Defensive Fill-ins Appreciation Thread
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12-21-2011, 01:29 AM
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Listening to music
Originally Posted by
German Way of War
Bingo. I don't buy into the Joe Michelletti/Sam Rosen Kool Aid. There's a reason why these guys were/are on the trash heap.
And then they magically become competent NHL defenseman when they join the Rangers? Who happen to have (surprise surprise) a Vezina-caliber goalie between the pipes?
Nope. No thanks. Not buying it.
Woywitka and Eminger are 5th and 6th defensemen who are the last guys a coach of a contending team wants on the ice in a crucial situation. We have already seem games decided because of their mishaps.
People need to stop sugarcoating these guys. When Staal and Sauer come back and Erixon gets a longer look, guys like Eminger, Stralman, Woywitka and yes, even Bickel are friggin redundant.
Hard to say. While Lundqvist certainly could help any defenseman's +/-/GA/etc, he isn't going to change the perception of their play for those who are watching those players. Eminger had stepped up nicely before his injury. Woywitka was Woywitka (7th/8th defenseman), Stralman continues to look like a highly inconsistent 3rd pairing defenseman, etc. Bickel was good tonight, but I'm sure a couple more games will have him looking more like the 6/7/AHL defenseman he is (not to take anything away from what he's done with the organization so far). Those were my perceptions prior, and they're still my perceptions now.
With that said, I don't want any of those players near the NHL blueline when the playoffs roll around. Eminger I'd be okay with having, the rest? Chuck 'em. Sign another 18-20 minute defenseman in the offseason, bring Erixon along, and watch the defenseman take off. I'd still keep some extra defenseman around in case of a repeat of a current situation, but if our defense looks like it does now in the playoffs past the first 3 or 4 defenseman, we won't go anywhere.
Lundqvist simply helps keep this team's GA down, even with terrible injuries. He's the best insurance policy in the league. He won't make the team look pretty, but he'll get the job done. And, finally, for the first time in a while, he has a capable team in front of him. No more 1/2 goal ********, this is a team that had the ability to score 3+ goals any given night.
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