Which player can "patch" the Habs' lack of physical toughness
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11-17-2010, 05:20 PM
Join Date: Aug 2010
Personally I just don't care so much because I don't think we can 'patch'. Calling up 1-2 goons in the line-up won't change anything. Least of all, it will NOT prevent dangerous, dirty hits. Savard got taken out by Cooke, Krejci in the playoffs by Richards, is it because they lack toughness? They don't. It's just that dirty hits from dirty players are not prevented by having goons. Those guys see the opportunity and take it, they don't think for 1 second about who the other team has in their rooster.
Only the league and referees can really settle the problem. I think it might even be worse if we had 'enforcers', because we would risk falling in their game and then they will have a whole lot more players that can play rough and dirty than we do. We would need to build a whole team around it to compete in that area, but we built around speed and smarts, not toughness and grit. We still have gritty players that sticked to their game yesterday and didn't let themselves get intimidated, but unless you have dirty players that will just do the same stupid dangerous hits than they do, you can't really do the same to them.
Does anyone HONESTLY think that having Henry in the line-up last night would have prevented Hartnell from nailing Gionta in the middle of the ice or Powe to crush Halpern's head in the board? Oh, he might have fought Powe instead of Lappy (and likely not, those players DON'T want to fight people that can hurt them they know how to pick their fights, you saw how Powe just refused going with Moen) but putting Henry too often on the ice at the same time as those guys would end up being dangerous for actually winning the game.
It's fun to say 'you can't trust the league, you have to defend yourself!' but unless your whole team is built for it, it's not realistic, and one enforcer never changed anything about it. One 'top line guy that can drop them' doesn't either, you need 2, 3, 4 of them. The problem is when referees are totally unable to keep control of the game and let everything degenerate by not calling penalties when they should, and the league being unable to have serious sanctions for dangerous players, especially repeated offenders. All you can do is stick to your game, not get intimidated (that's a kind of toughness our players have) and win. Don't downgrade your rooster to fit in a goon that will not prevent any kind of injury from happening.
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