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12-04-2004, 06:39 PM
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Originally Posted by flyers guy
I usually agree with your thoughts, but I really couldnít disagree more about Avery and I see almost every Kingsí game. Being transplanted to the west coast gives me time to watch two games a day, an Eastern Conference game earlier on Center Ice, then Foxsportís ultra biased coverage of either the Kings or Ducks at night, although preferably the Kings (I hate Jim Fox .)

Right now I must say that Avery really isnít a very good agitator at all. Avery is one of the most, if not the most undisciplined player(s) in the whole league. A good agitator should be fairly subtle to the spectators and the officials, yet annoying as hell to his opponent, all the while staying cool, calm, and capable of turning the other cheek. Avery is annoying, but he fails in every other category that makes an agitator effective. Iíll guarantee you every other successful agitator has a game plan of what theyíre going to try and do to get a specific player off his game, but Avery just buzzes around the ice randomly going nuts most games. Itís not effective on most players, as itís blatantly obvious what heís doing, so it only works on players who canít control their temper (Forsberg and Bertuzzi.)

Having said all that, I canít figure out why in the world you think Sean Avery is so important to a team (heck, any team) being coached by Andy Murray. Murray rarely ever dresses enforcers and isnít fond of players as undisciplined as a guy like Avery. Avery doesnít have bad skills for the role he plays, however heíll never see the ice time he needs to put up more points than he did last year. He got decent ice time at the end of the year and did play better, but unless another catastrophe happens in L.A. thereís no way heís playing over 10 minutes a night, as he still is a liability to take stupid penalties.

This statement would have been true for the first two months of last year, but Avery really turned a corner following the Sillinger incident. His hands are better than most think, and Murray's coaching/discipline is exactly what he needs at this point. He gives his all every shift and demands the same from his teammates, which does get him in trouble from time to time.

And to say that Murray doesn't use enforcers is a bit of mis-statement. Murray is the guy who dressed Stu freakin' Grimson in several playoff games when they upset Detroit and took Colrado to 7 games. Murray doesn't dress guys who can't contribute more than just punches, ie: Brennan, Belanger and Flinn (who actually might be dressed quite often next season).

Avery's been a loose-cannon to be sure, but he has shown signs of maturing, and could very well be a future team captain (and no, I'm not kidding). He is going to get 12-18 minutes a night as long as he doesn't take stupid penalties, which is exactly what happened throughout the Kings' ultimately doomed run at the playoffs.

As far as Foxsports being "ultra-biased", the Ducks' homer-coverage is much worse than the Kings', which isn't any more biased than any other American home team network that you'll find on Center Ice. Canadian coverage is usally outstanding, but the American markets are mostly concerned with promoting their local teams and not the sport as a whole, hence the "homerisms". Oh, and Jim Fox rules!

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