Marilyn Indahl-US PRESSWIRE
Setoguchi could offer an interesting addition to an Anaheim line-up that has struggled to find the right piece to compliment the Top Line, which results in line shuffles affecting the whole team.
This past Sunday, Mike Russo of the Star Tribune reported that Devin Setoguchi is in Minnesota's doghouse and is on the trading block. Setoguchi comes with a fairly reasonable $3 million salary for this year and next.
His goal totals have been dropping since he posted 31 in the 08-09 season. However, he's managed to stay around 20 goals a year despite getting less than 15 minutes per game. He led Minnesota in Corsi last season. Yes, he was a negative player, but no Minnesota forward who played more than 40 games finished with a positive corsi rating. That might be because he managed to fling 174 shots on net in only 69 games.
Setoguchi is by no means a dramatic pickup, but if Minnesota isn't happy with his performance he could have a positive impact for the Ducks. Anaheim has needed some secondary scoring for years in order to balance out their attack and keep them going when the top line has struggled. Setoguchi can be productive with limited minutes. More importantly, he can offer speed and shooting to the top line. Gooch proved in San Jose that he can be productive playing with good talent. Getting a guy like Gooch could allow the Ducks to have a little more scoring rotating through the top lines instead of taking Beleskey off a fourth line role that he's been pretty effective at.
The x-factor in all of this is Emerson Etem. In brief time up top, he's looked good. Of course, he's pretty much looked good everywhere he's played. Still, I think the Etem-Bonino-DSP line was effective in its two games together and could offer a good place for Etem and Devo to develop over the long term, after Devante Smith-Pelly comes back from this stint in Norfolk. If that line could get closer to 10-11 minutes a night instead of 7-8, I think the team would be better off in the long run. However, Etem needs to get this shot on the top line. If he's the solution, that's all the better as it won't cost us assets.
I don't want to give the wrong impression. I don't think that Murray should pull the trigger today. I do think that he should make a call to Chuck Fletcher and start talking about what the price could be. If the Wild are selling low, then this might be a deal worth making. Setoguchi can be a good second or third line winger with decent scoring upside, and at a relatively decent price. His ability to move play and dictate possession might be slightly underrated. It's a situation the Ducks should keep an eye on, because a winger like Gooch could round out the forward corps nicely.