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01-26-2012, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by deanwormer View Post
and yet, our need when you stand us up comparatively and objectively, isn't scoring, it's a big-body to play with Ellis (or Blum) on our 3rd pair.

A top-end F would be gr8, a C to move Fish and/or Spals down and Smithson to the bench would be gr8, but objectively, it wouldn't appear to address our weakness.

Gleason, etc - won't cost us much and changes things considerably; adding Ruutu or whomever makes us a little better in an area that won't help us overcome the true weakness in the 3rd pair, and I'm not sure even a Parise-type does.

remember - we add a Parise and get a PPG, but Horny or someone moves down and becomes less productive. So, maybe we net an extra half-PPG; woopee - unless Sutes and Weber are gonna' play 30mins every night and Josi makes no more rookie mistakes 20 games into his career, that 3rd pair is VERY exploitable for their 15mins on the ice, and when it's all PO caliber teams, that exploitation of that pair is gonna' cancel out that half-PPG, IMHO.

We all cringed every time Co*y Franson was on the ice last year; everyone joked about his "protected" minutes - but we had SOB back there with him. Sure, Ellis is better than Co*y, but right now, not all that much defensively, and Cube/Hillen is a significant downgrade from SOB, his antics/discipline issues not-withstanding.

We want a run; it's the upgrade at D that's gonna' make the difference, and the bonus is it won't mortgage the future.
I think if we want to make it to round 2, and definitely beyond, we need both. Top six forward and solid number 4 d-man. Both are glaring weaknesses, IMO.

The comparison is made to Boston last year, but Boston also had legit first liners as part of their "balanced attack:" Lucic, Krejci, Bergeron are all top 3 forwards on most teams in the league. Contrast that to us--no one in our top six is a true first liner. Like in years past, where scoring was an issue in the playoffs(Ducks series and their third string goaltender\horrible defensive depth not withstanding), we have two second lines. we DO have a fourth line that could be construed as an extra third line...but that still leaves us set up as 2/2/3/3. I'm not sure that's good enough.

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