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Deepest Kings Team... ever?

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Old
12-28-2010, 01:37 AM
  #1
TonySCV
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Deepest Kings Team... ever?

One of the fans since '67 said it tonight. What say you?

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12-28-2010, 01:54 AM
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Josh Deitell
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I don't know if any blueline group we put together will ever stack up to the '92-93 team.

Boolake
Coffey
Zhitnik
McSorley
Sydor
Huddy

Up front it's on par with that squad depth-wise, but there's no transcendent forward on this squad like Gretzky and no goal scorer of Luc's caliber. Kopitar might prove to be one of the great forwards in franchise history but he's not even in his prime years yet.

In net, Vachon aside, I don't think we've had a goalie as good as Quick in franchise history. Bernier might prove to be just as good, but he's turning into a solid backup, at the least.

Overall? We'll only know when the games really matter.

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12-28-2010, 01:58 AM
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William H Bonney
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It's tough for me to say "ever" just because I've only followed the Kings since the mid-90's. But I will say that this is the deepest team we've had in that time frame.

It's an exciting time to be a Kings fan.

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12-28-2010, 02:25 AM
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I was just thinking before the game tonight, looking over the GDT roster ... probably the first time ever I'd seen the roster and not had a complaint at any position - top to bottom.

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12-28-2010, 02:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Deitell View Post
I don't know if any blueline group we put together will ever stack up to the '92-93 team.

Boolake
Coffey
Zhitnik
McSorley
Sydor
Huddy

Up front it's on par with that squad depth-wise, but there's no transcendent forward on this squad like Gretzky and no goal scorer of Luc's caliber. Kopitar might prove to be one of the great forwards in franchise history but he's not even in his prime years yet.

In net, Vachon aside, I don't think we've had a goalie as good as Quick in franchise history. Bernier might prove to be just as good, but he's turning into a solid backup, at the least.

Overall? We'll only know when the games really matter.

I have been following the kings religiously since 1990 and the 92-93 team was the best. The d core was great and the team sported IMO the best group of forwards the kings have ever had.

Luc
Gretzky
Kurri
Granato
Sandstrom
Carson
Conacher
Taylor
Lang
Millen. (23 goals and 39 points that year)
Donnelly (29 goals and 69 points)

Team was crazy deep

I think today's team has a shot at being better but they need to win first

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12-28-2010, 02:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Deitell View Post
I don't know if any blueline group we put together will ever stack up to the '92-93 team.

Boolake
Coffey
Zhitnik
McSorley
Sydor
Huddy

Up front it's on par with that squad depth-wise, but there's no transcendent forward on this squad like Gretzky and no goal scorer of Luc's caliber. Kopitar might prove to be one of the great forwards in franchise history but he's not even in his prime years yet.

In net, Vachon aside, I don't think we've had a goalie as good as Quick in franchise history. Bernier might prove to be just as good, but he's turning into a solid backup, at the least.

Overall? We'll only know when the games really matter.
Don't forget Coffey didn't finish that season with us.

That said, yeah, it was a good D core, and an edge better, largely because of the bottom two. If held together though, the D we have now will be the best ever in likely two more seasons, give or take.

I think you hit the nail on the head for the forwards, we don't have a true superstar (Gretzky) or a snipe (Luc). I don't think we NEED that superstar, but we do need that sniper type.

We are by far the deepest we have ever been in net. Overall though, 92-93 was better as a team in whole. If we do a trade for a goalscorer and a physical, minute munching D-man, we could be talking a whole nother story.

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12-28-2010, 03:00 AM
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i think the blueline depth was better as noted by Josh. now in a year, two or three that may change entirely as the prospects in MAN move to LA.

forwards i think are comparable at best. Gretz was a 'once in a lifetime' player, Kings obviously don't have that now.

Luc is one of the top 5 LW's in the history of the game, I say 5 because i've seen some debates over where he ranks. dude gets little respect and there are still old-schoolers from back east and canada that claim guys from the 40s & 50s are better.....w/e. anyways today's team doesn't have a Luc. in other words do the Kings have a bona-fide future winger in the line-up....no.

back then LA also had T Sandstrom that I think is similar today to R Smyth. always around the puck, has a great feel for where to be and has a scorer's touch, except in the SC in '93 (damn that still hurts).

they also had a great, quiet, hard working Fin by the name of Kurri, another HOF'er that would knock in 25-40 goals. he was also one of the best defensive forwards of his time. again LA doesnt have a player at this level, Kopi is some aspects is getting close though.

they seemed to have good consistent depth of 10-20 guys. Granato, Krush, Millen, Donnelly...even Blake and Marty were in this range.

they had better vet leadership i think with the likes of Taylor and Conacher, not to mention all the guys from EDM on what it takes to win.

in goal the Kings today have with Quick what I haven't seen since I've followed the Kings. like some say here and what I've heard elsewhere, the best since Rogie. then to top it off they may have equal or better waiting on the bench with Bernier.

the team is getting there imo, but still are 2-3 years away from firing on all cylinders. next year i see another year similar to this year where we see some very inconsistent play and some WTF was he thinking moments. next year when we see more of the kids from MAN, it will require more time for learning and coming together. after that, well who knows but we all are hoping for you know what

it's def a great time to be a Kings fan

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Old
12-28-2010, 08:43 AM
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In 1992-93 LA started the season with Gretzky hurt and the top line of Kurri centering Robitaille and Sandstrom was on fire early. The lines changed throughout the season especially when Coffey was traded for Carson.

However if memory serves me correct LA had the following lineup in most playoff games.

Rychel-Gretzky-Sandstrom
Robitaille-Kurri-Shuchuk
Donnelly-Millen-Granato
Conacher-Carson-Taylor

Carson played 18 of our 24 games that playoff and Shuchuk played 17.

The fact this team could and did double shift Gretzky was huge. IMO this was the best scoring depth LA ever had.

On our current roster we don't have a goal scorer like Robitaille or even a sniper in the calibre of the VERY underrated Sandstrom. And that 3rd line with Granato had so much speed it was fun watching opposing dmen try to check these guys. The Vancouver Canucks color commentator once dubbed them " The Red Ants" He said they were all over the place and just when you thought you were rid of one the other two showed up! LOL!

This current LA team is still very young and in 2-3 yrs time when Simmonds, Clifford and the d is more mature it will be very solid. By that time Kopitar should also be a top 10 center scoring 40G and 90+ points regularly.

PS- Damn this team would be scary with a player like Tomas Sandstrom in the lineup!

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12-28-2010, 10:07 AM
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When you break it down, how do you beat this team?

top 3 defense in the west, probably the league, plus they play a defense first system, and all the forwards are 2 way forwards, so its tough to get any good scoring chances, and when you do, you only have to get the puck past 1 of the hottest keepers in the league.

Aside from that, you have to stop a 1st line that can match any other top line, then you also have to stop the 3 other lines all of which can put the puck in the net.

You can't beat them by taking the body with them, since they are a big team and will just take the body back harder

You also can't beat them with speed (unless you are phoenix fast), there is no weak points in this team.

And to think it will only get better when you consider how young everyone is. Schenn will come in and be sick good hopefully, Lewis/Clifford/Simmonds/Martinez/Doughty/JJ/Kopitar are all young and will get better over the next few seasons

Exciting times indeed

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12-28-2010, 11:16 AM
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TonySCV
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This is great insight guys... particularly from folks who have followed the team far longer than I have.

I was (pleasantly) shocked when I read those comments last night, although when you consider the (lack of) banners in the rafters, I guess it's not all that surprising that there hasn't been much depth to rave about over the decades.

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12-28-2010, 11:21 AM
  #11
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90-91 was The Kings best and deepest team. Take the 92-93 team mentioned above and add Duschene and Robinson on D.

Add Elik and The friendly ghost up front.

People often forget that Gretz was hurt for most of the 92-93 season and Luuuuuuuuuuuuuc wore the C most of the year


Edit- Webster was also 10x the coach Melrose was


Last edited by Flour Child: 12-28-2010 at 11:27 AM.
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12-28-2010, 12:04 PM
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... Yeah, the 90-91 team was the best I ever saw. That team gave up about 90 fewer goals than the 92-93 team did while scoring about the same amount of goals, so even though the personnel on defense appeared to be better in 92-93, the results say otherwise.

Coffey was acquired essentially to fill the void left by Duchesne's departure. I don't think people realize how good Duchesne really was during his first term with the Kings. Of the 10 or 15 best seasons ever by a Kings' defenseman, Duchesne had four of them.

I don't think the current team can touch the 90-91 squad offensively, but this might be the best defensive team the Kings have ever had. The Kings have never led the league in fewest shots against per game; they're third in the NHL now, behind Tampa Bay and New Jersey.

If Quick continues to keep his save percentage around 93%, he'll make a case for having the best season ever for a Kings' goalie. Only Vachon's 74-75 season would arguably be better.

The Johnson-Doughty pairing probably the best the Kings have had on the PP since Blake was paired up with either Schneider, Zhitnik, or Coffey.

We're not yet at the halfway point. It wasn't that long ago that the Kings were being kicked around in Montreal, and the talk was what would happen if they missed the playoffs. The team has played a truly impressive stretch of games, and it's something to appreciate and be happy about, but there's still a long way to go.

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12-28-2010, 12:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Little Bunny Foo Foo View Post
90-91 was The Kings best and deepest team. Take the 92-93 team mentioned above and add Duschene and Robinson on D.

Add Elik and The friendly ghost up front.

People often forget that Gretz was hurt for most of the 92-93 season and Luuuuuuuuuuuuuc wore the C most of the year


Edit- Webster was also 10x the coach Melrose was
The D was MAYBE better, I'll give you that, but you can't simply "add" Robinson and Duchense to the 92-93 team. Basically we replaced Robinson with Huddy and Duchense was traded for Kurri. Really, it's a debate of which is better, veterans or youth, because the 92-93 team had Zhitnik and Sydor, while the 90-91 team didn't. Instead they had Benning and Watters. Obviously Sydor/Zhitnik were better NHL D-men long-term, and debateably had a better 92-93 season than the 90-91 seasons of Benning and Watters.

Offensively, I like 92-93 better upfront. We dropped Elik and Kudelski and replaced them with Carson, Kurri, Millen and Donnelly, all of whom scored (minus Carson) scored at a 69 point clip over a full season (Millen I think people forget scored 23 goals in 42 games that season for us).

In net, I may give the edge to the 90-91 squad, as Berthiaume as a backup is my preference over Robb Stauber.

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12-28-2010, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JT Dutch View Post
... Yeah, the 90-91 team was the best I ever saw. That team gave up about 90 fewer goals than the 92-93 team did while scoring about the same amount of goals, so even though the personnel on defense appeared to be better in 92-93, the results say otherwise.

Coffey was acquired essentially to fill the void left by Duchesne's departure. I don't think people realize how good Duchesne really was during his first term with the Kings. Of the 10 or 15 best seasons ever by a Kings' defenseman, Duchesne had four of them.

I don't think the current team can touch the 90-91 squad offensively, but this might be the best defensive team the Kings have ever had. The Kings have never led the league in fewest shots against per game; they're third in the NHL now, behind Tampa Bay and New Jersey.

If Quick continues to keep his save percentage around 93%, he'll make a case for having the best season ever for a Kings' goalie. Only Vachon's 74-75 season would arguably be better.

The Johnson-Doughty pairing probably the best the Kings have had on the PP since Blake was paired up with either Schneider, Zhitnik, or Coffey.

We're not yet at the halfway point. It wasn't that long ago that the Kings were being kicked around in Montreal, and the talk was what would happen if they missed the playoffs. The team has played a truly impressive stretch of games, and it's something to appreciate and be happy about, but there's still a long way to go.
While I still liked the 92-93 squad better, I agree with the rest of your post. Well put.

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Old
12-28-2010, 12:17 PM
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We will find out in June...

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12-28-2010, 01:30 PM
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I think once Martinez either improves or is replaced by a better prospect, it will be the best defensive core in Kings history. I'd have Martinez over Drewiske right now, and once Mitchell comes back Martinez will be our "weak spot." That's awesome.

As far as goaltending, I never got to see Vachon play but his name is in the rafters so I'm guessing he'd be the best goalie right now. However, the way Quick has played the last few years is just plain exciting, not to mention Bernier emerging as a solid back-up with a ton of potential. I'd say this is a big question mark right now as far as who the best goaltending duo ever was.

Offense is where the biggest disparity is. The early 90's teams were deep AND they had top offensive talent. It has been said above; we have no Greztky, and we have no Robitaille. Still, the current team gets the job done.

So, I'd say:

Defense - Yes
Goaltending - ? (Up to your own opinion, personally I'd say yes)
Offense - No

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Old
12-28-2010, 02:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Josh Deitell View Post
I don't know if any blueline group we put together will ever stack up to the '92-93 team.

Boolake
Coffey
Zhitnik
McSorley
Sydor
Huddy
Devils Advocate here but....

Coffey was nearing the end of his career and was a shell of his former playing days. Zhitnik and Sydor were both green and still rookied. Huddy outright sucked...even as the #6 dman he wasnt as good as O'Donnell was last season. Mcsorely was good because he could play and fight....from that Angle this years Dcorp is better.

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12-28-2010, 02:02 PM
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Ron
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I did bring it up because I have been following the team since I was 9 in 1967 and that makes me...never mind what that makes me.

Anyway, the comments above are very descriptive and while I do agree that offensively the Kings may have been better in the early '90s with all that talent, this team (IMO) is the deepest from top to bottom.

Goaltending is absolutely outstanding, I really think we have the best 1-2 goaltender tandem in the entire league.

This defense is rock solid, now ranking 2nd in the league behind only the B's with a goals against average of 2.3 and a penalty killing tandem that ranks 4th in the league.

Their offense is getting there, becoming very productive over the past 10 games. It may not be as potent as the early '90s, but with the defense this team has it definitely has been enough.

And all four lines hustle and contribute. The early '90s teams also had all solid lines.

All in all, my claim is basically for the top to bottom talent and drive. These kids are only going to get better and more consistent, and if they can keep their consistency up, they are definitely one of the four teams in the WC that you can call a valid Stanley Cup contender (Detroit, Vancouver, and San Jose being the other three).

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12-28-2010, 02:18 PM
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Originally Posted by BringTheReign View Post
I think once Martinez either improves or is replaced by a better prospect, it will be the best defensive core in Kings history. I'd have Martinez over Drewiske right now, and once Mitchell comes back Martinez will be our "weak spot." That's awesome.

As far as goaltending, I never got to see Vachon play but his name is in the rafters so I'm guessing he'd be the best goalie right now. However, the way Quick has played the last few years is just plain exciting, not to mention Bernier emerging as a solid back-up with a ton of potential. I'd say this is a big question mark right now as far as who the best goaltending duo ever was.
I would like to address your first two points.

First of all, I like Martinez. He hustles, he has good ice sense, and he doesn't make mistakes (consistently...there have been a couple of gaffs but it didn't hurt us).

If he is our "weakest link," we will definitely be in great shape.

Rogie Vachon was un-****ing believable. Yes, there is a reason why his jersey is retired and hanging in the raftors. I had the privilege of seeing him play personally and the guy was born to be a goalie. He won the Vezina trophy in 1967-68 with the Canadiens and (IMO) should have won it more times through the 1970s but unfortunately too many Eastern GMs voted for their guys in Montreal and Philadelphia...a case could have really been made for Vachon during the 1974-75 season when the Kings ended up in fourth in the league with 105 points, but he was still passed over.

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12-28-2010, 02:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysteryman View Post
Devils Advocate here but....

Coffey was nearing the end of his career and was a shell of his former playing days. Zhitnik and Sydor were both green and still rookied. Huddy outright sucked...even as the #6 dman he wasnt as good as O'Donnell was last season. Mcsorely was good because he could play and fight....from that Angle this years Dcorp is better.
Coffey was still very good and had a couple of decent years with the Wings after that. Carson was crap compensation for Cof.

P.S. I hated Melrose's man crush on Shuchuk!

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12-28-2010, 02:42 PM
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Originally Posted by mysteryman View Post
Devils Advocate here but....

Coffey was nearing the end of his career and was a shell of his former playing days. Zhitnik and Sydor were both green and still rookied. Huddy outright sucked...even as the #6 dman he wasnt as good as O'Donnell was last season. Mcsorely was good because he could play and fight....from that Angle this years Dcorp is better.
... Coffey's 50 games as a King in 92-93 was the best offensive stretch any King defenseman ever had. While Gretzky was out, the Kings started that season very hot, going 19-7-2 over the first 28 games - and the two players most responsible in my mind for that start were Kurri and Coffey. With a five-man unit of Robitaille, Kurri, Sandstrom, Coffey, and Blake, the Kings were throwing out an All-Star lineup. Trading Coffey to the Red Wings probably cost the Kings their first Stanley Cup.

And as for Huddy that season - he definitely looked terrible at times, but played pretty well as a whole that season. Not sure why you're comparing him to O'Donnell, who was the #4 D last season. Greene was #5 and Jones/Drewiske was #6.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron View Post
Goaltending is absolutely outstanding, I really think we have the best 1-2 goaltender tandem in the entire league.
... Boston has the best tandem. Montreal is probably second best; either them or the Kings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron View Post
He won the Vezina trophy in 1967-68 with the Canadiens and (IMO) should have won it more times through the 1970s but unfortunately too many Eastern GMs voted for their guys in Montreal and Philadelphia...a case could have really been made for Vachon during the 1974-75 season when the Kings ended up in fourth in the league with 105 points, but he was still passed over.
... You'd have a hard time convincing anyone that Vachon was better than Bernie Parent in either 73-74 or 74-75. In any other season, Rogie might have been the best in the league, but not those two.

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12-28-2010, 02:47 PM
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I'd say this team has the most upside as opposed to previous generations of Kings' teams.

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12-28-2010, 02:56 PM
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Coffey was still very good and had a couple of decent years with the Wings after that.
... Yeah, seeing as how he won the Norris in 94-95, I'd say Coffey was a bit more than decent. He still had a lot left and the Kings were fools to let him go.

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12-28-2010, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysteryman View Post
Devils Advocate here but....

Coffey was nearing the end of his career and was a shell of his former playing days. Zhitnik and Sydor were both green and still rookied. Huddy outright sucked...even as the #6 dman he wasnt as good as O'Donnell was last season. Mcsorely was good because he could play and fight....from that Angle this years Dcorp is better.
Coffey had 57 points in 50 games that year. Outside of JMFJ and Drew Doughty, I wish all of our D-men were a shell of a former Paul Coffey. He would also go on to win another Norris Trophy with Detroit a few years later, so he couldn't have been that far down the hill.

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12-28-2010, 03:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mysteryman View Post
Devils Advocate here but....

Coffey was nearing the end of his career and was a shell of his former playing days. Zhitnik and Sydor were both green and still rookied. Huddy outright sucked...even as the #6 dman he wasnt as good as O'Donnell was last season. Mcsorely was good because he could play and fight....from that Angle this years Dcorp is better.
I think that McSorely was as a severely underrated player that's ever played in L.A. He became a very good defenseman, yet his physical play (fighting) took over the spotlight. He never made me nervous when he was back on D, much unlike Sydor, Huddy, Robinson, and plenty of other D-men.

When he played forward, he was a good assist man - and he had that great assist on Gretzky's #802.

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