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Flyers depth at center

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Old
02-13-2014, 12:05 PM
  #1
WelcomeToGirouxSalem
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Flyers depth at center

Not sure if something like this has been posted yet, sorry if it has!
Looking at the flyers top players/prospects there are a lot of centers:
1) Giroux
2) Vinny
3) Schenn
4) Couturier
5) Laughton
6) Cousins
Im probably forgetting some, but with the young 4 studs (excluding giroux/vinny) we don't have enough room for them. I doubt anyone would take Vinny in a trade so is it getting close to the time to move one or more of them? Or would it be best to let the players like Laughton and Cousins get some big league experience (added value) before shipping them away?
EDIT: I know cousins isn't a huge prospect, but rumor has it he has decent potential.

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02-13-2014, 12:14 PM
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Meh, I'm not about to count Laughton and Cousins as center depth until they've shown something substantial at the NHL level.

I would imagine Vinny is the first odd man out at this point?

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02-13-2014, 12:18 PM
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I really don't think there's a rush to move any of them honestly. Vinny is old but he's still producing. Giroux is one to build the team around. I really think Schenn and Coot have plenty of potential for years to come.

I would just say keep running it with those 4 since, in my opinion, they're doing really well. Don't fix it if it ain't broke.

The Flyers really need to make their moves on the defensive end since I think that's where their big needs are, especially in a #1 to replace Pronger.

They'll probably make some moves once Vinny retires but as of now I think this depth is what's giving the team plenty of strength.

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02-13-2014, 12:29 PM
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We do need a #1, and before we get that #1 D I doubt we will get anywhere deep into the playoffs. Maybe Morin and Hagg will be the 1 2 punch that we need in a few years, and hopefully we don't destroy them like we do with our D prospects. (Our D prospects actually look pretty strong with Lauridsen, MAB, Manning (kind of), and Ghost)

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02-13-2014, 01:05 PM
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The only way the Flyers move some of their center depth is for #1 Dman.
Weber or a bonefide #1 would need to be coming to Philly for the Flyers to move some of the centers, IMHO.

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02-13-2014, 01:43 PM
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Historically the Flyers have been deep and strong at Center... and have often moved centers to wing, or used them in trades -- only exception I know is Giroux who was drafted at wing but it became obvious his best future was at center -- Kerr, Gagne, Leclair and many others were centers at one time and shifted to wing. While some centers cannot be effective at wing, it is more often than not that a natural center can adjust... albeit, they may not be at their 100% best, but they fill a need and relieve the log jamb with a move.

I expect the Flyers to work this out as usual and in time the depth will either be moved outside the Organization, moved too wing, or force another player to be moved. It is important to have depth in every position to replace injured players and to allow for player movement that would improve the team. Right now I see Vinny as being important and could be a key player in a possible long playoff run where no team avoids lengthy injuries... I'm not confident at this time that Lecavlier will not eventually find his way back to center once he is 100% healthy and the team falters a bit with the lines as they are now, and the centers as they are.

The future centers may not be in play down the line, and the current centers are not now a problem... nor are they necessarily destined to become a problem. If and when there is a concern, Homer has the flexibility to rectify it with the depth he has.


EDIT: I inadvertently stated Giroux was drafted a Center when I meant to state wing... I have now corrected that error.


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02-13-2014, 01:54 PM
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Center depth is a good thing to have. They can always move to wing and they will be on your team to fill in at center for when there is an injury. You need to build your team down the middle and at defense and the Flyers do the one thing well.

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02-13-2014, 02:38 PM
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I agree with what was said above about the Flyers historically having depth at center. However, I think this is a trend throughout all of the NHL. Forwards, in general, seem to have quite a bit of gray area between being centers and wingers. As previously mentioned, players like Giroux and Leclair could have been either or. I think this opens the door to more depth, which lands us in this situation.

Quality D-men are a little harder to come by. So what I'm getting at is that most team's weaknesses are on the defensive side, whether it's needing a #1 or more depth.

I don't think the center situation in Philadelphia is too wacky and a quite a few teams across the NHL also have tons of offensive depth.

Most teams can score. If you're a forward and don't put up points you're not going to play. Defenseman have some statistics like hits, blocked shots, etc. that you can use to rate them but some (GROSSMANN) can slip through and get time on the ice even if they're average.

It's not a concerning situation to me because I feel like plenty of teams in the league have some depth in their forwards.

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02-13-2014, 02:54 PM
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This is why I'm not a fan of always constantly being logjammed at center. I know the organization can and always does finaggle around it, but it's just an unnecessary complication.

Anyhow, Laughton is ready to make the jump to the third or fourth line as is in my opinion and he'll most definitely be ready come around next season or so. Which means, in my mind, we have six NHL ready centers for four spots and without question have five. Lecavalier doesn't really have long-term importance here aside from the sheer length of his contract. He's also the least useful one of the bunch really. So stick to Giroux-Schenn-Couturier-Hall until Laughton gets up here then I honestly belive moving Giroux to wing would be the best thing to do there, but the organization will never do that I think so either shift Schenn to wing and move Couturier up or shift Hall to wing. Gotta fit Laughton in at center somehow since his defensive acumen is the most effective and promising part of his game.

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02-13-2014, 03:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garbage Goal View Post
This is why I'm not a fan of always constantly being logjammed at center. I know the organization can and always does finaggle around it, but it's just an unnecessary complication.

Anyhow, Laughton is ready to make the jump to the third or fourth line as is in my opinion and he'll most definitely be ready come around next season or so. Which means, in my mind, we have six NHL ready centers for four spots and without question have five. Lecavalier doesn't really have long-term importance here aside from the sheer length of his contract. He's also the least useful one of the bunch really. So stick to Giroux-Schenn-Couturier-Hall until Laughton gets up here then I honestly belive moving Giroux to wing would be the best thing to do there, but the organization will never do that I think so either shift Schenn to wing and move Couturier up or shift Hall to wing. Gotta fit Laughton in at center somehow since his defensive acumen is the most effective and promising part of his game.
Unfortunately, I feel like Laughton's only going to be here long term if he's able/willing to make the transition to wing permanently. I'm of the feeling that Giroux could excel at wing if put to it, but the team clearly wants him at center ice. That leaves Giroux-Schenn-Couturier down the middle for the forsessable future. Unless Laughton develops to the point that they he displaces one of those three (which I doubt he does), his future is only at wing. However, I'd love to see this arrangement in two years, once all these guys are ready to be counted on full time:

Giroux-Schenn-xxx
xxx-Couturier-xxx
xxx-Laughton-xxx

I think that's an arrangement that could get the best out of all four guys.

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02-13-2014, 03:34 PM
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Hall is a natural winger and it is obvious to me that both Chief and Homer have used every opportunity to have him play there as various players have been brought up or in and have centered that line... Hall has only centered it when there has not been a center and Rosehill has been dressed... Hall has been very effective as a winger and very important as one of the main penalty killers. Centering the Fourth Line is not a problem.

If Laughton makes the team, he could easily be slotted as the Fourth Line Center... However, I wouldn't mind Laughton playing in the A for a season with some call ups as needed, with the expectation of his playing more minutes and developing... That opinion seems to be in the minority and his making the Flyers out of Camp looks pretty good... With that I see players like Vandevelde or Raffl moving to make way.

Personally, if a chance of acquiring a good top pairing D-man with a long-term future here arises, I would seriously consider moving some of the center depth... since I agree that good D-men are harder to obtain, and more teams have excess forwards -- which hinders the chances of such a deal, of course -- As it is now, I see no problem with the Flyers' policy of staying strong and deep at center... They have tried to be that way on D with a high percentage of the Cap earmarked there and excess NHL D-men on the roster... unfortunately though, they have not been as successful with the D as they have with Centers.

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02-13-2014, 03:52 PM
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The thing with Hall is...

he has not really played wing full time since 06-07 to the best of my memory.

The Penguins I am sure acquired him and moved him to centre on their 4th when someone went down.

Then when he got put in the AHL for a year by Tampa I think he just spent the year working on his faceoffs by the looks of his stats before and after.

But yeh; he looks fine at RW as well and could definitely play there with Laughton and be a faceoff safety blanket while allowing Laughton to play in his favoured position.

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02-13-2014, 03:56 PM
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Personally, if a chance of acquiring a good top pairing D-man with a long-term future here arises, I would seriously consider moving some of the center depth... since I agree that good D-men are harder to obtain, and more teams have excess forwards -- which hinders the chances of such a deal, of course -- As it is now, I see no problem with the Flyers' policy of staying strong and deep at center... They have tried to be that way on D with a high percentage of the Cap earmarked there and excess NHL D-men on the roster... unfortunately though, they have not been as successful with the D as they have with Centers.
Which 2 centers would you say are untouchable, Giroux & Couts? Because I'm in the minority here with Giroux and Schenn (mostly because I'm hopeful that Schenn will live up to his potential). What if it was for lets say Weber (HYPOTHETICALLY) and they wanted both B.Schenn and Couts to be included in the deal, would you do that?

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02-13-2014, 04:11 PM
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Originally Posted by WelcomeToGirouxSalem View Post
Which 2 centers would you say are untouchable, Giroux & Couts? Because I'm in the minority here with Giroux and Schenn (mostly because I'm hopeful that Schenn will live up to his potential). What if it was for lets say Weber (HYPOTHETICALLY) and they wanted both B.Schenn and Couts to be included in the deal, would you do that?
nope. Weber doesn't fix this team. Suter would be better IMO.

also, why can't laughton play in the ahl....There is no need to "make room" for him.

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02-13-2014, 04:14 PM
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Which 2 centers would you say are untouchable, Giroux & Couts? Because I'm in the minority here with Giroux and Schenn (mostly because I'm hopeful that Schenn will live up to his potential). What if it was for lets say Weber (HYPOTHETICALLY) and they wanted both B.Schenn and Couts to be included in the deal, would you do that?
If we are talking a Weber, then certainly the quality player has to go up... In retrospect, I wish Home could have hammered out a deal with Nashville that would have brought Weber here... Coots and Schenn was and is a dear price, but I'm not so sure I wouldn't give it very serious thought... I wouldn't walk out on that. Personally, I'd consider one of those and Laughton+ a deal that I'd make... with Weber locked up long-term. I believe Weber is the piece the Flyers need for a contender for years to come... and a good center is much easier for the Flyers of obtain or develop, especially when you look at their track record. Had Nashville decided to not match, IMO, it would have been a for the Organization ONE of its greatest moments, below the Cups and Soviet game... They were sooooo close DAMMIT.

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02-13-2014, 04:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WelcomeToGirouxSalem View Post
Which 2 centers would you say are untouchable, Giroux & Couts? Because I'm in the minority here with Giroux and Schenn (mostly because I'm hopeful that Schenn will live up to his potential). What if it was for lets say Weber (HYPOTHETICALLY) and they wanted both B.Schenn and Couts to be included in the deal, would you do that?
I think that might be an underpayment for Weber , even B.Schenn+Couts might not be enough to get Weber.
The Flyers might need to add a pick in addition.
With Timonen close to retirement, we need to rebuild the backend.
It would suck to trade them both but, we may not have any other choice to fix the defense.
He might be the only #1 Dman available at any price.

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02-13-2014, 04:31 PM
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I think that might be an underpayment for Weber , even B.Schenn+Couts might not be enough to get Weber.
The Flyers might need to add a pick in addition.
With Timonen close to retirement, we need to rebuild the backend.
It would suck to trade them both but, we may not have any other choice to fix the defense.
He might be the only #1 Dman available at any price.
the choice we have to fix the defense is be patient, trade expiring contracts for picks, and build the farm. sign a quality ufa as necessary and hope for 2016.

it would be outstanding to trade 4 major pieces for weber and then have him get concussed 2 weeks later.

out organization does not have the farm to take a prospect hit like that again.

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02-13-2014, 04:53 PM
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Unfortunately, I feel like Laughton's only going to be here long term if he's able/willing to make the transition to wing permanently. I'm of the feeling that Giroux could excel at wing if put to it, but the team clearly wants him at center ice. That leaves Giroux-Schenn-Couturier down the middle for the forsessable future. Unless Laughton develops to the point that they he displaces one of those three (which I doubt he does), his future is only at wing. However, I'd love to see this arrangement in two years, once all these guys are ready to be counted on full time:

Giroux-Schenn-xxx
xxx-Couturier-xxx
xxx-Laughton-xxx

I think that's an arrangement that could get the best out of all four guys.
I wouldn't be surprised if the organization sees it that way, but I really don't want that to happen. Someone more familiar with prospects can correct me if I'm wrong, but what I've been lead to believe is that Laughton is a two-way guy and thrives off of being that kind of player. He also seemed way more ready defensively then he was offensively whenever he was considered to be brought up.

Just seems like a huge waste and stupid decision if he's moved to wing. There's some other small differences to playing center but the two big things about it is that it's naturally a much more important position defensively and is the only position that is supposed to take face-offs which are huge in any area of the ice. Giroux and Schenn both aren't and don't seem likely to ever be excellent at face-offs. I haven't really bothered to check Giroux's face-off percentages this season but he ranges from average to slightly above average at it and neither he nor are any different when it comes to defensive play. They're both pretty average at it and don't really standout as excellent defensive players. So to shift Laughton to wing to keep those guys at center seems like a waste similar to if Couturier were shifted to wing.

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02-13-2014, 05:01 PM
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I just don't understand how some of you guys seem to be incapable of grasping that they're not going to trade for a #1D... it's just not realistic.

There are two separate, and very unlikely, things that need to happen in order for a trade like this to happen.

1- A team needs to actually have a reason to trade a #1D, which is obviously very rare since what team doesn't want/need a #1D? If you have one you aren't trading him unless he's old, has some type of problem, or you are massively overpaid for him.

2- The team that needs the #1D has to be willing to part with a massive amount of value and believe that this player will be worth all that they're losing and most likely creating a large hole somewhere else on the the roster.


The only two ways that we're realistically going to get what we need is through the draft or by trading for a player that isn't a #1D but has potential and getting lucky, which would also cost a lot and comes with a lot of risk. Getting a #1D right now wouldn't be worth what it would take to him, you would have to destroy the offense and then we wouldn't be any closer to getting a cup.

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02-13-2014, 05:04 PM
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Tbf to Giroux, amongst elite centres he is pretty good at faceoffs:

13-14: 51.3%
12-13: 54.5%
11-12: 53.7%

He was poor early on as well if I remember correctly; sub 50 until ~game 20.

Toews, Crosby, Bergeron, Datsyuk and Thornton are the only other great centres usually above him.

Kopitar, Staal, Krejci and Spezza are about his level.

Getzlaf, Tavares, Sedin, Zetterberg, Backstrom and Malkin are overall a cut below when a few years are considered.

Last 3 years # in faceoff wins across NHL:

13-14: 5th (3rd in # taken)
12-13: 1st (1st in # taken)
11-12: 4th (6th in # taken)

Without Giroux the Flyers faceoff stats would be pretty bad... he takes such a high proportion of Flyers faceoffs... he is probably overworked in the faceoff department tbh when you look at other teams.


Last edited by Appleyard: 02-13-2014 at 05:11 PM.
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02-13-2014, 05:06 PM
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On the 1D thing the only legit 1D I remember being traded in recent seasons is Pronger who was an old guy at the time of acquisition, needed to be re-signed afterward, and still cost a crapload to get. Phaneuf too depending on how you view him.

1D players don't get traded short of unusual and rare circumstance and usually when that happens it's not a 1D in their youth. Weber is the only possibility I can imagine right now and he would cost an insane amount and be on a risky, long-term contract that we didn't sign him to.

Honestly you also don't necessarily need a 1D like a lot of people on here like to say. If you have a competent two-way group of legit top four D (or something similar) and the rest of your team is strong then that's enough. The bigger problem with our D is that there's only one or two of them that are truly two-way players and half of them are of the same ilk (big and immobile) which is an ilk that usually doesn't work out.

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02-13-2014, 05:09 PM
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Tbf to Giroux, amongst elite centres he is pretty good at faceoffs:

13-14: 51.3%
12-13: 54.5%
11-12: 53.7%

He was poor early on as well if I remember correctly; sub 50 until ~game 20.

Toews, Crosby, Bergeron, Datsyuk and Thornton are the only other great centres usually above him.

Kopitar, Staal and Spezza are about his level.

Getzlaf, Tavares, Sedin, Zetterberg, Backstrom, Malkin and Krejci are overall a cut below when a few years are considered.
He's a little better then I thought so thank you for the numbers. Thought he'd be more around 50/50.

I probably do expect a bit too much there considering his point production, but if you don't limit it to other elite centers there's guys like Hall throughout the league that are definitely better.

Thanks for the information.

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02-13-2014, 05:14 PM
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On the 1D thing the only legit 1D I remember being traded in recent seasons is Pronger who was an old guy at the time of acquisition, needed to be re-signed afterward, and still cost a crapload to get. Phaneuf too depending on how you view him.

1D players don't get traded short of unusual and rare circumstance and usually when that happens it's not a 1D in their youth. Weber is the only possibility I can imagine right now and he would cost an insane amount and be on a risky, long-term contract that we didn't sign him to.

Honestly you also don't necessarily need a 1D like a lot of people on here like to say. If you have a competent two-way group of legit top four D (or something similar) and the rest of your team is strong then that's enough. The bigger problem with our D is that there's only one or two of them that are truly two-way players and half of them are of the same ilk (big and immobile) which is an ilk that usually doesn't work out.
Basically what I'm saying, I also was going to add something similar to your last paragraph but forgot. I'd rather have a balanced group of 6 solid D who are all good at their jobs than one really good D, 3 good D, 2 bad D, and a gutted offensive core. Obviously it's too early to tell, but based off their projections, if Morin, Haag, Gostisbehere, and maybe another D from ADK or a future draft develop properly we might have a pretty solid group in a couple of years. Either way, gutting the team for one player is never a good idea.

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02-13-2014, 05:25 PM
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He's a little better then I thought so thank you for the numbers. Thought he'd be more around 50/50.

I probably do expect a bit too much there considering his point production, but if you don't limit it to other elite centers there's guys like Hall throughout the league that are definitely better.

Thanks for the information.
Even when you look at guys who are not elite players overall he is pretty good:

19th in the NHL in % last year and the year before.

Out of ~85-90 guys a season who qualify for 'faceoff leaders' stats (there in a cutoff at number taken.)

So he has been better than ~80% of regular faceoff guys the last few years.

This year he is still above average amongst those kind of guys. (ofc the bar is raised slightly, as those who take more are generally better, so the average among these guys is ~51% instead of 50... he is 39/85 this year, so even when having a down year he has been better than 55% of those guys.)

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02-13-2014, 05:36 PM
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On the 1D thing the only legit 1D I remember being traded in recent seasons is Pronger who was an old guy at the time of acquisition, needed to be re-signed afterward, and still cost a crapload to get. Phaneuf too depending on how you view him.

1D players don't get traded short of unusual and rare circumstance and usually when that happens it's not a 1D in their youth. Weber is the only possibility I can imagine right now and he would cost an insane amount and be on a risky, long-term contract that we didn't sign him to.

Honestly you also don't necessarily need a 1D like a lot of people on here like to say. If you have a competent two-way group of legit top four D (or something similar) and the rest of your team is strong then that's enough. The bigger problem with our D is that there's only one or two of them that are truly two-way players and half of them are of the same ilk (big and immobile) which is an ilk that usually doesn't work out.
IIRC the Flyers DID sign him to that contract... but Nashville matched the contract and he sign it again with them, which overrode the very same contract that he signed with the Flyers.




... BTW: To those who don't want to gut the Flyers Offense for a player such as Weber... I don't believe anyone here is suggesting anything that would be considered gutting the forwards... Two top notch forwards from a somewhat deep group for one exceptional D-man to add to an average group that will then be losing its aging #1 to retirement.

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