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04-01-2005, 05:47 PM
  #119
NFITO
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RoyIsALegend
Since you're not doing the actual pairings of the teams, which is fine, I would add my Avs perspective and definitely say Ossi Vaananen surpasses Karlis Skrastins post-lockout. At this point, I would heavily prefer the Liles and Vaananen duo over Brent Sopel and Sami Salo.

In regards to your first match-up with Blake-Foote against Jovo-Ohlund, I agree that the gap will be closing significantly, but I would also like to mention I think there's at least three seasons of Blake-Foote being better. I am not a Jovanovski fan and simply do not feel his lack of focus for the full 60 minutes of a game, both in playing and disciplinary, will provide the Canucks with the back-bone defenseman they need for a Cup. On the other hand, I do believe Mattias Ohlund will be the game's best shut-down defenseman extremely soon, and will catapult himself past Jovanovski on the 'Nucks depth chart, if that hasn't already happened.

Personally:

Blake-Foote > Jovanovski-Ohlund
Liles-Vaananen > Sopel-Salo
Skrastins-Boughner < Malik-Allen
Sauer >> Baumgartner
The point of my response was that the Avs defense is simply not "a much stronger defense corps" as DRL claimed them to be.

The defenses are comparable, and it's debatable whether one is overall better than the other. Sure Vaananen could jump into elite status next season, but Jovo could also become one of the top offensive dmen in the game. And while Vaananen could "mature" into a much better player, so could Jovo... Allen could jump into a solid top4 role as well. bottom line is that it's all subjective at this stage, and neither defense stands out as much stronger than the other.

When you factor finances and durability into it, the canucks have the easier situation. Blake and Foote could be a strong defense 1-2 for the next 3 years, but they are also costing the Avs at least $13-14 mill between them, and at the age they're at, their durability isn't going to be that good.

That's why - all things considered - I would take our defense first. You could argue both ways, but I perfer the 1-to-6 we have, and either way, they're not that far apart.

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