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At the All Star Break ...

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Old
01-21-2009, 11:08 PM
  #1
Joe T Choker
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At the All Star Break ...

we're 1 point out of 15th in the Western Conference, while we are 8 points out of 8th and having to jump 6 teams to make the playoffs to get sodomized by the Sharks/Wings again in the first round ... Play the kids ?, trade the vets for draft picks and bad contracts coming back ?

Any suggestions ?

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Old
01-21-2009, 11:30 PM
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Enoch
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I would definitely move Devries and Bonk if their are takers. If Zanon isn't in the plans next year, I would move him as well. I think trading for someone to make the playoffs would be asinine at this point, even though we aren't terribly out of it.....

I would call up our prospects. It is time to see what they have. Winning in Milwuakee is great and all......but at what point do we decide we want to see what they can do at the next level?

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Old
01-22-2009, 02:14 AM
  #3
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Move DeVries, Bonk, Koistenin around the deadline. Keep an open mind about trading more significant players but don't do anything stupid. Only trade a Dumont or a Suter if we are getting a great deal coming back. Call up guys we haven't seen before (O'Reily, Spaling, Franson) and let's see what they can do at the NHL level and let them get some experience. Jones should be brought back up full time. Give Santorelli or Hornqvist another shot. Bring Sulzer back up to stay for good.

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Old
01-22-2009, 03:35 AM
  #4
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Depending on who we trade, we may not have much choice on how many players get brought up, but we have to make sure not to jeopardize Milwaukee's shot at the playoffs. If they can wrap up a playoff spot by the end of February (which is feasible with 16 games between now and March 1), we could see all of the top players recalled and sent back down after the season is over for the playoffs, which should work out perfectly.

I guess my point is, that with a minor league team that is trying to accomplish what we see as unattainable at this level (winning a championship), we might ought to be careful how we handle the player management situation.

If push comes to shove, I'd have no problem with bringing Santorelli and Jones back up, but not unless we have to, particularly Jones, since we know what he's capable of and he all but has a roster spot locked up next year. Those two are huge offensive cogs for Milwaukee. We'll likely be forced into bringing Sulzer up full-time (I believe he'll still be eligible to participate in the AHL playoffs if we do), and will see some of Franson and possibly some of Laakso if the situation calls for it.

Up front, odds are good we'll get a look at Spaling and O'Reilly, especially the latter to see if he has what it takes to carve out a niche in the NHL. We could also see Jessiman, just for the organization to see if they can get anything out of him or if he's the CML he's been branded as all along. There's a slightly smaller possibility that we'll see more of Hörnqvist as well Thuresson and Ortmeyer. As I stated earlier, I would hold off on recalling Jones and Santorelli to give the Ads some semblance of offense while we scrape the rest of their roster clean.


As far as trades, De Vries, Bonk, Fiddler (who probably won't be back), Ward, Zanon, and Koistinen are all very much available, and I would keep an open mind about trading anyone else that isn't named Weber, Suter, or Rinne.

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01-22-2009, 09:44 AM
  #5
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Fiddler, DeVries, VK, Bonk, Ward all need to go. They wouldnt do anything for us even if we did get into the playoffs.

I really think we need to ship them all out, bring up the kiddies, make a run for Tavares, and then send the kiddies back down for the AHL playoffs as suggested earlier.

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01-22-2009, 11:56 AM
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Play out and develop the kids. Try and salvage what you can from this year. Getting the #1 pick will be near impossible with the level of suck coming from The Isles. Aim for a playoff spot but frankly, this team is not a playoff team; I said it at the begining of the year and I will say it now. If the race to the playoffs becomes rediculous, trade the UFA elligible vets you can and develop the kids you think have a future with the team. Make the signings of the players you want back and wait and see what happens.

This team has a crap load of picks next year and if they get a top 3 pick might make a move to trade up to Tavares. Do I think that would be the right move, hell no. Just look at the THN draft preview thread to see how that works out for you. Just give a phone call to Calgary about the trade to move up and get Trevor Kidd. I'd rather have more slightly smaller bullets to shoot the the target with than one big bullet.

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Old
01-22-2009, 02:17 PM
  #7
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First things first. The Preds have 14 games through and including Saturday Feb 21. I would make a run through that date to see if there is a chance to make the playoffs. It's a brutal schedule in terms of number of games. It might be somewhat realistic to go .500 in those games but that isn't good enough. We need an unrealistic run of, say, 10-4 or 9-5. Highly, highly doubtful but I would take the following steps during the break:

1. Put together line combos that don't change AT ALL absent injury.
2. Pair Dumont and Arnott again. Add Jones or Sullivan.
3. Pair Legwand and Erat again. Add Jones or Sullivan.
4. Sit Koistenen.
5. Give the D a green light to jump into plays, even at the risk of giving up goals.
6. Name Rinne the starter and have Ellis play only in back to back situations.
7. Sit Belak.
8. Give Sully the green light to cheat constantly (not that he needs it).


At the end of that experiment, assuming it fails:

1. Trade DeVries, Koistenen, Bonk and Fiddler. Trade Ortmeyer if possible.
2. Keep and re-sign Ward.
3. Call up Sulzer and pair him with Hamhuis (do I have both sides covered?).
4. Ask Sully if he has an interest in playing for a contender, with the understanding that we want him back next year and want him to be a permanent part of the Preds organization. Trade him if he wants it.
5. Shop Ellis hard, particularly if we can identify a decent backup to obtain.
6. Sit Arnott as much as possible and keep Legwand on the wing. Call up Spaling and Santorelli to center our top lines. We need to see what we have there.
7. Send flowers and candy and women to Radulov daily. Get him back here next year- play him or trade him (I say play him and trade or bench anyone that balks, including our captain)...but get the value back here.
8. Re-sign Zanon (never thought I would say that before this year). Trade Franson.
9. Send Pihlstrom down to get more experience.
10. Start looking for 2 new assistant coaches to hire in the offseason- keep Trotz.

Some of the moves will have to be made in light of the minimum salary cap.

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Old
01-22-2009, 02:58 PM
  #8
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I'm gonna post something I posted on the NP boards:
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Draft Picks:

Nsh 1st
Nsh 2nd Minnesota's 2nd
Nsh 3rd Ottawa's 3rd
Nsh 4th Toronto's 4th Ranger's 4th
Carolina's 5th (Nashville's 5th lost to rid the team of the corpse that is Nick Tarnasky)
Nsh 6th
Nsh 7th Philly's 7th

I expect more to added if/when DeVries or Koistienen are traded.
__________________________________________________ ______________________________
_________________

Who will be on the roster next year (Pre-trade deadline)

-Arnott -Dumont
Legwand- -Erat
-Tootoo
-Smithson
Belak
______________________
Weber-Suter
Hamhuis-Klein
Sulzer-

______________________
Rinne
Ellis


Now, here's where the speculation begins and I want comments on how I could be wrong.

Using the cap numbers on http://www.hockeybuzz.com/cap-central/team.php?team=NAS I took how much the team has spent so far on players this year and subtracted how much in salaries has already been committed next year. Now most would say that's too much money, the Preds are hurting financially and will have to cut salary. I counter that's not really possible since the team is on or near the cap floor as is. I feel this years numbers are a safe bet.

Once I did the math, well, my Victor 2640 caluclator did, I got 11,994,200 for 6 forwards and 3 defensemen to be signed. Sulzer has been given a spot at 600,000 which brings the numbers down to 11,394,200 6 forwards 2 defensemen. The money doesn't seem like much but most of the spots on the roster are for the bottom half of the roster. One of the benifits of having a good, YOUNG, defensive core is that they are cheap and that money can go towards the forwards. The 2 defensemen salary spots are for the #6 and #7 defensemen and 4 of the forward spots are for 3rd and 4th liners. if you count down with me, there is a good chance the team with have quite a bit of money when it's all said and done.

11,994,200
600,000 Sulzer
-------------
11,394,200
693,867 Cody Franson (AHL all-star, he finally earns his way to Nashville)
-------------
10,700,333

Basically, the defensive core is set. the Preds can sign a cheap JAG (Just another guy) defenseman to fill the doormat D spot
Next comes the forwards and this is where a bunch of question marks come in. Will the kids be good enough for prime time?
Here's what I THINK Poile could do which could save the team money and maybe put the team in the running for someone better than the supposed 2 line winger most think they could get.

10,700,333
1,131,830 Jones RFA (I have no clue what he could get but I'm just going to guess he get's his current contract plus 15%)
-------------
9,568,503
624,250 Pihlstrom RFA (Same deal but I'm just adding 10%)
-------------
8,994,253

Now, here's where I'm really guessing and the question marks come in. This team will have a lot next year Santorelli, Sullivan, Radulov. There are no answers for these questions but each one could only plesantly help David Poile in building this team. I'm going to assume that Santorelli CAN play on this level, Sullivan shows he can play only 10 minutes at a time, and Radulov is not a factor.

8,994,253
708,667 Santorelli
-----------
8,235,586

This leaves the team in a need for 1 defenseman, and 3 forwards minimum. The one defenseman is the #7 defenseman and 2 of the forwards are heading to the 3rd/4th line. Just to take up cap space let's say the Preds re-sign Nichol and Ward for the 4th line.

8,235,586
800,000 Nichol (This year's salary: 750,000)
-----------
7,435,586
750,000 Ward (This year's salary: 500,000. I'm over spending on him because this is a budget and it's better to over budget)
------------
6,685,586

All that is left is a top winger and a number #7 defenseman. I'm assuming a 22 man roster to maximize the amount of dollars on fewer players.

6,685,586
600,000 JAG defenseman
-----------
6,085,586 top winger

After this the lines look like this:

-Arnott -Dumont
Legwand- Santorelli -Erat
Pihlstrom- Jones -Tootoo
Ward- Nichol -Smithson
Belak-
______________________
Weber- Suter
Hamhuis- Klein
Sulzer- Franson
FA signing
______________________
Rinne
Ellis


With this come the question marks:

Would and does Sullivan deserve to be re-signed and for how much next season?

Is Santorelli ready next year?

Does the cap go down next year?

If Radulov does come back next year because the KHL is in deep?

And most importantly and which makes the above all mute:

What happens at the trading deadline?

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Old
01-22-2009, 04:04 PM
  #9
Joe T Choker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigFatCat999 View Post
I'm gonna post something I posted on the NP boards:
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Draft Picks:

Nsh 1st
Nsh 2nd Minnesota's 2nd
Nsh 3rd Ottawa's 3rd
Nsh 4th Toronto's 4th Ranger's 4th
Carolina's 5th (Nashville's 5th lost to rid the team of the corpse that is Nick Tarnasky)
Nsh 6th
Nsh 7th Philly's 7th

I expect more to added if/when DeVries or Koistienen are traded.
__________________________________________________ ______________________________
_________________

Who will be on the roster next year (Pre-trade deadline)

-Arnott -Dumont
Legwand- -Erat
-Tootoo
-Smithson
Belak
______________________
Weber-Suter
Hamhuis-Klein
Sulzer-

______________________
Rinne
Ellis


Now, here's where the speculation begins and I want comments on how I could be wrong.

Using the cap numbers on http://www.hockeybuzz.com/cap-central/team.php?team=NAS I took how much the team has spent so far on players this year and subtracted how much in salaries has already been committed next year. Now most would say that's too much money, the Preds are hurting financially and will have to cut salary. I counter that's not really possible since the team is on or near the cap floor as is. I feel this years numbers are a safe bet.

Once I did the math, well, my Victor 2640 caluclator did, I got 11,994,200 for 6 forwards and 3 defensemen to be signed. Sulzer has been given a spot at 600,000 which brings the numbers down to 11,394,200 6 forwards 2 defensemen. The money doesn't seem like much but most of the spots on the roster are for the bottom half of the roster. One of the benifits of having a good, YOUNG, defensive core is that they are cheap and that money can go towards the forwards. The 2 defensemen salary spots are for the #6 and #7 defensemen and 4 of the forward spots are for 3rd and 4th liners. if you count down with me, there is a good chance the team with have quite a bit of money when it's all said and done.

11,994,200
600,000 Sulzer
-------------
11,394,200
693,867 Cody Franson (AHL all-star, he finally earns his way to Nashville)
-------------
10,700,333

Basically, the defensive core is set. the Preds can sign a cheap JAG (Just another guy) defenseman to fill the doormat D spot
Next comes the forwards and this is where a bunch of question marks come in. Will the kids be good enough for prime time?
Here's what I THINK Poile could do which could save the team money and maybe put the team in the running for someone better than the supposed 2 line winger most think they could get.

10,700,333
1,131,830 Jones RFA (I have no clue what he could get but I'm just going to guess he get's his current contract plus 15%)
-------------
9,568,503
624,250 Pihlstrom RFA (Same deal but I'm just adding 10%)
-------------
8,994,253

Now, here's where I'm really guessing and the question marks come in. This team will have a lot next year Santorelli, Sullivan, Radulov. There are no answers for these questions but each one could only plesantly help David Poile in building this team. I'm going to assume that Santorelli CAN play on this level, Sullivan shows he can play only 10 minutes at a time, and Radulov is not a factor.

8,994,253
708,667 Santorelli
-----------
8,235,586

This leaves the team in a need for 1 defenseman, and 3 forwards minimum. The one defenseman is the #7 defenseman and 2 of the forwards are heading to the 3rd/4th line. Just to take up cap space let's say the Preds re-sign Nichol and Ward for the 4th line.

8,235,586
800,000 Nichol (This year's salary: 750,000)
-----------
7,435,586
750,000 Ward (This year's salary: 500,000. I'm over spending on him because this is a budget and it's better to over budget)
------------
6,685,586

All that is left is a top winger and a number #7 defenseman. I'm assuming a 22 man roster to maximize the amount of dollars on fewer players.

6,685,586
600,000 JAG defenseman
-----------
6,085,586 top winger

After this the lines look like this:

-Arnott -Dumont
Legwand- Santorelli -Erat
Pihlstrom- Jones -Tootoo
Ward- Nichol -Smithson
Belak-
______________________
Weber- Suter
Hamhuis- Klein
Sulzer- Franson
FA signing
______________________
Rinne
Ellis


With this come the question marks:

Would and does Sullivan deserve to be re-signed and for how much next season?

Is Santorelli ready next year?

Does the cap go down next year?

If Radulov does come back next year because the KHL is in deep?

And most importantly and which makes the above all mute:

What happens at the trading deadline?
you're forgetting our # 1 Prospect in our forward ranks in the form of Colin Wilson, a very good PP option for our anemic PP % (4-14 on the PP for the Terriers) - his shooting % is 3-40 in 5 vs 5 play

(UFA) - Arnott - Dumont
Legwand - Santorelli - Erat
Pihlstrom - Wilson - Jones
Ward - Nichol - Tootoo
Belak-Smithson

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Old
01-22-2009, 04:20 PM
  #10
BigFatCat999
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you're forgetting our # 1 Prospect in our forward ranks in the form of Colin Wilson, a very good PP option for our anemic PP % (4-14 on the PP for the Terriers) - his shooting % is 3-40 in 5 vs 5 play

(UFA) - Arnott - Dumont
Legwand - Santorelli - Erat
Pihlstrom - Wilson - Jones
Ward - Nichol - Tootoo
Belak-Smithson
I would be shocked if Wilson came directly to the Preds. I'm still in the mind of "he's a rook, he plays in Milwaukee." If Wilson did come I guess he would make 1.5 million for a rookie salary. If he does I think he pushes Santorelli. Now, I wonder about Hornqvist's development and if he could make the team?

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Old
01-22-2009, 04:33 PM
  #11
Joe T Choker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigFatCat999 View Post
I would be shocked if Wilson came directly to the Preds. I'm still in the mind of "he's a rook, he plays in Milwaukee." If Wilson did come I guess he would make 1.5 million for a rookie salary. If he does I think he pushes Santorelli. Now, I wonder about Hornqvist's development and if he could make the team?
from what our Ads fans have reported to us, he doesn't score enough at the AHL Level (soft shot is how I believe they explained him) to even be an afterthought for the Predators

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Old
01-22-2009, 07:56 PM
  #12
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Back to macro level thoughts on what the team should do-- I agree that by mid Feb we'll know how this plays out.
Barring an improbable rally, I think we should be sellers-- move DeVries, Bonk, VK. Bring up kids one or two at a time, give them a chance to play IN THE APPROPRIATE SPOT, see where they are.
There is no question attendance will suffer some, but we need to do this NOW to build for a new team next year. I would rather see that than read apololgies the next day after virtually every game and read about our chances and bounces. I'm sick of that talk.

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Old
01-22-2009, 08:04 PM
  #13
Enoch
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Do you really think we will let all of Zanon, Nichol, Ward, Fiddler, and Sullivan all leave without a contract (not to mention DeVries, Bonk, Koistinen, and Ortmeyer). I cannot see that happening. We just gave Jerred Smithson a 2 year extension for crying out loud.

I hope we say good bye to all of them barring a cheap signing of Sullivan and possibly Fiddler if he comes in at 1 mil or less a year. Zanon hopefully will be dealt for a second round pick or some other exorbitant price at the deadline, and while I like his effort, tenacity, and personality - we have the depth to move on from him if need be. With that said, I wouldn't be surprised if he remains with us for a bit longer on a 2-3 year deal in the off-season.

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01-22-2009, 08:20 PM
  #14
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4. Chicago 45 58
5. Phoenix 48 53
6. Edmonton 46 51
7. Vancouver 48 51
8. Anaheim 49 51
9. Minnesota 46 49
10. Columbus 47 49
11. Dallas 45 47
12. Colorado 47 47
13. LA 46 45
14. Nashville 46 43
15. St. Louis 46 42

Whether we are buyers or sellers at the trade deadline depends on how well we do now til March 4th. Here are the games against the teams we are competing with. I ignored Chicago and Vancouver games because I feel they are locks for the playoffs and we always lose to them anyway.
Key games:
Sun Feb 1, 2009 Predators@Oilers
Tue Feb 3, 2009 Coyotes@Predators
Thu Feb 5, 2009 Ducks@Predators
Fri Feb 6, 2009 Predators@Wild
Sun Feb 8, 2009 Predators@Stars
Thu Feb 26, 2009 Coyotes@Predators
Tue Mar 3, 2009 Oilers@Predators

The good: we play St. Louis 3 times, no San Jose games, and have 4 more home games than away.
The bad: No Columbus or LA games, first week after all star break is the Western Canada road trip.
The ugly: 3 Detroit games (2 home), 1 Boston game

Our schedule is favoring us, I think. Plenty of home games. If we are within 4 points from 8th place by March 4th I think we will be buyers. Anything less we are sellers. If you have a chance to make the playoffs, you have to go for it. The revenue is just too important.

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01-22-2009, 09:38 PM
  #15
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Of course, we could both go for it AND be sellers. Does anyone really think Bonk, DeVries and Koistenen being traded would materially impact our record?

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01-23-2009, 08:00 AM
  #16
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Of course, we could both go for it AND be sellers. Does anyone really think Bonk, DeVries and Koistenen being traded would materially impact our record?

All depends on who replaces them and how they play. It could be worse.

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01-23-2009, 08:03 AM
  #17
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Originally Posted by Enoch View Post
Do you really think we will let all of Zanon, Nichol, Ward, Fiddler, and Sullivan all leave without a contract (not to mention DeVries, Bonk, Koistinen, and Ortmeyer). I cannot see that happening. We just gave Jerred Smithson a 2 year extension for crying out loud.

I hope we say good bye to all of them barring a cheap signing of Sullivan and possibly Fiddler if he comes in at 1 mil or less a year. Zanon hopefully will be dealt for a second round pick or some other exorbitant price at the deadline, and while I like his effort, tenacity, and personality - we have the depth to move on from him if need be. With that said, I wouldn't be surprised if he remains with us for a bit longer on a 2-3 year deal in the off-season.
So, you're suggesting we lose 8 of our 23 man roster and replace them with??? Admirals? Jones, Hornqvist, Sulzer, Santorelli, and 4 others? I think we'd be disappointed in some of the problems we would see with such a green team.

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01-27-2009, 03:14 PM
  #18
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I would take the following steps during the break:

1. Put together line combos that don't change AT ALL absent injury.
2. Pair Dumont and Arnott again. Add Jones or Sullivan.
3. Pair Legwand and Erat again. Add Jones or Sullivan.
4. Sit Koistenen.
5. Give the D a green light to jump into plays, even at the risk of giving up goals.
6. Name Rinne the starter and have Ellis play only in back to back situations.
7. Sit Belak.
8. Give Sully the green light to cheat constantly (not that he needs it).
At the risk of quoting myself (a braindead move for sure), according to the paper today, the Preds are implementing #2, #3 and #4. Arnott politely asks Trotz to implement #1 as well.

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Old
01-27-2009, 03:41 PM
  #19
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from what our Ads fans have reported to us, he doesn't score enough at the AHL Level (soft shot is how I believe they explained him) to even be an afterthought for the Predators
If that is the biggest flaw I'm not worried too much. My hope is with some weight training that shot can be stronger.

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Old
01-27-2009, 05:11 PM
  #20
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If that is the biggest flaw I'm not worried too much. My hope is with some weight training that shot can be stronger.
we are talking about Hornqvist right? His shot has to get significantly stronger. His weak wristers from the top of the dots are nothing but confidence builders for the opposing goalie.

I think of all the rookies and newcomers this season he is easily my biggest disappointment.

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