Summer lovin’, had me a blast. Summer lovin’, happened so fast. The gang from Grease probably said it best when it comes to that carefree summer love feeling. And this year, the two prettiest fish in the singles pool are Rick Nash and Bobby Ryan.
Between the scorching days and restless nights, summer in the city is here and delusional fan bases can get a little carried away with the, ahem, “view”. A bevy of strange and attractive options are available on the open market. The problem is, as any Sox fan can attest to, this isn’t 1967. There is no Impossible Dream and there is no Summer of Love. So while these “investments” may conjure up dreams of grandeur and excitement on a steamy July afternoon, they rarely live up to the hype after Labor Day and the annual county fair (But we won you that 3 foot tall stuffed bear!!). Rick Nash and Bobby Ryan may seem like supreme catches right now, but come training camp, the tan lines will start to fade and the heavy sweaters will start to come out.
A case has already been made against courting Nash. The main drawbacks with this brown-eyed goal-scorer being his remaining contract length and a pricey cap hit. While B’s fans would love to add a buxom 40 goal scorer to an already formidable headlining group (Krejci, Segs, and Nash?), it just doesn’t make much sense to invest so much on relationship that end up just tearing apart your friends. Think about it. Nash takes a cap hit of 7.8 million for the next 6 years. Combine that with Chara’s 7.5 million cap hit over the same span and you’re tying up about one fifth of your payroll on two players. In other words, why waste all your summer earnings from hawking grease-balls at the Clam Box on a fading summer “10″, when you could stretch it on two fun loving “7″s (ok, 6 and a halves), in different zip codes back home. Save the Nash money and spend it on two twenty plus goal scoring depth forwards… possibly with a little left over to help upgrade the blue line. In the era of a salary cap, depth is what wins hearts.
If Nash is a “10″, Bobby Ryan is an “8″. Still an attractive option, but willing to do some things more worthy of a “6″. Better yet, if Nash is Sandy and then Ryan is Baby. You can dress Nash up, but he’s still going to be an innocent, goal scoring fox. Ryan, on the other hand, is still pretty enough to pursue… and willing to go behind daddy’s back to get things done. Ryan can score, pass, and mix it up when need be. He fits the Bruin mold very well, so it’s obvious why the brass is into him. Unfortunately, he’s not necessarily anything new. Really, what it boils down to is adding another Milan Lucic. Which Jennifer Grey; pre or post nose job? Ryan is a big, burly goal scorer who get’s physical. He has a little bit better scoring touch than Looch… but he’s also going to cost more. And while it’d make for a fun time watching them as “bash brothers” duking it out for the Garden crowd, it’ll probably cost the B’s David Krejci. Even though we have the depth to help compensate down the middle, is the move really going to make the team better? We won the cup with this core, does it really need the shakeup that badly? “Come on, Sandy, what’s the matter with you? I thought I meant something to you!”
The bottom line is, now is not the time for the Bruins to get wrapped up in the wander-lust of summer romance. What feels good now, just might not jive when it comes time for classes and holidays. Play the field, without a doubt, but don’t be taken in by those fabled “night moves”. Let’s see what kind of new girls show up in town for September. Let’s weigh our options in February (post Valentine’s of course). No need to settle down into anything now. Afterall, nobody puts Boston in a corner.