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Lars Eller: will he ever make it here?

View Poll Results: We don't know the future, but what do you think?
Yes, Eller is being handled perfectly fine 97 84.35%
No, he's not being given the chance to thrive 18 15.65%
Voters: 115. You may not vote on this poll

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Old
01-16-2012, 11:32 AM
  #1
Coldplay
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Lars Eller: will he ever make it here?

Let me preface this by saying I'm not suggesting in any way, shape, or form that Lars Eller is a bust or that he should be moved out.

Eller's been here for a season and a half, and while there have been some strides in his play, his level of finish remains pretty low, he gets shunned for ice time, and constantly finds himself in the coach's doghouse (first with JM, now, unfortunately, with Cunney).

The organization doesn't seem to want to let him make mistakes to grow.

Which begs the question: are we giving him an environment where he can succeed here? Or is he going down the all-too-familiar path of being one the guy who we give up on way before we should who goes on to succeed in superior surroundings a la Sergei Kostitsyn, Matt D'Agostini, etc?

Eller is oozing potential, but I fear that we're stifling him.

Thoughts?

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01-16-2012, 11:36 AM
  #2
Patty Roy
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4 goal game aside, i just don't see Eller ever becoming a bit point contributor in the NHL.

He reminds me a bit of Zubrus when he was with the Habs....all the tools, nice flashes, but when its all said and done there's something missing that will hold him back from ever being a 60 point producer.

I like Eller and i think he has a future here so long as he's seen as a potentially very good 3rd line center and not much more.

Also i couldn't answer your poll question because i believe the answer is somewhere in between the two options.

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01-16-2012, 11:40 AM
  #3
Et le But
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He might not ever be a huge point getter but a 22 year old who isn't a superstar isn't going to be a polished offensive player, especially when they are expected to play a 2 way game. Eller was never going to break out this season besides in small doses.

At his age, Desharnais was dismissed as a career minor leaguer, and Plekanec as a borderline NHLer. In fact the only centre on this team who was a great NHLer at 22 was Scott "Superstar" Gomez.

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01-16-2012, 11:40 AM
  #4
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still in the learning curve. Wethere martin,or randy or scotty bowman, Eller will see his TOI directly correlated to his play on the ice, and he will not get a benefit of the doubt Vets get, for obvious reasons.
He will be fine, his attitude looks great, i don't see any problems, i only see a steady climb to being properly developed.

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01-16-2012, 11:41 AM
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I'll agree that it was frustrating seeing Eller benched yesterday but other than that he's been pretty free with Randy as the coach and I suspect yesterday was just a case of rolling the good lines.

Eller will end up being our 2nd/3rd line center (assuming he stays here) and I think he'll reach his 50-60 pt potential. You can tell he's still learning a lot.

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01-16-2012, 11:41 AM
  #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Et le But View Post
He might not ever be a huge point getter but a 22 year old who isn't a superstar isn't going to be a polished offensive player, especially when they are expected to play a 2 way game. Eller was never going to break out this season besides in small doses.

At his age, Desharnais was dismissed as a career minor leaguer, and Plekanec as a borderline NHLer. In fact the only centre on this team who was a great NHLer at 22 was Scott "Superstar" Gomez.
I'm not dismissing Eller as a career minor leaguer, just wondering if his leash is too short.

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01-16-2012, 11:41 AM
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He was benched because he got lazy last night. Otherwise Cunney doesn't punish players who make mistakes, which is the only explanation why Weber keeps getting ice-time.

Eller reminds me of Pleks, all the tools but can't seem to glue it all together early. I'm sure he's going to develop into a force though, his handling and puck skills are great.

He's our best centre prospect and he's being handled fine.

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01-16-2012, 11:42 AM
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Jack Bourdain
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Fans need to stop overrating Eller, and I say this knowing full well he's just a 22 year old player. He made the team on the virtue that he was an NHL ready prospect (and it did help that he was the highlight of the Halak trade). If he wants to become a household name in the NHL and on the Canadiens, he'll have to earn it. People need to stop playing him like a victim, he has benefitted a lot more than most rookies/sophmores do, him and Subban have become complacent with their roles. I'd like to see them progress and I accept that they should be punished from time to time for their mistakes and that this will light a fire under their arses and make them play better.

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01-16-2012, 11:43 AM
  #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coldplay View Post
I'm not dismissing Eller as a career minor leaguer, just wondering if his leash is too short.
He doesn't get the benefit of the doubt that others do, but I don't think that's too shocking at this point especially when we are allegedly fighting to make the playoffs.

By next year I would hope he is trusted more but this year is still as much about the learning process as it is about any contribution he will make on the ice. Yesterday for instance while I think Randy was a bit harsh on him, Eller responded nicely by saving his best stuff for the 3rd.

Like WhiskeySeven said, he's our best centre prospect and if anything is suffering by being too good for the AHL but not good enough to be an offensive player in the NHL yet. It's all part of the process though.

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01-16-2012, 11:52 AM
  #10
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I think Eller is being handled just fine. I saw his line float for two shifts on the forecheck in the second half of the first period. That's just not allowed when you're 22 year sold and your coach counts on you to bring it every shift.


Not worried though, he's not the kind of player with effort issues. Kostitsyn on the other hand, it was one of the few times this season that I thought he was lacking intensity.

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01-16-2012, 11:56 AM
  #11
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Eller is doing fine, 2nd line potential tops.

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01-16-2012, 11:58 AM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HabsHockey View Post
Eller is doing fine, 2nd line potential tops.
I agree, Eller is being brought along just fine IMO.

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01-16-2012, 12:03 PM
  #13
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I put a benchmark of 30 points and increased roles this season. He is well on his way to achieving that, and his progression is moving in a good pace.

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01-16-2012, 12:06 PM
  #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patty Roy View Post
4 goal game aside, i just don't see Eller ever becoming a bit point contributor in the NHL.

He reminds me a bit of Zubrus when he was with the Habs....all the tools, nice flashes, but when its all said and done there's something missing that will hold him back from ever being a 60 point producer.

I like Eller and i think he has a future here so long as he's seen as a potentially very good 3rd line center and not much more.

Also i couldn't answer your poll question because i believe the answer is somewhere in between the two options.
I think I agree with this. Zubrus is a very good comparison. Lots of Devils fans are big fans of his, even if he never put up any big numbers. The same could be said of Eller. Lots of Habs fans like him for his play, and people who just look at his stat line miss the point completely.

He'll probably top out as a very good third liner who can do spot duty on a second line, with streaky scoring here and there.

As for how he's handled, I'd like to see him given consistent time with skill players (or with Kostitsyn and Moen, since they have good chemistry). Cunneyworth's been doing that, so I can't really complain.

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01-16-2012, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buddahsmoka1 View Post
I put a benchmark of 30 points and increased roles this season. He is well on his way to achieving that, and his progression is moving in a good pace.
It's all about this. Understanding that he's a rookie and his getting benched now and then is going to happen and setting realistic expectations. Eller is a fan favourite and people's expectations often tend to want to speed up a process that takes years, not half a season, and requires patience and understanding that there will be highs (4 goal game) and lows (being in the coach's doghouse).

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01-16-2012, 12:11 PM
  #16
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I don't understand why some think Eller will only turn into a great third line center, whatever that means. With Crosby and Malkin in Pittsburg's lineup Jordan Staal is a great third line center because well, Crosby and Malkin are in their lineup!

Jordan Staal would be a top 6 center on most teams and has the skills to play with first line wingers. I say that because Eller and Staal are similar players in my mind although Eller is not as physical nor as good of a goal scorer as Staal is but ofcourse that could and will improve in my opinion.

Eller is already atleast an average third line center. Can any of you tell me that a 22 year old cannot become a better goal scorer or more consistent? Also, Eller has already shown flashes both last year and this year of his ability to play with top 6 wingers. It's unlikely that he will become a superstar, however he has the skills to center top line wingers in my opinion.

I think he can become a 70 points-ish player or maybe more with legit goal scorers and that would be fine. Sometimes you need players like Eller who will help complement/help top line wingers, you do not always need a center who will crry your team offensively. The problem is that right now we don't have a winger who can carry this team. It's the same reason Plekanec struggles. I say it all the time, we wouldn't be crying for a first line center if we had an elite goal scorer like say ovechkin(though he's been struggling this year). Plekanec would play very well with Ovechkin in my opinion.

So my point is, when you have young centers like Leblanc(if he is developed as such) and Eller i think you need to do whatever you can to get top line wingers and they will flourish.

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01-16-2012, 12:14 PM
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I'm not sold on the potential people claim he's still our best center prospect. For now I have no issue with how he's being used as last year he started off very raw and still is in regards to the offensive side of the game. As long as he keeps improving I'm happy. I trust cunneyworth as he's been a development coach for years.

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01-16-2012, 12:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hototogisu View Post
I think I agree with this. Zubrus is a very good comparison. Lots of Devils fans are big fans of his, even if he never put up any big numbers. The same could be said of Eller. Lots of Habs fans like him for his play, and people who just look at his stat line miss the point completely.

He'll probably top out as a very good third liner who can do spot duty on a second line, with streaky scoring here and there.

As for how he's handled, I'd like to see him given consistent time with skill players (or with Kostitsyn and Moen, since they have good chemistry). Cunneyworth's been doing that, so I can't really complain.
I really wouldn't complain if he ends up being another Zubrus. Every team could use a player like that.

But I wouldn't cap his ceiling as that. He has the potential to be more offensively. It's one thing to show sporadic skill, Eller makes good offensive plays virtually every game, he just tends to be a tick off.

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01-16-2012, 12:21 PM
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Originally Posted by BlackStar View Post
I don't understand why some think Eller will only turn into a great third line center, whatever that means. With Crosby and Malkin in Pittsburg's lineup Jordan Staal is a great third line center because well, Crosby and Malkin are in their lineup!

Jordan Staal would be a top 6 center on most teams and has the skills to play with first line wingers. I say that because Eller and Staal are similar players in my mind although Eller is not as physical nor as good of a goal scorer as Staal is but ofcourse that could and will improve in my opinion.

Eller is already atleast an average third line center. Can any of you tell me that a 22 year old cannot become a better goal scorer or more consistent? Also, Eller has already shown flashes both last year and this year of his ability to play with top 6 wingers. It's unlikely that he will become a superstar, however he has the skills to center top line wingers in my opinion.

I think he can become a 70 points-ish player or maybe more with legit goal scorers and that would be fine. Sometimes you need players like Eller who will help complement/help top line wingers, you do not always need a center who will crry your team offensively. The problem is that right now we don't have a winger who can carry this team. It's the same reason Plekanec struggles. I say it all the time, we wouldn't be crying for a first line center if we had an elite goal scorer like say ovechkin(though he's been struggling this year). Plekanec would play very well with Ovechkin in my opinion.

So my point is, when you have young centers like Leblanc(if he is developed as such) and Eller i think you need to do whatever you can to get top line wingers and they will flourish.
Eller's two-way game is severly overrated. He's a good responsible player but his offensive game isn't up to par and his defensive game isn't elite like Staals. Staal is worlds ahead of Eller and may always be. I consider Staal a very good player so it isn't a shot at Eller whatsoever.

I really fail to see how Eller will be a 70 point center. Does it mean I don't think he's integral to the team? Absolutely not. I think he's perfect if he matures in his role.

I think expectations need to be realistic and that's what we're seeing here. We're all crying for him to be the next star forward but there's a reason he is where he is. This guy will be a huge core piece for us but not in the way people think. He'll be our two-way 3rd line center. Our Bolland, Staal or whatever. Management is developing him thay way as well. Unless he turns up the offensive output, I think management is fairly comfortable grooming him into our own long term 2nd/3rd line center.

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01-16-2012, 12:24 PM
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Originally Posted by LyricalLyricist View Post
I'm not sold on the potential people claim he's still our best center prospect. For now I have no issue with how he's being used as last year he started off very raw and still is in regards to the offensive side of the game. As long as he keeps improving I'm happy. I trust cunneyworth as he's been a development coach for years.
Here's my question then, Cunney by how he is he using Eller on the team seemingly thinks that Eller has atleast top-six potential. Like you said, Cunney has been a developmental coach for years. Therefore, don't you think that if he is trying to develop Eller into a first-liner(i believe he sees that much potential in him) then that you should probably ask why you and the experienced developmental coach do not share the same views about Eller's potential?

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01-16-2012, 12:25 PM
  #21
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he's 22...

at the very worst he'll stay what he is: a good shutdown center for the third line.
at best: second line 50-60 points .

don't see any reasons to panic or give up on him. a lot of players don't break out until they are 24-25. as long as he is improving - and he is, then it's all gravy

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01-16-2012, 12:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BlackStar View Post
I don't understand why some think Eller will only turn into a great third line center, whatever that means. With Crosby and Malkin in Pittsburg's lineup Jordan Staal is a great third line center because well, Crosby and Malkin are in their lineup!

Jordan Staal would be a top 6 center on most teams and has the skills to play with first line wingers. I say that because Eller and Staal are similar players in my mind although Eller is not as physical nor as good of a goal scorer as Staal is but ofcourse that could and will improve in my opinion.

Eller is already atleast an average third line center. Can any of you tell me that a 22 year old cannot become a better goal scorer or more consistent? Also, Eller has already shown flashes both last year and this year of his ability to play with top 6 wingers. It's unlikely that he will become a superstar, however he has the skills to center top line wingers in my opinion.

I think he can become a 70 points-ish player or maybe more with legit goal scorers and that would be fine. Sometimes you need players like Eller who will help complement/help top line wingers, you do not always need a center who will crry your team offensively. The problem is that right now we don't have a winger who can carry this team. It's the same reason Plekanec struggles. I say it all the time, we wouldn't be crying for a first line center if we had an elite goal scorer like say ovechkin(though he's been struggling this year). Plekanec would play very well with Ovechkin in my opinion.

So my point is, when you have young centers like Leblanc(if he is developed as such) and Eller i think you need to do whatever you can to get top line wingers and they will flourish.
Agree with this, if we could get someone like Evander Kane, to go along with Eller and AK we would have a 1B line, never mind a 2nd or 3rd line type player.

I liked the way Martin handled Eller, even if Eller didn't like it.

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01-16-2012, 12:30 PM
  #23
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Eller was having a poor night, then made a lazy play on the Rangers goal. He responded in the third with some strong play, but I don't ever agree with sitting a guy on the bench for an entire period, except extreme cases.

I don't know what his ceiling is, but he's still young. He's fantastic with the puck, but he isn't able to find his teammates as well as Desharnais, but hopefully that will come with time.

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01-16-2012, 12:32 PM
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If this team is built right over the next few years, Eller will turn into a top flight 3rd line center for the Habs. I think he has the ability to play as the second line center, but for maximum team potential, should play mostly on the third line. Similarly how Pleks should never be considered a number one center, but a very good second line center.

Eller has all the tools, I just don't think he'll ever become what some think he will. That half step off is hard to correct at the NHL level.

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01-16-2012, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MasterDecoy View Post
he's 22...
This. If they thought he was a good return for Halak, they should at least give him some time to prove it. I think he has shown enough to keep him out of package deals as some kind of "value balancer", and I doubt PG is in any rush to address him/his spot specifically in an attempted "upgrade trade", so he's probably safe for a while.

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