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Chad Larose a Sniper?

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Old
04-09-2010, 10:33 PM
  #1
Goose
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Chad Larose a Sniper?

I think it's largely coincidence, but everytime I've seen or heard of Chad Larose over the past month or so the guy's been making fantastic offensive plays. When I checked the stats I expected him to be at least in the 20g25a range, but he's right where he usually is.

I noticed, however, that the he scored at a goal a game pace for one season of junior. What's his story? Does he have crazy skill that somehow gets repressed by weakenesses in his fundamentals, or he's just not used offensively, or it's a confidence thing, or what?

Or am I way off base, and he's not very offensively talented? From the VERY BRIEF snippets of the games I've seen him play in, I had it in my head that he had Stephen Weiss (at right wing, and more from the past few seasons, not this season) type potential in him? Is this delusional, or are there circumstances around his development/game that aren't obvious at first glance?

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04-09-2010, 10:55 PM
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Duck and cover. You're going to get opinions all over the map on this guy. Here's mine:

Pretty much all of that is true. He's got a nice touch around the net, but he's not big or all that fast. He works very hard, though, and he gets his chances. Early in his career, he didn't convert, either due to a confidence problem or putting too much pressure on himself. The past two seasons, they're starting to go in, and he's playing with a lot of confidence. His teammates and the fans love him, too.

This year, he missed a bunch of time and was playing hurt when he did play. I think you can pencil him in for 15-20 in a typical, 82-game, third-line season.

Of course, I personally think we could etch 20 in stone every year if he got even second-line power-play time. He has *zero* career PPGs and I can't recall him ever even being in on power-play practices. Honestly, I don't know why not. With more room and less work on the walls, I would think Rosey would be a perfect match for the power play. He's got good hands, good offensive instincts, and definitely has a "shoot first" mentality that translates well to the PP.

Anyhow, he's small. He's probably not a top-6 forward. But if given time with Staal -- at even strength and on the PP -- I'd be willing to bet on the "over" if we set his total at 50.

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04-09-2010, 11:23 PM
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Yeah, makes sense - absolute best case scenario is what's happened to Burrows in VAN?

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04-10-2010, 01:21 AM
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The Burrows comparison is way off, and I'm a big fan of LaRose. He's not going to reach 35 goals. I'd even doubt he could reach 30 goals.

He's an energy/utility guy first and foremost and that's what you're going to see from him most of the year. And while he'll pot a couple goals playing that role, he's not going to put up major numbers doing it.

The only time he's been successful in the goal-scoring aspect of the game is when he's put on lines with talented players, usually Staal. And he's put on those lines to give a kick of energy and to get the respective talented player out of a funk. Then once that player's out of his funk, LaRose is put back on 3rd line duty.

So while he did have productive numbers in junior, it's not going to transfer to the NHL. To reach anywhere near the 20/25 assessment, he'd have to play with Staal all year, and it'd seem like a waste to put a 50 point guy on the 1st line (though it might keep Staal from his habitual slacking off).

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04-10-2010, 01:55 AM
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Isn't that exactly what people thought Burrows was three years ago? I followed Van fairly closely and I didn't hear hardly anyone think he'd ever be more than a 20g scorer, and hardly that.

As said, Burrows would be absolute max potential.

When this article was written, for example: http://www.thehockeynews.com/article...d-the-NHL.html

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04-10-2010, 01:55 AM
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I may be the most optimistic guy on the boards about LaRose. I love the fact that he's all energy all the time, and he's finally gaining the finish to match. His pure hustle every shift is contagious and Staal has done miles better when paired with him (despite the sample size). I think he could score 30 if playing with Staal and Jokinen for a full year. He scored 19 goals last year while getting only 15 mins per game (9th among forwards) and almost no PP time per game. I'd love to get an extended look with Jokinen // Staal // LaRose

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04-10-2010, 02:26 AM
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The biggest problem in projecting Larose is that he is typecast for his role as a 3rd line energy and penalty killer. It would take an act of God to change that reputation after a few hundred NHL games. Even in the best of times, he only gets spot duty on the powerplay and hasn't been very productive there.

The goal per game year came in his overage season and is probably the biggest misnomer you can find. He was a guy that should have been playing pro at that year, but his size at the time was a huge issue in the obstruction based league. He's skilled, but not as skilled as those numbers would indicate.

I always let his small stature and skill fool me year after year into thinking he'll pot 20 or more, but it hasn't happened and there seems to be a reason. He's simply not consistent enough to maintain the level of icetime in order to hit that mark. Plus, he'll never crack the powerplay here with Staal, Whitney, Jokinen, Ruutu, Sutter, and a mixture of Samsonov/Cole/Flavor of the minute.

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04-10-2010, 07:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sam View Post
I may be the most optimistic guy on the boards about LaRose. I love the fact that he's all energy all the time, and he's finally gaining the finish to match. His pure hustle every shift is contagious and Staal has done miles better when paired with him (despite the sample size). I think he could score 30 if playing with Staal and Jokinen for a full year. He scored 19 goals last year while getting only 15 mins per game (9th among forwards) and almost no PP time per game. I'd love to get an extended look with Jokinen // Staal // LaRose
That's a complete waste though. Don't get me wrong, I have absolutely no problem with Chad the person. Chad the player though should be absolutely nowhere near the top line. I don't see 30 goal upside in him, maybe 25 but that's absolute max and that's with being played up on the first line where he shouldn't be. Absolutely no reason to play the guy on a top line over Tuomo Ruutu other then injuries. None whatsoever. Ideally, and this is assuming we don't make a move for a top 6 winger, LaRose, Cole and Samson should be fighting it out for the #2 RW spot in camp.


Last edited by DaveG: 04-10-2010 at 07:31 AM.
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04-10-2010, 08:55 AM
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Man he was playing like a superstar vs MTL

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04-10-2010, 12:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveG View Post
That's a complete waste though. Don't get me wrong, I have absolutely no problem with Chad the person. Chad the player though should be absolutely nowhere near the top line. I don't see 30 goal upside in him, maybe 25 but that's absolute max and that's with being played up on the first line where he shouldn't be. Absolutely no reason to play the guy on a top line over Tuomo Ruutu other then injuries. None whatsoever. Ideally, and this is assuming we don't make a move for a top 6 winger, LaRose, Cole and Samson should be fighting it out for the #2 RW spot in camp.
I'm not sure what Ruutu has done to be penciled in to the #1 RW spot either. Playing with Staal for much of last year he only potted 26 goals himself while getting extensive PP time (3 most among forwards). Besides, if LaRose doesn't work out he's a versatile enough guy where he can drop down without a problem.

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04-10-2010, 12:16 PM
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LaRose should get more minutes than Cole EVERY single game, I do know that... I think LaRose with Sutter is a good combination...

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04-10-2010, 12:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sam View Post
I'm not sure what Ruutu has done to be penciled in to the #1 RW spot either. Playing with Staal for much of last year he only potted 26 goals himself while getting extensive PP time (3 most among forwards). Besides, if LaRose doesn't work out he's a versatile enough guy where he can drop down without a problem.
Plus Ruutu is made out of glass. I'm starting to have doubts about him taking the next step in his development. Last season might be as good as it gets for Ruutu, but I hope not. He has the shot and playmaking ability to be a 30-30 type guy (if only he could stay healthy and reasonably consistent). Staal needs a real #1 winger though.

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04-10-2010, 12:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Sam View Post
I'm not sure what Ruutu has done to be penciled in to the #1 RW spot either. Playing with Staal for much of last year he only potted 26 goals himself while getting extensive PP time (3 most among forwards). Besides, if LaRose doesn't work out he's a versatile enough guy where he can drop down without a problem.
That's kindof my argument though and the biggest reason I want to see us bring Williams back if he can stay healthy. We haven't had a first line winger since 2007. Cole was a legit #1 guy in 05-06, but hasn't been since and is now a 3rd liner. Williams was a legit first liner in 2006-07 and the first part of 2007-08 before he ran into injuries. Ruutu, for as much skill as he has, is more of a 2nd liner. I'd put LaRose as a 3rd liner. You don't put 3rd liners on the first line aside from injury issues whether that be Chad LaRose or Eric Cole.

But for the past few years this team has been "Eric Staal and the 2nd liners". Whitney has been the only other guy you can make an argument for being a first liner, and he's more a secondary scoring type anyway. When he has to be an offensive leader your team is in trouble long term. I'm hoping that this season is a sign of more of what's to come with Jussi since he has played like a first liner this year. Not sure that rate is sustainable though since he's shooting at damn close to 20%. He's actually skilled enough to have a very high shooting percentage, but I don't know about THAT high.

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04-10-2010, 12:57 PM
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That's kindof my argument though and the biggest reason I want to see us bring Williams back if he can stay healthy. We haven't had a first line winger since 2007. Cole was a legit #1 guy in 05-06, but hasn't been since and is now a 3rd liner. Williams was a legit first liner in 2006-07 and the first part of 2007-08 before he ran into injuries. Ruutu, for as much skill as he has, is more of a 2nd liner. I'd put LaRose as a 3rd liner. You don't put 3rd liners on the first line aside from injury issues whether that be Chad LaRose or Eric Cole.

But for the past few years this team has been "Eric Staal and the 2nd liners". Whitney has been the only other guy you can make an argument for being a first liner, and he's more a secondary scoring type anyway. When he has to be an offensive leader your team is in trouble long term. I'm hoping that this season is a sign of more of what's to come with Jussi since he has played like a first liner this year. Not sure that rate is sustainable though since he's shooting at damn close to 20%. He's actually skilled enough to have a very high shooting percentage, but I don't know about THAT high.
Fair enough on point one. I thought you were considering Ruutu a first liner rather than the best 2nd liner on a team with no first liners. I'd only like to see LaRose on the first line if they mostly kept the team they have and didn't get a legit first line winger. I definitely don't think he's the answer.

As far as Jussi goes, I like the fact that we've seen him dish out some pretty good assists to go along with his 30 goals this season. This is his 3rd season with around 35 assists, so I guess that should have been known by now. If his goals fall off but Staal gets a legit first line winger on the other side, I can see his assists start to skyrocket and produce at more Ray Whitney-like point total pace 20-30ish goals but 40-50+ assists.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Erik Stall
Plus Ruutu is made out of glass. I'm starting to have doubts about him taking the next step in his development. Last season might be as good as it gets for Ruutu, but I hope not. He has the shot and playmaking ability to be a 30-30 type guy (if only he could stay healthy and reasonably consistent). Staal needs a real #1 winger though.
I think Ruutu playing on the 2nd line could also help him out a bunch. He likely wouldn't have to go up against such tough competition all the time and play his game. If he can replicate last season from the 2nd line, I'll take that even if he's making a bit more than he should.

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04-10-2010, 01:11 PM
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Ruutu-Sutter-LaRose isn't a terrible line to be honest... I think Ruutu is definitely a 2nd liner, he's been very disappointing

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