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01-07-2013, 09:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Blind Gardien View Post
I think there's a minimal level of hustle and willingness to take a hit to make a play and stuff like that which even a non-"mauler" has to be able to muster to play D in the NHL. Historically, Kaberle has indeed been more than adequate defensively. But the last couple years... I find he has taken just a bit too much off the detail work in his own zone, holds back a bit too much, soft touches things a bit too much, for it really to work. He can still anticipate on the rush or make good transitional plays that help defensively, but there are other areas where he has lost ground that hurt his game. Defnitely having a more robust partner would have helped cover that too. But there's still a minimum requirement, even for a softer guy, and I felt like Kaberle wasn't meeting that minimum. To the extent that it made him "inadequate" overall. But it shouldn't be impossible to get back. He's not that old or broken down or anything. Dunno if there were any conditioning issues, that sort of was hearsay, but nothing conclusive. I'm at least mildly optimistic in his case, and glad he played at least a bit in Kladno.
It wasn't just hearsay, Rutherford called him out for not being in shape.

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