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Is Horcoff more important than most of us think?

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Old
03-03-2013, 07:55 AM
  #1
wiz64
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Is Horcoff more important than most of us think?

I am a die-hard Oilers fan and long-time follower of this board, although I do not post much.
Given recent discussions about the struggles of the team and RNH in particular, I want to raise the discussion whether the primary whipping boy Horcoff might play a more important role to this team than most of us would concede (and his stats would suggest).
To me it seem that Horcoff is now primarily used to do the heavy lifting (defensive zone faceoffs, matching against opponents' top players, etc...) thus giving the kids more breathing room and easier matchups. So I want to raise the point: Can the ongoing struggles (at least partially) be attributed to Horcoff being injured? I think this is a legitimate question, which has been kept out of discussion in recent weeks.

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03-03-2013, 07:59 AM
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some posters just look at his contract and hate him for it. My prediction is, once horcoff comes back and starts playing some of the minutes Nuge is playing right now, we will see Nuges numbers increas---some of the tough minutes Nuge is playing now, would be played by Horcoff if he was playing

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03-03-2013, 09:49 AM
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Teflon Shawn lives a charmed life. He has uplifted us the last 5 or 6 years from being so bad we are out of the league to just missing the playoffs or being last in the league.

- He can't score 5-5 at all.
- His fo% the last 3 years was below 50%
- His 'heavy lifting' has conisted of having probably the worst cumulative plus minus in the league the previosu 3 years.
- He never scores important goals.
- Unlike a 20 year old guy in Taylor Hall (who is true capt material) he never is accountable for his own play and always talks about the youth on the team when things are going bad.

He'll come back and the team will win 3 out of 10 rather than 2 out of 10 and he will be extolled as the great difference maker.

Yes we miss Horcules badly.

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03-03-2013, 10:36 AM
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Yes Horcoff is missed as he does play the tough mins.

He is an important player on this team. Until some one can replace him and his role this team has a hole that needs to be filled.

Yes there are plenty of players with better contracts that can fill that role how ever at the moment non of them are employed by the oilers!

Belanger is not at the same level and VV is a few levels below that.

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03-03-2013, 10:59 AM
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Tarus
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Nope

If anything, the absence has shown how little he impacts the game for this team, and just how important it is to buy him out in the summer.

Don't even care about his contract, it's all about the fact that Horcoff is no longer an effective NHL player. The Oilers don't need passengers in critical roles no matter what the contract is, and when you can replace your 3rd line center with AHL tweeners and not notice the difference, the team has a major problem.

He's done, has been for a couple of years now.

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03-03-2013, 11:05 AM
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Originally Posted by Tarus View Post
Nope

If anything, the absence has shown how little he impacts the game for this team, and just how important it is to buy him out in the summer.

Don't even care about his contract, it's all about the fact that Horcoff is no longer an effective NHL player. The Oilers don't need passengers in critical roles no matter what the contract is, and when you can replace your 3rd line center with AHL tweeners and not notice the difference, the team has a major problem.

He's done, has been for a couple of years now.

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03-03-2013, 11:08 AM
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Travis093
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I had a dream we traded horcoff for mike green...

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03-03-2013, 11:09 AM
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horcoff plays an important role on the team, anybody who is an oilers fan can tell you this... the problem is that he plays a 3rd line C role, and is paid like a 1st line C role.... if horcoff was making 3 million/year, nobody would complain about him... i agree with others, that horcoff coming back will allow RNH to get some favorable line matchups once and a while, as opposed to having to play the other teams top line 90% of the time

i know this isn't an RNH thread, but it really is remarkable how good he is defensively as a 19 year old... the datsyuk comparisons before he was drafted had me rolling my eyes, but i really *can* see the resemblance between the two of them

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03-03-2013, 11:11 AM
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An empathic yes from me, people look at what he makes and put him down, but he plays an important role on this team, one that we can't replace with minor leaguers.

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03-03-2013, 11:22 AM
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Jek McPorkins
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We need him. Hell, I need him. I'm a mess without him. I miss him so damn much! I miss being with him. I miss being *near* him. I miss his laugh! I miss his scent. I miss his musk... When this all gets sorted out, I think he and I should get an apartment together.

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03-03-2013, 11:28 AM
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Originally Posted by Psycho Dad View Post
We need him. Hell, I need him. I'm a mess without him. I miss him so damn much! I miss being with him. I miss being *near* him. I miss his laugh! I miss his scent. I miss his musk... When this all gets sorted out, I think he and I should get an apartment together.
Get in line.

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03-03-2013, 11:36 AM
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He might score 5 goals this year, forcing poor old Lowetide to move the goalposts yet again ...

This team will be a lot better off when we replace Horcoff with an actual $5.5 million dollar center who is durable and produces results at both ends of the ice.

The sooner this happens, the better.

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03-03-2013, 11:51 AM
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Yes and no.

The role that Horcoff plays is more important than many of us think. Matching up against other teams best players when he has to, while also producing some offense, key faceoffs etc.

Problem is that Shawn Horcoff is actually quite poor in the role. He has been eaten alive the past few seasons against other teams top players. I've said this before, but anyone can go out there against a teams top players and perform poorly. That is what Shawn Horcoff has done. Now that has been important in that it has allowed some of our other centers to not have to be matched up against other top lines, but that doesn't mean Horcoff has done his job well. He's just taking all the abuse so someone else doesn't have to.

You look at a player like Martin Hanzal who can play the type of minutes Horcoff does and put up a similar level of offense. But he doesn't get absolutely destroyed at 5v5 doing it.

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03-03-2013, 11:59 AM
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For Horcoff's cap hit we could have 2 guys who do as good or even better of a job than he does.
Horcoff + Whitney = around 9-10 million
That's a lot of money going down the drain so far this season.

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03-03-2013, 12:19 PM
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And yet for some unknown reason, when Horcoff is out of the line up we have consistently had trouble winning games.

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03-03-2013, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by wiz64 View Post
I am a die-hard Oilers fan and long-time follower of this board, although I do not post much.
Given recent discussions about the struggles of the team and RNH in particular, I want to raise the discussion whether the primary whipping boy Horcoff might play a more important role to this team than most of us would concede (and his stats would suggest).
To me it seem that Horcoff is now primarily used to do the heavy lifting (defensive zone faceoffs, matching against opponents' top players, etc...) thus giving the kids more breathing room and easier matchups. So I want to raise the point: Can the ongoing struggles (at least partially) be attributed to Horcoff being injured? I think this is a legitimate question, which has been kept out of discussion in recent weeks.
Horcoff is a support player and nothing more, this is it for him here, we need him in that role and yes he needs to do heavy lifting because he is exactly that type of player, he was a shutdown shadow type of guy coming into the NHL and he adjusted his game to give us offense he really didnt have in him. He did an admirable job for us back then, but today he is what he is and that is an excellent veteran shutdown guy, Horcs is coming full circle in his career, of course he is a shutdown defensive guy and we need him.

But he has no critical bearing on how this team does in the long term, if he didnt return it wouldnt change the vegas line on us winning the cup.

We only have room for one veteran forward and one d-man for experience and leadership the rest need to perform and produce, and Smyth and Schultz are our veterans in those departments, the rest of the vets need to produce every game consistantly on par with the kids at the very least. Horcoff doesnt need to score goals now so he better focus on setting his linemates up, Horcs can only score if he is the line focus, so those days are over now, he needs to use his experience to create space and opportunity for others in every game and provide perfect defensive awareness and coverage, he CANNOT take any risks at all defensively because that is his role now after so many years of having wiggle room to take those types of risks, Horcs was on a path to be an elite shutdown guy, on another team he would never have been asked to provide so much offense, this waylayed his career, the contract was the payoff for that sacrifice and both he and the Oilers know this.

I like Horcoff, and I would like him better if he would give the C to Samwise and settle this team down, but somehow I dont think he gets any say in who gets letters on this team, we are ruled by some freak power monger, and its really getting on everyones nerves.


I believe we have a Stanley Cup roster here right now and horcs is part of that. For as long as we fail to recognise our system is flawed we will continue to spin our wheels and be inconsistant and this will lead to self-mutilation out of frustration, and because changing the system means hunting big game in the front office we will see no changes, who could or would take on the job of trimming fat in the Oilers organisation? No one would waste their time trying because of how this organisation is structured. We didnt keep the right Dynasty Oiler at the wheel, and that should have been clear from the get go many years ago, there is no way anyone would have predicted Lowe would be in his position today, no way possible, he did not project that at all. I am not saying he isnt qualified I am saying that out of all the men on the Dynasty team he is one of the least likely candidates. And for gods sakes he sure wasnt retained to help us work on offense, now was he? Kevin Lowe was a one dimensional player and he has carried that over to the rest of hios career, he CANNOT build a Dynsty dynamic here because he was only a peripheral component of that |Dynsty when he played, he NEVER had the core data, he just won all the small battles that it took to get the job he has today, that shows he is a hard worker, stubborn, a defensive specialist that eliminates competition any way he can with no rules, and a professional with enough smarts to get the job done, but hi IS NOT and NEVER WAS a fair representaton of that Dynasty team on any level other than nasty stay at home defensman level.

K Lowe has delivered on his side of the bargain, this team has his personality stamped all over it and the results we get are in line with a nasty stay at home defensmans perspective. Get that?? He has done his job, we just asked for the wrong things. Now he will bolt for Montreal if he is smart before the other shoe falls here. He is living proof that the hockey people are full of crap, he proves that good defense doesnt create good offense, ha ha ha, all it can ever produce is good defense. All Kevin produced here was a stay at home set of results and thats exactly where our team has been come playoff time since he has had his hands on the wheel. Yes he is tough as nails, and yes hes smart and yes hes dirty as spit, but so what? That is not only why we were winners during his playing days, he was merely a plug and play cog of that wheel, he was willing to get his hands very dirty to win and we needed that mindset, we danced with the devil when we hired him on after his playing days, he is one underhanded bugger who gets the job done no matter what it takes, a warrior no doubt. He has done as would be expected given his playing style, he has stayed the course and been consistant, he would be horrible to play against, nasty comes to mind, dirty type of nasty, you would need to take him out early and with intent and even that would be nearly impossible because of his survival instincts. If he could have bottled that committment to doing the dirty dance and given it to this roster he would have had better results so far, he tried to change his approach to much because what he was best at bringing to the rink is what we are missing the most, nasty and loyal, how is that possible? He is a warrior who creates scholars and poets? Thats just not right.

Horcoff is a pacifist at heart he likes iggy and is like iggy and I get sick thinking about that stupifying mindset, that uber-relaxed minset, that i dont REALLLLY care attitude that everythings going to be ok win or lose, no urgency at all, screw the skill Iggy brings, you can teach a monkey to play the piano and an elephant to paint, scoring points in the NHL isnt as hard as everyone preaches, someone has to score regardless , come on already. But leadership isnt related to scoring all the time ,most times but players like Iggy are prime examples of when the role is in the wrong hands. Body language is more important than people think and so is image and attitude. In 5 or 6 years Taylor will get his shot at being a leader and we will see the warrior spirit here, we have it in spades already in Sam gagner but he is being blackballed obviously over money, but that aside we need to let Nuge the scholar lead us to some cups, then Hall will be ready. Samwise will be our veteran presence IF we win cups with this group.

Horcoff, and all the vets excluding Smyth and N. Schultz are on the market, it is what it is. We need to bring people in at every level during this phase of development and this means we need to rely on young guys at every position, we cant change halfway and keep vets in critical areas to long, we need the next younger Horcoff already, we need that replacement here already and prepared to step in next year. Keeping vets to long now just spreads our mistakes out over more years, lets get those green guys in there right now and let them grow together, they need to become accountable to each other as much as to the system and as long as there are vets in to many places taking the heat this group will be held back in the accountability department, they are READY right now to take the full load of pressure and to take a little say in how things run teamwise, they need to be listened to now and held accountable now 100%. We dont have any time past next year to develop, if we dont have the pieces sorted out by next year we will lose some of the core without a doubt, big changes will be made, ones we dont really want to see. I am done with horcs as captain and leader here, and i am not in the corner of whoever gave the letters to Hall and Ebbs, it was a very poorly thought out decision, neither of then are established nearly enough to back up those letters. Managment jumped to soon to facilitate contract negotiations, and they deserve what they get for doing that. The kids didnt deserve this badly planned dynamic.

Horcoff is a role player in a defensive category, so if he cant provide results doing that or if we dont need that from him then we need to move him ASAP and get a younger man in there learning. And if his layed back attitude is rubbing off in the dressing room we are double screwed because that is so un-Oilers it is scary. How does a guy with a presence and personality like Horcs end up captaining a team run by kevin Lowe? Horcs has the leadership skills and experience but he is so vanilla it is damaging to the team. A Captain that will not fight and lead with everything he has is no Captain and sorry Horcs but your time is up, thanks for the memories now step back, we need those who will bleed, and it is what it is, if you wont stand up for Oilers colors you shouldnt be here wearing them ,you havent always done that Shawn for whatever reasons ,and if you wear the C and you are a physical player like Horcs and you dont back that Oildrop up out there you need to pass the torch and the record says its past time to pass that torch. Remember Sammy dropping the gloves with a guy twice his size recently ? Sam Gagners ready, suck it up, he has earned it, no one else has stepped up as he has, in fact I am sick of the way he is treated here, so now its time to rock and roll, Horcs hasnt earned his spot in several years, managment can take a hike, this issue has caused trouble in the room for more like three years, Smyth accepts his role and Horcs just smiles and cruises along, is he Kevin Lowes illegitimate son or what the heck. I wouldnt have stayed here as an athlete this place is screwed up pretty badly, and its nearly impossible to see it till you are buryied chest deep in the poop. its like Hanzel and Gretel, Players are luerd here to the Candy House , and before they know it some old hag has sweet-talked them into the roaster and is sliding them into the oven to cook them.

When I saw Gilberts attitude and listened to him talking I realised just how bad it has gotten here, we are in an abusive relationship as fans with this managment group and we have developed Stockholm Syndrome, it is very very sad, we turn to our abusers for help, it just sickening. The managment group is trying to validate 15 years of system failure on the backs of a bunch of kids, a system they already spent most of these kids young lives proving via a lack of NHL results is a failure, that is just a travesty, and at this point Katz is also responsible for some of this, what is he blind? Does he not really care? Is the team just a tax write-off for him? No folks we dont need Horcs anymore, in fact maybe he needs to go just to cleanse the room, like some of our upper managment and the system also need to go to cleanse the organisation, and NO they cant go piecemeal, they all need to go at once or the cancer remains.

We are a proper system and one dominant NHL faceoff man away from a Stanley Cup run, Horcoff is in the spot we need to put the faceoff man in in all likelyhood, and to top it off we need a dominating FO man now to make up for the kids learning curves, we cant expect them to carry that load alone that is one of the areas we need a specialist in. We cant afford Horcs in a 3rd line role when we need a faceoff man so badly, in fact we need to lock one up for at least 4 years here and fast. And one last note to Horcs, no one deserves to be here if they wont fight for the team, you know that very well, so well played but now get the hell going. I dont see an oppotunity for redemption, I wouldnt tolerate teammates who dont have my back and never a Captain who isnt willing to lay it ALL out on the line for the team. You were never Nuge or Hall or Ebbs or Gagner, Horcs you know it, somewhere along the line you lost track of your own evolution and let other people tell you who and what you were. Do us all a favor and start to define your legacy here before you leave, throw down the mitts, and show everyone what you are made of----oooops sorry I forgot about the knuckle--- yet another timely excuse, we are out of time so you better use your stick and start slicing and dicing opponents while you still can then and make some memories of being an Oilers Warrior because it doesnt look so good right now.


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Old
03-03-2013, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Alawishis View Post
And yet for some unknown reason, when Horcoff is out of the line up we have consistently had trouble winning games.
With Horcoff in the line up we have been a 30th 30th 29th team. If Horcoff is in, maybe Nuge has a few more points. But you can bet other teams top line players probably have just as many more points against the Oilers.

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03-03-2013, 12:27 PM
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I'm really surprised that our PK has been so good without him still. No matter what any of the guys that just have a hate for Horcoff have to say, he's still one of the best PK guys in the league.

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03-03-2013, 12:34 PM
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wow somebody give horcoff a chance when the teams not tanking for 1st overall picks, then we can evaluate his play.

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03-03-2013, 12:42 PM
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Horcoff is paid as a #1 center. Was billed as a number 1 center and was in the peak of his career while producing like a #3 center.

Anyone will easily tell you Horcoff has done the heavy lifting over the past 5 years but they will also tell you he more often than not failed at that heavy lifting.

So you are partly correct in saying Horcoff will more than likely help RNH when he gets back. And yes maybe some people do forget how difficult Horcoff's job is.

BUT

He is paid to do that job. Paid well to do that job well.

RNH is a 19 year old kid and in my mind already does a better job of it that Horcoff.

So IMO no. Horcoff is not more important than people think. Horcoff think's he is more important than he is forsure. Horcoff is paid more than he should be foresure. But what he does is still important in general.

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03-03-2013, 12:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alawishis View Post
And yet for some unknown reason, when Horcoff is out of the line up we have consistently had trouble winning games.
Just as we have consistently had trouble winning games with him in the lineup.

For $5.5 M a year there should be some impact having him in the lineup.

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03-03-2013, 12:46 PM
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General consensus IMHO is that Horcoff is a decent player, but should come about 2-3 million cheaper.
His level of play is around where John Madden was in his final years, but he was paid around $1-2million.


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03-03-2013, 01:11 PM
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Originally Posted by Perfect_Drug View Post
General consensus IMHO is that Horcoff is a decent player, but should come about 2-3 million cheaper.
His level of play is around where John Madden was in his final years, but he was paid around $1-2million.



BadMedicine; I just can't be bothered to read your posts. They're too repetitive, and can easily be distilled down to 3-4 lines.


I know that one is long it got away on me. Its ok to skip posts that are to long for your liking and it is also ok to do it without wasting time posting comments about not being bothered to read them no one is keeping score its just a chat, its ok, I am not wasting my time googleing John Madden to see what you are talking about or were your two distilled sentences supposed to do all that for me. Can you please give just a little supportive context, its ok you know, like maybe a short one-liner describing his career curve or anything, unless i am hockey dictionary you need to give a little more and worry less about how much others are giving, ha ha ha, seriously I dont know anything about Madden, please take more time to explain what you are trying to say. Unless i am a walking dictionary or want to take the time to open another window and google John Madden you just wasted my time. Stop distilling so much your posts are to thin for me to understand without going to a lot of trouble trying to fill them out. It kind of ruins my enjoyment of the site when there is no context to the posts i read.

How did Madden start and how did his career tail off statswise, How was he similar to Horcs in terms of value for dollars contribution wise.

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03-03-2013, 01:57 PM
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Always thought Horcoff was important to the team. Don't really care what the folks that don't like him have to say. Most don't realize that his stats are going to be naturally worse because 2/3s of his shifts start in the defensive zone and against top competition. He plays the shifts no one else would want or be suited for. I think having him back as our 3rd line C would be a big pickup.

Those saying Nuge is doing Horcoff's heavy lifting better are wrong. Obviously I think Nuge is a great player and better than Horcoff, but I think his numbers are suffering because he's not ready for those hard minutes yet. He's also not even playing the same hard minutes Horc normally does.. for example, his zone starts are much more neutral than Horc's who are heavily biased to the D-zone.

That said, I would love to see an upgrade for Horc, but we don't have anyone better suited for his role on the team.

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03-03-2013, 02:00 PM
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Yes he is a good #3 center. I shake my head everytime I hear people say we should buy his contract out (we have no cap issues) and go to FA (which we havent had much luck) to find a cheaper #3 center (that will develop the same chemistry with team mates and are better than Horcoff)

doesnt seem logical. Youth is important but we need vets

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