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05-01-2008, 06:17 PM
  #143
mcphee
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VAN-HAB View Post
taking in consideration the minutes he gets, powerplay time, best linemates, Higgins has been a non-factor this playoffs.

I don't really agree with the stone hands assesment (just yet), but at the same time he is soooooooo far from being a genuine top 2 line player.
He's in a funny position. Mtl's the most east west team in the league and Higgins plays north south, at least to be effective, he has to. When he's at his best, he's skating hard to open ice, creating seems, kind of like a soccer player opening field on a run.

I don't see how that style can mesh with Kovalev. I just don't see how it can work . You can get some short term success but not over the long haul. The younger wingers on the team favor the e/w style and are the current flavors of the month because it was a successful year doing it.

Higgins is probably ranked in the 25-35 range as a lw'er, that's easily good enough for any team's top 6. He has to adjust though, and there has to be recognition when something's wrong.

I also think he worked on a lot in th eoff season, mental approach, confidence, physical rehabilitation but didn't seem to adjust his game. Developmentally, though his numbers are around where they'll probably average, he has regressed overall.

Remeber G4 against Boston ? The 1-0 game ? He was everywhere during the last 10 minutes, won key battles in his own end. Got the puck out reatedly down the stretch, did all the things your key players have to do to win. That's Higgins at his best. I don'tr know if he was on the scoresheet that night, I think he was one of the guys in fropnt of the net when Brisebois scored, but his signature was all over the win. That's the type of game they need from him consistently. Getting goal 5 in a 6-1 win are always fun for the crowd, but I want the guy who gets the puck out with 2 minutes left.

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