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Old
09-13-2007, 09:55 AM
  #1
jstreet
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TSN Central Division Preview

I realize that I maybe should have put this in the media thread, however I thought there might be plenty to discuss about each of our rivals heading into the season.

TSN CENTRAL PREVIEW


There are a few disappointing statements:
"With the state of the division, the Wings should run away with the regular season title. "


Wings players leave but they have plenty of good youth to run away with the title. Preds players leave and they have leftovers to ice a team with? I know the talent level of the exodus players may not be the same, but I somehow thought we wouldnt have to enter this season fighting for the same respect and recognition that the Wings get. Our work is never over.

Here's to another season!

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09-13-2007, 11:07 AM
  #2
Jarnberg
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Almost everyone has been counting out the Wings the past few seasons due to age, the nature league progression, the salary cap, etc. For the past few seasons, this was the year that the Wings were to be taken over in the Central. Yet each year the Wings have still come out on top. It would be foolish to assume the Wings will be anywhere other then #1 in the division in my opinion.

Last year the Predators had a better team on paper in my opinion. If you put the lineups side by side, I'd say the Predators should win. However, the Wings players played to the system brought in by their coach. And this was the reason that they were so successful. Now, I'm not saying their lineup was chopped liver, in fact they were far from that. However, with their lineup and the ability of the players to buy into a good system, the Wings were able to excel last season. They had at least two players pressuring the puck carrier at all times. They forced teams to cough up the puck alot, especially in the neutral zone. They forced teams to dump the puck, where Hasek or a defensemen would meet the puck and start another Detroit counter-attack. Teams which weren't able to adjust (our team) were punished.

The Blues and Blackhawks have made moves to improve their rosters and depending on the play of some of their rookies and young players, they each could have a surprising season.

The Blue Jackets are going to be stronger for nothing other then playing under Hitchcock. Will they be the class of the division? No, but they won't be as much of a walk in the park as they have been. The Blue Jackets have shown flashes of a good team in the past, but those flashes came in patches and the team was very inconsistent. If someone can fix this (Hitchcock) and their new GM can bring in some appropriate players, the Blue Jackets will be a tough team to play against.

As for the Detroit losing players, they've earned the respect.

We've been the sexy pick the past few season, but we've failed to deliver.

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Old
09-13-2007, 12:29 PM
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jstreet
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It seems to me that the chink in the Jackets armor is defense and goaltending again. Are they ever going to really address it? Norrena can stop a decent amount of pucks, but they've yet to ice a game stealer in the crease.

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Old
09-13-2007, 12:40 PM
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lstcyr
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Why is it we keeping reading about how we gutted the team or sold it off? The only player we lost that we "sold" was Vokoun. The others were all free agents. Even if Poile had more leeway, I don't think he would have matched the contracts that Kariya, Timonen or Hartnell got. As for Forsberg, I don't think we're out of that hunt yet.

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09-13-2007, 01:34 PM
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Jarnberg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lstcyr View Post
Why is it we keeping reading about how we gutted the team or sold it off? The only player we lost that we "sold" was Vokoun. The others were all free agents. Even if Poile had more leeway, I don't think he would have matched the contracts that Kariya, Timonen or Hartnell got. As for Forsberg, I don't think we're out of that hunt yet.
I agree. The main focus should be that we lost those players, regardless of how we lost them.

Unfortunately, most of the media doesn't take the time to analyze how teams approach may change. For instance, while we lost some offensive firepower, it looks like we're going towards a more defensive approach, which is why we got (that and for monetary reasons) Bonk, Ortmeyer, etc.

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09-13-2007, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by burnlikestars View Post
It seems to me that the chink in the Jackets armor is defense and goaltending again. Are they ever going to really address it? Norrena can stop a decent amount of pucks, but they've yet to ice a game stealer in the crease.
They have a really good prospect in Russell coming up. I'm not sure what has gone on with the development of Leclaire.

Last year they flat out stunk on all sides of the ice. I think the bad parts of the organization (Maclean, all the previous crappy coaches) are out.

They still have some solid players to build around in Nash, Klesla, etc. It just takes time.

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Old
09-13-2007, 02:12 PM
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BigFatCat999
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Let me quote Metallica on this One:

"Who cares?"

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Old
09-13-2007, 02:44 PM
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jstreet
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
They still have some solid players to build around in Nash, Klesla, etc. It just takes time.
The Jacket specific TSn preview states that Vyborny could leave for a better team or better contract soon. I dont think that Poile would go out and offer him big money, but Vyborny and Erat have had great chemistry on the world stage.

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Old
09-13-2007, 02:53 PM
  #9
cbjgirl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by burnlikestars View Post
The Jacket specific TSn preview states that Vyborny could leave for a better team or better contract soon.
Not quite...

http://www.dispatch.com/live/content...P.html?sid=101

I'm not surprised the Jackets aren't getting much respect. Even Jacket fans have no idea what the team will be like this year.

To quote another board member:

Quote:
Light The Lamp has a great recap of the Jackets Town Hall meeting

http://lightthelamp.blogspot.com

Great comments from Priest and Howson, but it was Hitch's comments that really got me fired up...


Quote:
Next up and the final speaker of the event was the head coach. Here is a summary of what he had to say:

* First thing he did was lose the mike - said its September and its "yelling stage now". (everyone got a good laugh out of that one)

* Said that he was in Canada at the airport counter (or something like that) and someone asked him what he did. He said he was a head coach for the Columbus Blue Jackets. At that point the woman looked at him silly and asked what was that? Hitch told her that he'd be back at this counter in a year's time and she'll know. Went on to explain that a franchise is made once they make the playoffs - that's where the attention is gained.

* He is in the winning business, not the development business. Scott Howson's job it to look at the big picture and his is the immediate picture and goal of winning now.

* 96 points got you in the playoffs last year and we were one win below .500 once he took over. Went on to say we were essentially one win a month out of the playoffs.

* Its not just about getting players into shape for the start of the season. His focus is to make sure they are in shape in May and June. Said the veterans have made significant changes to their bodies.

* Only 3 players haven't reported yet. The rest are here and already skating together.

* We are young in age but not in experience - basically saying since we have brought so many kids up early that although they are young they do have the NHL experience which is going to benefit us. Specifically referred to Klesla/Nash/Brule.

* Said there are no excuses any more. Said everyone is gonna have us ranked 15th or 16th in the conference - could care less about that. Said no one in the print or electronic media knows this team. He has talked to many players and management and they all said how much harder Columbus is to play against since the coaching change.

* No scrimmages in camp, no skating drills, no horsing around. Gonna start with two teams, give everyone a chance and then cut right down to the players who have a legit chance to make the team. In a hurry to get the team that will play the majority of the season together and working. Re-iterated though that everyone will get a chance.

* Every player that had issues, whether it be injuries, with the city, with management have all been resolved and are ready to go.

* His final message, the Columbus Blue Jackets are "gonna shock people".
See the Preds on Sunday. Woo hoo hockey!!!


Last edited by cbjgirl: 09-13-2007 at 02:59 PM.
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Old
09-13-2007, 03:02 PM
  #10
jstreet
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"
* Said that he was in Canada at the airport counter (or something like that) and someone asked him what he did. He said he was a head coach for the Columbus Blue Jackets. At that point the woman looked at him silly and asked what was that? Hitch told her that he'd be back at this counter in a year's time and she'll know. Went on to explain that a franchise is made once they make the playoffs - that's where the attention is gained."


I like that alot. And Im all for it as long as it is at the Red Wings expense and not ours.

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Old
09-13-2007, 03:05 PM
  #11
Dr. Fire
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Nashville and Columbus finally have 1 thing in common. They both have great coaches. You have had yours for some time now, and we finally got ours. I think Trotz will really get the best out of the players on your team. I don't count the Preds out of it for one minute. Injuries might hurt a bit more as you probably took a small step backward in the depth department, but only a small one. Jackets will be tough to play this year, but look for bigger things in 08-09.

Interesting also, Hitch and Trotz are best friends.

I'll be there Sunday, but this game will be a lot of guys that won't be around come Oct. 5th. I assume it will probably be the same with the Preds. Look for a better, more representitive line-up come the last pre-season game at the Sommet.


Last edited by Dr. Fire: 09-13-2007 at 03:11 PM.
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Old
09-13-2007, 08:11 PM
  #12
cbjgirl
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Expected Jackets line-up for Sunday (well from this list at least):

Blue Team
Forwards:
Boll
Dupuis
Fritsche
Jarman
Legein
Malhotra
Marquadt
Murray
Nash
Novotny
Platt
Pohl
Sesito
Szwez
Vyborny
Zherdev

Defense:
Brookbank
Hainsey
Hedja
Klesla
Landry
Maenpaa
Plekhanov
Smith
Westcott
Wright

Goaltending:
Lacosta
Popperle
Leclaire


Oh, and by the way, Hitchcock is trying a little experiment: Zherdev centering Nash and Vyborny. We'll see how that works.

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Old
09-18-2007, 05:05 PM
  #13
TK 421
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Preds fans, how do you see order of finish in central?

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Old
09-18-2007, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TK 421 View Post
Preds fans, how do you see order of finish in central?
Red Wings
Predators
Blues
Blue Jackets
Blackhawks

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Old
09-18-2007, 10:35 PM
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PeterAngelo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TK 421 View Post
Preds fans, how do you see order of finish in central?
Wings
preds/blues (coin flip)
hawks
jackets

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