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02-13-2012, 06:01 PM
  #40
littletonhockeycoach
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jame View Post
while he definitely deserved to be sent down... it's still surprising he was never given another shot with vanek and pommer, where he did most of his scoring, and we looked like a decent team...
Right on Jame.

It's easy to conclude that it's better for him to be playing somewhere than riding the pine. But I think the situation is lot more complex than that.

I've been wondering for a while what Luke's role is supposed to be on this team. Is he supposed to be a sniper or a plumber? A garbage collector or loaded gun? The guy has a wicked release and shot yet he was relegated to playing 4th line at the end. I thought his skating improved greatly this year and while he doesn't use his size to play a physical game, neither did Peter McNabb. Overall, I see him as someone you play with better linemates and try to get the puck to rather than expect him to dig and carry it out of the corner.

I realize that you have to play a total game in the NHL. However the defensive part of the game is so hard to learn... It took Sakic, Yzerman, etc. years to get good defensively. That said, I think he needed more rather than less TOI. And better line mates to help him develop his game. After all, the whole team was in the toilet most the season (Luke along with the rest) and pretty much lost most any reasonable chance of getting into the playoffs. Which to my mind, created a good situation where the coaches could develop a rookie and help him develop his game at the NHL level of play. (Suffer the consequences, you're team's already blown the season....)

So while he does get playing time in the AHL with this move, it's a place where he's already conquered the level of play. Other than TOI, I'm not sure how this helps him. Does him now scoring AHL goals really help restore lost confidence? Or help him recover his game?

Or is this simply designed to make him hungrier?

Finally, if he indeed recovers his touch and game, what's the plan for how he will be used next go around?

I mean, surely there's a player development plan for Luke..... The hockey dept. isn't just making this up as they go along?

Or are they?

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