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06-09-2004, 01:10 PM
True Blue
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 15,807
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Fish, I understand what you are saying, BUT

there's a BIG difference between saying that this is a rebuilding year and throwing ALL caution to the wind by throwing young players on the ice, wether they are ready or not and playing only 4 vets in a lineup and rebuilding the right way.
To me, the goal is to play hard, develop a system, and develop players. Playoffs are gravy. However, I do not think that the proper way to develop players is to just throw them all into the fire and hope and pray that things work out. You can't just had a top line spot to Prucha. The kid has MAJOR size issues. There's a reason that there is only one St. Loius and only one Gionta. Add to that the fact that he has yet to step a toe onto North American ice. You can't enter a season with Jagr & Holik as the only vets amongst forwards.
You cannot just throw youngsters who are not ready onto the ice at the NHL level. And assigning a top line spot to a Prucha may be just that. NO ONE knows if the kid can handle the league. Personally, I have my doubts and I think that his size will be a major issue. He is TINY. Now, that is not to say that I cannot be wrong. However, not to resign a Rucinsky becuase you are praying that Prucha is can step right into first line duties, is incredibly short-sighted.
There WILL be vets signed. But to me, if the kids ouplay the vets in camp, then let said kids play the top lines and said vets play lower lines. However, if the kids prove not to be ready, then you have viable options to play on your top lines.

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