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04-11-2012, 09:38 AM
BillyShoe1721's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Country: United States
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First Pairings

Eddie Shore is an all time great defenseman. He's a much better #1 than Salming. His all star voting record is easily superior, and is one of the best defensemen ever. His presence alone is what makes Winnipeg's first pairing so good.

Red Horner is an interesting partner for Shore. As I mentioned earlier, these two are going to get in heaps of trouble in terms of taking penalties. They both like to run around a bit, looking for the big hit. They also both like to jump into the offensive zone and rush the puck, which exposes them to a quick transition the other way(the bread and butter of the Kariya-Howe combination). They'll be a terror to play against for sure. Both of them will try to take liberties with some of my smaller guys like Hyland and Kariya, but Graves and Fleming will be there to take on all comers when need be. Howe and Goodfellow(master of the one punch knockout) will not fight unless absolutely necessary because they are much more valuable on the ice. Horner is a better player than Boivin, but I'd give Boivin the edge in terms of defensive play. The read I get on Horner is that he's like a defenseman that rushed the puck and was physical, but was not all that great in his own zone because his all star voting record does not reflect his offensive abilities and physicality.

Philadelphia's pairing is no pair of buttercups either. Salming is about as tough a European player in the NHL as you're going to find, and Boivin was known as one of the best body-checkers of all time. My first pairing is very physical, and will make life hard on my opponent's forwards.

Winnipeg holds the advantage on the first pairings. Shore's presence and his advantage over Salming is what makes Winnipeg's pairing better. Both pairings are extremely physical as well. Winnipeg's first pairing could run into problems with taking too many penalties, and running around in their own zone looking for the big hit, or pinching on offense, taking themselves out of position. I'm not sure if I would want these guys to be out together protecting a lead at the end of the game.

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