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Our Offense: Does Poile Need to Add?

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07-01-2013, 08:44 AM
  #1
Jarnberg
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Our Offense: Does Poile Need to Add?

Does Poile need to add from outside the organization, via trade or a free agent signing, in order to improve our offense? Or will going from within improve the 30th rank offensive team last year and get us into the playoffs?

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07-01-2013, 08:52 AM
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Joe T Choker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
Does Poile need to add from outside the organization, via trade or a free agent signing, in order to improve our offense? Or will going from within improve the 30th rank offensive team last year and get us into the playoffs?
I think adding Jones will help, even though I don't like the pick, The question becomes does the team believe they can do it from within, me personally, I'm not sold, so the answer to your question would be yes we need to go outside the organization to get two top six forwards (one for Erat & one for Sergei) and add from there

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07-01-2013, 09:23 AM
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Enoch
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We obviously have to add.

This isn't the 30th ranked offense when healthy. It also probably isn't better than 20th.

-A healthy Wilson, Hornqvist, Borque will help.
-Jettisoning of dead weight will allow the younger players to play a more effective role.
-Beck will step in and be moderately productive - 15-20 goals with some grit and nice puck skills.
-Forsberg will easily replace SK's craptastic play in our top 6. He is a clear upgrade here. I don't know if he will replicate Erat's normal production, but I think it is a good bet that he will match his compete level of last year.
-I don't expect a drop off from Legwand.
-Fisher will be the same if not better than last season.

I think all of the above are near certainties. At a bare minimum we are returning a better rounded offense, but one with clear holes. We lost Erat and are replacing him with FF. We lost SK - Beck is stepping into a new role. If those two transitions are even moderately effective, we return to our middling offensive team, which is a vast improvement from last year.

Keys to really improving:

1) Our transition game was atrocious last year. We could not move the puck through the transition game. Losing our best puck mover in Suter put a shock through the system. SK's inability to care on the ice, lost us another one. Erat's trade further killed our transition game as he was likely our best puck-protecter on the team.
- How do we improve?
* Josi's expanding role and Weber's familiarity with his partner will go a long way in improving this aspect of our game. Josi isn't Suter with the puck, but he is a better skater and has good vision. This defense pairing will not struggle moving the puck through the zone, and with more maturitiy and familiarity, should be lethal at even strength.
* Ryan Ellis needs to get more ice time with the puck. Get this guy a consistent defensive minded partner, and let him move the puck in transition. His puck handling skills are off the charts. He absolutely can be a huge boon for our even strength transition game. The flip side is he has to be better in the corners. His puck skills and smarts are upper echelon, and his positioning is average to above average. He is just getting out-muscled. This needs to be improved. If we can get this guy into our lineup, our 2-4th lines transition game and offensive ability will markedly improve.
* Seth Jones: This kid can move the puck, see's the ice well, and has loads of offensive potential. For someone of his size, he has excellent speed. He could be our transition game replacement. He isn't going to be Ryan Suter at 18-19, but he is going to move the puck far better than most. Expect our offense to change with this guy filling a void that was desperately lacking last year. If anything, by making this pick, Poile has went a long way to improving our neutral zone and transition game deficit which, IMO, was one of the primary reasons the offense was pathetic last season.

2) Our powerplay took a step back.
- I think we are going to see our powerplay re-emerge as a top threat this year. We do not have a sniper, but Beck, Hornqvist, and Borque are excellent at sniffing out the front of the net. Add increased puck movement, more Ellis, more Josi/Weber, and maybe even Seth Jones .... this powerplay is going to be much more dynamic. I like our chances of seeing a more deadly powerplay with bombs from the point and finishers at the front of the net being ready. FF had some slick passing skills in-tight which could really open up the interior/crease play if he continues to progress.

3) We are lacking a top 6, possibly two top 9 forwards:
- Despite all of this, I Think it is pretty clear that we do need another top forward. Most of us have been clamoring for a center for years, and even if this forward isn't available, adding a goal-scoring winger would alleviate the pressure on this forward corps immensely. There are a lot of possibilities out there, but the bottomline is, Poile needs to get it done. We all heard the names: Seguin, Skinner, Vanek, Lecavlier, Horton, Evander Kane, and many others are FA or available for trade. You could logically add a center from the Avs Stastny? and an Edmonton forward as well.... The market is there. Even if the prices are high, you have to begin to ask - does it matter? Does losing two of Ekholm, Blum, Ellis with 1 or 2 of Watson/Lepisc/Salomaki/Budish and possibly a 1st or 2nd round draft pick destroy our system? Absolutely not. This is a young roster with two superstars locked up long term, the backend locked up long term, two elite prospects in FF and SJ, with lots of bottom 6 role players and 5-7 defensemen. We can take a hit easily. It takes guts. It takes finding the right piece at the right moment. It is a move that needs to happen. If it takes cash or players or both, hopefully we see something get done.
- Even with the above statement, I think it is possible for us to acquire 2-3 forwards via FA that are not huge names but are quite effective in roles here. The stalberg's, etc. could slide right in to a top role and be huge boosts to the system only costing cash, allowing us to trade off other assets to get different pieces ....

4) The players making their way:
-I am intrigued by what Beck, Watson, and FF will offer to this team. I think it is completely reasonable to view Beck and Watson as super 3rd liners with potential to be viable 2nd line players. I think it is completely reasonable for FF to be viewed as a 2nd liner with the potential to be that 1st liner. If we hit on projections with these guys, we could be doing far better than we hoped. The question is - how long will it take and will it happen? All three look like they will thrive in this system.... I think it can.

Summary: We have some pieces to improve already. We have the cap space and prospects to improve even more. Poile should not even be close to done. This could be an extremely exciting lineup next year if the transition game improves.

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07-01-2013, 10:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
Does Poile need to add from outside the organization, via trade or a free agent signing, in order to improve our offense?
Bears still **** in the woods, and this is still one of the worst offensive teams in the league even when healthy, so yes.

Our forward group looks like this:

Forsberg-Wilson-Hornqvist
Beck-Legwand-Bourque
Kostitsyn-Fisher-Smith
Clune-Gaustad-Spaling

If we're automatically dumping Kostitsyn, that means we absolutely need to add somebody. (We probably need to anyway, because that group of wingers is really underwhelming.) Nobody in Milwaukee is ready for full-time NHL work (Watson is especially not ready if he's going to play center at this level). Depending on how the club feels about Smith's future, we could be looking to add two forwards.

If we can add Ribeiro or Lecavalier, Wilson can stay on the wing, moving Forsberg and Beck down and filling the void from the top. If we add Ryder or Horton, the club can go ahead on Wilson's planned move to center. For players like Roy or Brunner, the lines would be more flexible, but if the club is set on moving Wilson to center, the results will likely be the same.

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07-01-2013, 10:52 AM
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NoNecksCurse
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if poile wants to pick in the top 8 again, then no our offense is fine. the forwards are anemic. fisher and legwand will be a year older and sucking more too as our top 6 centers.

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07-01-2013, 04:07 PM
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Going into last season, we were in need of a legitimate 1st line forward (hence why we went after Parise).

We lost Erat, so now we need another top 6 forward.

SK can be replaced from within, hopefully, assuming he leaves.

Forsberg and Beck are too young to already pencil them in major roles. We'll see how they go, but they probably need more seasoning (Forsberg in Milwaukee and Beck in a limited role). If they surprise us then it's gravy.

We really need Smith to break out.

Legwand and Fisher are officially out of their prime if you ask me. 33 years old is twilight, downside territory.

So yes, the offense is in dire need of upgrades. Not only do we need a consistent replacement for Erat, we have always lacked a top 3 offensive forward.

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07-01-2013, 04:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stranger View Post
Does Poile need to add from outside the organization, via trade or a free agent signing, in order to improve our offense? Or will going from within improve the 30th rank offensive team last year and get us into the playoffs?
we need at least one 20 goal scorer to replace Erat. At a minimum. Would be nice to think Forsberg will replace SK's production(from two years ago not last season) right off but I dont know if we can count on it.

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07-01-2013, 04:32 PM
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We all know we could use a shot in the arm offensively. I'm not thrilled about the free agent class of forwards though. There are a few out there that would be nice fits but they are pricey. I see some say Forsberg and Beck won't put up the numbers. Well, if we land a free agent and take away their playing time, they certainly won't. I sometimes wonder if we did get spoiled at being a playoff team. I really think this is a year to transition to some of our younger players and have them learn from Fisher and Legwand. While it may not be what most of us want, it may be what actually happens. If we don't land any free agent forwards who can put the puck in the net, we have to rely on the younger kids. At some point we have to see if they can play. If not, we've got another bunch of them in the system that will be auditioned in the next year or so as well. If we hit on half of the prospects we have a top 6 without having to add. Poile is patient and unfortunately I can see this playing out as opposed to big money free agent contracts.

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07-01-2013, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PredsV82 View Post
we need at least one 20 goal scorer to replace Erat. At a minimum. Would be nice to think Forsberg will replace SK's production(from two years ago not last season) right off but I dont know if we can count on it.
I agree 100% and this would be to stay at the same level. I can see Forsberg producing SK numbers but to even consider him to replace Errat right now is just foolish. They need to add someone who can put up 50-60 points and it isn't going to be easy.

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07-01-2013, 05:12 PM
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If SK is gone, this team only has 3 guys that are legit top 6 players (Fish, Legwand, Wilson). At least two of those are 2nd line quality and Wilson has not yet proven he is top line quality. That's trouble.

We also have Hornqvist, who scores enough but should be a 3rd line guy on a team with a true Top 6. For now, though, he may have to be Top 6.

So we need 2-3 guys. Internal options include FF, Smith, Beck and Bourque. That probably gets you 1 or 2 slots adequately if not optimally filled.

At a bare minimum, then, we need 1 guy from the outside. Really, we need 2 if we are being realistic instead of hopeful. To me, Horny isthe barometer for this team. When he is pencilled into your 3rd line, this is a very good team. When he is pencilled into your top 3, it is a fairly bad team.

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07-01-2013, 05:18 PM
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What about Vinny Lecavalier?

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07-01-2013, 05:20 PM
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We need the team to add a forward with a scoring touch, get guys like Bourque and Wilson to progress a bit further, and just as importantly ... stay healthy. We have the right mix to run the equivalent of several second lines ... not flashy but effective.

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07-01-2013, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by braindead View Post
If SK is gone, this team only has 3 guys that are legit top 6 players (Fish, Legwand, Wilson). At least two of those are 2nd line quality and Wilson has not yet proven he is top line quality. That's trouble.

We also have Hornqvist, who scores enough but should be a 3rd line guy on a team with a true Top 6. For now, though, he may have to be Top 6.

So we need 2-3 guys. Internal options include FF, Smith, Beck and Bourque. That probably gets you 1 or 2 slots adequately if not optimally filled.

At a bare minimum, then, we need 1 guy from the outside. Really, we need 2 if we are being realistic instead of hopeful. To me, Horny isthe barometer for this team. When he is pencilled into your 3rd line, this is a very good team. When he is pencilled into your top 3, it is a fairly bad team.
While I agree with this post, I think if our defense is improved, it will take pressure off of the offense. We aren't going to be any type of elite team so there's needs we must address, but it's likely that we see guys like Forsberg, Smith, Wilson, Bourque, Beck, etc start to come into their own as consistent NHL players. At least some of them. It's not bad to expect that we'll be getting more production from the young guys, hence the point of letting young guys get experience. So maybe the returning guys can be penciled in for more than we're expecting.

I have faith that we'll land at least one good forward, whether it be free agency or a trade. Past free agency flops be damned.

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What about Vinny Lecavalier?
About half the league is on his list, and we aren't on it.

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07-01-2013, 05:24 PM
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There isn't a team in the league that wouldn't love to have Hornqvist in their top 6. Fully disagree that's he's nothing more than a third liner.

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07-01-2013, 05:32 PM
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to reply to the OP's question.......

does a bear **** in the woods?

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07-01-2013, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Paranoid Android View Post
There isn't a team in the league that wouldn't love to have Hornqvist in their top 6. Fully disagree that's he's nothing more than a third liner.
Agreed. He puts up similar numbers to Brown, Doan, and Callahan. Some might argue those aren't top 6 players, but they'd be wrong.

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07-01-2013, 07:27 PM
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Yes but I expect big things from Beck. What I saw from him last season his hustle, strong on the puck, and can score. He is becoming one of my faves already. I think he will be a nice surprise.

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07-01-2013, 07:38 PM
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I Will Son
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Do we need offensive help? Lmfao

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07-01-2013, 10:56 PM
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Yes but I don't think Poile will actually get anyone decent through FA.

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07-01-2013, 11:31 PM
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Is THIS the season Spals becomes a top 6 ??

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07-02-2013, 12:09 AM
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braindead
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Moved


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07-05-2013, 11:06 PM
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Bump

Are Cullen and Stalberg the help we needed to get us over the hump?

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07-05-2013, 11:44 PM
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Bump

Are Cullen and Stalberg the help we needed to get us over the hump?
If by "over the hump," you mean, "fourth place in Conference III, squeaking into the playoffs to get our skulls caved in by the Blackhawks," then maybe.

But that has always been the "Predator Way," hasn't it?

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07-06-2013, 12:01 AM
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I don't see a replacement for Erat yet. We really need someone who can carry the puck up ice and manufacture offense with puck protection. Stalberg is decent along the boards, but not so great as a playmaker. Like Hornqvist, I view him as a complementary player. But maybe he just needs a chance to shine?

I still think we need a playmaker who's not afraid to hang on to the puck.

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07-06-2013, 01:09 AM
  #25
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I don't see a replacement for Erat yet. We really need someone who can carry the puck up ice and manufacture offense with puck protection. Stalberg is decent along the boards, but not so great as a playmaker. Like Hornqvist, I view him as a complementary player. But maybe he just needs a chance to shine?

I still think we need a playmaker who's not afraid to hang on to the puck.
I think the expectation is for Forsberg to be that player.

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