I think he's a very good 5on5 defenseman, 4on4 too. He's picking his spots to jump up, playing some pretty tough minutes ... and always giving effort. So don't get me wrong, I like Staios, he's a solid guy and a decent defenceman. But it blows me away that he's getting so much ice time. Its too much, and it affects his play.
Part of it is because I'm tired of Ferraro praising Staios even when he screws up (are these two related or something?) and part of it is I just think Staios is not a very good PKer and is a terrible PP guy. It's not for lack of trying ... but he just isn't. He's a very good 22ish minute a night defenceman, that's it.
And Steve isn't getting much more ice-time than Smith and Brewer at 5on5 hockey ... so essentially the Oilers are wearing this guy down by playing him a swack of extra PK and PP minutes ... where he has been downright awful. I just can't see the reasoning.
As a PP guy: The Oilers outscore the opposition by a goal for every 34 minutes of time he is out there, that's worst on the team, even worse than Cory Cross for crying out loud :mad: [Hemsky is the Oilers best at 8 minutes]
As a PK guy: The Oilers get outscored by the opposition every 7 minutes he is out there. Smith is just as bad, they Are D partners, after all, only Horcoff is worse so far. Brewer and Reasoner are excellent at 24 minutes ... and Moreau has been near perfect so far, an incredible streak.
My point ... Staios is a good defencman and a valuable player. Why in the name of Buddha are the Oilers wearing him down with these extra special teams minutes? Its not like they NEED him there, in fact it would be easier to argue that the need him to NOT be there.
I would have liked the Oil to have made an offer for Tverdovsky.Staios would be a much better dman if he wouldn't be overworked. But I see why MacT is relying on him so much as he is more dependable then the others. Could someone make the same case for Horcoff? Please someone show me the reasoning behind minutes and quality ice time this guy gets?
My question to everyone here is who is a better substitute for these situations? Brewer would be now but through the first 12 games he was aweful with and away from the puck. Bergeron makes too many bad clearing passes in the defensive zone to kill penalties, Semenov has not shown enough toughness in front of his own net to give him any pk time, ferguson is only effective in small minutes. PK tends to get him extremely exhausted and mistakes are much more obvious and glaring. That leaves Cross and Smith. Of course Smith is out there with Staios in PK situations leaving only Cross. Brewer and Cross are the number 2 pairing. YOu have Staios and Smith as your #1 pk unit because they are your best 2 defensive defensemen. On the pp they use Staios because he has a knack for knowing when to make a play for the net yet he is defensively responsible. Bergeron is used as the other point man unless they go 4 forwards. There is not a lot more they can do with the personnell they have. They don't have the experienced offensive defenseman that moves the puck well out of his own zone and has the confidence to carry it as well. They have to make due. IMO the forwards are more to blame on both pk and pp. They haven't gotten enough traffic and their ability to get control of the puck in the offensive zone has been lacking. They use simple defensemen and have been trying to simplify the system. You can only take what you get and with the Oilers sometimes that isn't much with the personnell employed.
My question to everyone here is who is a better substitute for these situations?
Well, its the same forwards when the other D are out there, and they are doing much better.
As for who else should be playing the special teams minutes:
On the powerplay ... a forward and either Bergeron or Brewer on the first unit powerplay. Semenov in 4on3 and 5on3 powerplays. The other D shouldn't get a sniff at the top unit.
2nd unit doesn't matter so much ... outside if DET nobody's 2nd PP unit does more than about 10% net anyways. Mostly just make sure they don't give up a SH marker, and be ready for the guy coming out of the box.
On the PK:
Brewer is the best guy IMO, he moves forward a bit too much for my liking, but he's strong enough to clear big guys from the front of the net. He seems to simplify his game on the PK ... and aside from the occasional blunder, seems like the most reliable guy out there for the Oil. Him and Janne did well together on the PK last year, and they seemed to face the first minute or so of it a lot (i.e. the tough part). I really like Cross on the PK too. I have no problem with any of Smith, Staios and Fergie, even Semenov ... just not for as much ice-time, and not as much time against the other team's top unit.