ATD 2012 Lineup Assassination Thread - Sam Pollock Division
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03-24-2013, 03:49 PM
I voted for Kodos
Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: West Egg, New York
Originally Posted by
Les Nordiques de Québec
DaveG & EagleBelfour
Father David Bauer
Mark Messier - Sid Smith - Bill Cook
Babe Siebert - Didier Pitre
Richard Martin - Eric Lindros - Gordie Drillon
Fred Stanfield - Frantisek Pospisil
Alf Smith - Mark Messier
Jack Stewart - Leo Boivin
Stan Smyl - Mel Bridgman
Frantisek Pospisil - Frantisek Tikal
Bill Cook - Orland Kurtenbach
Ron Greschner - Babe Siebert
I'll take a crack at this one. This is a very interesting team that will certainly cause its opponents some serious problems. The defense is absolutely ferocious, and the forward lines all have at least one player on them with a quite violent reputation. This is the last opponent that a soft and/or injury-prone team will want to meet in the playoffs, especially if the weakness is at forward.
A remarkably aggressive group. Stewart are Siebert are going to be extremely physical, but are below-average as a top-pairing, overall. Stewart is a viable #1 defenseman, but he is definitely on the lower end, while I consider Siebert a bit above the average for a #2. This top pairing will be strong defensively, but won't be that great at moving the puck, I think.
The Pospisil - Boivin second pairing is among the best in the draft. Pospisil is an elite #3 defenseman who has pretty much everything but great mobility. Boivin is a player I have a hard time rating...funny for a guy who is so well established in the ATD, but there still seem to be a lot of unknowns here. On the one hand, Boivin's actual AST voting placements are very suspect, and suggest that he shouldn't be a 2nd pairing defenseman, at all. But on the other hand, we have incomplete voting records for a chunk of his prime years, and he was for most of his career the classic "defensive defenseman on a bad team", and those guys never get the credit they deserve. He's also in the hall of fame, though I don't really know how much that tells us. Anyway, weighing all of the variables, I think Boivin is likely a good to very good #4, though not an elite one. Overall, an excellent second pairing that is very physical and has no clear weaknesses.
Tikal and Greschner seem to be a good match on the bottom pairing. I think you overrated Gresch's defense a bit after making the pick, but he's still a good bottom-pairing guy in this, and matches well with the rough, defensive-minded Tikal. I wish I knew more about Tikal, but we know something about the competition he faced, and he was at least good enough to beat out Ragulin a couple of times, and is generally well-respected for having a long and good career. I think he's a good bottom-pairing guy, as well.
The unit as a whole probably comes out to about average, with the relative weakness and strength of the 1st and 2nd pairings, respectively, counterbalancing one another.
Frightening top line. Jeez...Messier - Cook are going to roll a lot of defensemen, even at this level. Martin is a player who I think has been historically pretty overrated in the ATD, mainly on account of his all-star credentials (which he won in a very weak era for LWs) and his prominence on a famous line. The VsX numbers are not kind to Rick Martin, and I think the reason for that is because he was a limited player with very little playmaking ability. Anyway, unbalanced goalscorers are a bit underrated by points-based VsX numbers, so he's somewhat better relatively than the numbers indicate, and he should get excellent playmaking service from Messier and Cook. Very strong top line at any rate, even if I think Martin is somewhat less a player than his ATD reputation would indicate.
The forward lines aren't as dominant past the top unit, and it's a shame that Pitre didn't use his size and strength to play a rougher style of hockey, because it would have been useful given your team concept. But Lindros will do a lot of hitting for the line, and is generally a quite strong second line pivot. Smith is another pure goalscorer like Martin, and is ok as a second liner. Pitre, I'm not sure about. Ok, he led the NHA in scoring twice, and led the IHL once, though beyond that peak, he's got one more pretty good season where he was 3rd in NHA scoring, and then a bunch of years that don't look all that impressive. I just don't know about Pitre. He's certainly fine as a second liner, but I wonder if he's not still a bit overrated compared to a few of the RWs taken a bit later. Anyway, it's a strong second line.
I have some concerns about the 3rd line. Specifically, I don't know if this is a good way to get the best out of Gordie Drillon at even strength. Drillon was known for cleaning up Apps' trash, and I don't see a whole lot of offensive creativity on this unit, so I don't know how much trash he'll have to clean up at even-strength. In fact, I would strongly consider switching Drillon and Pitre, because I think Drillon next to Lindros could work out very well. Anyway, Drillon is certainly an elite offensive talent for this unit if you choose to leave him there. Stanfield is a kind of meh 3rd liner at even strength, I think, though I think Smith is pretty good in a kind of poor man's Cashman role.
The bottom line is very hardworking, tough and aggressive, although not particularly skilled. You'll probably want to match it against other bottom units when possible, although the way a lot of teams have built depth scoring this year, that may not always work out, either. This line is kind of a battering ram more than anything - a classic energy line - and it will do that job well, but not much else, in my opinion.
Barrasso is a good goalie for this team. He's been fairly underrated in the ATD for some time and I like where you took him relative to a couple other goalies who went a good bit earlier. With a fairly average defense and not a whole lot of high-end checking from the forwards, he will probably get a fair amount of work, but he was at his best when facing a heavy volume of shots, so it's a good fit. His puckmoving abilities are also pretty underrated by a lot of people who don't remember him clearly, I think, and will help the defense a lot to get the puck moving quickly in the other direction on dump-ins and such. This will be especially helpful behind the first pairing who are not the greatest puckmovers for this level.
I like Peter Laviolette, and think he's definitely an ATD-calibre coach at this point. He runs hard-nosed, disciplined teams who are often something more than the sum of their parts. I'd like to see a little more checking from the forwards on a Laviolette team because I think he kind of likes that, but it's a small nit to pick. He's not a high-end ATD coach, but he's also not out of place, and I think it generally a good fit for the team you're icing.
The PK is an issue, as others have mentioned. Not sure I can offer better advice than has already been given. Siebert next to Stewart on that first unit would probably be a good idea. Beyond that, I think you've got the personnel about right.
You're leaning on Babe Siebert an awful lot having him on 1st units straight across, but I think it is the most sensible choice from a talent perspective. How he'll hold up is maybe a good question, but he was a very tough guy who played a long career without any real physical problems, so he can probably take a lot of icetime. This is still probably more than I'd give him in a perfect world, but it's not as bad as it would be for some #2 defensemen to play that kind of minutes. Come to think of it, maybe Pospisil on the 1st unit PK (dropping Boivin to the 2nd) would be a better idea than Siebert.
Overall, a good entry. This team may well eat opponents who cannot keep up with the physical game, though it may run into problems with those that can survive the onslaught, and exploit the so-so penalty kill.
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