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07-01-2011, 02:57 AM
  #145
JeffMangum
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Join Date: Oct 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kel Varnsen View Post
He's definitely a low end 2nd liner at best right now. He didn't play enough last year to pencil him in for 30 goals and 60 pts a year. Plus last year was the first time he showed us any kind of hands at all, so he'll have to do more to erase the memories of stone hands. I'd love for him to be that guy, but I sure wouldn't put money on it.
I'm not penciling him in for anything, but Ryan Callahan is more to this team than a "low end second liner"—he's more than that to any team in the NHL. There are very few players in this league that impact his team's game in a positive light on a shift-by-shift basis as Callahan does—yeah, he's not the most talented player in the league, but he's one of the most effective. He knows where the puck is going to be, he knows WHERE to be on the ice, and he knows what to do with the puck. He's a fantastic forechecker, backchecker, PKer, and net-front presence—his deflection skills are severely underrated. He had nearly half of his goals last year on the powerplay, 3 more than Gaborik, the next best, and 6 more than Dubinsky, the 3rd best.

He isn't a 1st liner, but he is most certainly a legitimate 2nd line winger on every team in the NHL.

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