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12-22-2004, 05:20 PM
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I kind of agree on Ahonen. This guy has been in the minors for 4 years already and the Devils never have started him once. They recalled him a couple of times as an emergency backup. But why didn't they have the confidence to play him? What was so bad that could have happened?

If Ahonen is so great, how come he isn't tearing up the AHL? He also seems to get hurt sometimes and sick a lot. This year being an example. And Clemmensen has already established himself as a reliable backup.

Makes ya wonder. Of course, NJ fans will argue that Ahonen has no chance of doing anything because Brodeur plays almost every game. So, it's better for his development to play in the AHL.

LaBarbera was drafted late and not much was expected. He has already been recalled a couple of times and started. Though he hasn't looked comfortable, he got experience. And now, he's working with our new goalie coach Allaire. This should only benefit him. And he's proving last year's MVP season in the 'A' wasn't a fluke. The only thing he needs to do now is take his game to the next level and prove he can play. Whenever that is, only God knows.

The other thing that works against Jason is that he's a couple of years older than Ahonen and has stiff competition in Lundqvist, Montoya and possibly Blackburn. When you factor in Dunham and Weekes if the NHL ever comes back, it's going to be tough for Jason to make it.

I kind of feel that the Devils should have dealt Ahonen already and gotten back something. His value can't be that high right now. And Brodeur shows no signs of slowing down. What's the point of carrying a guy considered to be a top goalie prospect if all he'll ever get in is 4-5 NHL games and toil in the minors? Better off trading him.

On our goalie situation, I see a trade coming whenever the NHL returns. Something has to give. And by the time it comes back, Montoya will probably be in Hartford signed and so will Lundqvist. Blackburn might be healthy enough to play too. That's a logjam and it doesn't even include Jason or the two goalies on the NHL roster. Valiquette too.

On the Parise vs Moore thing, there's no comparison. One guy is considered a "sure thing." The other was drafted a few years ago out of Harvard and had a solid college career and has played well for Hartford. He's developed into our best player. I'd have enough confidence to have him center a 3rd line. He competes hard all the time, skates like the wind and has great vision. His forechecking abilities are not that different from Parise. Moore always works hard. That's also the book on Parise. He never gives up on plays and can play in any facet. They do sound a lot similar. But Parise is supposed to have this skill that separates him from others. Both guys are small but use their size well. The difference aside from the talent is Moore is four years older. So, less is expected.

Thing is Moore showed in his debut against Montreal what he could do, tallying three assists. Only second Ranger to ever have that kind of start. Even sparked Lundmark.

So, what's Moore's ceiling? Hard to say. If he is given the kind of role he deserves, why can't he put up 18-20 goals and 25-30 assists? He has enough ability too. Maybe he taps out at 50 points. And I see him as a solid two-way player. Well isn't that special? You can never have enough players like that.

The other difference is this. Parise has these lofty expectations and tons of pressure. If he doesn't become an All-Star and put up 70-or-more points, he'll be considered a bust. He is supposed to be this 'franchise center.' Better than Gomez.

That's a lot of pressure.

I know he has 21 or 22 points in the 'A' but most of them have come on the power play. Nobody ever mentions it. I bet at least half his pts have come via it.

I'm sure he'll improve production at even-strength eventually. Just thought that was interesting.

Anyway, I think the real comparison should be Lundqvist vs Ahonen. One guy has risen his stock a ton and was taken way late (7th round, 2000) while the other was a 1st round pick with higher expectations.

As far as the other, we don't really have anyone similar that can compare to Parise. I suppose Jessiman will be unfairly compared because they took him over Zach. But they're different style players.

Maybe if Dawes makes it, he will be compared to Parise. They're similar in stature and Nigel was great last year for Canada. Had more pts than Parise in the WJC. If Dawes can duplicate last year's output on a better team, then he'll get more recognition.

We'll see how it goes.

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