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05-06-2013, 03:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Tender Rip View Post
If it wasn't for Iginla's role on the PP, I would say that Bennett has been doing much, much better than him. Including the fact that I thought Bennett was uncharachteristically weak on the puck yesterday and suffered big time.

Of course, this should also play into evaluations on Malkin. No one here can suggest that he has been playing as responsible defensively as Crosby, but he is not even close to having the same kind of support defensively and speed/coverage wise as what Dupuis and Kunitz are providing Sid. And ultimately Geno is at a 0 while Sid is at -2.

Clearly some of this is just coincidence as the Isles have had enough quality chances on Malkin's line, but it remains that I think Malkin is getting a raw deal/evaluation for his performance. Particularly yesterday I thought he was largely playing very solid, making few questionable passes in danger areas and was very committed to backtracking. I won argue game two where along with being a terror offensively he made me insane with his giveaways also.

Anyway, I don't want Bennett out now. I don't even want Despres out unless it is for Orpik. Both those kids should be given some line here to go out and improve on bad performances. Lord knows the vets do, and many of them cannot bring the stuff our rookies can when they are on their game. Don't drop them and have the play scared next time they are in.

Only game day roster change I would pine for is to get Glass the hell out of there and put Vitale in. Lines.... well, that is a different matter and it starts with having Iginla on Sid's RW. I still fully believe this is necessary.
Actually, the Isles had just one fewer quality chance on Sid's line than on Malkin's line yesterday. And, for as great as people think the Kunitz-Crosby-Dupuis line has been, they have the same number of ES goals (2) in the last two games as the Crosby line.

As for Bennett, the kid is just ****** right now. With Iginla floating the way he is, you're asking him to be BOTH Kunitz and Dupuis for Malkin. It's an impossible situation for him, and it explains why Malkin has been in a catch 22 the last two games . . . press offensively to make up for it, and people will ***** about the inevitable turnovers and you not backchecking (Bennett can't do it because he's first in, and Iginla just pretty much never has been first back the last two games); basically play like a 3rd defenseman like game 3, and people will ***** that you're not hustling.

He's the other scary thing: The Isles actually are putting their shutdown line-- the Neilsen line-- on Malkin, not Crosby, by choice.

BUT, you're right . . . none of this will get in the way of a good narrative. I mean, right now, Capuano wants Tavares against Sid, and Tavares' line generated more ES chances on Sunday. BUT, nobody would dare to make a real point of that. Narratives . . .

KIRK is offline   Reply With Quote