Defensive Fill-ins Appreciation Thread
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12-21-2011, 01:39 AM
Two Pucks, One Cup
Join Date: Dec 2005
Originally Posted by
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.
Well that's my whole point. These guys wouldnt be playing if the team was healthy.
Out of all those guys:
1) Who are the two pairs for PK?
2) Who are the pointmen for both PP units?
3) Who is drawing the Top Line matchup?
4) Who is on the ice during the last 2 mins of a period?
I can tell you right now that the only guy who won't be out there due to skill level is Eminger. Erixon is certainly being groomed as a Top-4. He's just green right now.
Therefore, Bickel, Woywitka, Stralman, Bell -- they are nobodies who will not be capable of having responsibility in a crucial game.
End of story.
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