It's possible Snow signed Sutton first.
I know that's highly unlikely now that Charles Wang just handed over three years and nine million dollars of his money to Andy Sutton but if you cannot sign franchise forwards, load up in other area's.
Between Witt, Sutton and Markov on the back line no one is going to push this club around in it's own end of the ice and all three will feed off one another which also becomes contagious with Hunter, Bergenheim, Fedotenko and Sim and others feeding off that which is Ted Nolan hockey at it's best.
A player like Dany Markov will always be worth something on the trade market for the same reasons teams want Sillinger and he brings championship level experience if it does not work out. This also allows the club to move Brendan Witt at the trade deadline if it's not in contention with a year left on his contract.
Is this realistic? Perhaps not. All the reports claim the Isles were signing Markov or Sutton and that's all. But Markov seems to be looking for top salary in Russia according to reports or overplayed his hand with Snow, but nothing is etched in stone here and if the Isles step up and meet his price it's likely he will sign here and the Isles will have a player who's considered a prime UFA defender.
Aaron Johnson played sixty one games for the Blue Jackets a year ago. Freddy Meyer has a friendly contract (pending UFA) and could turn out to be a good two-way defender as he was in Philadelphia as a rookie. The Matt Spiller's of the organization have some NHL experience as well so there are cheaper and less talented alternatives.
Markov will help the younger defenders improve quicker and provides depth if Radek Martinek again is injured in his final year before UFA. It does not replace Poti's puck moving ability but if you cannot load up on top forwards, load up on defenders who can run them over.
In my opinion Garth Snow should meet Markov's price and add him to Sutton, Witt.