Anaheim today signed free agent center Trevor Smith. The 25 year-old UNH product signed with the Islanders in 2007 and has played primarily for their Bridgeport AHL affiliate after playing his way out of the ECHL in the 2007-08 season. He has only appeared in 7 NHL games but has had 62 and 47 point seasons in the AHL.
In yesterday's conference call, Murray noted he was looking to make some depth moves for his minor league team, and the acquisition of Jaffray, and now Smith, could go a long way to putting some experience and, more importantly, scoring on a Crunch team that will be developing a lot of first year pros and players who were caught up in last year's affiliate-less shuffle.
Anaheim Calling asked Crunch beat writer Lindsay Kramer about the move, and he noted that while he wasn't as familiar with Smith as he was Jaffray, the acquisitions make the team stronger up the middle, perhaps building an experienced top line.
Are he and Jaffray two-thirds of a top line? Could be. The key thing is that both can play wing or center and both have a history of being able to score.
Also, asked what Anaheim still has to acquire to fill the holes in the current Syracuse roster, Kramer offered this:
With so much young and relatively unproven talent on the roster now, the Ducks can't go wrong throwing top-line guys at Syracuse for any position. But, naturally, a good veteran goalie is a must, plus one or two defensemen to run the power play. I'm sure Anaheim has some good young players, but fans here grew tired in the Columbus years of waiting half a season for prospects to get better (maybe) while in the meantime the Crunch fell into a big hole. So, Anaheim's mandate should be to have enough established players here from the get-go. Sexton and/or Sharp would be helpful.
There are certainly moves left to make, but Murray is feeding some quality forwards into the Crunch for now, which can only help playmakers like Bonino, Deschamps, etc. develop in their first year as pros. Kramer also notes that Trevor Smith played for new Crunch coach Mark Holick when both were in the BCHL.