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Old
10-24-2006, 12:25 PM
  #1
Colt.45Orr
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Our Bruins based on the Buffalo model:

The Sabres are the best team in the NHL this year and everyone is talking -and has been talking for awhile- about their 3line attack. This is a team -in my opinion- that would have won the Cup last year had they not lost all of their Dmen in one series.

People talk about the Buffalo model, the B's managment talked about wanting to get there as well... so now it is time to seperate fact from fiction: here is one model of the Sabres line-up:

Jochen Hecht Daniel Briere Ales Kotalik
Jiri Novotny Chris Drury Jason Pominville
Thomas Vanek Derek Roy Maxim Afinogenov
Andrew Peters Paul Gaustad Adam Mair





Now here it is player-by-player with comparables to the Bruins:
Note: not all will be the same obviously, I will highlight where we are falling really short.
Jochen Hecht------Marco Sturm
Daniel Briere -------Marc Savard (both small 5m dollar men)*
Ales Kotalik--------Brad Boyes (size difference, but I would take Boyes)
Jiri Novotny--------Mowers/Hoggan (ugly)
Chris Drury---------Patrice Bergeron (2-way centres)
Jason Pominville----PJ Axellson ugly from offense standpoint
Thomas Vanek -----Glen Murray (one on the way up, other down)
Derek Roy----------Yan Stastny (chipping at each other last game...adv Roy)
Maxim Afinogenov---Phil Kessel (MA HOT right now, Kessel snake-bitten)**
Andrew Peters------Wade Brookbank (both protect teammates and the puck well)
Paul Gaustad-------Wayne Primeau (both are mamoth checking C's)
Adam Mair----------Sean Donovan (advantage us if we had the luxury).

*I think Savard would put up another 97pts if he was playing for the Sabres.
**Maxim is way ahead of Phil right now, but the gap will close as the season goes on... both have the Bure-esque speed and high-flying dangling ability.

So basically we match up well up-front on 9 of the 12 forwards --the trick is to figuere out what to do to fill the gaps. As Wonder Boy pointed out in another thread our 3rd line is alot of their 4th line. We need an injection of skill into the line-up and then see how it turns out from there:

Jochen Hecht---- Daniel Briere--- Ales Kotalik
Marco Sturm----- Marc Savard---Brad Boyes

Jiri Novotny------ Chris Drury--- ---Jason Pominville
Petr Kalus-------- Patrice Bergeron- PJ Axellson

Thomas Vanek---- Derek Roy----- Maxim Afinogenov
Glen Murray-------*********----- Phil Kessel

Andrew Peters---- Paul Gaustad--- Adam Mair
Wade Brookbank-- Wayne Primeau- Sean Donovan


If you look at it this way it appears that we are one talented and offensive 3rd line forward away from matching up well (assuming Kalus can come in and play a strong board-game). I don't mind Statsny at all to be honest, and would like to keep him around somehow.

On D -which I will not get into here yet- we do not have the speed and mobility 6-deep the way the Sabres do -which should allow the forwards more support and passing lane options. Leetch may be a good option in this case to be a #6 who acts in the Nummenin role.

But that is not my point, the Bruins -when healthy- need to add some more talent to the line-up. Axellson is not a good fit on the 2nd line obviously --I would love to see a Axe Vemette deal go down to be honest... in which case Vermette could be our 3rd-line CENTRE option with some O.

Thoughts?

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10-24-2006, 12:58 PM
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and they're doing this without Connolly....damn.

I don't think the B's are one scoring forward away.

Bergeron
Boyes
Sturm
Savard

Kessel is developing (not on Vanek's level yet as a #5 pick)

We fall short in skating and/or skill with Murray, Primeau, Donovan, and Axelsson.

*Despite his great effort against CGY, Murray can be a one-dimentional player.

*Primeau is comparable to Gaustad, the difference being Primeau is on our 3rd-line.

*Donovan--fast, but would be a 4th-line player on Buffalo

*Axelsson--great defensively, but a 4th-line player on Buffalo

Once Kessel settles in I think the B's will be 3/4 forwards shy of what Buffalo has. By all accounts Kalus will be here next year, etc. but we're still a ways away in my opinion.

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10-24-2006, 01:02 PM
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Briere and Savard may be small 5 million dollar men, but Savard is far behind Briere in skill set IMO.

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10-24-2006, 01:07 PM
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Great post Colt...I was actaully going to post a similar thing when I got out of work today. I didn't really have the time to contrust something with the thought I wanted to here at work.

We are certainly trying to put together a similar model but they clearly have the advantage with an extra 2 or 3 guys that have the abilities to be a top 6 forward.

We match up rather nicely until you see Roy vs Stasny...thats a total mismatch and a guy like Roy makes a huge difference when you roll out 3 or 4 scoring lines.

Kessel has a long long way before he gets to Max's level...not only in the scoring department but I think even skating( I notice Kessel seems to be dead tired to the point where he can barely get to the bench at time), he clearly hasnt got to the conitioning level he needs to be at, but the see is there.

PJ is a solid defensive player but I feel as though he is losing a step and is really just a liability in terms of offense out there...the guy produces nothing. I just wonder if he is begining the downside of his career? I always loved the guys attitude and still to but personally someone like Krejic is more appealing even if he is a ways out(younger, more scoring, solid defensively) we need to take a chance on some of the young guys and hope they pan out like Buffalo's did.

Another big gap is our defense and the ability to transtion the puck. It all starts from the backend and Buffalo has 6 defensemen that are fleet of foot and very smart with the puck. Lashoff could be the answer to our problems over a York or Dempsey.

I like what you have done with some of those lines but would possibley tweak.

Sturm Savard Boyes
Kalus Bergeron Muzz
Kessel Krejci Axe
Brookbank Primeau Hoggan/Stansy

Chara B. Stuart
Mara Jurcina
Lashoff M.Stuart

Alberts when healthy for either M Stuart/Jurcina depending on their play.

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10-24-2006, 01:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westfield Eagle View Post
and they're doing this without Connolly....damn.

I don't think the B's are one scoring forward away.

Bergeron
Boyes
Sturm
Savard

Kessel is developing (not on Vanek's level yet as a #5 pick)

We fall short in skating and/or skill with Murray, Primeau, Donovan, and Axelsson.

*Despite his great effort against CGY, Murray can be a one-dimentional player.

*Primeau is comparable to Gaustad, the difference being Primeau is on our 3rd-line.

*Donovan--fast, but would be a 4th-line player on Buffalo

*Axelsson--great defensively, but a 4th-line player on Buffalo

Once Kessel settles in I think the B's will be 3/4 forwards shy of what Buffalo has. By all accounts Kalus will be here next year, etc. but we're still a ways away in my opinion.
I think you misunderstood a good portion of Colts post. You may want to reread that one again.

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10-24-2006, 01:11 PM
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Colt.45Orr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westfield Eagle View Post
We fall short in skating and/or skill with Murray, Primeau, Donovan, and Axelsson.
True, Axe and Donovan can wheel but don't have the skill. Murray has skill (shot) but doesn't have the wheels.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Westfield Eagle View Post
and they're doing this without Connolly....damn.
And JP Dumont... lost 2 top6 forwards without missing a beat (signing a big UFA)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Westfield Eagle View Post

*Despite his great effort against CGY, Murray can be a one-dimentional player.

Once Kessel settles in I think the B's will be 3/4 forwards shy of what Buffalo has. By all accounts Kalus will be here next year, etc. but we're still a ways away in my opinion.
Vanek is pretty 1D in my opinion at this stage too. When your team is scoring a ton nobody notices that though.

I agree, we are not just one forward away... we need that forward and a few upgrades. I think Krejci can eventually become our Pominville and Karsums our Derek Roy... Kalus can hopefully be a strong top6 guy... but all of this is abit optimistic to happen this year. *HOWEVER* what we do know is that Hoggan/Mowers is no the answer to fill these slots.

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10-24-2006, 01:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruinsyear View Post
Kessel has a long long way before he gets to Max's level...not only in the scoring department but I think even skating( I notice Kessel seems to be dead tired to the point where he can barely get to the bench at time), he clearly hasnt got to the conitioning level he needs to be at, but the see is there.



Another big gap is our defense and the ability to transtion the puck. It all starts from the backend and Buffalo has 6 defensemen that are fleet of foot and very smart with the puck. Lashoff could be the answer to our problems over a York or Dempsey.

Good point --Kessel has the electric speed, but his conditioning doesn't seem quite there does it?


So true, I was going to get into the backend --but I was too lazy. Chara has Seabrookitis I think. When I would watch Seabrook live all the time I was never blown away because he never skated very hard... in fact he was playing 40+mins a night and was conserving himself. I would not have believed he would have got 37pts in his rookie year (playing way less mins). Chara is a great conditioned athlete, but perhaps he would be more effective if he was playing 25mins a night instead of 30+. Just a thought.
We do need more support from the back-end. A guy like York or Dempsey cannot do that without being even more of a liability defensively.

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10-24-2006, 01:19 PM
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We are a looooooong way away from being comparible to the Buffalo Sabres. For the most part, those guys have been playing together for years. They have built that team through draft picks, and while it took awhile, now they are the most "gelled" team in the league.

The new NHL is geared towards offense. The Sabres have it. Why? Well one thing that isn't hurting them is that they didn't go out and spend 7.5 million a year on a defenseman. Another thing is that their coach is not an "old school" defensive minded coach. A coach that preaches defense first against a highly offensive team is going to get burned. Especially when we have so much invested in the D, and it is still mediocre. I'm not bashing Chara..... I like Chara, and I'm glad he's here but he came at too high a price in an offensively geared NHL.

I believe we have some good offfensive talent in the system right now. I don't think Lewis is the right man at the helm. He is not geared to coach a winning team in the new NHL. The team needs to think "offense", and they hired a guy who preaches the opposite. It's called Bruins.

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10-24-2006, 01:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bruinsyear View Post
I think you misunderstood a good portion of Colts post. You may want to reread that one again.
What are you talking about?

"If you look at it this way it appears that we are one talented and offensive 3rd line forward away from matching up well"

I disagree with this point. What's the problem?

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10-24-2006, 01:28 PM
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Colt.45Orr
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westfield Eagle View Post
What are you talking about?

"If you look at it this way it appears that we are one talented and offensive 3rd line forward away from matching up well"

I disagree with this point. What's the problem?
To clarify --I meant matching up well on paper (and even that was under the assumption that Kalus could come in here and play well).

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10-24-2006, 01:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colt.45Orr View Post
*HOWEVER* what we do know is that Hoggan/Mowers is no the answer to fill these slots.
Right. They are roster fillers. A FOURTH line of Axelsson-Primeau-Donovan would be more comparable to Gaustad, Mair and Novotny (assuming Connolly comes back).

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10-24-2006, 01:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Colt.45Orr View Post
To clarify --I meant matching up well on paper (and even that was under the assumption that Kalus could come in here and play well).
Fair enough. I *hope* that we're not overvaluing guys like Karsums and Kalus, because if we are then it's gonna take even longer. Are the prospects the B's have comparable to what Buffalo had in Rochester?

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10-24-2006, 01:35 PM
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Right now I feel we're based on the Bills model.


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BOSTON STRONG !!!
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10-24-2006, 01:41 PM
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Great post Colt, and I see where you're going, but Buffalo is eons ahead of our beloved right now IMO.

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10-24-2006, 01:45 PM
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Sorry to post on your board but this is an intriguing thread. Actually to disagree I believe that the bruins have just as much talent as Buffalo barring one or two here and there. The big and I mean BIG difference between the two is chemistry. Hecht, Briere, Drury, Max, Mair and Connolly (not playing yet) all have been playing together for years on the big club. Roy, Pominville, Paille, Gaustad, Peters,Vanek, and Novotny went through the AHL together, almost won a calder together with MIller I may add. Now they have alljust bonded extremely well.

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10-24-2006, 01:49 PM
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Originally Posted by WhamBamCam8 View Post
Great post Colt, and I see where you're going, but Buffalo is eons ahead of our beloved right now IMO.
I concur... very well-thought out post but we certainly can't discount the importance of chemistry.

Every year the amount of turnover on the B's roster is tremendous. Most of the core of this Buffalo team was assembled pre-lockout.

The Sabres lost McKee and Dumont but wow you couldn't tell if they missed those two. Another advantage Buffalo has is that their money's spread over 3-4 lines, whereas our money is disproportionately distributed to our top-end guys. One fial advantage Buffalo has over us is the emergence of their #1 goalie. Miller broke out last season and without a doubt will carry the Sabres this year. Our situation is a little more complicated because Rayzor played himself out of town, Thomas did great last season but is somewhat struggling early, and Hannu was injured last season and off to a slow start this year.


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10-24-2006, 01:49 PM
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Colt.45Orr
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Originally Posted by paille#1 View Post
Sorry to post on your board but this is an intriguing thread. Actually to disagree I believe that the bruins have just as much talent as Buffalo barring one or two here and there. The big and I mean BIG difference between the two is chemistry. Hecht, Briere, Drury, Max, Mair and Connolly (not playing yet) all have been playing together for years on the big club. Roy, Pominville, Paille, Gaustad, Peters,Vanek, and Novotny went through the AHL together, almost won a calder together with MIller I may add. Now they have alljust bonded extremely well.
Great point. Gaustad -for example- had his coming out party in that Calder Cup run... hopefully the Bruins can do the same thing with the K-kids...but at the same time I want them to get a shot with these injuries that are happening right now.

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10-24-2006, 01:51 PM
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I would be very interested to see how many resources the Sabres have spent "bringing in" vs "going out" players.

I.E. Boston trys to solve problem with 7.5 Chara and 5 Savard

Buffalo solves problem with? Losing and being patient to build guys.

Now I am NOT saying that Boston's current brass will not take this style of "problem" solving - but our revolving door policies from before have left an imprint on this team.

I would be curious to look at this in 3-4 years time when some of our kids come up and Buffnblo has to pay big bucks to keep their boys in check.

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10-24-2006, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Colt.45Orr View Post
Great point. Gaustad -for example- had his coming out party in that Calder Cup run... hopefully the Bruins can do the same thing with the K-kids...but at the same time I want them to get a shot with these injuries that are happening right now.
With guys like Bergeron, Boyes and Kessel I believe that Boston will be great in a few years IF they make the right moves. One of them is letting Hannu keep the number 1 job and play 50 games or more. Even if it isn't working out he could use the experience. Add in Stuart, Jurcina, Chara and the other Stuart and that is a solid start to a defensive core. When these guys gel together which might take another year, they will be sick

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10-24-2006, 01:58 PM
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The good thing about Buffalo is that they have many players that are similiar in pay status. No superstars...and they mostly all fall under 5 mill to 2 mill range. When one guy has a good year they can ship him out and replace him with a similiar talent but less salary. They can have a revolving door of talent which would allow them to maintain a desirable salary. Unlike the Bruins who have people like Chara, who could be untradable due to his high salary. I like Chara but the Bruins have a few awesome guns and a few whimpy guns compared to Buffalo who have many great guns.
The Bruins tried to build thier new team under the Buffalo mold and I thought I heard them say that they wanted no superstars. They kind of steered away from this. The Bruins are trying to have scoring lines like Buffalo but a work ethic of Calgary. That is the plan as I see it and I am all aboard. Will take a few years tho. We may need to have a few crumy years to draft some special talent tho.

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10-24-2006, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Westfield Eagle View Post
Fair enough. I *hope* that we're not overvaluing guys like Karsums and Kalus, because if we are then it's gonna take even longer. Are the prospects the B's have comparable to what Buffalo had in Rochester?
I am certainly not the expert on this, but I do not think it is unreasonable to hope/expect Krejci to be comparable to Pominville and for Karsums to be comparable to Roy (or a Roy/Paille mix). Kessel doesn't have the size of Vanek, but should be a similiar player.

If the Bruins could swing a Axellson+ pick deal for Vermette than they would match up better IMO.

Jochen Hecht---- Daniel Briere--- Maxim Afinogenov
Marco Sturm----- Marc Savard--- Phil Kessel

Jiri Novotny------ Chris Drury--- ---Jason Pominville
Petr Kalus------ P. Bergeron----- Brad Boyes

Thomas Vanek---- Derek Roy----- Ales Kotalik
Glen Murray---- A. Vermette---- Stastny/Karsums

Andrew Peters---- Paul Gaustad--- Adam Mair
W. Brookbank-- Wayne Primeau- Sean Donovan

Make Primeau-Donovan the #1PK unit so that they get alot of icetime despite being on the 4th line. Keep Bergeron fresh for 5-5 or PP time.

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10-24-2006, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Gee Wally View Post
Right now I feel we're based on the Bills model.





It's an interesting comparison to make but, personally, I think it begins and ends with Lindy Ruff. The Sabres have a ton of talent, but they were able to plug inexperienced guys in last season due to injury and not really miss a beat. Ruff's system is dynamic under the new rules.

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10-24-2006, 02:03 PM
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This is what happens once the going gets a little bit tough and another team is simply on fire. It becomes a case of penis envy that can't really be justified.

The reason the Bruins aren't playing well and, conversely, the Sabres playing lights out is simply acheivement; Boston underacheiving and Buffalo playing over their heads.

Man for man, I don't think anybody can make a case that Buffalo's top six is better than Boston's. On paper, disregarding the records this season, Boston is a flat out better team.

So why is Buffalo 9-0 while Boston struggles to string two wins together? I'm not sure because I haven't followed them all that closely this season but I would venture a guess that the biggest problem with the Bruins is the break up of the former top line.

Why was it done? To spread out the scoring? Did Marc Crawford put Bertuzzi on a line with the Sedins in 2003 or was Hejduk taken off of Forsberg's line to "balance it out"? You don't break apart the team's best unit (and one of the best lines in the entire NHL for that matter) simply because you want to spread them out.

And how long does it take for the Bruins to realize this? Sturm's production has literally disappeared and Boyes and Bergeron haven't been as dominant. The team is losing and scoring is way lower than it should be. This seems so obvious to me its almost stupid. Unless Savard has a serious problem playing with Murray or Kessel I am completely lost with Dave Lewis' logic on this one.

Bring back the top line and you're going to see a turnaround to compete with not only Buffalo, but any team in the league.

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10-24-2006, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gee Wally View Post
Right now I feel we're based on the Bills model.


Good one,but not even that.At least the Bills made it to 4 straith superbowls,I know they lost them all,but right now I would just be happy seeing the Bruins getting out of the first round.



My opinion of having watched both teams play this year and also last year is that the Sabres don't nessacerly have the better players,they play like a team,witch we don't.Miller is a better goalie then Thomas or Toivonen right now IMO but the fact of the mather is that all 4 lines do their jobs right.We don't.We always expect production from the same guys,just like when Thornton was here and now Bergeron and Savard.We need to play like a team,players need to stand up for each other,play hard wearing that jersey and play with pride.Right now the Bruins players just simply don't give a flying Fu$%

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10-24-2006, 02:10 PM
  #25
Colt.45Orr
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This is what happens once the going gets a little bit tough and another team is simply on fire. It becomes a case of penis envy that can't really be justified.
Actually it goes back further than that: The Sabres are hot, but they dominated us all of last year too (while we were again filling out line-up with 4th line pluggers and AHL fodder).

Lots of teams are trying to go off of the Sabres model, but simply cannot. Many think the Sabres would have won the Cup last year if not for some terrible injury luck.

We have a 42m payroll and some depth so it should be somewhat of a reality for us if another of the K's can step up and Axe gets turned into a Vermette.

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