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Twitter Tuesday: Thoughts on Taylor Hall, where he’d fit in and Nikita Zadorov

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Please Ray Shero, just pull the trigger so we can stop all this Taylor Hall speculative madness...

NHL: Edmonton Oilers at Colorado Avalanche Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome back to another edition of Twitter Tuesday! Last week, we talked plenty about Taylor Hall and could/should/would the Avalanche trade for him, and then speculating as to what it might take to acquire a difference maker like himself. This week’s questions were largely in the same vein.

Let’s jump back in, shall we?

I wrote about 1,000 words on this on Monday. I’ll just leave this here:

And I’ll rehash my feelings now. To summarize what I wrote about in the above column, and my general sentiments I’ve posted on Twitter over the past few weeks, my thought is I don’t think the Avalanche should pay the price on Taylor Hall. I’ve been saying Colorado doesn't need Hall, and I’ve changed the language on my statements on that.

Of course a player of Hall’s caliber would help the team and every team, in a way, needs a guy like Hall. I feel the Avs are already in a position to compete for a Cup with the team they have already. I made the point in my column yesterday that even despite the rash of injuries that’s decimated Colorado’s lineup, the team still looks like one of the best in the league in spite of said injuries. In fact, the Avalanche began the season with the fifth-best odds to win the Stanley Cup. Today, they’re being given the third-best odds. So despite a depleted lineup, Colorado’s tried-and-true depth overcame the odds and has actually improved in the meantime.

Again, every team could use a player like Hall. Obviously. My issue lies in the price that will need to be paid to acquire him.

Per the usual standard of these types of trades, it usually revolves around a top prospect and a first-round pick as a baseline starting point. By most accounts, New Jersey has its eyes on Conor Timmins, given Bowen Byram is a non-starter for GM Joe Sakic. For me, I say no.

I think trading for Taylor Hall is too risky in the sense that his contract is expiring and he’ll need to be re-signed in this upcoming offseason. It’s assumed that he and his agent won’t be signing a deal during the season, rather, he’ll wait until the conclusion of this campaign and decide to stay or go from there. I think there’s too good of a chance that Hall chases the money in the offseason, and I don’t think Sakic is opening his wallet for the $8-9 million AAV contract he’s likely to command for his next deal. So in essence, Hall could be just a rental for Colorado.

If that’s the case, do you really want to give up Timmins, your first-rounder plus another possible conditional pick for six months of Taylor-Hall hockey? The argument by the other side is that a rental and six months of Hall could be all it takes to win the Cup this season, and then at that point do you even notice a guy like Timmins is gone?

Sakic has more than earned the trust of the fanbase, as far as making smart trades goes. I believe in him. He’ll make the smartest move for the team. In Sakic we trust.

Um.

No and no. Sam Girard isn’t going to be moved for Taylor Hall, or really for anyone for that matter. And even in the event that did happen, Timmins wouldn’t be called up. The Avs still have Calle Rosen up with the team in Denver riding the plush chairs of the Pepsi Center press box. He seems to have jumped in front of Timmins as far as defenseman call-ups go.

And it’d be hard to call up Timmins if he’s traded...

I truly feel that with whatever team Hall gets moved to, if he gets moved at all, he would be a rental.

Hall will be 29 at the start of next season and is likely looking for a place to end his career and will probably Jerry Maguire “show me the money” for what could be his final NHL contract.

No doubt about it, Sakic will most definitely try to sign him. And Colorado certainly has the cap space to sign him now and for the next few seasons, but will there be a fit there? There’s really no way of knowing.

The fact that Hall could potentially be a third-liner (he won’t be) on Colorado’s depth chart is incredible and it’s a testament to the depth that Sakic and Co. have grown and built over the past couple years.

I would say he won’t be top line, although he’d make a great addition to the top-unit power play, as would his shot share. Behind Nathan MacKinnon, Hall would be the No. 2 guy in the Avs lineup in terms of shots taken. Fun fact: MacKinnon has taken over twice as many shots (144) this season as the next closest guy (Nazem Kadri, 71) on the Avalanche. Like MacKinnon, Hall is nearly doubled his nearest teammate on the Devils roster in terms of number of shots taken too. Although, his conversion percentage on those shots is third-worst on the team (minimum 25 games played).

Anyway, back to your point. He’d likely slot in, like you said, on the second line as a winger with Kadri and Burakovsky. That’d be a pretty lethal line to accompany the top trio, providing a nice offensive one-two punch.

I agree, and I’m over it honestly. Just get it over with Shero.

Looks like you already got your answer on this one. The Avalanche called up Adam Werner on Monday as a precaution for the ailing Grubauer. The belief is he’s fine and just needed a night off for rest. The Avs recalled Werner to sit shotgun on the bench in case Pavel Francouz needed to leave the game for any reason, thus ensuring Grubauer wouldn’t need to enter the game at all.

Grubauer practiced with the team on Monday and is probably just day-to-day at this point, if you want to put an designation on it at all.

Big Z has certainly earned himself at least a discussion with Joe for contract extension this offseason. He’s stepped into the shut-down D-man role very well in these past few weeks. It seems Bednar is trusting him a bit more, as well. Z is averaging 23.44 minutes of ice time per game over the last five contests, the most of any Avalanche defenseman.

To your point, let’s hope he maintains this “Darth Zadorov” mentality and work ethic for the rest of the season. That’s my biggest complaint against Z. He's very inconsistent when it comes to his play.

He’s most definitely a fan-favorite and a social media darling, and I think he’s earned more than a one-year deal this time if he does get one at all. I’d be comfortable with something like a three-year, $3-3.5 million AAV contract. Do you guys want to see Z on the team next year?


More questions, comments or concerns? Hit me up on Twitter anytime @0ffScottFree. See you next Tuesday!