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08-09-2010, 05:30 PM
The Perfect Paradox
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Long Island, NY
Originally Posted by
What do you New York fans get out of listing star players in a conference? You can do that in the West too. It means absolutely nothing. The competition in the West as a whole is much stronger. And I mean, if you want to talk about who Staal matched up against, you can't put Crosby and Malkin, unless Staal was double shifting.
He does hold his own very well. I never said he didn't. I said he plays very solid defense. I also said I don't think he is a shutdown defenseman. I see him as a big minute eating guy who plays an elite two way game.
Those are players that he plays with nearly every game during the season. Every shift he's out vs the Pens, he's either shutting down Malkin or Crosby. He's on the ice with both of them every time they play the Pens. When a team has two goal scoring threats like the Pens, the Rangers coaching staff makes sure he is out with both players every game. Of course they don't double shift him, but he isn't out with only Crosby the whole game. Occasionally they'll put him out against Malkin, and occasionally he'll be out against Crosby.
The point of listing all of these players was to show that while you believe that the competition in the west is "stronger", that Staal shuts down the most elite players in the game. Despite the conference he plays in, he still puts up with talent almost every game. He shuts down the opposing team's scoring threats, that has been his role his whole career, and he does it very well.
From the looks of your comments, you either don't watch Staal very much, or don't pay attention when he is on the ice. He is most certainly a shutdown d-man. I wouldn't call his two-way game "elite" at this point in his career. While his offensive game overall is slowly coming along, he has never reached the 30 point plateau in his three seasons of play.
You can make a case for him being a shutdown D-man very easily. A two way defensemen? Not at all, at least not as this point in his career. His natural abilities and the way he styles his game is exactly like a typical elite, shutdown defensemen. If you can't see that, you most likely don't watch him enough. Either that, or, your letting your extreme homerism get in your way.
Staal is a better shut down defensemen that Michalek, right now and will be in the future. I said this in another thread yesterday, the sky is the limit for Staal. His offensive game is coming along, but don't let that fool you. His shutdown game is becoming better as well. He is a natural shutdown defensemen, and all of us Ranger fans have seen this since the day he broke into the league.
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