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07-09-2013, 01:52 PM
Andy's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Montreal
Country: Canada
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Originally Posted by HiggsBozon View Post
Only saving grace? Come on. NOBODY on last year's roster was stepping up when we needed a goal big time. Nobody. In the series against the Sens, nobody could score "THE" important goal to put the game away or come back in it... or start strong.

As for Briere's numbers decreasing last season, look at Philly as a team. Scott Hartnell had 11 POINTS! Eleven. Does that mean he's washed up? Read just had slightly better stats by Briere if we look at PPG. Couturier also regressed big time.

The year before, Briere was still good for a pace of 57 points in 82 games. He can play center. Which means if one of our top-3 C goes down, we can still replace them with an offensive weapon capable of generating offense. Depth down the middle is one of the most important things to win in hockey... AND in the playoffs.

As for Gionta, Briere and Desharnais, the one who's the best player among those three is Briere, and by far. Gionta, in 4 years with us, has yet to even cross the 50 points mark. At 5M/year. I bet you in his first year, Briere will get it.

As for "Gionta taking on tougher matchups", it didn't help us in the last few years, and it definitely didn't help us win a playoffs series in the last 3 seasons.
It's not just Briere's point production, but his goals have decreased in each of the last two season. It's also pretty disingenuous to blame playoff losses on Gionta. I didn't know all the team's playoff hopes depended on one single player. Out of Desharnais, Briere and Gionta, I'd take Gionta as he doesn't need soft minutes to produce at the rate he has the last three season which has been pretty consistent.

Briere while he might bring depth, just replaces a problem the team already has...a small uni-dimensional centre who requires soft minutes and offensive players to produce. The team needs to move away from these players, not acquire more of them.

His only saving grace right now is his playoff production because it's the only argument people can put forth right now to show Briere's worth and usefulness to the current club. Aside from that, we're essentially hoping that a 36 year old injury prone forward returns to his production of three years ago.

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