The Toughness Debate Strikes Back
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04-17-2012, 11:16 AM
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Trolling Brian Wilde
Originally Posted by
The thing I like with Ottawa's fighters (and I'm biased obviously since I cheer for them as well) is that you've got a guy like Neil who is a good fighter, but at the same time he's a good bottom 6 guy who can fill in on the top 6 and score some goals (game 2 vs. NYR after Alfie got injured is a good example)
Konopka's not a big offensive threat by any means but he's been good on the faceoffs and solid so far in the playoffs (although he did catch some flack in the regular season). He can also play shorthanded. Carkner had a rough season because of injuries but as I recall when he's 100% he is a decent bottom pairing defenseman.
I think the key is to have good fighters who have some skills outside of fighting, so that you're not just icing a lineup of 11 guys plus a fighter. Lots of games go by where no one fights, and even with fights, you've gotta play the 60 minutes of hockey. By all accounts guys like Nilan were also decent players although I was too young to really follow the Habs back then.
If Darche was a fighter he'd be perfect (since his offensive output is pretty similar to Neil's). Staubitz has seemed like a player who can at least keep pace with the game, although it's been a small sample size. He doesn't seem to have a ton of offensive upside, but I think he might be good down the stretch especially since the players seem to like him a lot.
Ryan White I could see being a really useful player (a la Neil) going forward because he plays with a lot of heart and seems to have untapped offensive potential to boot. He's really fast and he can play, already - and he's still young.
PS - I can't wait to see Emelin in the playoffs, on a semi related note.
I really like Zach Smith too, to add on to what you're saying. I wouldn't want as many 'plugs' as Ottawa has, but definitely guys like Smith and Neil are what great teams want on their bottom lines.
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