Buy or Sell: Would the Anaheim Ducks Be Nuts to Speak With Alexander Semin?


Seems like such an obvious question – but is Anaheim actually the perfect team for the under-achieving Russian?

The Carolina Hurricanes have finally cut ties with mercurial Russian forward Alexander Semin, thereby signalling the end of his NHL career and a new career with Russia’s KHL, right?


Surely no one in the NHL is going to offer Semin, who was a point-per game player when the Hurricanes first got him back in 2012 and regressed to a career worst 6-13-19 -10 player last season, REAL money to wear a jersey in North America for the 2015-2016 season, yes?  I mean, no one’s that desperate, are they?!?

Before you answer, “Yes – someone IS that desperate – just not the Anaheim Ducks,” I ask you to sit down, take a deep breath, and think about what is happening in Orange County right now.

Paul MacLean has been brought in as an assistant coach.

The Anaheim Ducks have made trades for not one, not two, but three players.

Ryan Kesler (UFA), Tim Jackman (UFA), Frederik Andersen (RFA), Hampus Lindholm (RFA), Sami Vatanen (RFA), Simon Despres (RFA), Jiri Sekac (RFA), John Gibson (RFA) and Rickard Rakell (RFA) are set to become free agents in the summer of 2016.  The Anaheim Ducks will NOT retain all of these players.

It may not be a “The sky is falling!” scenario, but if the Ducks don’t at least make it to the Stanley Cup Final in 2016, this team could very well look a lot different come 2016-2017.

With that in mind . . .

The Pros

With the exception of last season’s afore-mentioned 19-point campaign and his rookie season (22 points), Semin has never scored below 42 points in a season.  He has topped 50 points five times, 70 twice, and even went for 84 points one season (in just 73 games, no less).  There is no doubt that, when engaged, Alexander Semin is a top-six forward in the NHL.

Furthermore, Semin has played, and played well, for Anaheim Ducks head coach Bruce Boudreau.  For a guy whose representatives claim that he does, indeed, want to stay in North America and play in the NHL, maybe a change of scenery and a reunion with a respected coach would allow Semin to finish his NHL career on a high note.

If Bruce Boudreau and the veterans in the Anaheim Ducks locker room could somehow get Semin to focus for just one season . . . there could be a whole lot of this happening in SoCal:

So much ******* talent!

The Cons

Everyone who follows the NHL understands that there is one gigantic con when it comes to Alexander Semin – does the guy come to play?  Clearly, Semin did not come to play last season with the Hurricanes, and no one is blaming Carolina for placing him on waivers.  He was paid way too much money to put up only 19 points last season, so he had to go.

Semin won’t wind up receiving as much money as someone like Matt Beleskey will this summer – how strange is that? – but he won’t come super-cheap, either: ESPN’s Scott Burnside figures that $3 million is a conservative number.  Sure, whatever he gets would be fairly cheap for a point-per-season player – but how many gamblers in the NHL feel he would return to such a productive state?

The Bottom Line

The title of this posts asks, “Would the Ducks be nuts to talk to Semin?”  My response?  I’m selling on that idea – the Anaheim Ducks should very much talk to Alexander Semin.

However, talking to him and signing him are two entirely different things.  He’s a gamble, no doubt, and he would have to come pretty cheap for Anaheim to justify signing him, rather than moving one of their prospects up.  It all boils down to how desperate the front office is to win with this group of players, knowing that changes are a’coming, fast.

Next: Anaheim Ducks 2015 Draft Grades