Friday, April 14, 2006

Earl Leaves; Goepfert Next?

More news of the "Lincoln Shot" variety today. Robbie Earl signed a pro contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Wisconsin Hockey Blog was on top of things yesterday when he said there was a 90% chance of Earl leaving. The good news for Badger fans is that it seems likely that Earl will be the only early departure this season.

The St. Cloud Times had a very interesting article about Goepfert's future at St. Cloud. By now most people are familiar with the rule that college players have to be signed by the summer after their freshmen class graduates. But because Goepfert sat out a year while transferring to St. Cloud, his class will be graduating this year. That means that Pittsburgh has to either sign Goepfert this summer, or lose him to free agency.

The Penguins could afford to lose Goepfert to free agency. They've already committed to Marc-Andre Fleury has their goalie of the future, and feel like they've got another quality young goalie in the system with Andy Chiodo. They also got Notre Dame goalie David Brown in their system. They've got a lot of quality, but not much in terms of depth.

If the Penguins do decide to let Goepfert become a free agent, that means any other team could sign Goepfert this summer. I think Goepfert has the opportunity to be an NHL goalie some day if he finds the right team.

Goepfert seems resolute in staying for his senior season at St. Cloud, but this seems like the type of situation that always ends with the player saying "I got an offer that I couldn't pass up" over his shoulder as he leaves town.

12 comments:

blockski said...

At the Earl presser, Eaves implied that they'd be offering to someone to come in and fill Robbie's shoes; i.e. someone fast with a nice shot. Of course he couldn't say who, but do you have any ideas of someone who would come in for next year that's uncommitted at this point?

Goon said...

Oh the humanity. That would a downer for Husky fans. Hopefully they won't be jumping into the Mississippi river as of yet.

Goon said...

Blochski could you drop us a hint who Eaves might be talking about?

blockski said...

I wish I knew who he was talking about, I threw it out here to get opinions from those more recruting-savvy than myself.

Eaves implied that he had one guy in mind, and if that didn't work out, they'd just eat the schollie and spread it around for the rest of the partial schollie kids.

Perhaps it's someone who was previously tagged for MJ play, but would consider the NCAA if they could hop right into a contender... I have no clue, really.

Chris said...

I'd have no clue who Eaves might be talking about. I don't think they'd be able to find somebody that would be able to equal what Earl can do this late, but I guess you never know.

I'm guessing they have someone in mind though, since I'm sure they had a pretty good idea that Earl would be leaving after this season.

Badger Backer said...

My overall Earl post is up now at http://wisconsinhockey.blogspot.com/2006/04/good-bye-earl.html.

As for the signee, I don't know either. Maybe they'll be offering to someone who is thought to be in the 2007 class but hasn't signed yet like they did with Ben Street (post Kessel) and Brian Elliott (post Brodeur)?

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing we'll find out before long if they do get that person in for next year? When did Street sign last year?

Calling Chris Heisenberg...

Badger Backer said...

Street signed in April of last year, about this time.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Heisenberg emailed me back, said he didn't have any good ideas.

Turris and Gagner turn 17 in August. I think Toews turns/turned 18 in April this year. So if either of those 2 would be able to fasttrack and enroll for next fall, they'd be REALLY young.

Badger Backer said...

The contingency plan is supposedly Patrick Kane, to start playing in December.

I'd take that.

Chris said...

You realize that if that happened, none of us would ever talk to you again, right? Are you prepared to feel that kind of shame and guilt?

Badger Backer said...

45 goals and 45 assists in 52 games this year? I think I can handle the shame and guilt.