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01-31-2013, 01:24 PM
Join Date: Apr 2002
Originally Posted by
The lack of acceleration and defensive struggles are issues. Like you said, if Grigorenko gets better in the defensive zone, Hodgson would have to get bumped down. And at that point, it's the Roy situation all over again. They traded Roy for Ott to get that sand paper in their bottom 6, I'm not sure how Hodgson ending up there helps things. Would he not continue to get misused there too?
A more likely scenario is that Hodgson pushes Ennis to the wing on the 2nd line LW. I think they go that way first.
He absolutely would be miscast in a 3rd line role on the Sabres. They may move Ennis to the wing but what if Ennis is the better center (not sure he is at this point)? Hodgson without significant improvement to his defensive game is in a vulnerable position. The Sabres organization has Grigorenko which they clearly have high hopes for AND a second high draft pick center from last year in Girgensons who is finding his way in pro hockey right now. Girgensons isn't competition for Hodgson yet but he may be in short order. When you throw the competition of Ennis at the same position I think you have a situation where Hodgson has to improve these aspects to his game over the next calendar year or he very much risks falling in the depth chart.
Now as you say, guys can get moved the the wings but typically you aren't moving the 6' 3" guys from center to the wing to make room for the 5' 10" guy (I don't believe he's 6' as listed but might be wrong).
Again, Hodgson is very talented. A very smart player as well IMO. But his mobility and defensive limitations and how he deals with/improves those aspects are what are likely to determine his ceiling. Is he a solid player that everybody would like on their team or is he a guy who can put up points but you ultimately don't win with? I don't have the impression that so far in his pro-career that he recognizes that those are the things he needs to address to be the impact player he wants to be.
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