Is it just me, or does this year feel different?
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08-17-2010, 08:03 AM
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Decatur, AL
A full year of a healthy Wilson (hopefully) plus Lombardi should replace the points Arnott put up last year, and maybe even add a bit to it. In addition, Lombardi should be much better in the defensive zone leading to an overall improvement in the team's goal differential from last year.
SK or Andersson ... one of those guys HAS to be better on the Legwand line than Smithson was last year. They certainly can't be worse offensively. If they can combine with Legwand to increase the productivity of that line while staying defensively responsible, that could be a huge boost to the team. Or, heck, maybe Linus Klassen (whose name I've probably just misspelled) will force his way onto the team in camp and bring more offense. The depth of the team feels a lot better this year, to me. Not a lot of sixty-point guys, but a lot of guys who could put up forty or fifty. Not a lot of thirty-goal scorers, but a lot of guys who could put up fifteen or twenty.
As for losing Hamhuis ... I don't know. On the one hand I agree that he was a big part of the defense. On the other hand, if there's one thing this team has been able to do traditionally, it's bring up young defensive prospects and turn them into good defensemen. With guys like Blum and Josi chomping at the bit, Ellis turning heads in juniors, and Sulzer and Franson fighting for a spot on the roster I have to think that the defense is going to be OK. I just hope we don't ride Weber and Suter into the ground on the top pairing so that they have nothing left or get injured before the playoffs come around.
There are a lot of questions about the roster, yes, but they feel like better questions than in the past.
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