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04-20-2012, 05:31 AM
  #28
Mike8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prairie Habs View Post
Young offensive players have to play their way up to the top lines. That isn't just a Montreal thing, that is true for every successful team in the league.
Well, you're both right and wrong on this one. Good teams will play their young players on the bottom-six, but they do ensure those young players have some talent to play with rather than grinders. Datsyuk came up with Hull, for example, and Hudler with Shanahan. Giroux also came in and played with talent right away--on the 3rd line. Gomez played with Mogilny. etc. Generally speaking, talented young players in good organisations will play with a talented vet on the 3rd line.

Montreal, on the other hand, plugs young players with ... well, pluggers. Moen is fine on one wing, but make sure the other wing is a talented vet. Maybe a Gionta, or a Kostitsyn, or an older, less productive but skilled Ray Whitney. Someone who can toss up 40-45 points and play a nice secondary scoring role, and help develop that young player.

Higgins and Plekanec played with each other to develop, and then eventually Higgins with Koivu and Plekanec with Kovalev. I suppose Latendresse was given some quality ice time, but not enough, and not consistently. Other than that? I can't recall too many attempts at proper pairings for youth in the NHL.

Another benefit to these pairings is that it generates stability for the young player, and gives them a specific role.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Commandant View Post
Perhaps a guy like Ryan Walter in Vancouver is needed.
Just a minor note, but Walter's with the Flames organisation now.

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