: Confirmed Signing with Link:
Flyers sign Mike Knuble
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01-24-2013, 10:03 PM
Join Date: Oct 2010
Originally Posted by
Knuble is not going to be a "replacement" for Hartnell.
I still believe he has something left. So what if he's slow? Knuble's never made a living off of speed. He's made his money over the years in the dirty areas in front of the net and has been one of the best at it. Ideally he should be in the top-six and should see PP time. That's where he's been able to succeed. Last year once Hunter took over in Washington, Knuble was put down on the fourth line and was next to invisible. Previously under Boudreau Knuble was on the top line with Ovechkin and Backstrom for years and had good chemistry with those two. Shouldn't have been moved off of that line IMO. Was the worst thing that could happen to him last year and his production suffered. He needs to be in the top-six. Like Holmstrom last year he proved to be almost useless at ES at fourth line minutes.
Flyers could use some offense and I still think Knuble can put the puck in the net. It's going to be a matter of using him appropriately and playing him with some talented forwards. He won't do anything in a checking or grinding role. Should be a good signing if that criteria is met. I think he can still produce. Like I said, should also see PP time. Lack of speed won't break him at this point. Plus, he's a leader, a veteran, and he's played for the team before and with some of the current Flyers. Familiarity is good.
Amazing how many players have returned to old teams this year. Begin, Corvo, Samuelsson, Bouillon, Stuart, and now Knuble. Crazy.
Knuble was moved off of the top line before Hunter took over. After the early season hot streak (the 7-0 start), he struggled. He was demoted to the 4th line while Boudreau was still at the helm.
And it's not just his foot speed that has declined, his hands aren't nearly as quick as they used to be as well. A lot of the pucks he used to bury end up being saved, contested, or forced wide. He's not the same presence in front of the net he used to be. Combined with his reduced speed making him far less effective on the forecheck, he's simply not a player you can feed significant minutes any more.
He can still be useful. He can kill penalties well, he's still a warrior and a leader, and he he's defensively responsible. He can fill in on the PP and can still screen the goalie and be responsible and smart with the puck. But don't expect much production.
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