Imagine my surprise to see that the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has published not one but two articles on the team in recent weeks -- I was under the impression the paper had forgotten about the whole club. (link goes to the general Thrashers page. www.bugmenot.com is forward-thinking enough to include the first name that you have to enter along with the user ID and password.)
One of the stories covers possible replacements if Marc Savard jets, and it's pretty damn scary, "The Shining"-level scary. I'm not a big Savard fan, and I think his numbers are boosted a bit by high-profile linemates, but here's a sampling of the suggestions:
* Alexei Zhamnov
* Michael Peca
* Jeff Halpern
Now bear in mind that this is for a first-line center. The first line is traditionally a scoring line. Let me put forth a few names that would be about as good in that spot:
* Jiří Dopita
* Tomáš Klouček
* Kari Lehtonen
* a skating garbage can
The article also suggests Jason Arnott,which isn't horrible, and Joe Sakic (not likely). But all of a sudden re-signing Savard seems urgent, even more urgent than re-signing Klouček.
The other article focuses on František Kaberle, and contrasts his excellent season with the penalty- and turnover-prone Thrashers d-men, while discussing Hartley's dislike of Frankie. He would have been very welcome this season. Not all is lost, though -- looking at the picture alongside the article, I think we've discovered a wayward branch of the Kaberle family tree.