Top Defensive Forwards So Far This Year
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01-18-2011, 01:40 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Originally Posted by
Good points, Dulz. I, for one, can say I've always maintained Legwand's value to this club. I know I did so during his offensive droughts because I've always thought of him as valuable, and he has had several such droughts. Also the salary bit has been beaten to death, resurrected, and beaten to death again. Sometimes you get a deal, sometimes you overpay, and sometimes it's fair value. It's the way it goes. Still it's a fair post.
I think a lot of us share this frustration. For what he consistently brings to the ice (defensive acumen) he is definitely overpaid. He does have the ability to step it up offensively. I'm not sure if it's something he can only for short periods, if he thinks that he needs to stick to defense first and only create offense when the team needs it/he sees an opportunity, or if it's the way he's being asked to play. The latter seems pretty weak. If I were a coach I don't think I could ask a forward to tone down the offense in order to focus on defense unless said player has absolutely no offensive skill (Smithson). On the other hand, I'm not a coach and for good reason. Trotz did play him on a Ward/Smithson line basically all of last season. Vocalized or not, that is essentially asking him to tone down the offense to focus on defense. This year he's being given ice time with offensive guys. Due to injury or not, he is being used in a different role and it looks like he's taking on that role just fine.
There is little disagreement from me. If he was paid, 2.5m it would be a perfect fit for a defensive role with "occasional" offense. The more frustrating part is he's rarely willing to go in high traffic areas and get involved in the physical game (see playoffs last year for an exception, also his career year). Ironically, that's usually when his offensive game upicks up. A guy like Arnott gets reamed for this, but it's rarely mentioned with Legwand.
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