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11-17-2010, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Vaasa View Post
He's 23, in his 3rd season, played a good chunk of last season injured or recovering from injury, and has obviously been working on other aspects of his game to be a more all-around player. Just as Patty struggled for years for any sort of consistency, and Clowe had his issues, as did JT, Seto will have his slumps and his down times. And even if he's not scoring right now, he is doing everything else a 3rd-liner is expected to do. And he's being paid like a 3rd-liner.
I agree generally with this sentiment, but I just can't agree with the bolded section.

Marleau came into the league as a 17 year old in 97-98, and at 22/23 (end of 01-02) he had seasons of 32, 45, 40, 52, and 44 points, with goal totals being 13, 21, 17, 25, and 21. At 23/24 and 24/25, he put up back-to-back 28 goal, 29 assist campaigns. Then, after the lockout: 86, 78, 48, 71, 83, and this year's 17 so far. Marleau had ONE YEAR where he significantly underperformed his expectations, and pretty much every other year turned out to be about right. Streakiness is one thing, and yes Marleau did have bouts of that, but Seto's struggles go past streakiness.

Thornton is similar. He had 7 points in his first year in the league, then 60, 71, 68, 101, 73, then after the lockout with the Sharks we all know. He had one blowup year but otherwise was pretty consistent through his learning curve.

You can't even say that about Clowe. It took until game 20 for Clowe to score his second goal last year, but he had 8 assists in that time - and that was still considered awful. He looked really bad on the ice too, granted, which Setoguchi does not, but from a production standpoint his slump wasn't nearly as bad.

No, Setoguchi's current struggles go far beyond what any of Marleau, Thornton, or Clowe went through to get to where they are.

So adjust your expectations one an all. If his consistency improves, he'll be back to being a 2nd-liner. If it doesn't he'll get paid like a 3rd-liner again next year and he'll stay on the 3rd line until he develops more. Having Seto as a 3rd-liner is hardly a terrible proposition.
Unfortunately, this is already a large drop from his being a fixture on the first line's right wing, which everyone thought he would be after his 31-goal year.

I wouldn't do the deal because I think Setoguchi's long-term 'resting point' (so to speak) is much closer to 30-goal Seto than he is to the current iteration, but Seto's production is starting to remind me of Bernier's - meteoric, and then fading fast. His stock is lower than ever right now. And if this goes on for long enough such that people actually have to start re-evaluating his talent as more of a career third-line winger, then not trading him while everyone else thinks he has 1st line potential is asset mismanagement. (That being said, Setoguchi not earning a huge payday this year and then signing on for a few more years at a 1.8-ish cap figure would be a-ok by me)

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