.
#17 / Right Wing / Colorado Avalanche
Apr 17, 1982
|2011 - Chuck Kobasew||10||1||0||1||-5||6||0||0||0||14|
I vote Chuck Kobasew off the Island. Is that allowed under the CBA? Even tracking him briefly this one time per week makes me want to fall asleep. Its all just so very... meh.
Listed on the Sharks injured reserve after the second knee surgery this summer, Sheppard is not currently skating.
#24 / Left Wing / Dallas Stars
Feb 14, 1983
|2011 - Eric Nystrom||5||1||0||1||1||0||0||0||0||9|
Look at that, a goal for Nystrom. Clearly the Wild let go of the only offensive talent they had. I'm being snarky again. I apologize.
#60 / Goalie / Florida Panthers
Sep 13, 1976
|2011 - Jose Theodore||6||343||3||2||15||2.62||173||158||.913||1|
Things in FLA seem to be slowing down just a bit for Theo. Not surprising. The team in front him is, shall we say, not that good. He also is battling a "lower body injury," which is never good for a goaltender. Here's hoping Theo is back at it soon.
What it All Means
Is there a way to trade say, a couple hundred seventh round picks and get Burns back? I know his play was up and down, but with Marek Zidlicky's disappearance, and the injuries, his down play would even be welcome at this point. Or maybe it wouldn't, and I'm starting to see some holes in the D that just aren't able to be filled.
Certainly no one else on the list can be overly missed, right? Or am I wrong here?