Thread: Matt Duchene
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11-06-2012, 04:02 PM
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Originally Posted by ABasin View Post
Good post.

The one thing about Duchene that really bothers me, isn't the backchecking thing. That's simple effort, for the most part. The thing that really concerns me, is that Duchene just doesn't seem to often put himself or the puck in the correct places at the correct times. Some of that can be experience, but often a lot of that is simply sense - it's there or it isn't. And Duchene simply makes poor decisions with the puck and with himself all of the time.

Compare this to O'R, for example, who always seems to have his stick and his body in the right place, and puts the puck in good places on the ice all night long.

When discussing 'hockey sense', whatever "it" is, it seems that Duchene doesn't have it, while O'R does.
I don' think its fair to say Duchene doesn't have hockey sense. Hockey sense is a trait you can develop some like O'Reilly or Landeskog developed it quickly. Why this happened, its tough to say be hard work, willingness to change etc. Duchene on the other hand has never had any adversity, everything has always come easy for him when it comes to hockey up until last year. So maybe Duchene is a bit more stubborn when it comes to changing his game/work habits etc. It looks like this last summer he took the necessary steps to attempt to change. Will it make a difference, only time will tell.

Not all players are instant successes when they enter the league. Take Vincent Lecavalier. Struggled his first year, then had 2 pretty successful years, then had a major step back the following season. Then something changed (who knows what he did), and he became a highly successful NHLer who had good statistical years and was very reliable elsewhere. Sure his numbers have declined a bit the past 2 years but that is mainly due to taking a back seat to Stamkos, but Vinny is still a reliable solid player.

So basically there is time to develop some hockey sense, not every young kid is able to just adjust to NHL hockey/smarts instantaneously. Some cases it takes 4 or 5 seasons.

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