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06-11-2012, 03:40 PM
  #283
Tiranis
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Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Toronto, ON
Country: Czech_ Republic
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I watched around 15 games this past season so not as many as thefeebster, but I'll try to be helpful:

Quote:
Originally Posted by BATJAM View Post
Because of his size, does he get rocked any harder than others by big hits?
He gets rocked every once in a while but he recovers well. I've never seen him back down after a big hit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BATJAM View Post
Also, do other teams try to key-in on him with more contact/clutching/grabbing, and if so, how does that affect his game?
I think he does a pretty good job of avoiding those types of situations. As you pointed out, he's a good, shifty skater and his stickwork is excellent so he's generally gone before they have the opportunity to manhandle him. That said, he's actually quite good at using his body to protect the puck — even from much bigger players. He gets outmuscled at times, but yeah he's not bad in this area — better than Raymond.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BATJAM View Post
The highlight package showed some solid back-checks and him stripping pucks off forwards. Is this common?
In the games I watched: yes. There's a shift in the defensive zone in one of the games just prior to the playoffs that really impressed me and I'll try to get it on YouTube.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BATJAM View Post
How often does he get out-muscled on d-zone coverage?
Not that often. He's very strong, not just for his size either. From the times I've seen him walking around in regular clothes on various Wolves footage, he looks far more built than Hodgson or even a lot of Canucks for that matter. Plus he's strong on his skates.

The thing he has improved on this year is that he hounds the puck more than he used to which helps when he does get outmuscled. Last year he would just give up and wait for the puck to come back, this year he actively fights for it and goes into all the dirty areas. You can see some of that in the video.

I think a lot of us wanted him to develop that part of his game (I know it was mentioned a lot last offseason) because that's what makes guys like MSL and Ennis so successful and it certainly seems like he's tried to do that.

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