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Old
06-10-2012, 04:15 PM
  #201
Harley83
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Stuart going to SJ is going to see Detroit in that much more of a scramble to get a well-rounded defenseman that can take over Lidstrom's leadership role.

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06-10-2012, 04:25 PM
  #202
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Russell has had quite a few injuries at the pro level. Him and Huskins being injured left a hole at the LD this year. I don't think Russell offers much as far as offense like others do although I do think he is good with moving the puck. A healthy roster this year is a must.

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06-10-2012, 04:26 PM
  #203
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Huskins and Russell are far from similar. Russell excels at handling and moving the puck, something Huskins is below average at.

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06-10-2012, 04:48 PM
  #204
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Neither of them offer a huge offensive game and they are both good enough with moving the puck. At 5'10" he should be a good skater and stickhandler. But neither of them are addressing the problems with production numbers at LD. Jackman who doesn't even play an offensive game and outproduced Russell and Huskins just because neither of them were healthy enough during the season. I think if a player doesn't offer a big defensive game they should be putting up numbers close to Shatty. People don't pressure Shatty's defensive game because they know he will make up for it with his offensive game.

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06-10-2012, 04:50 PM
  #205
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harley83 View Post
Russell has had quite a few injuries at the pro level. Him and Huskins being injured left a hole at the LD this year. I don't think Russell offers much as far as offense like others do although I do think he is good with moving the puck. A healthy roster this year is a must.
Russell's primarily a smaller, fluid skating offensive d-man. Huskins is a big, slow, stay at home d-man. That they both happened to have injuries this year could not be less relevant to playing style. We disagreed yesterday on the element missing in the LA series and you argued that it was about clearing the crease, while I pointed out that's the full-blown symptom stage of a disease that has to be prevented earlier with quick strong clearing attempts. We are definitely not eye-to-eye on the defense.

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06-10-2012, 04:55 PM
  #206
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Originally Posted by Harley83 View Post
Neither of them offer a huge offensive game and they are both good enough with moving the puck. At 5'10" he should be a good skater and stickhandler. But neither of them are addressing the problems with production numbers at LD. Jackman who doesn't even play an offensive game and outproduced Russell and Huskins just because neither of them were healthy enough during the season. I think if a player doesn't offer a big defensive game they should be putting up numbers close to Shatty. People don't pressure Shatty's defensive game because they know he will make up for it with his offensive game.
Russell IS a good skater and stickhandler. Are you sure we're talking about the same Russell? Even watching him in one game can tell you he's an excellent skater. He's one of the fastest skaters on the team and he has excellent first step instincts to get past the first forechecker. Have you watched the guy play? It's a legitimate question with an assessment this far off from reality.

Or are you purely looking at stats, deciding that since he's not in the top 20 blueliners of the entire NHL offense-wise (like Shattenkirk) he must not be an offensive defenseman?

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06-10-2012, 05:33 PM
  #207
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Russell definitely doesn't address the issue of being overpowered at the crease while his puck moving skill is good enough to be used. At 5'10" 172 lbs. he is expected to be a good skater just like the rest of the smaller guys in the league but he is way too small to be a force in front of the crease and most fans will agree the lack of a physical game is what L.A. used to pick St. Louis apart. As far as the clearing attempts they were combated by high pressure in the neutral zone from L.A. You just can't rely on small defenseman to battle with the larger forwards in today's game. Any pro defenseman is expected to have the ability to clear the puck out of the zone no matter what style of game they play. As far defense the Blues need grit in the back end (Jackman) to protect the goal and engage in confrontaional play and a skilled two-way reliable partner for Petro (nobody yet), Russell addresses neither of those in my opinion.

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06-10-2012, 05:44 PM
  #208
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Originally Posted by PocketNines View Post
Have you watched the guy play? It's a legitimate question with an assessment this far off from reality.

Or are you purely looking at stats, deciding that since he's not in the top 20 blueliners of the entire NHL offense-wise (like Shattenkirk) he must not be an offensive defenseman?
That is the kind of comment I was referring to last night with our whole sarcasm debate. Some people have different opinions than you P9 it doesn't mean that they are invalid it just means they are different than yours.

I watch the same games as you all season long. Maybe you seen him play in a bunch of regular season games that I didn't because I was under the impression he spent a good portion of the season on the injured reserve along with Huskins at LD. I said he is good at moving the puck but he is expected to be a good skater and stickhandler as small as he is.

Others feel that he is too small and doesn't offer much offensive numbers like I do, and yes stats do reflect his offensive game in many ways. Actually for most it's the preferred method.

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06-10-2012, 05:52 PM
  #209
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Originally Posted by Harley83 View Post
That is the kind of comment I was referring to last night with our whole sarcasm debate. Some people have different opinions than you P9 it doesn't mean that they are invalid it just means they are different than yours.

I watch the same games as you all season long. Maybe you seen him play in a bunch of regular season games that I didn't because I was under the impression he spent a good portion of the season on the injured reserve along with Huskins at LD. I said he is good at moving the puck but he is expected to be a good skater and stickhandler as small as he is.

Others feel that he is too small and doesn't offer much offensive numbers like I do, and yes stats do reflect his offensive game in many ways. Actually for most it's the preferred method.
That wasn't sarcasm. I was actually asking if you'd seen the guy play. I submit that it is impossible to watch both Russell and Huskins play and conclude they have similar playing styles.

As for Russell in the LA series he averaged over 20 minutes a game and had two assists and was a +2. He was easily one of the Blues best players in that series, and your conclusion is that in order to overcome teams like LA we have to upgrade Russell? Color me far from impressed with this evaluation.

I'd also add that I think you misapprehend the purpose of a message board. Opinions obviously differ but in thread discussions they get challenged. It sort of feels like you're offended by the idea that I would challenge other folks' opinions. It is not personal.


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06-10-2012, 06:05 PM
  #210
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Russell has a lot in common with Huskins as far as style of play and injuries. They both have the ability to move the puck and they both play a safe kind of game but they both have had some streaks of injuries which prevent establishing themselves as reliable which STL needs. Russell has his young age in his favor although he is rather small to protect against the NHL's larger forwards.
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Originally Posted by Harley83 View Post
Russell has had quite a few injuries at the pro level. Him and Huskins being injured left a hole at the LD this year. I don't think Russell offers much as far as offense like others do although I do think he is good with moving the puck. A healthy roster this year is a must.
Let me make this easier for you.


"I don't like Russell and want him replaced with a player who is more like Jackman (or Jackman himself) or is an offensive wunderkid."

See, now you can quit reaching for farcial comparisons.

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06-10-2012, 06:14 PM
  #211
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Of course I had seen the guy play... I challenged the fact that he isn't a big offensive producer at only 20 points a season as offensive defenseman. I watched the guy play and it just looked like a fundamental, safe style of hockey. He is not a big numbers producer like Shatty or Petro and doesn't offer physical play like Jackman, Cole, or Polak so what does that really leave passing and good skating? That's something all defenseman should be able to do. Colaiacovo was third in +/- postseason and we all know the popular opinion about him. Russell's average ice time in the regular season was one of the lowest out of active St. Louis defenseman. I'd rather have a guy perform all season long than show up during the playoffs. St. Louis needs reliability at LD all year long. Color me far from impressed on your painting of Kris Russell.

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06-10-2012, 06:17 PM
  #212
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Multimoodia View Post
Let me make this easier for you.


"I don't like Russell and want him replaced with a player who is more like Jackman (or Jackman himself) or is an offensive wunderkid."

See, now you can quit reaching for farcial comparisons.
I think you meant farcical... And I said they both play a safe style of defense. I don't believe he is the big offensive producer like many of you do, I just believe he is good at moving the puck and that is not enough at the pro level especially with his streak of injuries. I don't believe he is a top four.

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06-10-2012, 06:25 PM
  #213
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Russell was one of the best players we had in the playoffs.

He's never really going to have an offensive game, and he is not expected to.

His game is all about transition, and that's why we traded for him. It's amazing how some people forget that before we got Russell, we struggled to move the puck out of our own end on a consistent basis. It wasn't too long ago when we didn't have Petro, Shatty, and Russell, and the transition game was a disaster.

Today's NHL relies more on transition, and you need at least 1 good puck mover on every pairing to be successful.

We did NOT lose against LA because of a lack of crease clearing defensemen.

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06-10-2012, 06:29 PM
  #214
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Originally Posted by Harley83 View Post
I think you meant farcical... And I said they both play a safe style of defense. I don't believe he is the big offensive producer like many of you do, I just believe he is good at moving the puck and that is not enough at the pro level especially with his streak of injuries. I don't believe he is a top four.

No one said he is a big offensive producer or that he should be in the top 4.

Safe doesn't mean same style. Lidstrom plays safe, Pietrangelo plays safe, that just means they aren't risky, they play smart. It's what good defensemen are suppose to do.

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06-10-2012, 06:44 PM
  #215
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I do agree with you that transition is a big part of today's game especially with stronger forecheck pressure. But a million dollar injury prone player needs to offer more to a team than just puck movement.

He is still under contract now but I don't believe he is top four talent on this team with Jackman on the second line and I couldn't see him being Petro's partner on the first line. On the third line if Cole gets over the jitters this season and has less turnovers I just don't see where Russell will fit in especially if he is still averaging two to three unrelated injuries per season.

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06-10-2012, 06:52 PM
  #216
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Originally Posted by bleedblue1223 View Post
No one said he is a big offensive producer or that he should be in the top 4.

Safe doesn't mean same style. Lidstrom plays safe, Pietrangelo plays safe, that just means they aren't risky, they play smart. It's what good defensemen are suppose to do.
Safe to me means not spending too much time holding the puck, not trying to skate around the opposition, and not engaging in scrums. It could be a good or bad thing depending on the player. For some defenseman taking risk is what makes them who they are. P.K. Subban plays the opposite of a safe game and it has worked for him in some ways. Eric Brewer has played a safe game and doesn't take enough risk and I think that was what seen him getting traded to Tampa and he hasn't played too well since. Petro and Lidstrom put up numbers to justify their safe game.

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06-10-2012, 06:55 PM
  #217
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I don't care how good Russell looked for 4 games against the Kings...he was the last guy they were concerned with shutting down or being beaten by. It's easier to look decent when you're not the focus of the opposition. Shattenkirk looked like garbage in the playoffs. Does that mean you'd rather have Russell than Kirk?

Over the course of the entire season Russell had a few nice moments, but overall he is replaceable. If the Kings had focused on stopping Russell like they did Pietrangelo, Petro wouldn't have been the only one knocked out. The fact that he performed admirably shouldn't mean the Blues should be content with running out an undersized, mediocre offensive d-man who can at times be a liability in his own end.

The Kings are doing so well in the playoffs in part because their defensemen are huge and good puck movers. The only guys I want under 6'0" and 180 lbs on the back-end are guys that are going to put up 40-80 points per season, like Shattenkirk or Karlsson. If you're a 20-point 180lb defenseman, you're a prime target to be upgraded. Nothing personal.

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06-10-2012, 06:56 PM
  #218
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I do agree with you that transition is a big part of today's game especially with stronger forecheck pressure. But a million dollar injury prone player needs to offer more to a team than just puck movement.

He is still under contract now but I don't believe he is top four talent on this team with Jackman on the second line and I couldn't see him being Petro's partner on the first line. On the third line if Cole gets over the jitters this season and has less turnovers I just don't see where Russell will fit in especially if he is still averaging two to three unrelated injuries per season.
Russell and Polak make the 3rd pairing, they will stay a pairing, I'm not sure why you keep bringing up that he is not top 4 caliber because it doesn't matter and no thinks he is.

Cole will be with Pietrangelo or Shattenkirk depending on who we get. When Cole played, he was with Pietrangelo. Cole will most likely stay with Pietrangelo.

Russell is cheap and not anywhere close as injury prone as Colaiacovo. Before this season he had back to back seasons playing 70 or more games.

He is a solid 3rd pairing defenseman and is a great compliment to Polak.

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06-10-2012, 07:00 PM
  #219
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Safe to me means not spending too much time holding the puck, not trying to skate around the opposition, and not engaging in scrums. It could be a good or bad thing depending on the player. For some defenseman taking risk is what makes them who they are. P.K. Subban plays the opposite of a safe game and it has worked for him in some ways. Eric Brewer has played a safe game and doesn't take enough risk and I think that was what seen him getting traded to Tampa and he hasn't played too well since. Petro and Lidstrom put up numbers to justify their safe game.
You do realize that the great think that Russell does is hold on to the puck and draw defenders toward him? By doing that, he just slides a pass over to Polak, who has all the time in the world to make the next pass.

Either way it doesn't make Russell and Huskins similar. If it does, then you think Russell and Huskins and Pietrangelo are all similar...

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06-10-2012, 07:14 PM
  #220
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A "safe" style is so vague as to be meaningless. What's not a safe style? Risky style?

Moreover, when you are a mobile puck mover and you depend on eluding the first forechecker while holding onto the puck the way Russell does (as opposed to playing keep away with a short, high percentage pass ala Huskins) the first word that would spring to someone's mind to describe that style is not "safe." You have to trust that you're going to continually beat that forechecker with that move or else he's hitting you and probably causing you to turn the puck over.

I find the whole Russell direction this thread has taken a little mystifying. The argument now is they need to upgrade Russell with a physically imposing solid defensive player who's as good in transition as Russell? Those guys are called top-four defensemen. Where is the argument coming from that Russell should be a top-four on this team? He's perfect in a 3d-pairing role on this team in this system. The knock on Russell can't possibly be that the 3d pairing needs to be upgraded because if he'd been a 1st or 2d pairing player that the Kings would have expended more energy attacking he wouldn't have succeeded. Again, sure! But nobody's saying he should be a top four defenseman that the Kings would be attacking. And since nobody's saying that, the fact that he was so successful under pressure in his role is a fantastic bit of evidence that he doesn't need to be upgraded.

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06-10-2012, 07:20 PM
  #221
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Originally Posted by bleedblue1223 View Post
You do realize that the great think that Russell does is hold on to the puck and draw defenders toward him? By doing that, he just slides a pass over to Polak, who has all the time in the world to make the next pass.

Either way it doesn't make Russell and Huskins similar. If it does, then you think Russell and Huskins and Pietrangelo are all similar...
This is why I have been asking him if he's really watched Russell. Russell does exactly the opposite of what he's describing.

I don't understand the fixation on scrums, either.

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06-10-2012, 07:24 PM
  #222
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You do realize that the great think that Russell does is hold on to the puck and draw defenders toward him? By doing that, he just slides a pass over to Polak, who has all the time in the world to make the next pass.

Either way it doesn't make Russell and Huskins similar. If it does, then you think Russell and Huskins and Pietrangelo are all similar...
Petro has lots of talent offensively and defensively, is reliable plus he puts up the numbers. Russell and Huskins don't offer any of those. I'm just not sold on a 5'10" defenseman drawing defenders in then sliding passes over with a short reach. If he was 6'2" I could see that being a big appeal but each year the NHL forwards are getting larger. Cole is definitely up and coming but I don't think he has the skill level to be Petro's partner yet.

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06-10-2012, 07:27 PM
  #223
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This is why I have been asking him if he's really watched Russell. Russell does exactly the opposite of what he's describing.

I don't understand the fixation on scrums, either.
Russell's composure and confidence on the puck is right there with Pietangelo's and Shattenkirk's. Obviously he doesn't have the same amount of talent as those two.

In the old NHL a more physical presence was needed, but not in today's game. I know people on here have been wanting a crease clearing dman for awhile, but how many goals do we actually give up because we lack that player? I don't think it is as many as some think.

Our style is to force teams to the outside, cause turnovers, and block shots. We play fast, which is why we don't need a crease clearing defenseman. Hitchcock has a system and Russell fits it. Hitch is in charge, so people better get use to having Russell on the team.

I don't even understand the discussion anymore...

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06-10-2012, 07:30 PM
  #224
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Originally Posted by Harley83 View Post
Petro has lots of talent offensively and defensively, is reliable plus he puts up the numbers. Russell and Huskins don't offer any of those. I'm just not sold on a 5'10" defenseman drawing defenders in then sliding passes over with a short reach. If he was 6'2" I could see that being a big appeal but each year the NHL forwards are getting larger. Cole is definitely up and coming but I don't think he has the skill level to be Petro's partner yet.
Even if you personally choose not to be sold on Russell (your right, won't try to talk you out of it), what you're saying now is he can't be good at the style to suit your tastes, not that he doesn't play it. You identified what "safe" style meant to you and other than scrums you described the opposite of Russell's actual game. Like his game, don't like his game, whatever ... but it's the opposite of that style. Except for the scrums. Personally I don't really consider how often a defenseman gets into scrums when I consider how he'll perform but to each his own.

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06-10-2012, 07:30 PM
  #225
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Understand the debate about crease-clearing d-men, which we are lacking.

I think you have to distinguish between the regular season and the playoffs. We got by without size on the blueline in the regular season - it hurt us in the playoffs.

Need to get stronger on the back line. Russell, Cola and Jackman aren't the answers.

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