Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Senators eye Jokinen for deadline pickup

With the Ottawa Senators missing out on the Doug Weight sweepstakes, Sens GM John Muckler is reportedly pursuing a younger, more robust player to fill the team's second-line centre void: Florida Panthers captain Olli Jokinen.

Two things: 1) The reportedly I refer to is that of Ottawa Sun columnist Bruce Garrioch, who is noted for being the predictor of things that don't come to fruition. Still, when asked in an interview by The Score, Muckler said he felt every team would be pursuing Jokinen if he's made available.

2) Contract talks between Florida and the burly Finn, who stands to be an unrestricted free agent this offseason, are also not going particularly well. Jokinen is having a fantastic season (12th in league goal scoring and on a 40-goal pace) and would command big dollars in a multi-year contract, something a chary Panthers ownership group may balk at.

What would the Sens have to give up to pry Jokinen out of Florida, if only for the stretch run? Let's just say it'd be more than what the St. Louis Blues wanted for Weight, which Muckler said was a first-round draft pick and two players from Ottawa's roster. A steep price, to be sure.

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