Mount Vernon—For Blades GM Chet Merola, the future is now. Merola made a big splash recently, acquiring Dany Heatley, Tomas Kaberle, Miro Satan and a 2010 5th round pick from the Brooklyn Cyclones in exchange for James Neal, Kris Versteeg, Clarke MacArthur and a 2010 2nd round pick.
A gutsy move, perhaps, for a 9th ranked team nearly 500 points removed from first place. From a different perspective, Mount Vernon ranks 5th in the WHL's most improved race, so selling young assets for an elite player may actually benefit Merola's rebuild via top draft picks in the first three rounds.
Brooklyn manager Mike Zecca is taking a more traditional approach in preparing for the 2010-11 season, waving goodbye to Heatley and his $58.9 million dollar contract and welcoming in younger and cheaper forwards James Neal and Kris Versteeg, and a 2010 2nd round pick.
With injuries and unpredictable trends always looming, there is no such thing as a full-proof strategy in fantasy sports. One thing is for sure - WHL managers have more rebuilding options now than ever before and several are showing no fear in taking risks.