Staal gets all the credit, but I think Girardi is right there with him. Girardi is great in his own zone and and a solid checker, I wouldn't say Staal is much better defensively. Staal does have a much better shot, but Girardi has emerged as the superior puck mover this season with 20 assists, which isn't too shabby and is already a career high. Girardi, barring divine intervention, will absolutely shatter career highs in assists and points, so his 2 way game has improved as well. Staal may be the all-star, but like I said, I think Girardi is right there with him. Where would you put Girardi in comparison to Staal?
So staal's shot is better because he has more goals.. and Girardi is a better puck mover because he has more assists.. ahhh ! I finally see how things work now!
It's not just their numbers this year. Staal just shoots a hell of alot harder and his passing game leaves alot to be desired where as Girardi has improved in that area. That's just the way it is. The numbers only reflect that.
Girardi is having his best season this year--he was pretty good--now he's noticeably better. When people say that Staal is the better of the two I agree--when they say he's only going to widen the gap in the future--I don't necessarily agree because a) I (we) can't say that Girardi (who is still relatively young) is not going to continue to get better in the next few seasons b) I see limits to both Girardi's and Staal's offensive games which is the one area where both could make the greatest improvement.
Both good players.... Girardi is the better shot blocker for sure... Look at the stats... However, I think Staal is stronger in 1 on 1 situations, and Staal is also better at moving the puck in the defensive zone, especially in traffic (he's so calm and composed). Girardi seems to be a little more adept offensively, but not by much.... I think with Girardi, what we see now, is what we're going to get... Which is a pretty solid/consistent defenseman.... But I think Staal's ceiling is higher and he will continue to elevate his game, at least to a certain extent.
The stats don't lie, girardi is a pretty good passer and staal is doing well offensively thus the goals and assists tallies. I think girardi is a great complimentary defenseman, he plays off his partners strengths and weaknesses and he does it well. Staal on the other hand is IMO in a different category, he's among the elite, he's good at everything and is best being a shutdown defensman, he also makes the guys around him better especially girardi. Their both great and will be cornerstones of this defense for years to come but staal is by far the better all around defenseman, keep in mind both are still young and getting better.
Yes, Girardi has 20 assists, but I can't remember the last time I thought "Wow, what a great pass by Girardi." 11 of his 20 assists are secondary assists, which is fine, but not necessarily indicative of a great passer. His outlet pass is average for a defenseman, nothing special.
I don't think Girardi or Staal are really all that adept at passing, but from an offensive standpoint, Staal has "wowed" me moreso than Girardi. Staal is capable of making an end-to-end rush and weaving through defenders, and he has scored off the rush multiple times, and I can't say the same for Girardi. From a strictly offensive perspective, one can see that Staal has better instincts than Girardi.
they are both guys that i would love to have on the blue line as a part of a first pairing, but if i had to pick one, it would certainly be Staal, he is a definite top defenseman in the league, he's an all star for a reason
thats not to say that anyone can really be upset or dissapointed in any way with Girardi this season