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08-24-2013, 08:39 AM
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Originally Posted by smoneil View Post
You pulled a few cases where that happened. I didn't say it was impossible. I said it was unlikely. Should we trade Brassard or Stepan to make sure we keep Boyle just because some forwards have improved significantly in their late 20s? After all, just look at Parenteau!

Stralman right now is well below the level that Del Zotto is at right now. No coach or team executive will say otherwise. Strals has indeed improved over the last two seasons. He has improved from the level of a cast off who couldn't snag a roster spot on abysmal defenses into a very good third pairing defenseman. The odds of Stralman hitting some gear that he has never, I repeat never, shown before is not likely. Has it happened in the past? Sure, but you don't make moves based on a few outliers.

I'm not down on Stralman. I'm realistic.
Nah, I didn't pull a few random cases. I looked at this 3-4 years (or something like this) ago, and at the time these guys where a great portion of the highest scoring D's in this league. For the record, one can also note that there has a been a generation chagen on D basically, I found few new names to add to my list. I want to add one aspect here that I have not taken into account. And that is that during the trapping era, many D's that came into the league failed to adopt a offensive precense because they were never allowed to learn the trade. This probably affects the number of players born around 1970-1975 that we saw have alot of success offensively in the NHL, at the expense of the 1976-1980's generation that never really got a chance to learn the trade. This might boost the number of examples I could find alot to be honest.

However, no matter what, I am not saying that the examples I pointed at in any way makes it likely that Strålman will become a top 20 scoring D. But, when you go back and look at the highest scoring players in this league, a number of them will have established themselves in that role late in their career and an even bigger number will have improved post 28 y/o -- for sure. Guys like Lidström, Niedermayer and co player their best hockey when they were like 36 y/o. And that hockey was definitely alot better than they ever showed when they were 28.

I would be very suprised if Ryan Callahan improved his offensive game. That would be unusual and go against all history and logic.

With someone like Strålman, I think its much more likely that he keeps improving. The game for a D like him is much more about being poised with the puck, taking the right decisions, experience just matters more than for a forward when you look at out put.

To comment specifically on Antron Strålman, I think he is a very good hockey player and defensemen, who is kind of square because he takes up a role of the prototypical offensiveminded D without having that last 5% of the offensive game it takes to put up 40+ pts. Hence he is kind of hard and not optimal to peg into any lineup. You do not play him with a PMD. He is not a good enough PMD to form a good pairing on a great defense next to a more stay home type. You preferbly want a player with his style on a top 2 pairing. If Strålman start finding ways to put points on the board, you got a really high performing D on your hand. If he don't , he is very square. I don't think it makes much sense to compare him to MDZ. Without putting up pts, Strålman is hard to peg into the lineup but could still be pretty cheap OTOH. MDZ has no real flaw IMO and he will score 40 pts over a full season. The problem for MDZ is that he got Staal and McD infront of him...

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