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12-04-2012, 07:01 PM
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
Lots of talent in the top 6, but they seem a little on the soft side.
I would agree that our top-6 is not going to intimidate or hurt anybody. Having said that, there is a lot of size and strength for battling, and none of our top-6ers are known for backing down. Furthermore, you have to look at who they are competing against. Who are the best top-6 puck-winners out there? Mac Colville? Nathan Horton? Bert Olmstead, Wayne Cashman, and Alf Smith don't fall to the AAA draft.

Petr Sykora was always at his best with a big forward on his line to open up space for him - in New Jersey where he had his best years, he was almost always centered by either Bobby Holik or Jason Arnott, both big bodies that could open up space for the relatively soft Sykora. Adams and Gee read like solid two-way players (Adams' time in NJ was before my time), but is either going to open up the room that Sykora needs to be most effective?
Sykora isn't soft - he's just small and weak. Does that make sense? He was always known as a guy who was a willing battler, but was just never able to win battles because of his size.

Also, both Adams and Gee are big.

The line does lack a big-time puck-winner, but if you look at the rest of the draft, those guys don't fall this far in the draft. Compared to the ATD and MLD, this line is soft, but compared to the other AAA drafts? Not so much.

Likewise, I still have some concerns about the puck winning of your second line. Legends of Hockey rarely says a bad word about a player and their profile of Khristich calls him a skilled player "whose intensity has been questioned," and that "there was a concern over the drop in Khristich's play in the playoffs when tighter checking predominated." I like the chemistry of Prospal passing the puck to Bullard (like he passed the puck to Lecavalier in real life). Bullard definitely has some toughness, but the read I get is he'd rather fight for goals in front than fight in the corners. The second line might be fine at battling for pucks by committee, but considering toughness on the first line is also an issue, I think you could defintiely use more tougness somewhere in your top 6.
Please read Khristich's bio! There's way too much evidence for his puck-winning to keep questioning it.

Mike Bullard does have a reputation for toughness, but I'm not sure here that comes from. He certainly isn't really much of a physical guy from what I've seen. I don't think it's a big deal since both Prospal and Khristich are good puck-winners/grinders at the AAA level.

Typically strong third line for you guys, more defensive than offensive, but it can score. I can't see what seperates Burrows from similar types drafted in the MLD, so great pick there. Perhaps you could move him to the 2nd line and bench Khristich.
After the bio we put together on Khristch, he sould be viewed as one of our best forward... and even one of the best in this draft. He's got 1st line offense AND a good two-way game AND good puck-winning skils. There's no way he's on the bench.

4th line is another solid hard working line, but I really think you could have used a real heavyweight with lack of toughness being the one weakness in your top lines.
Bob Kelly is a real heavyweight. While he was behind The Hammer, he was still one of the best fighters in the NHL. Just because he can skate, handle a puck, and even play responsible defense doesn't take away from his fighting ability.

I have no idea how to rank defensemen when we get this low. With Rolf, Reisse, Snepst, and to a lesser extent Hardy, toughness sure isn't a problem for your D. All 3 pairs seem adequate at moving the puck, though not exceptional.
First of all, you should rank Leo Reise #1. Then go from there

As much as I'd love you to think Rolfe is tough, he wasn't. He was huge and strong, but not a hitter or fighter. "Hal Gill + skating" would be a good comparison.

Mark Hardy, however, was definately a very tough player. He's a big-time physical presense at this level.

Goalies seem adequate for this level, no more.
We waited a long time to draft a goalie

With what has been revealed here, Igor Liba is way too good to be a spare! Not sure who you would bench for him though. It's a royal shame to see someone who brings as much as Steve Rucchin as a spare, as well.
With injuries, he'll still play quite a bit.

Interesting decision to play your second line on the first PP. I do think Bullard might be your best net presence. Playing Petr Sykora and his hard shot on the point of the PP is an option - he didn't play there all that often, but was quite good when he did. Just make sure the defenseman next to him can cover for his mistakes.
Our top-2 lines are really interchangable.

Using the percentages from the top-6 seasons:
1st Line, 321-368-401 = 1090
2nd Line, 400-391-365 = 1156

It probably does make sense to switch Sykora and Khristich. Since both Bullard and Khristich were major net-front factors, they should probably split up on the PP.

Penalty kills seem fine.
I think it's better than fine

Last edited by Dreakmur: 12-04-2012 at 09:44 PM.
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