The more I watch Gill
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09-20-2003, 09:45 AM
Join Date: Feb 2002
The more I watch Gill, the more I believe he's the last guy the Bs should trade.
If we had Bourque, Blake & Foote then yes, they could move him. They don't though, they have/had Sweeney, Girard, Berard, a broken OD, and a young Boynton. Not exactly norris type team-mates.
Gill gets " no respect " for the things he does well. Some of those off the top of my head; Games played and mins played. No substitute for a guy that always plays 75+ gms, and eats up defensive mins.
Skating & passing have really improved in the last 2 years. For a guy 6'7 & 250, his stop starts and balance are pretty darn good. I think his passing is better than given credit for also. Time after time last year, he'd get the puck, take his time and really put some zip on passes right on the tape. His " offensive " partners make him look bad though, especially when they take off up the ice when no one else is ready and lose the puck at the other blue line. Where's Gill? Oh Yeah, he was the one playing back while his partner was " creating " chances!
Seniority, he's been here the longest, no contract battles, no weekend drunks to explain, works out in the off season, good in the community, and generally keeps his head down and tries his best. ( Sounds alot like Bourque doesn't it? Hmm )
Maybe not nasty, but this guy is very strong. How many times does he get the puck to our goalies right, and with a flick of the wrist he can zip the puck around the glass every bit as hard as our other Dmen could with their hardest slapper.
Crease clearing, this is one everyone harps on over & over. I see it differently than most I guess. Crease clearing to me means letting your goalie see the puck. Because of his size there is always at least an extra foot between Gill's backside and our goalie when forwards park in front. That extra distance gives the goalie that much more vision. Traffic in front wasn't the biggest problem our goalies had the last few years. Gill also forces alot of guys to go wide around the net, if everyone else does their job a turnover will eventually occur.
He's still not that old. Not 30 yet is he? People cut guys like Joe & Sammy slack. They also say Dmen take longer. Gill's still improving, so it would be silly not to see what happens with him. Especially considering his price tag.
There now, anyone reading this that didn't know Gill would think he was the next Norris winner.
I like Gill, but I also realize his shortcomings as well. I'd love for him to play more physical, of course. As a matter of fact, I said to the wife yesterday, I'd love to see Gill put Mario through the glass into row 4 when they play the Pens here Tues night. I'd give my left arm to see that.
Any chance Sullivan can help him with this? I don't believe he doesn't want to do it, rather he's afraid of getting caught out of position. Hitting isn't something you just do , its a skill. Two years ago in games towards the end of the year, I remember Gill trying to pull off Rob Blake's move. When Blake comes gliding down his blueline with his butt towards the glass and pinches the forward off. I swear I saw Gill trying to pull this off 2-4 times, but with no success. If Sully & Gill could work together to try and get him to master that, boy O boy.
Moral of the story, Please don't move Gill, that would be nothing more than a lateral move. Wait until we have more D men and a better team and then move him for a real talent, which he will fetch in a couple years if he plays the same.
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