Handicapping the field
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09-21-2003, 09:09 AM
Join Date: Aug 2003
Originally Posted by
McKeens describes Bergeron as a swift skating puck mover, so I think he's okay in that department. Maybe Jim Harnock can confirm.
McKeens also say Luoma "moves well for his size" so maybe I'm overreacting.
As you say it is still early times but the #6 & #7 d man position looks like this from what I have seen. Luoma has done everything that MacT likes in a #5 6 d-man and still brings some offensive upside. He actually thinks about scoring rather than just making the safe play. He is too good (#5 or 6 on this team) to cut if the option is him returning to Europe but will be sent to TO imo for 20-30 games if that is possible. Bergeron is certainly flashier and some of my concerns about him being able to handle himself physically in the d zone have lessened but he does make mental errors with the puck as is often the case with d men who are creative. He has the best foot speed of the 3 we are discussing but his overall speed is not so good because he has such short legs. I saw Cross pass him once when they were both going for the puck. Bergeron looked like he was flying because his feet were moving so fast but Cross (who looked like an ocean liner to Bergeron's speedboat) caught him and passed him. In shorter races in tight spaces I think Bergeron is quicker.
Ferguson is the known quantity. It is also known that if they cut him they will lose him for nothing. Absolutely no offensive upside he is reliable against 3rd and 4th liners in his own zone and a good guy in the dressing room. It's almost like it should be between Bergeron and Luoma for the 6th spot with Ferguson a lock for #7.
Conclusion - Bergeron to TO IF Luoma returns to Europe if he doesn't make the big team but if they can convince him to play 20-30 games in Toronto he will be sent there and if he plays as well as I think he can then Ferguson is gone because the brass will be sure that they have upgraded.
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