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03-12-2011, 05:45 PM
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I don't think Boyle was ever as bad defensively as Gonchar was in Washington. Boyle wasn't good defensively early on, but he was never Housley-bad like Gonchar used to be. I would have to look at ice time stats (which I don't have now after losing my hard drive) to know for sure, but my impression is that Boyle is better over his career. Gonchar was a #4/5 defenseman at even strength with major PP time for a long time. I also don't think Boyle was ever prone to terrible brain farts as Gonchar was from time to time.

Gonchar vs. Rafalski is interesting. Rafalski is much better positionally, but Gonchar better one-on-one due to not being a midget.

Gonchar is definitely better than Housley in his own zone. Gonchar actually improved defensively over his career; Housley is the rare case of the defenseman who did not. Also, Gonchar isn't nearly as soft as Housley was. Housley was the unique combination of zero defensive awareness, while being totally soft.

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