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06-30-2008, 09:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Edge View Post
Problem is that it's not just the stats that make or break a player.

A few factors to keep in mind is that both Byers and Korpikoski are two years YOUNGER than Jessiman.

Byers projects as a fourth liner who aggrivates and pops in points, I'm not sure if Hugh would really fill that role the way Byers would. There's a certain mindset to that role, and I just can't see Hugh bringing that to the table.

Korpikoski has excellent hockey sense, which is not one of Hugh's strengths. He projects as a smart third line player who covers his own end and can put in around 20 goals if he progresses.

Heck for all the talk about Jessiman, why don't we mention Greg Moore in that conversation. He's a big guy who came from the college ranks and is the same age as Hugh. Moore is all of two days older and has out-performed him in two pro seasons by a pretty big margin. In fact he does one better than your fourth round comment about Hugh, he was a fifth round pick.

Yet somehow Moore has little shot at the NHL and never seems to get mentioned in these conversations. Ironic isn't it? Moore performs at a level we would gush over Hugh for and yet he's ignored.

Therein lies one of my big problems with most conversations about Hugh and why I can't help myself whenever he comes up in coversation. Stuff that would just not fly for ANY other prospect is acceptable for him.

There are just players this board can't help but that do that with and Hugh is one of them. I don't know but for the last 8 or 9 years we fall in love with a kid who really doesn't look like he's going to make it and we just latch onto them. We get into multi-page arguments over them and we insist that "they'll make it if we give them a chance."

Yet everytime a kid makes it, he shows the same thing. A higher level of performance at the AHL or the ability to bring one or two distinct abilities to the pro team. Additionally, we almost never have to make an excuse for them for very long or attempt to twist their game into something more than what they actually showed.

That's what seperates the Girardi's for the Baranka's. The Staal's for the Pocks, the Dubinsky's from the Immonen's and Lundmark's and the Dawes,Korpikoski's and others from the Jessiman's.
I think a lot of prospects that go the college route end up being underrated, especially if they stay in college for more than 2 years. By the time they get to the AHL, they are a year or two older than other rookies and they've been out of the spotlight for so long that fans have written them off. Plus, they don't play that many games in college so you won't usually see a lot of big numbers. It's hard to gauge how a player's game will translate from college to the AHL and NHL. Moore is underrated and so is Potter IMO.

On the subject of Byers, I think he can be a 3rd or 4th line guy, but I think he can also be affective on the PP. He's shown good hands in front of the net in Hartford and we could use a big body to take the hits, screen the goalie and pick up the garbage rebounds in front. Also, I'd bet good money that he's quite a bit heavier than the 195 lbs he's listed at. Probably more like 215.

I'm not sure yet about Jessiman. I like the progress he made this year, but as others have noted, he wasn't strong on his skates during the preseason. At his size, people should bounce off when they hit him. I guess we'll see this year in camp how much progress he's really made, assuming we resign him.

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