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11-04-2012, 08:57 AM
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: London Ontario
Originally Posted by
Jack de la Hoya
While his skating will likely prevent him from ever being an elite offensive player at the NHL level, he has a ton of skill, he sees the ice well, and he has a very good shot. I don't think a 60-70 point projection is over-the-top at all, and if he pulls that off, plus plays elite-level defense, he will be an invaluable piece.
See, and this is where I disagree with others when it comes to Couturier. He's a very good skater. He might not be a burner, but he can certainly skate. The way people talk about Couturier, you'd think he was Michal Handzus in terms of skating ability.
Couturier's skating style was a little awkward when he first arrived. However, I suggest people watch some Adirondack games and see just how much his skating has improved. He's so strong on his feet and more important, he has a very strong stride. He's a lot like Primeau in the sense that Keith wasn't the fastest of skaters either, but when they bull rush, there's nothing that can really stop them. That's what Couturier is like.
Maybe it's just me, but I think the whole notion that Couturier's skating will hold him back from being an elite forward is a little far fetched. There have been other elite forwards in the league that have been worse skaters than Couturier, so I really don't think skating will be what holds him back. I think it will be the role that Laviolette uses him in in Philadelphia that will hold him back (although I see Laviolette eventually using Couturier as the top line center with Giroux and Schenn flanking him on the wings).
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