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11-28-2009, 03:08 PM
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Originally Posted by Sturminator View Post

It seems strange to me that Tremblay has had a reputation on this board for playing poor defensive hockey - even to the point that Devil questioned not whether or not he was an effective #1 defenseman, but whether or not he belonged on a first pairing, at all. For those of us who saw Tremblay play (I am old enough to remember him in his last couple of years in Montreal), such statements are mindboggling, but they seem to have been accepted as fact around here for some time. At any rate, it is hard to imagine that the Habs could have won 5 Cups with Tremblay as their #1 defenseman if he hadn't been very good in his own zone.
Damn, called out by name in someone else's series. I guess I should respond.

First off, if I said he doesn't belong on a first pairing, that's a bit harsh and I should clarify. I think that ideally, he's a second pairing puck mover who doesn't play regular minutes against ATD first lines. I think it probably takes away from his strength - his offensive game - if you want him to focus more on defense.

I meant that second pairing duty would free him up to do what he does best - control the transition game without having to spend as much time in his own zone. But given the premium you put on your first line and goaltending, defense won't be ideal. It happens. I highly doubt he's the worst #1 in the draft. Anyway, it's a moot point now since he's on your first pairing to stay.

When I questioned Tremblay on the first pair, it had at least as much to do with style as ability. Obviously, if Tremblay is the 3rd best defenseman on your team, you have a super-stacked defense. Some #2s are better off playing next to the #1. Some are better off anchoring their own pair. That was my bigger point.

But since I'm here, I'll make a few more points.

1. Was Tremblay really the #1 defenseman on the 60s Habs? They had a guy named Jacques Laperriere who received more Norris and All Star consideration and who is in the Hall of Fame. I had been under the impression that Tremblay and Lapperriere collectively filled the #1 defenseman role that the Habs had been missing since Harvey left - Tremblay more on the offensive side, Lapperriere more on the defensive side.

2. Paul Coffey won a lot of Cups as a #1 dman, and he wasn't anything special defensively. I'm not compairing Tremblay to Coffey, but the "he won all these Cups as the #1 guy, how could he be anything less than very good in his own zone?" doesn't fly.

3. Finally, not everyone who say Tremblay play shares your view of his defensive acumen. I've talked to more than one Canadiens fan who is old enough who was not a fan of Tremblay in the defensive zone. And no, I have no seen Tremblay play, other than the occasional video well after the fact. Take that for whatever you think it's worth.

Your co-GM said that Tremblay will not be used as a true #1 in the ATD. Surely, there is a reason for that.

Last edited by TheDevilMadeMe: 11-28-2009 at 03:44 PM.
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