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-   -   Player Discussion: Derek Stepan (http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/showthread.php?t=1332525)

Bleed Ranger Blue 01-25-2013 09:57 AM

Derek Stepan
 
With all the bottom 6 forwards and 3rd pairing defensemen being needlessly blamed for the bad start, lets talk about a huge source of the actual problem, Derek Stepan.

In many ways, Stepan at the 2C spot is a major key to this season. He has been a ghost at even strength so far this year, and hes brought everyone put on his wings down with him. This team cannot win it all unless Stepan wakes up and is a main catalyst for the secondary scoring this team is currently missing.

JeffMangum 01-25-2013 10:05 AM

I thought he looked pretty solid last night against the Flyers.

He's a big key to the success of this team. I agree that he needs to be a lot better.

Dangleberry 01-25-2013 10:09 AM

He had a few scoring opportunities and didn't turn the puck over. He looks fine to me?

SingnBluesOnBroadway 01-25-2013 10:10 AM

I'm not sold on the Gaborik-Richards-Nash line yet. They had a great game against Boston and were good last night. But a guy like Stepan needs a scorer to play with him.

broadwayblue 01-25-2013 10:15 AM

I'd split up Nash & Gaborik...at least until some other guys get their game going. Putting all our eggs in one basket means that they have to be double shifted the whole game since there don't seem to be many other scoring options at the moment.

Chimp 01-25-2013 10:16 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by SingnBluesOnBroadway (Post 58307501)
I'm not sold on the Gaborik-Richards-Nash line yet. They had a great game against Boston and were good last night. But a guy like Stepan needs a scorer to play with him.

I'm not sold on that line either. It makes our scoring very shallow and easy to face. Not to mention the players aren't used to their efficiency that way. Out of the three, Nash is the only legit franchise forward. Gaborik and Richards are premium first liners, but they're not like Nash, who can deke his guy and create great chances out of nothing. I don't think I've ever seen Gaborik deke a guy successfully, he purely relys on speed, timing and positioning.

Nash should be used on a second line, because he doesn't need Richards and Gaborik, while they need a hard working board guy who can go towards the crease whenever he isn't doing board work. A guy like Callahan or yes, at this point even Pyatt, who is in great form. Perhaps back to Hagelin when he's back to his old self.

But all three together? I'm very sceptical. It only looks good on paper.

NikC 01-25-2013 10:17 AM

Very important thread. Stepan's role is crucial to the success of this team, this year and going forward. He impressed me his first season with his skill and tenacity. It's dropped off since then, and i've never seen that player that impressed initially show up again.

I'm not sure what his game is about, and I don't think he does either. He doesn't really excel at any area of the game. He's average in size and build and brings little to nothing to the table in terms of physicality.

The 2C role is huge for the long term success of this team, esp if we want to capitalize while our our SC window is open. Such a shame that J.Staal went to play with the wrong brother, cause he would be exactly what we need in a 2C.

Not sold on Stepan. I don't like his skillset. If he can prove me wrong and excel, great. I don't think he will and I would package him in a deal at some point, or look to bring in another top 6 C, at the deadline or FA.

Malarowski 01-25-2013 10:18 AM

Stepan seemed very slow and casually skating to me most of the time. Not sure if I just misperceived it or whatever.

Hagelin seemed to be on a decent track though, woke up a bit and did some decent work today. Being on the 4th line seemed to be a wake-up call.

Vitto79 01-25-2013 10:19 AM

Stepan has been fine. The issue is obvious to me. Kreider is not showing he's ready and Hagelin is a 3rd lineer not a 2nd so it leaves a hole in the top 6

They need to make a balzy trade and get a guy in here. Also stop playing Gaborik on LW , Nash can play there no?

Nash, Richards,Callahan
X TRADE, Stepan, Gaborik
Hagelin, Boyle, Pyatt
Rupp, Halpern, Asham
maybe give Haley a shot cause Newbury cost them a goal last night, Bickel stinks and Segal is blah too.

SixGoalieSystem 01-25-2013 10:23 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Vitto79 (Post 58308065)
Stepan has been fine. The issue is obvious to me. Kreider is not showing he's ready and Hagelin is a 3rd lineer not a 2nd so it leaves a hole in the top 6

They need to make a balzy trade and get a guy in here. Also stop playing Gaborik on LW , Nash can play there no?

Nash, Richards,Callahan
X TRADE, Stepan, Gaborik
Hagelin, Boyle, Pyatt
Rupp, Halpern, Asham
maybe give Haley a shot cause Newbury cost them a goal last night, Bickel stinks and Segal is blah too.

Haley is poo.

Maybe Ferriero will get the chance to show what he can do.

Fleury4ever 01-25-2013 10:24 AM

I really think Stepan will be at his best on the wing, like a less talented Briere. He'd be great w/ a two-way center and hard-nosed winger. This is the Rangers problem this year, really missing the 2-way centers they gave up and still 1 tough Dman w/ a point shot short.

alkurtz 01-25-2013 10:28 AM

Absolutely agree, in many ways DS is the key to this season. Unless we receive strong play from our 2nd line centers (and w/o Dubs or AA we really have no other options), we will struggle and fall short of our goals and hopes.

DS had always been an interesting player whose short career revolves around one simple question: can a center with very good vision and passing ability make it in the NHL as a top six forward with only average skating ability?

At times the answer has seemed yes. I'm beginning to think that in his case, the answer may be no.

While it is very difficult to make yourself faster, you can make yourself quicker. Brian Boyle was a marginal NHL player who made himself into a 3rd line center by working on his quickness. (I still think he is a best a 4th liner but even that was more than he was considered to be after his first year here).

But instead of becoming quicker, DS seems slower. I know nothing about him personally, his work ethic, or his commitment to off season conditioning. I don't know whether he has worked with others to become quicker. All I know is what I see on the ice, and what I see is not good and a matter of major concern.

Bleed Ranger Blue 01-25-2013 10:33 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dangleberry (Post 58307447)
He had a few scoring opportunities and didn't turn the puck over. He looks fine to me?

Yes, he also didnt trip over himself either.

Is this going to be the measuring stick for our 2C?

I agree about the eventual need to break up Nash-Richards-Gaborik. One of those wingers needs to be thrown Stepan's way, especially when Callahan and Hagelin are fighting it too.

Glen Teflon Sather 01-25-2013 10:34 AM

I'll say it here too, I think he's maxed out his potential. He is what he is, he'll get you 50 points. He's not a great skater, he's lousy on face offs, he can be handled physically, his main strengths are his IQ and his passing. I really do think he's reached his ceiling here.

RangerBoy 01-25-2013 10:34 AM

Top six forward? Where are the Rangers finding a top six forward? They need another center and D too. Twenty nine other teams need those things too.

Bleed Ranger Blue 01-25-2013 10:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by 4th Line Grinder (Post 58308927)
I'll say it here too, I think he's maxed out his potential. He is what he is, he'll get you 50 points. He's not a great skater, he's lousy on face offs, he can be handled physically, his main strengths are his IQ and his passing. I really do think he's reached his ceiling here.

I have to admit Im concerned about this too.

This might be enough with the extra strength on the wings compared to years past. But if Stepan/Callahan/Hagelin don't step up their game, this team is not going to make a deep run.

Trxjw 01-25-2013 10:44 AM

Put Gaborik back on his line, and line-up Pyatt on the LW. He's not a big center, so generating space on his own is tough. The reason he was so effective with AA and Gaborik was the fact that Artie could create space and get him the puck so he could make a play.

It's about finding the right guys to play with someone. Sometimes I get the feeling that Tortorella generates his lines based on the player ratings in NHL13.

BroadwayBlues 01-25-2013 10:50 AM

This kid looks like he's regressing. I don't see much improvement in his game at all.
Where is his slick passing? That was suppose to be his strength.

Crease 01-25-2013 10:51 AM

Is Stepan this year's Dubinsky?

I like where Ola's head is at:

Hagelin/Kreider - Richards - Gaborik
Nash - Stepan - Callahan

McRanger 01-25-2013 11:01 AM

Stepan hasn't looked particularly good. His game has not really matured much from his rookie year. Which is a concern.

Both Stepan and Richards seem to be playing with a noticeable lack of urgency.

Pugs35 01-25-2013 11:46 AM

Stepan is not the problem. He's on pace for 61 points in an 82 game season (or 36 in 48 game season) and was probably our best forward last night, honestly.

And to say that he's hit his ceiling at 22 years old is insane. Good grief you guys.

wolfgaze 01-25-2013 11:51 AM

I have my doubts about his future viability as a 2nd line Center in the NHL. He does not bring his A-game consistently at all. Too often he is not a difference maker or or making an impact during his shifts. Many shifts you hardly notice that he was even out there.

NYR Viper 01-25-2013 11:53 AM

He is 22-23. People need to relax. He will be fine.

McDonaghisGod 01-25-2013 12:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by McRanger (Post 58310597)
Stepan hasn't looked particularly good. His game has not really matured much from his rookie year. Which is a concern.

Both Stepan and Richards seem to be playing with a noticeable lack of urgency.

That is most worrisome to me. The biggest problem is his skating and shot. Both are average at best and prevent him from creating and capitalizing on scoring chances.

RangerBoy 01-25-2013 12:22 PM

Stepan played his best hockey with Gaborik and Anisimov last season. Stepan and Callahan never have clicked. Torts used Stepan with Callahan and Dubinsky but they never clicked. Stepan with Gaby. Richards with Nash. Of course,Richards,Gaby and Hagelin clicked at the end of last season. Where does Callahan go? Move Nash to the left with Richards and Callahan. Hagelin with Step and Gaby. Too bad Miller and McIlrath aren't ready.


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