Changes (3rd Pairing D/Useless Forwards/Backup Goaltender)
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10-10-2006, 08:44 AM
Join Date: Jul 2003
Originally Posted by
Out: Montador, Mezei
In: Jackman, Kwiatkowski
Martin needs to stop jerking around the 3rd pairing. Confidence can't be built by any of these guys if they are being shuffled in and out of the lineup. Mezei is a big slug of a tree. Trade him, demote him, waive him. He's useless in the faster NHL. Montador is barely a #6, has zero offensive upside, and is
tough. Jackman and Kwiatkowski are not only no worse on D than Mezei and Montador, but bring alot more on offense. Both have the speed to stay with the play and can even be used from time to time on the PP.
Out: Gelinas, Roberts, Olesz, Campbell
There will be no more laughing at the likes of Jason Allison and Bobby Ryan: Gary Roberts is the slowest player in the league today. He is 40 years old. Aside from being Nieuwendyk's security blanket, I can't believe this organization couldn't upgrade the spot he occupies. Martin Gelinas isn't too far off. He isn't as dreadfully slow, but he doesn't really do anything well either.
The fact that Olesz is a regular and Campbell is the first called up on most occasions speaks less to their abilities and more to how low-quality our organizational depth is at the minor league levels and collection of prospects. Olesz and Campbell wouldn't even be ppg players in the AHL, but the fact is there is nothing keeping them OFF the NHL squad. Looking at our affiliates in the AHL, ECHL, and everyone we have drafted makes a fan sad. Frolik and Stewart are still a ways away from being regular NHL contributors, and that says alot about them as Panther prospects.
The only thing you're right about is Belfour out. Gelinas and Roberts have been very good on the ice this year - Roberts got a number of chances last night, so I don't know where you're getting the idea he's the slowest in the league. Olesz is a good young player who could be a great player when he reaches his prime, and Mezei's made a few mistakes, but that's to be expected when he hasn't played much the past few years, and overall he doesn't make too many and gives us another physical presence on the ice and also isn't as slow as you suggest. He's a very satisfactory #5 guy (though I wouldn't want him to see #2-3 minutes). Montador's a bit iffy, but Jackman was playing last night, and did well. But I wouldn't want Kiwi and Jackman paired together - both have a bit of an offensive mindset and could leave the defensive end abandoned on occasion.
I luckily missed the Atlanta game, but overall the performance opening night and last night weren't bad. If the team can keep it up, they'll end up ahead in the long run.
My only concern now is the fact Olesz might be out with another injury anyway, and Nieuwendyk too. Gives a couple rookies a shot (Booth and Stew?), but I'd prefer they get AHL minutes and Joe and Rostislav come back soon.
"...and ultimately it doesn't matter."
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