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07-04-2013, 03:56 PM
  #570
William H Bonney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sb24 View Post
How is Stepan not our best center? Leads all other centers in time on ice buy more then a min a game. was a +25 last year, more then 20 better then anyone else in the running. His 44 points tops all other by 13. Other then in the face off circle he seems to be the clear best. And I understand there is more to hockey then the numbers, but this is very clear.
It's not really about "best" but about fit. And I'm not saying Stepan isn't a good fit (he is) or won't be there (barring a disastrous start to the 2013-2014 season there's no justification to leave him behind) but it's not a lock that he's a top center on this team just because he had a great season. But I don't see the justification for those leaving him off of their rosters at this point, especially since it's likely they take 5 centers anyway.

The face-off issue is a big one though, especially when the other centers in contention are all pretty good at the dot. He's gradually improving every year but he needs to take another big step this upcoming season. They could always put Stepan on a line with another center with one of them playing wing as a precaution. If they're worried about sheltering him for face-offs it could bump him off the two top lines where they may not want to put a natural center on the wing and take a spot from a top six winger.

Quote:
Originally Posted by waldo17 View Post
Especially when people are inserting freaking Paul Statsny ahead him, damn joke.
Stastny had a down year for the Avalanche but he always answers the call for Team USA and has been fantastic in the last two World Championships on the big ice. This is about more than just NHL performance from 2012-2013.

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