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ATD 2013 Lineup Assassination Thread - Rene Lecavalier Division

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Old
03-25-2013, 02:58 PM
  #1
MadArcand
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ATD 2013 Lineup Assassination Thread - Rene Lecavalier Division

Rene Lecavalier Division
4. Leaf Lander - Toronto Maple Leafs
12. MadArcand - Hartford Whalers
20. ck26 - Dallas Black Hawks
28. TheDevilMadeMe - New Jersey Swamp Devils

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03-25-2013, 02:59 PM
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Hartford Whalers



Coach: Al Arbour
Assistant coach:

Bobby Hull - Sergei Fedorov (A) - Theo Fleury
Keith Tkachuk - Pavel Datsyuk - Pavel Bure
Johnny Gottselig - Mike Peca (C) - Igor Liba
Tomas Sandstrom - Dan Bain - Paul MacLean
Miroslav Satan, Harry Oliver, Ladislav Trojak

Bill Gadsby - Harvey Pulford (A)
Moose Vasko - Graham Drinkwater
Reed Larson - Robert Svehla
Wade Redden

Harry Lumley
Mike Liut


PP1: Fedorov - Gadsby - Hull - Tkachuk - Bure
PP2: Larson - Drinkwater - Datsyuk - MacLean - Fleury

PK1: Vasko - Pulford - Peca - Fedorov
PK2: Gadsby - Svehla - Datsyuk - Liba


Last edited by MadArcand: 04-14-2013 at 08:51 AM.
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03-25-2013, 04:56 PM
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DALLAS BLACK HAWKS

OWNER: THAT WOMAN PAUL NEWMAN SAYS IS "TOTALLY ******" … OR HER HUSBAND ... OR MAYBE THE MILL ... OR ... WHO CARES, YOU GET YOUR CHECK
GENERAL MANAGER: CK26
HEAD COACH: DICK IRVIN SR
HOTTIE ASSISTANT COACH: JESSIE DAGE
EQUIPMENT MANAGER: THE KID WHO KNEW OGIE OGLETHORPE WASN'T PLAYING BECAUSE HE WAS SUSPENDED

BILL BARBER - NEWSY LALONDE [A] - LANNY MCDONALD [C]
ROSS LONSBERRY - RICK MACLEISH - TERRY O'REILLY
JERE LEHTINEN - KRIS DRAPER - BLAIR RUSSEL
PIERRE MONDOU - FRANK MCGEE - VINCENT LECAVALIER

ROD LANGWAY [A] - LARRY ROBINSON
SERGEI ZUBOV - TERRY HARPER
CALLE JOHANSSON - NIKOLAI SOLOGUBOV

TURK BRODA
MIKE VERNON

SPARES: F BRIAN SKRUDLAND - F HARRY TRIHEY - F DAVE CHRISTIAN - D DARRYL SYDOR

PP1: BARBER - LALONDE - MCDONALD - ZUBOV - SOLOGUBOV
PP2: LECAVALIER - MCGEE - O'REILLY - ROBINSON - LANGWAY
PP: MACLEISH
PK1: DRAPER - LEHTINEN - LANGWAY - ROBINSON
PK2: MONDOU - RUSSEL - HARPER - JOHANSSON
PK: LONSBERRY


Last edited by ck26: 04-06-2013 at 04:16 PM.
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03-25-2013, 05:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadArcand View Post
Hartford Whalers



Coach: Al Arbour

Bobby Hull - Sergei Fedorov (A) - Theo Fleury
Keith Tkachuk - Pavel Datsyuk - Pavel Bure
Igor Liba - Mike Peca (A) - Paul MacLean
Johnny Gottselig - Dan Bain - Tomas Sandstrom
Miroslav Satan, Harry Oliver, Ladislav Trojak

Bill Gadsby (C) - Harvey Pulford
Moose Vasko - Reed Larson
Graham Drinkwater - Robert Svehla
Wade Redden

Harry Lumley
Mike Liut


PP1: Fedorov - Gadsby - Hull - Tkachuk - Bure
PP2: Larson - Drinkwater - Datsyuk - MacLean - Fleury

PK1: Vasko - Pulford - Peca - Fedorov
PK2: Gadsby - Svehla - Datsyuk - Liba


Flame away.
Coaching and Leadership

I have Al Arbour as co-#3 coach of All Time with Lester Patrick. He was something of a systems coach though, which is an unpredictable fit for a team built around individualists like Bobby Hull and Pavel Bure. Will Arbour make them fit into a team concept better, or will there be tension?

I don't see what Gadsby has done to warrant wearing a C here - I think Harvey Pulford and Mike Peca are more worthy of it. Team leadership from the playoers isn't great, but it's not bad, and Al Arbour is about as good a leader as can be.

Forwards

The team strength. The first line is the best Bobby Hull line I've seen constructed in the ATD - no easy task. As great as Hull was, he was something of a puck hog, and needs linemates who can play well without the puck. It would have been eve better if you had gotten Martin St. Louis, but them's the breaks.

I have mixed feelings about the second line. I think you could sometimes run into trouble having two puck hoggy guys who liked taking long shifts on the same team, but it would be a lot worse if Hull and Bure both played the same wing. As for the line itself, it has all the pieces - explosive scorer (Bure), two-way center (Datsyuk), tough guy (Tkachuk). I think they fit together very well in the offensive zone, but I'm not sure of the fit in transition. A Datsyuk can obviously backcheck and create turnovers which lead to a rapid Bure transition, so that's good. A big part of Datsyuk's offense comes from his puck possesion game, and that's going to take a hit playing next to Bure. But since Bure is the best player on the line, the most important thing is that Datsyuk help make him better, rather than the other way around, and he does do that. Tkachuk I'm less sure about - speed is the name of the game for Bure and Tkachuk was notoriously slow-skating. Overall, this line has all the pieces, but they won't fit together as perfectly as the first line.

Mike Peca is a great shut down center and you did a great job of selling Igor Liba - I see Liba as a slightly lesser Jiri Holik, and since I think Holik is a great two-way third liner, that makes Liba passable one. Paul MacLean drags the line down though - I see him as a 4th liner with some grit but mostly a PP specialist at this level. I don't think he has any defensive resume, and he really prevents the line from being the great shut down line that a line centered by Peca could be.

Bain and Sandstrom are typical 4th liners. Gottselig is way too good to play on a 4th line - I would try really hard to find a way to get him into your top 9 in place of Paul MacLean.

Satan and Oliver are good spares. Trojak is something of a stiff - should we really be drafting glue guys from European teams in the 1940s?

Defense

Gadsby is a solid but unspectacular #1 - I really do think there are fewer "true #1s" than there are teams in the ATD, just like in the real NHL, and that Salming/Gadsby/Leetch are the last true #1s drafted. I don't like Harvey Pulford as a #2 - the more I read about the era, the more I realize that while Pulford played forever and contributed to lots of team success, he really was never considered a star in his era. I see Pulford here as basically equal to Derian Hatcher in both style and quality.

Vasko is a defensively-oriented #4 who you are using as a #3. And Reed Larson has no business in a top 4 at this level. He's very good offensively, and I realize Al Arbour is a great coach to make sure you have your top pairing against top lines, but teams with competent second lines are going to tear Larson apart. I think Graham Drinkwater is best as a #5, but he really needs to go there instead of Larson. I don't know much about Drinkwater's defensive ability, but unknown is better than known bad.

I honestly think Redden is a better defenseman than either Svehla or Larson. But I understand that Larson is better on the PP, and that's what he was drafted for.

Overall, this team really could have invested in a true #2 defenseman to push everyone past Gadsby a spot down the depth chart.

Goaltending

I think Lumley is a fairly low end starter here - I was honestly not very impressed by what was said about him in the goalies project, though others seemed to disagree. He's going to struggle at times dealing with a group of defenseman who lack depth.

Lumley was something of a work horse though, so I don't think Liut plays all that much, but when he does, he is a high end back up.

Special Teams

Lots of talent on the first PP - I think I said previously that there is something of a concern about lack of natural playmaker up front - but it's going to be a shooting gallery and Bobby Hull and Bure definitely give the D two guys to worry about with Tkachuk doing his thing in the goalie's face.

One of the better second PP units in the draft - Larson is passable as the big shot a first PP unit, so he's good here, even if he's something of a liability at even strength.

First PK is strong, mostly because of the forwards
Second PK doesn't have anyone who stands out as elite, but it's very solid.

Overall

I like:

-The best Bobby Hull line I've seen in the ATD, even if it would have been even better with St. Louis
-A very strong one-two punch with your top 2 lines at both even strength and on the powerplay
-You managed to get defensive safety valves on all of your lines
-Bure will be deadly at pouncing on turnover created by Datsyuk in the neutral zone
-Johnny Gottselig is better than a lot of second liners, and is a luxury in your bottom 6 - find a way to use him more!

I have concerns about:

-The defense really could use a solid #2 defenseman to knock everyone else down a peg. Even if you take a rosy view of Pulford and believe he was better than a Derian Hatcher type, you are going to have a weak second pairing with Vasko best as a #4 and nobody else I would really want on a second pairing
-Lumley is a fairly weak starter, which means he might struggle at times covering for a defense that lacks a lot of depth
-Paul MacLean has no business on an ATD third line and really drags down what would otherwise be a great shutdown line.
-It might be nitpicking, but I don't think Datsyuk gets full use of his puck possession game playing with Bure, and there is a major speed imbalance between Bure and Tkachuk

I have no idea about:

How Al Arbour meshes with Bobby Hull and Pavel Bure


Last edited by TheDevilMadeMe: 03-25-2013 at 06:13 PM.
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03-26-2013, 05:29 AM
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MadArcand
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Something tells me we're in the same division...

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I don't see what Gadsby has done to warrant wearing a C here - I think Harvey Pulford and Mike Peca are more worthy of it. Team leadership from the playoers isn't great, but it's not bad, and Al Arbour is about as good a leader as can be.
I was thinking of Peca as well... might swap them around yet.

As for leadership overall - nearly everyone wore a letter, and the team has quite a few captains. I don't think it's lacking in any way.

Quote:
Tkachuk I'm less sure about - speed is the name of the game for Bure and Tkachuk was notoriously slow-skating.
I think you're remembering the St.Louis Tkachuk in lieu of the Jets/Yotes one, which was not slow at all. Not a speedster, but for his size, he was fast a plenty.

Quote:
Paul MacLean drags the line down though - I see him as a 4th liner with some grit but mostly a PP specialist at this level. I don't think he has any defensive resume, and he really prevents the line from being the great shut down line that a line centered by Peca could be.
I didn't dig too deep yet, but according to Pelletier:

'The dirty work on that line (often with Brian Mullen on LW) often ended up on MacLean's plate. He was a solid defensive player and, thanks to his size and balance, an above average grinder. It was often MacLean's job to retrieve pucks from the heavy traffic areas in the corners and the slot. He was a handful for defensemen to handle, but because he was generally such a clean player he rarely garnered the notice other lesser players have received.'

He should be adequate.

Quote:
Bain and Sandstrom are typical 4th liners. Gottselig is way too good to play on a 4th line - I would try really hard to find a way to get him into your top 9 in place of Paul MacLean.
I could go Gottselig - Peca - Liba and Sandstrom - Bain - MacLean. Neither of Liba and Sandstrom lacks experience at the other wing.

Quote:
Trojak is something of a stiff - should we really be drafting glue guys from European teams in the 1940s?
He's held in extremely high esteem for a reason. I also wanted a spare that'd provide more of the dirty work, leadership and tremendous work ethics, as the other two cover scoring well enough.

If I get the time, I might cobble together a bio on him as well.

Quote:
Overall, this team really could have invested in a true #2 defenseman to push everyone past Gadsby a spot down the depth chart.
I think you're underrating pretty much everyone on my D. Compare them to players in same slots on other teams, and you'll find out they're far from lacking.

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03-26-2013, 08:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MadArcand View Post

I could go Gottselig - Peca - Liba and Sandstrom - Bain - MacLean. Neither of Liba and Sandstrom lacks experience at the other wing.
If Liba can play both wings, this is a better setup. Maybe I'm underestimating MacLean, but I still see him as a 4th liner.


Quote:
I think yoHu're underrating pretty much everyone on my D. Compare them to players in same slots on other teams, and you'll find out they're far from lacking.
We agree that Gadsby is a solid but unspectacular #1 right? Your mileage will vary on Harvey Pulford, but I see a big, physical defensive defenseman who was a great leader, a slow skater, and had pretty much zero skill with the puck. That really sounds like a more historically significant version of Derian Hatcher to me.

Here are the awards records of the rest of your blueline (other than Drinkwater, who is something of a mystery). As always, I'm excluding seasons where they got only 1 vote.

Moose Vasko
Norris: 3, 4, 9, 13
All-Star: 3, 4, 11, 12, ?
(one season he got a small number of Norris votes but we only have the top 10 in AS votes)

I guess you could make the case that as a defense-first guy, Vasko was underrated, but I really don't think that's the case in a 6 team league when he played a very visible role as Pilote's partner. I don't know, maybe he's an all-right defensively-oriented #3. His record is really thin after his best 2 seasons, though.

Reid Larson
Norris: 11, 18
All-Star: 10, 10, 12, 14

Honestly, that's a terrible record for a guy who put up the points that Larson did.

Robert Svehla:
Norris: 14, 14 (both based on 4th and 5th place votes that didn't exist for the majority of the trophy's existence)
All-Star: 12, 15, 18

Wade Redden
Norris: 5, 9, 10, 11* 12
All-Star: 6, 9, 10, 11

*based off only 4th and 5th place votes.


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03-26-2013, 08:37 AM
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When I talk about #3 defensemen, I kind of see Eric Desjardins as the prototypical #3. He played in an era where point totals overly affected the voting, but he was neither good nor bad enough offensively for his voting record to be too skewed by it. This is Desjardin's record:

Norris: 4, 5, 10
All Star: 4, 4, 5, 9, 10, 11, 13, 17

So if your record is close to Desjardins, you are a solid #3. Looking at Vasko, his Norris record is actually slightly better but his All-Star record is a lot worse, so I dunno. Maybe I was underrating Vasko, and he is a solid #3. I still think Drinkwater is probably your best bet as a #4 though - I don't like any of your modern guys in that role. And I am skeptical of Harvey Pulford as a #2, like I said.

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03-26-2013, 08:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
When I talk about #3 defensemen, I kind of see Eric Desjardins as the prototypical #3. He played in an era where point totals overly affected the voting, but he was neither good nor bad enough offensively for his voting record to be too skewed by it. This is Desjardin's record:

Norris: 4, 5, 10
All Star: 4, 4, 5, 9, 10, 11, 13, 17

So if your record is close to Desjardins, you are a solid #3. Looking at Vasko, his Norris record is actually slightly better but his All-Star record is a lot worse, so I dunno. Maybe I was underrating Vasko, and he is a solid #3. I still think Drinkwater is probably your best bet as a #4 though - I don't like any of your modern guys in that role. And I am skeptical of Harvey Pulford as a #2, like I said.
A lot worse all-star record? Discount the 9+ low-end votes, and it's 3 & 4 vs. 4, 4 & 5, which is just slightly worse.

Anyway, the way I see it, Gadsby is fine if unspectacular #1. Pulford is OK #2 in my book, same with Vasko as #3. None of them are great, but none of them are bad in their slots either.

Drinkwater is pretty good #5, and Svehla is a fine #6. Redden is likely among the top #7s.

That leaves us with Larson. I think he's somewhat below average #4, but then how much out of place is he in the crowd of the likes of Boyle, Ross, Pratt, Bilyaletdinov, Burrows, Green, Lutchenko, Egan, Morrow, Numminen, Hollett, Tsygankov, Harper, Davydov, McNamara, Ramsey, Ramage, Rafalski or Ivanov? He's a low-end #4, perhaps, but IMHO no worse than that.

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03-26-2013, 04:18 PM
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A lot worse all-star record? Discount the 9+ low-end votes, and it's 3 & 4 vs. 4, 4 & 5, which is just slightly worse
Why would you discount them? The point of All Star votes, especially in a 30 team league, is that they give you an idea of who was consistently getting recognition beyond the top 5 or 6.

Quote:
Anyway, the way I see it, Gadsby is fine if unspectacular #1. Pulford is OK #2 in my book, same with Vasko as #3. None of them are great, but none of them are bad in their slots either.
It's possible I was underrating Vasko, Was he as good as Desjardins, McCrimmon, Hatcher, or Zubov? Those are 4 modern defensemen who I think set the standard of #3s. Maybe he was.

We're going to have to disagree on Harvey Pulford who played back when talent was very thin and was never really considered a superstar as far as I can tell even in his own era. He seems to have been a secondary star for a very long time who contributed to a lot of team success.

Quote:
Drinkwater is pretty good #5, and Svehla is a fine #6. Redden is likely among the top #7s.
Agree with all this - except IMO, your 4th best defenseman is probably Drinkwater.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MadArcand View Post

That leaves us with Larson. I think he's somewhat below average #4, but then how much out of place is he in the crowd of the likes of Boyle, Ross, Pratt, Bilyaletdinov, Burrows, Green, Lutchenko, Egan, Morrow, Numminen, Hollett, Tsygankov, Harper, Davydov, McNamara, Ramsey, Ramage, Rafalski or Ivanov? He's a low-end #4, perhaps, but IMHO no worse than that.
Honestly, Larson might be the worst of that group. All those guys except Morrow, Ramage, Rafalski, and McNamara are clearly better, and Rafalski at least had some defining moments in his career (playoffs and Olympics). Some of those guys (Boyle, Ross, Pratt, Lutchenko, Harper) are a lot closer to Vasko than they are to Larson. Well, Ivanov is something of a mystery.

I honestly think that Larson is probably the worst defenseman you have out of your 7. Redden was getting recognition as one of the best defenseman in the league for a time, and Svehla had a long and consistent career as a big minute-defense first guy. Larson played in an era where his flashy offensive numbers should have given him more recognition, yet his record is barely better than Bob Dailey's

In conclusion, Gadsby is fine as a #1 and I guess Vasko is fine as a #3. But I really don't like Pulford as much as you do, and I don't think Larson is anywhere close to a legit top 4 defenseman in this draft.


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03-26-2013, 04:35 PM
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DALLAS BLACK HAWKS

OWNER: THAT WOMAN PAUL NEWMAN SAYS IS "TOTALLY ******" OR HER HUSBAND ... OR MAYBE THE MILL ... OR ... WHO CARES, YOU GET YOUR CHECK
GENERAL MANAGER: CK26
HEAD COACH: DICK IRVIN SR
HOTTIE ASSISTANT COACH: JESSIE DAGE
EQUIPMENT MANAGER: THE KID WHO KNEW OGIE OGLETHORPE WASN'T PLAYING BECAUSE HE WAS SUSPENDED

LINEUP
BILL BARBER - NEWSY LALONDE [A] - LANNY MCDONALD [C]
JERE LEHTINEN - FRANK MCGEE - BLAIR RUSSEL
PIERRE MONDOU - RICK MACLEISH - TERRY O'REILLY
ROSS LONSBERRY - VINCENT LECAVALIER - KRIS DRAPER
BRIAN SKRUDLAND - HARRY TRIHEY

ROD LANGWAY [A] - LARRY ROBINSON
SERGEI ZUBOV - TERRY HARPER
CALLE JOHANSSON - NIKOLAI SOLOGUBOV
DARRYL SYDOR

TURK BRODA
MIKE VERNON
CHRIS OSGOOD

PP1: BARBER - LALONDE - MCDONALD - ZUBOV - SOLOGUBOV
PP2: LECAVALIER - MCGEE - RUSSEL - ROBINSON - LANGWAY
PK1: MACLEISH - LEHTINEN - ROBINSON - HARPER
PK2: DRAPER - MONDOU - LANGWAY - JOHANSSON
On my phone, but thoughts about my own team

Good: defense. I think Robinson and Langway is the best defensive d pair in the draft. They'll shut down whoever. Can also split them (Robinson Harper and zubov Langway and maintain big small / rushing stay at home / pick poise play it safe on both pairs. That's huge.

Versatility. Every line has a checker, every line has a scorer, and every line has grit and nastiness.

Turk Broda. Homeboy can play. Both backups have won Cups and one has a (dubious) Smythe.

Character. No head cases here. Lanny. Lehtinen. Langway. Draper. Tough customers, but no cancers and no hotheads except maybe Newsy.

Bad: proven scoring. Newsy is a monster. Lanny is ok. Lots of the offense -- McGee, Russel, Trihey, Sologubov -- beat up on questionable opposition.

No real playmakers up front. Kind of a caveman offense, and the lack of great passers may set back the scoring we DO have. Robinson, Zubov and Sologubov must help here.

Lines. No outright shutdown line, though the parts are there. A huge offensive opponent might require we juggle Draper, Lehtinen, Mondou, Russel, etc to get one real shutdown crew together. Hopefully our d and goalie will make that unnecessary.

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03-26-2013, 10:50 PM
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Black Hawks Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ck26 View Post


DALLAS BLACK HAWKS

OWNER: THAT WOMAN PAUL NEWMAN SAYS IS "TOTALLY ******" … OR HER HUSBAND ... OR MAYBE THE MILL ... OR ... WHO CARES, YOU GET YOUR CHECK
GENERAL MANAGER: CK26
HEAD COACH: DICK IRVIN SR
HOTTIE ASSISTANT COACH: JESSIE DAGE
EQUIPMENT MANAGER: THE KID WHO KNEW OGIE OGLETHORPE WASN'T PLAYING BECAUSE HE WAS SUSPENDED

LINEUP
BILL BARBER - NEWSY LALONDE [A] - LANNY MCDONALD [C]
JERE LEHTINEN - FRANK MCGEE - BLAIR RUSSEL
PIERRE MONDOU - RICK MACLEISH - TERRY O'REILLY
ROSS LONSBERRY - VINCENT LECAVALIER - KRIS DRAPER
BRIAN SKRUDLAND - HARRY TRIHEY

ROD LANGWAY [A] - LARRY ROBINSON
SERGEI ZUBOV - TERRY HARPER
CALLE JOHANSSON - NIKOLAI SOLOGUBOV
DARRYL SYDOR

TURK BRODA
MIKE VERNON
CHRIS OSGOOD

PP1: BARBER - LALONDE - MCDONALD - ZUBOV - SOLOGUBOV
PP2: LECAVALIER - MCGEE - RUSSEL - ROBINSON - LANGWAY
PK1: MACLEISH - LEHTINEN - ROBINSON - HARPER
PK2: DRAPER - MONDOU - LANGWAY - JOHANSSON
Coaching and Leadership

Dick Irvin is tough for me to place. On the one hand, he coached very good teams for a long time, and turned around both the Toronto and Montreal franchises. On the other hand, after turning troubled franchises into perennial contenders, he often had trouble taking them all the way. He was an intense guy - did he push his teams too hard in the regular season for them to have much left in the playoffs? I definitely think he's a top 10 regular season coach here, borderline top 5. Your mileage will vary in the playoffs though.

Newsy Lalonde was a legendary leader and absolutely 100% needs to be your captain. Any of McDonald, Robinson, and Langway would be decent assistants.

Forwards

You got a mini-steal on Lalonde. I think GMs finally realized he was a little overrated in the past compared to someone like Frank Nighbor, but by the time he got to you, he was a great pick. I'm not quite sure about his linemates - both Barber and McDonald bring a lot of grit and Barber brings defensive play, but as even strength scorers, they are just so-so. Worse, I think both Barber and McDonald heavily relied on playmaking centers for their offense. Is Lalonde a playmaking center? Yes and no. He's definitely a good playmaker, but most of the stories about him are about his grit and goal scoring. He wasn't as much of a pure goal scorers as Joe Malone, but he definitely was more of a shooter than Nighbor or Cyclone Taylor. Lalonde probably can carry the playmaking of the line, but you aren't getting the most of his goal scoring when you have linemates who can't really get him the puck back. It is a tougher than average first line though, with Lalonde an absolute beast and his wings capable of holding their own (at least until Barber dives)

Second line is better defensively than most, but it really relies heavily on Frank McGee for offense, and I'm not sure if he's up for the task. He was basically Russell Bowie's equal for 3 years, then retired while Bowie kept going, and opinions on Bowie vary widely. Lehtinen is better than average offensively for a checker... but he's still a checker. Blair Russell seemed like more Russell Bowie's defensive conscience in real life than much of a scorer. If Frank McGee had more defensive credentials, this would be a pretty good two-way line, but I don't think he has all that much there.

Third line is similar to the second - a goal scoring center who is going to have to create a lot on his own, flanked by wingers who are more there for their non offensive abilities. Mondou is a decent checker, and O'Reilly is a god in the trenches, but they seem like more 4th liners to me. Again, I'm not sure if MacLeish is enough to carry the scoring of an ATD line, even a third one.

I'd say the 4th line is a strange mix of players, but it actually follows your team concept - a scoring center, flanked by two guys on his wings who are pure checkers. Not sure how often Draper played the wing though.

It's an interesting team concept, definitely built from the middle out.

Your spares are both centers - offensive-minded Trihey and defensive-minded Skrudland. What's the plan if a winger is injured?

Defense

First pairing is the strength of your team. I don't think they are quite as good overall as Chara - Kelly, but they are likely the best shutdown pairing in the draft, and Robinson was a fantastic puck rusher on top of it all. Nobody can totally stop Phil Esposito, but if anyone can slow him down, it's this pairing.

Second pairing seems pretty average with Zubov maybe slightly above average for an offensively-oriented #3 and Harper seems like a typical defensive-minded #4. His size will be nice next to Zubov.

I think being used as a bottom pairing puck mover is the best role for the mystery man Sologubov. I wish you had gotten a partner who could carry the pairing defensively though. Johansson is okay, but I would prefer better next to someone who made a career playing against weak competition

Sydor is a decent spare, nothing special, won't hurt you.

Goaltending

I honestly don't think Broda is anything special in the regular season here - he always finished behind Brimsek and Durnan in All-Star voting, often way behind, except in the two seasons when his team led the league in GAA (then he beat out Brimsek by 1 point once and won over Brimsek via tiebreak the other time). Broda's value does go up quite a bit in the playoffs though.

What Broda really does have going for him in the regular season are durability and longevity. The man only missed 6 regular season games in the 11 full seasons he played over 14 years (he missed almost 3 years because of the War)! Now, seasons were 50-60 games back then, so I don't know if Broda reaches Brodeur/Hall level of where the backup literally doesn't matter. But his backup will barely play. So why did you draft two of them?

Either way, I see Vernon and Osgood as solid, but unspectacular backups. Vernon has higher highs between the two of them. It's not a big deal, but I'd consider dropping one of them for help up front.

Special teams

I would love the first PP with Barber on the point, but your scoring forwards are so thin, you probably need him to say up front. Sologubov is a question mark on a first unit though.

Blair Russell and Rod Langway really have no business on an ATD powerplay. If you keep Lecavalier in the lineup (more on that later), I would suggest this powerplays:

Barber - Lalonde - McDonald - Zubov - Robinson
MacLeisch - McGee - LeCavalier - Sologubov - Johanssen

It isn't the greatest (only Lalonde and Zubov are strong for their roles), but at least you don't have Langway or Russell on the PP.

As for the PK, I have no idea why you don't have Rod Langway on the first unit. Langway, Robinson, and Harper are a fantastic PKing trio. Johansson is fairly subpar as a fourth penalty killer, though.

With so many defensively oriented forwards, you can do better than MacLeish on the PK, I would use these pairs of PK forwards:

Draper - Lehtinen
Russell - Barber
Mondou - Lonsberry

Both Russell and Mondou are capable of playing C

Wow, that's a lot of checking forwards!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ck26 View Post
On my phone, but thoughts about my own team

Good: defense. I think Robinson and Langway is the best defensive d pair in the draft. They'll shut down whoever. Can also split them (Robinson Harper and zubov Langway and maintain big small / rushing stay at home / pick poise play it safe on both pairs. That's huge.

Versatility. Every line has a checker, every line has a scorer, and every line has grit and nastiness.

Turk Broda. Homeboy can play. Both backups have won Cups and one has a (dubious) Smythe.

Character. No head cases here. Lanny. Lehtinen. Langway. Draper. Tough customers, but no cancers and no hotheads except maybe Newsy.

Bad: proven scoring. Newsy is a monster. Lanny is ok. Lots of the offense -- McGee, Russel, Trihey, Sologubov -- beat up on questionable opposition.

No real playmakers up front. Kind of a caveman offense, and the lack of great passers may set back the scoring we DO have. Robinson, Zubov and Sologubov must help here.

Lines. No outright shutdown line, though the parts are there. A huge offensive opponent might require we juggle Draper, Lehtinen, Mondou, Russel, etc to get one real shutdown crew together. Hopefully our d and goalie will make that unnecessary.
The biggest strength of your team is definitely the top defensive pairing, and the biggest weakness is definitely the lack offense in a couple ways - no real natural playmakers though I think you can force Lalonde to adopt that role adequately, and the scoring from your wingers really drops off past the top two.

You seem to be going for the same model as the 1940s Leafs - scoring centers, surrounded by checking wingers, but the quality your centers versus the rest of our fantasy league isn't as high. I don't know - in the modern game, it does seem a little off that you don't have anyone playing C who will take the tough defensive assignments.

Did Vincent LeCavalier play wing for team Canada ever? If he did, you might consider moving him to wing and having Draper or Russell center a checking unit - you definitely have the pieces (and then some) to put together a strong checking line if you wished to do so.


Last edited by TheDevilMadeMe: 03-26-2013 at 11:06 PM.
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03-27-2013, 01:06 AM
  #12
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Coaching and Leadershipamazing breakdown
Newsy Lalonde was a legendary leader and absolutely 100% needs to be your captain. Any of McDonald, Robinson, and Langway would be decent assistants.

It's an interesting team concept, definitely built from the middle out.

It's not a big deal, but I'd consider dropping one of them for help up front.

Both Russell and Mondou are capable of playing C
Awesome writeup, thank you for it ... USA / Mexico soccer tonight, Tech N9ne concert tomorrow, but Thursday I owe you a reciprocal one. You shined a light on a lot of things I realized were inevitable about 15 rounds ago as well as a couple new ones, but I want to touch on a couple briefly.

Lalonde's a William Wallace character, no doubt, but I only have two Broad Street Bullies on my team ... the gentleman McDonald is more "in tune" with the team, because I don't really have any ruffians except Lalonde himself and maybe O'Reilly. If Newsy was skating in Bobby Clarke's spot, I would definitely give him the C, but as is I think Lanny's the guy.

Didn't consider Broda's durability when picking up Osgood ... I have a forward in mind, so I'll sleep on it.

Wanted MacLeish on the PK because he's my best defensive center after Draper ... didn't consider Mondou and Russel there, will probably change that.

Sidney Crosby out of position as a scoring winger would trouble me ... Kris Draper out of position as a grinder doesn't. He'll probably take a hit in a few peoples' eyes, but his defense, faceoffs and PK ability is worth it.

Edit: Dick Irvin too tough? Maybe, but my backup plan was Punch Imlach. There aren't any flaky wimps on this team ... I won't argue these are the 20 mentally toughest guys to ever lace 'em up, but this crew won't break. Too much character, too many leaders, too much grit and determination.


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03-27-2013, 03:46 AM
  #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ck26 View Post
Awesome writeup, thank you for it ... USA / Mexico soccer tonight, Tech N9ne concert tomorrow, but Thursday I owe you a reciprocal one. You shined a light on a lot of things I realized were inevitable about 15 rounds ago as well as a couple new ones, but I want to touch on a couple briefly.

Lalonde's a William Wallace character, no doubt, but I only have two Broad Street Bullies on my team ... the gentleman McDonald is more "in tune" with the team, because I don't really have any ruffians except Lalonde himself and maybe O'Reilly. If Newsy was skating in Bobby Clarke's spot, I would definitely give him the C, but as is I think Lanny's the guy.
I can see the point of not really having hooligans to follow Lalonde's example, but I would still make him captain. Probably not a big deal though.

Quote:
Didn't consider Broda's durability when picking up Osgood ... I have a forward in mind, so I'll sleep on it.

Wanted MacLeish on the PK because he's my best defensive center after Draper ... didn't consider Mondou and Russel there, will probably change that.
Are you overrating MacLeish's defense or am I underrating it? I get the impression that he was the only center on the 70s Flyers not to be particularly great defensively.

Quote:
Sidney Crosby out of position as a scoring winger would trouble me ... Kris Draper out of position as a grinder doesn't. He'll probably take a hit in a few peoples' eyes, but his defense, faceoffs and PK ability is worth it.
Yeah, you're right, it's much easier for grinders to move to the wing without losing anything than it is for scorers. Will Draper be taking faceoffs for the 4th line? The big thing that I think every team needs is at least one center (preferably two) who can be counted on for defensive zone draws.
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03-27-2013, 08:33 AM
  #14
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New Jersey Swamp Devils



Head Coach: Glen Sather
Assistant Coach: Roger Neilson

Sid Abel(A) - Phil Esposito - George Armstrong(C)
Ilya Kovalchuk - Milan Novy - Daniel Alfredsson(A)
Tony Leswick - Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Ed Sandford- Bill Thoms - Rejean Houle
Clint Smith
Rejean Houle will swap places with Toppazzini when we face Hartford, to check Bobby Hull

Paul Coffey - Bill White
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson
Gary Bergman - Doug Young
Miroslav Dvorak - Bob Dailey

Frank Brimsek
Jiri Kralik

PP
Sid Abel - Phil Esposito - Daniel Alfredsson
Ilya Kovalchuk - Paul Coffey

Milan Novy - Bill Thoms - George Armstrong
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson

PK
Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Tom Johnson - Bill White

Bill Thoms - Tony Leswick
Gary Bergman - Doug Young

Sid Abel - Daniel Alfredsson will take some shifts to press for SHGs

Estimated Minutes (regular season)

forwardESPPPKTotal
Sid Abel15 4120
Phil Esposito175022
George Armstrong153018
Ilya Kovalchuk135018
Milan Novy123015
Daniel Alfredsson134118
Tony Leswick110314
Ken Mosdell110314
Jerry Toppazzini110314
Ed Sandford7007
Bill Thoms62311
Rejean Houle7007
Total1382614178
Phil Esposito gets his extra time by taking long shifts, mostly at the expense of Novy and Thoms
Houle and Toppazzini flip ES minutes when facing Hartford/Bobby Hull

defenseESPPPKTotal
Paul Coffey196025
Bill White190423
Lloyd Cook152<117
Tom Johnson181423
Gary Bergman120315
Doug Young90312
Total92914114
Bergman-Johnson will sometimes be paired together, mostly in defensive situations
Only 9 of 46 min of ES ice time when neither the top pairing nor Tom Johnson is on the ice

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03-27-2013, 08:51 AM
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New Jersey Swamp Devils



Head Coach: Glen Sather
Assistant Coach: Roger Neilson

Sid Abel(A) - Phil Esposito - George Armstrong(C)
Ilya Kovalchuk - Milan Novy - Daniel Alfredsson(A)
Tony Leswick - Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Ed Sandford- Bill Thoms - Rejean Houle
Clint Smith
Rejean Houle will swap places with Toppazzini when we face Hartford, to check Bobby Hull

Paul Coffey - Bill White
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson
Gary Bergman - Doug Young
Miroslav Dvorak - Bob Dailey

Frank Brimsek
Jiri Kralik

PP
Sid Abel - Phil Esposito - Daniel Alfredsson
Ilya Kovalchuk - Paul Coffey

Milan Novy - Bill Thoms - George Armstrong
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson

PK
Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Tom Johnson - Bill White

Bill Thoms - Tony Leswick
Gary Bergman - Doug Young

Sid Abel - Daniel Alfredsson will take some shifts to press for SHGs

Estimated Minutes (regular season)

forwardESPPPKTotal
Sid Abel15 4120
Phil Esposito175022
George Armstrong153018
Ilya Kovalchuk135018
Milan Novy123015
Daniel Alfredsson134118
Tony Leswick110314
Ken Mosdell110314
Jerry Toppazzini110314
Ed Sandford7007
Bill Thoms62311
Rejean Houle7007
Total1382614178
Phil Esposito gets his extra time by taking long shifts, mostly at the expense of Novy and Thoms
Houle and Toppazzini flip ES minutes when facing Hartford/Bobby Hull

defenseESPPPKTotal
Paul Coffey196025
Bill White190423
Lloyd Cook152<117
Tom Johnson181423
Gary Bergman120315
Doug Young90312
Total92914114
Bergman-Johnson will sometimes be paired together, mostly in defensive situations
Only 9 of 46 min of ES ice time when neither the top pairing nor Tom Johnson is on the ice
Just some quick comments on the team:

The first unit is set up to be very similar to the unit Esposito had in Boston. Coffey was not Bobby Orr overall, but he is the only defenseman in history to be in Orr's class at the transition game. And Sid Abel and George Armstrong are basically better versions of Cashman and Hodge. Abel is so much better than Cashman, I don't need to say anything further, but I really do think Armstrong is quite a bit better than Hodge too. Hodge was bad defensively and inconsistent and both Harry Sinden and Don Cherry thought he had a bad attitudge - Armstrong is very good defensively and very consistent and was the the ultimate team player and captain. And I'm honestly not sure if Armstrong is any worse than Hodge offensively. These are their top 20 finishes:

Armstrong:
G 13, 15, 16, 19, 20
A 11, 12, 17, 18
P 15, 16, 16, 18, 18

Hodge:
G 4, 4, 4, 16, 20
A 4, 8, 12
P 3, 4, 5, 20

Hodge basically has 3 peak seasons on Armstrong and very little else, and those three seasons he happened to play on Boston's powerplay with Phil Esposito, Bobby Orr, and Johnny Bucyk, a powerplay that curbstomped the league whether Ken Hodge or Pie McKenzie was at RW. And Armstrong played on the most defensive team of the O6 era, a team known for holding back Frank Mahovlich's stats, while Hodge played for the offensive-minded Bruins in an unbalanced league, almost always with Phil Esposito, and usually with Bobby Orr on the ice.

The second line is the classic "change-up." After the first line is finished grinding defenses into dust, those defensemen have to adjust to the speed, skill, and European-style offense of the second line.

Biggest strengths of the team:
  • The Esposito-Coffey-Abel axis is awesome. Jari Kurri is a very good ATD first liner and Paul Coffey outscored him while the two were in Edmonton together.
  • I think this is a very good Glen Sather team - Sather teams started with offensive superstars and then added role players to play defense around them, so the stars didn't have to.
  • I think Frank Brimsek is right up there with Tretiak as the best goalie after the usual top 6 or 7.

Possible weaknesses:
  • George Armstrong has everything you want for him to be a very good second line glue guy (except speed I guess), but he's not really ideal for a first line. Still, he really fits the line stylistically. I think an Abel - Espo - Alfy line would be killer, but I think I probably need Alfy's playmaking for the second line.
  • The second line could have better chemistry. Statistically, Novy was a slightly better goal scorer than a playmaker, and the line would have better chemistry if this were reversed. On the bright side, Kovalchuk is an end-to-end player who doesn't necessarily use his linemates that much anyway, and Alfy is a very smart player who can adjust his game based on his line's needs. Alfy is actually slightly better as a playmaker than a goal scorer, which is fairly rare for a wing.

It was a conscience decision to worry about getting stronger second line wingers than the center. Why? If Phil Esposito is taking the long shifts he's famous for, he's cutting ice time from the other centers, not the wingers.


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03-28-2013, 12:20 AM
  #16
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Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
New Jersey Swamp Devils



Head Coach: Glen Sather
Assistant Coach: Roger Neilson

Sid Abel(A) - Phil Esposito - George Armstrong(C)
Ilya Kovalchuk - Milan Novy - Daniel Alfredsson(A)
Tony Leswick - Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Ed Sandford- Bill Thoms - Rejean Houle
Clint Smith
Rejean Houle will swap places with Toppazzini when we face Hartford, to check Bobby Hull

Paul Coffey - Bill White
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson
Gary Bergman - Doug Young
Miroslav Dvorak - Bob Dailey

Frank Brimsek
Jiri Kralik

PP
Sid Abel - Phil Esposito - Daniel Alfredsson
Ilya Kovalchuk - Paul Coffey

Milan Novy - Bill Thoms - George Armstrong
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson

PK
Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Tom Johnson - Bill White

Bill Thoms - Tony Leswick
Gary Bergman - Doug Young

Sid Abel - Daniel Alfredsson will take some shifts to press for SHGs

Estimated Minutes (regular season)

forwardESPPPKTotal
Sid Abel15 4120
Phil Esposito175022
George Armstrong153018
Ilya Kovalchuk135018
Milan Novy123015
Daniel Alfredsson134118
Tony Leswick110314
Ken Mosdell110314
Jerry Toppazzini110314
Ed Sandford7007
Bill Thoms62311
Rejean Houle7007
Total1382614178
Phil Esposito gets his extra time by taking long shifts, mostly at the expense of Novy and Thoms
Houle and Toppazzini flip ES minutes when facing Hartford/Bobby Hull

defenseESPPPKTotal
Paul Coffey196025
Bill White190423
Lloyd Cook152<117
Tom Johnson181423
Gary Bergman120315
Doug Young90312
Total92914114
Bergman-Johnson will sometimes be paired together, mostly in defensive situations
Only 9 of 46 min of ES ice time when neither the top pairing nor Tom Johnson is on the ice
Coaching
An above average coach, and he has the X's and O's assistant that he should have. Definitely fits your team concept.

Leadership
Solid overall with tons up front, but maybe lacking on the back-end. Not sure if that matters to people, but I always like to have a forwards leader and a defensemen leader, and I'm not sure who yours would be on D.

Forwards
First Line: A great line. This is the correct way to build a line around Phil Esposito. I don't really have much to say, it's a dangerous line that will tear apart defenses that are a little on the soft/small side.

Second Line: A line that is kind of difficult for me to evaluate. I think it lacks playmaking. IMO Alfredsson's playmaking won't be at it's full potential because he is the defensive conscience of the line. It also lacks toughness, but I don't think that's as big a deal as some other lines because it's not going to be the type of line that has to dump in and dig out the puck. I'm a little lower on Novy than some others might be...His Czech League finishes are impressive, but he was on what looks to be the powerhouse team in the league, a situation that the other Czech stars who he is often compared to, were not in. On the other hand, it is a completely different look than the first line which should throw teams off, and the Coffey to Kovalchuk outlet seems real deadly. I think this is a line that ends up looking better when you start factoring in the total team picture than it does standing alone. At least an average 2nd line, and maybe more.

Third Line: A good shutdown/defensive line, which is exactly what you need here. They won't score a ton, but that's not their job, and you have plenty of scoring on your first two lines.

Fourth Line: Another defensive-minded line, which again, I think was the way to go. It would have been too much for your 3rd line if they didn't have some help from these guys.

Overall: Two offensively powerful scoring lines supported by defensive 3rd and 4th lines. I love the 1st line, but the 2nd is hard for me to get a read on. As a total package I think these forwards work well.

Defense
1st Pair: Bill White is a great partner for Coffey that will be a rock defensively when Coffey is doing his thing. Taking overall team building strategy into account, I think this is about as good as you can do when it comes to building a team around Coffey and selecting a partner for him.

2nd Pair: These guys will be going up against the other teams' best forwards most of the time. They are below average for that role, but not bad by any means, and there wasn't really any way around that with this team. They are both defense first guys, and definitely much better than your average 2nd pairing defensively. I also think they are above average overall as a 2nd pairing. I like Bergman taking some of Cook's ES minutes to keep him fresher.

3rd Pair: I think Bergman is a higher end #5. I'm not sure about Doug Young, he's probably slightly below to below average for a #6, but I think this is a good 3rd pairing because of Bergman.

Overall: Considering how difficult it is to build around Coffey I think you did a good job. Looking at them individually, I see a slightly above average #1 (Coffey), average #2 (Johnson), high-end #3 (White), average #4 (Cook), high-end #5 (Bergman), slightly below to below average #6 (Young). The partners on each pairing fit well with each other.

Goaltending
In my eyes it was an absolute must for you to have above average goaltending with this type of team and you definitely have it in Brimsek. I have him below Tretiak, but solidly at #9.

Special Teams
Powerplay: First unit is downright scary with an elite blueline and elite net front presence. Watch out. The second unit is below average, but it looks like Kovalchuk-Coffey will be out there a lot of the time to help. I also think the first unit is a lot more important on the PP...unlike the PK, where I think both units need to be good.

Penalty Kill: First unit is very solid. Thoms seems like he could be a little weak on the 2nd unit. Wouldn't mind seeing more evidence to support him in this role.

Summary
A well put together team with some really tough guys to build around. After their first two selections I was really looking forward to seeing how this team came out. This is only my 3rd ATD, but this has to be one of, if not the, best Esposito or Coffey teams. These guys will score a lot of goals, and stopping that first line with Coffey behind them is going to be extremely difficult. If you're a team that has a weak PK, you're in big trouble against these guys. Being able to somewhat neutralize both Esposito and Coffey is probably the key to beating these guys, which is no easy task. A strong entry.

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03-28-2013, 01:03 AM
  #17
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Thanks for the review Hawkey Town. I agree with most of it (not surprising since it was mostly positive). As always, I'll focus on parts that I don't entirely agree with or have something to add to.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkey Town 18
Leadership
Solid overall with tons up front, but maybe lacking on the back-end. Not sure if that matters to people, but I always like to have a forwards leader and a defensemen leader, and I'm not sure who yours would be on D.
Usually I like having a defenseman wear a letter, and usually I don't like having 2 forwards on the same line wearing letters to spread things out, but how can I possibly not give George Armstrong and Sid Abel letters? Last year's NJ Devils had Parise with the C and Kovalchuk with the A on the same line and that worked pretty well.

Anyway, Doug Young seems like the best candidate for wearing a letter among the defensemen - he was captain of the Detroit Red Wings that won back to back Cups in the 1930s, and even though he didn't play in the playoffs for the second Cup due to injury, it was well known that he was still the vocal leader in the dressing room. Would you give Young a letter? I'm reluctant since he's just the #6 defenseman and it's not like guys need letters to actually show leadership. I also like Alfy as the leader of the European line. Or I could go with the old "Tom Johnson won a crap ton of Cups and nobody complained about his character, he can be an A" thing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkey Town 18
3rd Pair: I think Bergman is a higher end #5. I'm not sure about Doug Young, he's probably slightly below to below average for a #6, but I think this is a good 3rd pairing because of Bergman.
I honestly disagree with you about Young - I think a guy who got a handful of All-Star votes 3 times and had 1 big playoff (he was injured for the 2nd Cup but was considered a key part of the first Cup) is a pretty typical #6 in this thing, more or less on the same level as someone like Bob Armstrong or Jack Portland, just to name two guys off the top of my head. It's kind of splitting hairs though when you say he's probably slightly below average and I say he's pretty average.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hawkey Town 18
Penalty Kill: First unit is very solid. Thoms seems like he could be a little weak on the 2nd unit. Wouldn't mind seeing more evidence to support him in this role.
Unfortunately most of the articles that mention Thoms seem to be behind a pay wall. For some reason, the NY Times seems to have a lot about him - anyone here have a NY Times subscription?

I'm actually happy to have a discussion about Thoms, because I really want to know what people think about just how good the evidence of his defense is:

This is what I do have (It's all from Billy's profile from last year, but Billy didn't go out of his way to sell Thoms):

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Pelletier
Although he didn't have the polish of Joe Primeau, he was nevertheless an excellent two-way center and got his share of points.
...
He played five good years for the Black Hawks where he quietly continued to be one of the NHL's best two-way centers. He was said to be very adept with the poke-check and was a very good stickhandler.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lloyd Percival
Some people claim that the style of hockey played today makes stick checking of the old type, once used so sucessfully by the such "greats" as Frank Nighbor, Bill Thoms, Joe Primeau, and Frank Boucher, an ineffective skill. However any...
-Lloyd Percival, The Hockey Handbook, 1961, pg 178 (unfortunately google books doesn't have the rest of the quote)

Quote:
Manger Paul Thompson of the Chicago Blackhawks is mighty happy with the way his first line of Bill Thoms, Doug Bentley, and Bill Mosienko are rounding into shape for the NHL wars.

When Minneapolis sports fans attend the Hawks intra-squad exhibition here next Wednesday, they will see "the fastest line in the National Hockey League," he said.
Calgary Herald, Oct 21, 1943

Quote:
He was obtained from the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1938 and was an outstanding player at center, left wing, and defense.
Windsor Daily Star, Jan 10, 1945

So what do we know about Thoms? He was really fast, versatile (so probably smart), and was known for his poke or stick check to some degree. Lloyd Percival clearly was impressed by his stick check to list him with those other names. Those are all key attributes to a penalty killer. It's really hard to find actual quotes about penalty killing for guys who played before World War 2, so you really have to judge them by their skill set as much as anything.

I guess my task over the next week will be to try to find more on Thoms' defense. If I can't, I might have to break down and use Rejean Houle on the PK (Houle played center for a number of years so he'll take the faceoffs for it).

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03-28-2013, 11:36 AM
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Usually I like having a defenseman wear a letter, and usually I don't like having 2 forwards on the same line wearing letters to spread things out, but how can I possibly not give George Armstrong and Sid Abel letters? Last year's NJ Devils had Parise with the C and Kovalchuk with the A on the same line and that worked pretty well.

Anyway, Doug Young seems like the best candidate for wearing a letter among the defensemen - he was captain of the Detroit Red Wings that won back to back Cups in the 1930s, and even though he didn't play in the playoffs for the second Cup due to injury, it was well known that he was still the vocal leader in the dressing room. Would you give Young a letter? I'm reluctant since he's just the #6 defenseman and it's not like guys need letters to actually show leadership. I also like Alfy as the leader of the European line. Or I could go with the old "Tom Johnson won a crap ton of Cups and nobody complained about his character, he can be an A" thing.
I should have been a little more clear...I think the letters have been given to the right guys. Looking beyond just the letters, I think that the group of defensemen on any team need a leader among themselves, someone that understands the position and what the coach is asking them to do. It's tough for a forward to tell a defenseman how he should be playing. This is way way down the list in terms of importance, and I can't imagine it will be a deciding factor for anyone during regular season rankings or a playoff series, but like you said, my review was mostly positive, which feels unhelpful, so this was something I could nit-pick.


Quote:
Unfortunately most of the articles that mention Thoms seem to be behind a pay wall. For some reason, the NY Times seems to have a lot about him - anyone here have a NY Times subscription?

I'm actually happy to have a discussion about Thoms, because I really want to know what people think about just how good the evidence of his defense is:

This is what I do have (It's all from Billy's profile from last year, but Billy didn't go out of his way to sell Thoms):


-Lloyd Percival, The Hockey Handbook, 1961, pg 178 (unfortunately google books doesn't have the rest of the quote)



Calgary Herald, Oct 21, 1943



Windsor Daily Star, Jan 10, 1945

So what do we know about Thoms? He was really fast, versatile (so probably smart), and was known for his poke or stick check to some degree. Lloyd Percival clearly was impressed by his stick check to list him with those other names. Those are all key attributes to a penalty killer. It's really hard to find actual quotes about penalty killing for guys who played before World War 2, so you really have to judge them by their skill set as much as anything.

I guess my task over the next week will be to try to find more on Thoms' defense. If I can't, I might have to break down and use Rejean Houle on the PK (Houle played center for a number of years so he'll take the faceoffs for it).
This is a good start, but I wouldn't mind seeing a little more. Splitting 2nd unit PK time between Thom's and Houle is another option to look into.

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03-28-2013, 11:52 AM
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Hartford Whalers



Coach: Al Arbour

Bobby Hull - Sergei Fedorov (A) - Theo Fleury
Keith Tkachuk - Pavel Datsyuk - Pavel Bure
Igor Liba - Mike Peca (C) - Paul MacLean
Johnny Gottselig - Dan Bain - Tomas Sandstrom
Miroslav Satan, Harry Oliver, Ladislav Trojak

Bill Gadsby - Harvey Pulford (A)
Moose Vasko - Reed Larson
Graham Drinkwater - Robert Svehla
Wade Redden

Harry Lumley
Mike Liut


PP1: Fedorov - Gadsby - Hull - Tkachuk - Bure
PP2: Larson - Drinkwater - Datsyuk - MacLean - Fleury

PK1: Vasko - Pulford - Peca - Fedorov
PK2: Gadsby - Svehla - Datsyuk - Liba


Flame away.

Nice balanced forward core, Gadsby is a nice number 1, I will mirror what I think TDMM said in that I wish you would have went with a more solid defenceman as your 2-6 guys could all be bumped down a level.

That being said every teams has its flaws and overall a well built team, I like the balance of Hull- Federov and Datsyuk - Bure they complement each other nicely. I would have preferred a tough puck winner then Fleury on that top line.

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03-28-2013, 11:55 AM
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DALLAS BLACK HAWKS

OWNER: THAT WOMAN PAUL NEWMAN SAYS IS "TOTALLY ******" OR HER HUSBAND ... OR MAYBE THE MILL ... OR ... WHO CARES, YOU GET YOUR CHECK
GENERAL MANAGER: CK26
HEAD COACH: DICK IRVIN SR
HOTTIE ASSISTANT COACH: JESSIE DAGE
EQUIPMENT MANAGER: THE KID WHO KNEW OGIE OGLETHORPE WASN'T PLAYING BECAUSE HE WAS SUSPENDED

LINEUP
BILL BARBER - NEWSY LALONDE [A] - LANNY MCDONALD [C]
JERE LEHTINEN - FRANK MCGEE - BLAIR RUSSEL
PIERRE MONDOU - RICK MACLEISH - TERRY O'REILLY
ROSS LONSBERRY - VINCENT LECAVALIER - KRIS DRAPER
BRIAN SKRUDLAND - HARRY TRIHEY

ROD LANGWAY [A] - LARRY ROBINSON
SERGEI ZUBOV - TERRY HARPER
CALLE JOHANSSON - NIKOLAI SOLOGUBOV
DARRYL SYDOR

TURK BRODA
MIKE VERNON
CHRIS OSGOOD

PP1: BARBER - LALONDE - MCDONALD - ZUBOV - SOLOGUBOV
PP2: LECAVALIER - MCGEE - RUSSEL - ROBINSON - LANGWAY
PK1: MACLEISH - LEHTINEN - ROBINSON - HARPER
PK2: DRAPER - MONDOU - LANGWAY - JOHANSSON

Very interesting team, I could see this team winning the majority of their games in close low scoring games.

Obviously your top pairing is an elite top pair and will match up nice with teams who do not have secondary scoring in their line up.

That being some fire power is lacking in your line up, your success in the playoffs will stem from the type of team you end up getting.

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03-28-2013, 12:00 PM
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New Jersey Swamp Devils



Head Coach: Glen Sather
Assistant Coach: Roger Neilson

Sid Abel(A) - Phil Esposito - George Armstrong(C)
Ilya Kovalchuk - Milan Novy - Daniel Alfredsson(A)
Tony Leswick - Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Ed Sandford- Bill Thoms - Rejean Houle
Clint Smith
Rejean Houle will swap places with Toppazzini when we face Hartford, to check Bobby Hull

Paul Coffey - Bill White
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson
Gary Bergman - Doug Young
Miroslav Dvorak - Bob Dailey

Frank Brimsek
Jiri Kralik

PP
Sid Abel - Phil Esposito - Daniel Alfredsson
Ilya Kovalchuk - Paul Coffey

Milan Novy - Bill Thoms - George Armstrong
Lloyd Cook - Tom Johnson

PK
Ken Mosdell - Jerry Toppazzini
Tom Johnson - Bill White

Bill Thoms - Tony Leswick
Gary Bergman - Doug Young

Sid Abel - Daniel Alfredsson will take some shifts to press for SHGs

Estimated Minutes (regular season)

forwardESPPPKTotal
Sid Abel15 4120
Phil Esposito175022
George Armstrong153018
Ilya Kovalchuk135018
Milan Novy123015
Daniel Alfredsson134118
Tony Leswick110314
Ken Mosdell110314
Jerry Toppazzini110314
Ed Sandford7007
Bill Thoms62311
Rejean Houle7007
Total1382614178
Phil Esposito gets his extra time by taking long shifts, mostly at the expense of Novy and Thoms
Houle and Toppazzini flip ES minutes when facing Hartford/Bobby Hull

defenseESPPPKTotal
Paul Coffey196025
Bill White190423
Lloyd Cook152<117
Tom Johnson181423
Gary Bergman120315
Doug Young90312
Total92914114
Bergman-Johnson will sometimes be paired together, mostly in defensive situations
Only 9 of 46 min of ES ice time when neither the top pairing nor Tom Johnson is on the ice


Overall a pretty solid well rounded team. I've read your bio on Abel and i'm still a bit concerned that the majority of his success came while playing Center. I'm not saying he can't play LW, but will he do it as well as he played Center? I'm not sure.

Some very good offense for a 2nd line, you should catch teams with weaker 2nd pairings and benefit from that nicely. I'm not sure if they will win a lot of battles among larger pairings or teams with larger, physical puck winners. It will be interesting to see what type of match up your 2nd line will be up against.

Solid 3rd line, they obviously will be your "shut down line" they will not provide as much offense as other 3rd lines, but you did well in making sure you had that taken care of in your 2nd line.

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03-28-2013, 12:10 PM
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Overall a pretty solid well rounded team. I've read your bio on Abel and i'm still a bit concerned that the majority of his success came while playing Center. I'm not saying he can't play LW, but will he do it as well as he played Center? I'm not sure.

Some very good offense for a 2nd line, you should catch teams with weaker 2nd pairings and benefit from that nicely. I'm not sure if they will win a lot of battles among larger pairings or teams with larger, physical puck winners. It will be interesting to see what type of match up your 2nd line will be up against.

Solid 3rd line, they obviously will be your "shut down line" they will not provide as much offense as other 3rd lines, but you did well in making sure you had that taken care of in your 2nd line.
This was something I thought about too, but I came to the conclusion that because Abel is playing with Esposito he will playing a role closer to that of a center than he would be in almost any other LW situation.

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03-28-2013, 12:39 PM
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This was something I thought about too, but I came to the conclusion that because Abel is playing with Esposito he will playing a role closer to that of a center than he would be in almost any other LW situation.
Good point.

He will however still have defensive responsibilities in his own end like keeping an eye on his point etc.. so I guess it could work both ways.

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03-28-2013, 01:43 PM
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Hartford Whalers



Coach: Al Arbour

Bobby Hull - Sergei Fedorov (A) - Theo Fleury
Keith Tkachuk - Pavel Datsyuk - Pavel Bure
Igor Liba - Mike Peca (C) - Paul MacLean
Johnny Gottselig - Dan Bain - Tomas Sandstrom
Miroslav Satan, Harry Oliver, Ladislav Trojak

Bill Gadsby - Harvey Pulford (A)
Moose Vasko - Reed Larson
Graham Drinkwater - Robert Svehla
Wade Redden

Harry Lumley
Mike Liut


PP1: Fedorov - Gadsby - Hull - Tkachuk - Bure
PP2: Larson - Drinkwater - Datsyuk - MacLean - Fleury

PK1: Vasko - Pulford - Peca - Fedorov
PK2: Gadsby - Svehla - Datsyuk - Liba


Flame away.
Coaching

I love Al Arbour. Any team coached by him is going to be competitive. I think he would love having three centermen to send over the boards in a row like Fedorov, Datsyuk and Peca one after another.

I think he is close enough to the top that in any given series he can out-coach even the best. The 1993 Isles Pens series that he won was as David and Goliath as you can get and Al Arbour was the slingshot. He gave his teams the tools to upset a much more talent opponent and stopped a potential dynasty in its tracks.


Forwards

Hull Fedorov Fleury --> I like this line a lot. The best LW of all time has a center than can keep up, clean up his mistakes etc. My only concern is that Fedorov really doesn't have the offensive resume of a key 1st line ATD player. His all-around play makes him belong but he is the third best offensive player on this line. Fleury is a sparkplug, has wheels and puts up points. In the playoffs when Fedorov typically (and Arbour wouldn't accept anything less) picks up his game.. this line is huge.

Tkachuk - Datsyuk - Bure --> another well constructed line in that it has all the cookie cutter parts. Again I think Datsyuk is a little light compared to the better 2nd line centers in this for offense but his overall play picks him up. As always you'll face the issue of Tkachuk in the playoffs but I think this line's effectiveness will depend on the matchups you face.

Liba - Peca (A) - MacLean --> Peca is an Al Arbour type of player. With three centers as capable defensively as you have drafted here you are going to erase a lot of your team's mistakes.

For the fourth line nothing too notable to me, kind of typical.


Defense

I think the defense is a little suspect in their own zone but Arbour and those three centermen are going to help that deficiency a lot.

Larson is going to get murdered facing the competition he will face in a top 4 here. I know he played on the Dead Wings and that will drag down anyones statistics (See Ogrodnick on my team for example) but even adjusted his +/- is bad considering the offensive side of the equation he brings.


Goaltending

Meh really. Not going to kill you but not going to be the difference for you either.


Special Teams

All good with the personnel you have imo.

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03-28-2013, 03:11 PM
  #25
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Thanks for the review. I've been thinking of swapping Drinkwater and Larson as TDMM suggested earlier. The only concern is that it's be two LHS on 2nd and two RHS on 3rd pairing, but then that shouldn't really be a problem... no?

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