Time to re-unite line
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11-19-2010, 02:19 AM
Join Date: Oct 2006
Originally Posted by
it's funny... when Gionta was stone cold playing with Gomez, some people focused on the same thing, arguing that Gomez was playing just fine but that it was his wingers inability to finish the glorious scoring chances he created for them that was the culprit.
but after watching Pouliot, Gionta and now A.Kost all be completely unproductive playing with Gomez
, isn't it about time to start considering that perhaps the problem is him?
Sad thing is that in listening to Gomez's comments (first with Gio, now with A.Kost), even if he does it in a charming, comedic fashion, you can still tell that deep down he's making
do you really think, after 20 games, that it's just a serious case of bad luck?
at some level i really do wish that it is just a case of bad luck... but my eyes tell a different story.
Every half decent offensive play-maker sets up chances during a game that don't get finished.
I see Pleks setting up beautiful plays every game that don't end up working because the guy shooting misfires...
the difference is that Pleks sets up far more great scoring chances/per game, resulting in consistent production.
people can so easily point out to the 1 "empty net chance gomez set up that didn't get scored" per game in part because there is just one (or two or three, but definitely not as consistent as what you see from Pleks, or from opposition top 6 centres).
i do agree that the team is playing well, and winning, which certainly favors minimal lineup changes...
but Martin IS changing the lines around, the problem is that he is doing so in a fruitless attempt to get Gomez going, and nothing he tries is working. All that happens is that the players put with Gomez go stone cold.
The team is winning despite the complete lack of production from a player getting 17-20minutes/game, with considerable PP time. If Gomez were to be benched, or given sparse minutes on the 4th line, does that really change anything? I don't see it, at least not unless he becomes a cancer, in which case Hamilton is the easy (albeit expensive) solution.
Give Eller a game or two next to gionta/pouliot, re-unite the top line to get A.Kost going again, and see what happens. If it doesn't work, so be it, we can easily go back to watching Gomez skate fast up the ice and lose the puck as soon as he enters the offensive zone (be it via direct turnover, or by suicide pass that eventually gets taken away).
We saw tonight what happens to this team if Pleks line gets shutout... what happens if pleks goes down to injury (everyone knock on wood)???
Finding out if Eller could be even marginally productive with better linemates/icetime is the kind of thing to do now, earlier in the season, and Gomez being useless (at least production-wise) is the perfect excuse to test it out now.
on top of that, I'm still of the opinion that moving forward, IF we are going to keep Gomez around, we'd be far better served transitioning him into a full-time shut-down role (sort of like what Maxwell is being asked to do in Hamilton), where he can use his speed and decent defensive awareness to help the team, without worrying about producing offensively.
Besides, from what I've seen (especially while at the game) from Eller, I really believe that the kid is ready to be productive right now. His pathetic production through 20 games can be attributed to his ice time and line-mates unlike Gomez who, despite the excuses people try to come up with, has no one but himself to blame for his embarrassing lack of production.
you mean, after watching Pouliot, Gionta, AK, Lapierre, Moen, Pyatt...
although the last 3 arent expected to be on the scoresheet a lot, just reinforce the idea that the problem on the Gomez line IS Gomez himself.
Just looking at Pouliot, nothing while playing with Gomez, did great with halpern/Darche and while not great he had a decent game playing with Eller... so... conclusion ?
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