I have no idea why some of you put Emelin on the top-4, the guy is awful. He's lost defensively, he can't make a pass. We need at least one if not two good UFA signing on defense or we're screwed again next year.
I know I want Markov, Subban, and Gorges in our top-4 next season.
And I know I want Diaz and Emelin on the team.
I know I'd like to be able to throw the money at getting another really rock-solid top-4 guy.
St-Denis has seemed perfectly fine to me. He has some weaknesses but I agree that he has looked at least as good as Kaberle, Campoli, or Weber. That's not necessarily saying much... I actually think St-Denis has looked better than them, but I don't want to overstate things too much based on the relatively limited opportunity he has had.
Anyway, if I'm filling the #7/8 spots given a default top-6 of Markov-Emelin/Gorges-Subban/UFA-Diaz, then I'd MUCH rather fill it with cheap young guys (who might still have a bit of untapped upside) like St-Denis and Weber than older guys who are no better like Campoli and Kaberle. It yields more money to spend on better quality UFAs.
The defense is a bit of a mess, and I agree with what you are saying except that I'd rather have an upgrade over diaz. Next year's defense likely involves Markov, Subban, Emelin, Gorges, and Kaberle. You would have to hide kaberle a little bit in 5 on 5 situations with a rugged and reliable defensive partner, so I dont think diaz is the right fit for this club right now. I'm perfectly fine with st-denis as a #7 type
I dont care much for Campoli but his contract is expiring. Weber could be thrown into a deal as a project for all I care. But I do think the habs should focus on getting another rugged, reliable d-man.
The guy made huge strides in our depth chart; I see him as this team #7D in 2012-13 and I also like the comparison with Gorges. As a matter of fact, Gorges had good words for Saint-Denis (no mistake; good hockey IQ) after his first call up.
Gorges also mentioned (yesterday):
(... une description qui ressemble étrangement à celle de Josh Gorges. Un autre arrière de petite stature boudé par les 30 formations lors du repêchage.
« Je l’ai aimé dès le départ. Il accomplit toutes les tâches qui lui sont assignées sans rechigner. Il travaille dur, gagne des bagarres le long des rampes, bloque des tirs », a décrit Gorges. Il est maintenant plus sûr de lui. Il hésite moins à manier la rondelle. Sa prise de décision est très bonne. »
Selon le vétéran défenseur, le parcours de St-Denis pour atteindre la LNH prouve à lui seul la combativité et l’acharnement du Québécois.
« Il était prêt à se battre jusqu’au dernier souffle pour atteindre l’objectif qu’il s’était fixé et ça transparaît dans son jeu. Il agit de la même façon sur la patinoire », a déclaré Gorges.…)
"... I liked him since day 1. He gets the job done and he never complains. He works hard, wins his battles along the boards, blocks shots... He is gaining confidence and that translate in him handling the puck more often. His hockey IQ is very good. The road to the NHL was not an easy one for him: he had to work hard to reach his objective... and that attitude translate into his play" - Gorges
Diaz was a pleasant surprise for me in 2011-12 but, contrary to some posters, I don't think he is light-years ahead of Saint-Denis. I still rank him ahead of Saint-Denis but it's mainly because I saw him play more often (I don't follow the AHL) than Saint-Denis!
My depth chart:
6 1/2. Saint-Denis (as I mentioned: the more I see him play, the more I think he may be better than Diaz; my sample size still is too small though)
PS Saint-Denis (or Diaz) is not the answer (!) to our D woes: we badly need a gritty, experienced, stay at home D who can eat a lot of ES minutes; a guy like Barret Jackman would be ideal imo.
Last edited by Kjell Dahlin: 03-29-2012 at 04:54 PM.
What concerns me most about the Habs is the defense next year. I don't care for Weber at all despite him being able to put some points on the board so I'd take St-Denis over him personally.
I'd like to see the lineup where Diaz is the 7th D and St-Denis the 8th D with Weber and Kabs somehow gone. With Subban, Markov, Gorges, Emelin, we would need to find 2 quality defensemen though and that could be very tough to do.
I was a huge fan of the Emelin - Diaz pairing.
The two defenseman on the board who interest me most are, obviously Ryan Suter and then Dennis Wideman. I think Wideman would compliment our guys nicely (since I think we'd have no shot at Suter).
Then we could use St-Denis as the #7, although we'd need to move Kaberle in that scenario.