What We Need from Each Player
With all the talk of trading players, and with so much spare time on my hands this week, I figured I'd see what we need each player to bring for us to have a successful regular season, ie, a playoff spot. Feel free to do your own.
Koivu: A continuation of that consistent night in, night out effort, to go along with his contribution on the PP and getting the most out of his linemates.
Ryder: No slowing down. That in your face, slamming game he can play is so effective, especially as long as he shoots the puck.
Bulis: Hard forechecking, hard skating game. Needs to contribute on the PK and continue to hold his ground on whatever line.
Zednik: A 30-goal season, but more importantly a 50 goal effort. He's really becoming a leader in my eyes, you can't help but think he's done some work with Ribeiro and Ryder.
Ribeiro: Ditto Ryder, keep up the pace. If he can give us 60 valuable points and 60 minutes of hard work, than we're golden.
Dagenais: I'm not sure how much longer he'll stick around, but 15 goals and some consistent effort in both ends of the rink would be a nice foundation for him.
Sundstrom: His offensive production doesn't please me. I know he plays a very defensive minded game and spends his time defending mainly against premier players, but he's too talented to go six games without a point.
Juneau: He's playing well for the most part, but I don't want a peep out of him if his playing time is cut due to Begin's return.
Dackell: If we could give him Dags' shot, he'd be great, but I think for all his defensive work and effort in the offensive zone, he'll lose his 3rd line spot to Ward.
Ward: On the ice every evening. No more bumps and bruises (or broken bones), warriors such as you are needed on the battlefield every single night.
Perreault: A consistent effort is all I ask. You can't play defence, and you can't make a hit, but at least try and convince us that you're happy in this great organization.
Langdon: Continue to pick his spots wisely. No use dropping the gloves when we're up 4-1 in the third, and he knows that. A goal would help. :p
Balej: To learn and pick up all that he can from the more talented players in front of him, it will only help him adjust faster next October.
Kilger: Chad needs to be given a role where he can excel. We have seen he can be an excellent third line winger, and his chemistry with Ward still lingers. If not, Gainey will need to light a fire under his butt while they talk in the pressbox.
Begin: Begin, Begin, Begin. A healthy return and spirited play would do wonders. Why make use of simply an energy line when we can spread the energy through all four lines.
Markov: A return to the form of the player we grew to love. He needs to pick up the pace after the break, and I don't think he'll have any problem with that.
Souray: Shoot the puck and hit the man. Take care of those and the praise will continue.
Brisebois: A confident glide from now until April. Not a passenger by any means, but a player we need to be cautious with.
Rivet: Slowly regaining compusure; something that needs to keep up. Simply put, keep it simple and the results will be there too.
Quintal: His size and toughness come at a price (lack of nearly all else), but it's quite obvious that the classiest of class on our club will finish his career in perfect style.
Komisarek: Perhaps a return to Hamilton is in order, but there's no reason to believe he can't play in Montreal as long as he garners himself a black eye or three (and dishes out his fair share).
Bouillon: Love him or hate him, his continual mistakes are overrun by the good he's done for us the past few months. He stays, but his role should slightly diminish.
Theodore: A strong showing over the next two weeks should spur him to an even higher level, one that will need to have him meritting serious consideration for 'the award'.
Garon: His ice time will increase as we cement a postseason berth, so that we can rest his number one, and he'll need to make us look right in calling him the best backup in hockey.
Don't have the time to get into many specifics, but I like what you've written, mostly because you mostly work to and recognize each players strengths.
We can't expect every player to be as multi-dimensional as Koivu, but more effort within the system from a few souls would certainly be welcome.
All being said, I still can't see this team being much more than a 6th/7th place without at least a little offensive balance from (at least) the 3rd line. That's why I'd like to see Bulis back with Juneau, because between them they usually generated something. Maybe even put Ward with them to crank it up. If only Balej could step in on the 1st or 2nd line....
Then between Begin, Dackell, Sundstrom, Kilger and Langdon, CJ could really have a chance to round out with a respectable 4th.
For Zednik, I would add: a more consistent effort against lower-echelon teams. He seems to pick it up for big games, leading the offence and being a general pain in the ass, but he often disappears in games like tonight's, seeming content to pick his spots in the offensive zone and wait for Ribeiro to feed him. If he could do that, the guy could score 40 a year, never mind 30.
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