Marcel Hossa has yet to become the sum of all his parts for more than the briefest of periods at the NHL level yet. If he can, the habs have a good top 6 forward for years to come.
Hossa seems to have all the skills needed to become an NHL regular. He's a good skater with a good accurate shot. He also has good enough puckhandling/playmaking skills that it makes you wonder weather he should be a winger or a centre. I'll let you guys argue that one. Imo, until he proves that he belongs at this level, I think it's a mute point.
Hossa has also shown on occasion that he knows how to use his size in the corners and in front of the net.
There is no doubt that Hossa has to give a more consistent effort game in and game out, as he has shown the ability to become invisible for extended periods of time (1 goal in his last 30 games!!! We've hung Perreault and Audette for less!). Hossa must also improve the defensive side of his game.
With 44 NHL games under his belt (and 87 AHL games), its time for Hossa to provehe belongs in the NHL. If coach Julien can light a fire under Marcel's butt this upcoming season I'm sure he'll become a fixture in the habs starting line up. If not......
Marcel Hossa made a favorable impression in the NHL when he first got called up from Quebec, in the AHL. Scoring 3 goals and adding 1 assist in 10 games, he made people in Montreal very excited about him, and most of us were expecting great things from him as last season approached. When he was called up from Hamilton in mid-january, he continued showing great offensive skills, and was still putting up the numbers. However, as games went by, he realized it wasn't all about skills. Night after night, it got harder to notice him on the ice, and at some time he looked lost on the ice...
There are much aspects to appreciate in Marcel's game. As Darren said previously, he does have fluid skating, and a nice wrist shot. He also has decent size, at 6 foot 2, 210 pounds, but rarely takes advantage of it. He could be very effective along the boards, and in the slot, if only he could use more often that strenght he has. I believe the turning point for Hossa in this year's training camp is the head coach's comments on him, saying he wasn't showing enough emotion on the ice.
Since Julien made these comments in the newspaper, Marcel seemed to work a lot harder for the puck on every shift. Perhaps he realized he could easily be sent down in the AHL, and that he's far from being a lock on the big team. If he keeps mixing determination and his relentless attiude with his excellent on ice vision, he's in for a pretty good season, IMO.
btw, I want to thank Darz for the Monday night scouting reports, it was pretty appreciated... and I hope you enjoyed reading my comments as much as I appreciated yours. :p
Actually find his strength along the boards to be one of his strongest assets. He doesn't go out and throw heavy checks but we wins the battles along the boards and protects the puck very well. He has to be one of the strongest players on this team. It's the only thing that would make me reluctant to play him at centre.
Hossa is a tough player to evaluate. He seems to have adequate vision, strength,speed, an above average shot, the rare ability of getting into a good shooting position, though he seems tentative at times. On this board, we have hung the lazy label on him, but I'm not sure it's fair. Sometimes it takes awhile for a player to realize he can do certain things on the ice. He has to learn to be involved on the ice. There are too many shifts where he is reactive rather than proactive. confidence is the word we always use and I guess it applies. A big strong player can contribute with his body when his hands are slumping, that's where coaching will help him. comparisons to other players usually turn out to be kind of stupid, but I won't let that stop me. When I look at Hossa, it's difficult to know what type of player he'll be. Style wise, I'm hoping for something between Ulf Dahlen or Glen Murray. Both were late developers who excel in a positional game. Then again, he could end up at center and be totally different.
I have questionned Hossa's potential on these boards before. I still have the same questions.
I agree with mcphee that if your hands are slumping, you can still be effective. The questions I have had for Hossa is he doesn't seem to NEED the puck.
Ofcourse it is so very early in his career, this could be forgotten if he is nurtured along to become an effective player. I have yet to see him use his size as so many have claimed on these boards. I haven't seen him out muscle a D.
If his name was Mossa instead of Hossa, he would have a lot less pressure and attention. It would be a lot easier to judge him if the Habs could remove the attraction of his name.
Every article I have read about Hossa claims that he is a better setup man than a finisher. He is similar to Saku in this respect because Saku also usually is the setup man rather than the trigger man. I will not judge Hossa until he is given a fair shot at center. Ribeiro is the guy that is occupying the spot at the moment and this is his make it or break it year, so I'm still waiting for Hossa's chance.
As a winger he will be out of his element and will have a hard time scoring goals. He played with Gaborik on his junior team, and looked to set him up. I would put Hossa at center with Zednik and give him a chance to play in his natural spot.
I can understand where management is going with this, but I can't see him excelling on the wing. I just hope we don't trade him and he turns out to be a star like most of the other trades we make.