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Trade possibilites for a top4 defensemen...

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Old
10-16-2007, 08:32 PM
  #26
Alan Ryan
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Thomas Pock

Thomas Pock of the Rangers is sitting due to a glut of defensemen and isn't thrilled about it. The former UMass star is projected as a top four puck moving defenseman. See the following article.

http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.ph...wants_to_play/

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10-16-2007, 11:25 PM
  #27
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Axe isn't physically strong enough to withstand the beating a defenseman takes. Besides, even though he's lined up with Metro and Thornton, he's skating more minutes than Lucic. Lucic went from 6 1/2 in the first two game to 9 1/2 in the last three. Axelsson is still near 14 a game in last two and averaging 14 1/2 so it's not like he's been phased out. He's still essential.

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10-16-2007, 11:47 PM
  #28
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I think if you have to give up Mark Stuart you dont do it. You have Wideman and lashoff coming up, Wideman has looked alright so far this year and i would like to see him on the PP

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Old
10-17-2007, 09:17 AM
  #29
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?????, what on earth are you talking about? or is that aboot in Canada. Buddy, the B's have next to no options with their D as far as improving it from outside. I challenge anyone that Axe on D would be without question worse than Alberts, Allen,
Lashoff or Hunwick. We've seen what Alberts, Allen and Lashoff bring to the table. I've watched the B's since the mid 60's, I saw them move Jay Miller from forward to D for some games when they were going to the finals and semi-finals in the late 80's. If Jay Miller can be moved from F to D please don't tell me a far far superior defensive forward like Axe can't do it. You have not layed out any reason for not at least trying it. BTW, was that you on Cavemen the other night?

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10-17-2007, 09:21 AM
  #30
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I disagree, Axe has spent his entire career at wing, on the boards. You saw the hit he took against LA, on the boards making the play. I have complete confidence in Axe being able to do the job on D ahead of Alberts, Allen, Lashoff or Hunwick. Sometimes it pays to be creative. If Dandeneault can do it why can't Axe?

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10-17-2007, 10:02 AM
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Ryan View Post
Thomas Pock of the Rangers is sitting due to a glut of defensemen and isn't thrilled about it. The former UMass star is projected as a top four puck moving defenseman. See the following article.

http://www.kuklaskorner.com/index.ph...wants_to_play/
I went to UMass, watched Pock play for a few years, and I really don't think he'd be much of an improvement (if any) over anyone we've got right now. Sure, he can skate and move the puck, but he's a bottom pairing guy and we don't need any more of those. I'd rather just give Lashoff those minutes if we're really that desperate.

As for the Axelsson to defense idea, I've just got to say no. He's a great defensive forward, but that's the thing. He's a forward. He's used to playing LW, and I think he would feel out of place as a defenseman, and that would limit his effectiveness. He'd be prone to drift up to the point in the defensive zone, rather than playing down low where the defensemen do. He's also not strong enough to pin the opposing forwards to the boards like defensemen have to do. I'd much rather keep him in the role of shutdown/shadow forward and let the guys who play D handle the D. Moving Axelsson to defense seems like a desperation move from someone who has no other options, and I seriously can't see Julien trying it.

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10-17-2007, 10:08 AM
  #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umassfan View Post
I disagree, Axe has spent his entire career at wing, on the boards. You saw the hit he took against LA, on the boards making the play. I have complete confidence in Axe being able to do the job on D ahead of Alberts, Allen, Lashoff or Hunwick. Sometimes it pays to be creative. If Dandeneault can do it why can't Axe?
You're talking about making him our 6th defenseman... I really don't see the point. It would be one thing if he could be a legit top-4 guy and play a significant role in the defense, but as a #6 guy I think it would be more harmful than anything. He excels in his role as a shutdown forward, and we have enough bottom-pairing defenseman already. I'd much rather leave him at forward. Alberts has struggled, yes, and maybe he should sit out a game as a wake-up call and Allen can fill in. If he continues to struggle, he loses ice time. It's that simple. Allen is a fine #6/7 guy. He doesn't make stupid mistakes often, he's solid in his own end, and he doesn't try to do too much (he knows his limits). Let him take the job. Playing Axelsson as a defenseman just seems counterproductive.

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10-17-2007, 10:31 AM
  #33
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I understand your concern about Axe's ability to play physically enough to contain forwards, however there are DMen who don't play physically but play well (Rafalski, Paul Martin to name two). I have zero faith in Alberts, I think he is just a terrible NHL dman. I have nothing against Bobby Allen, he gives you his best, but he is a career minor leaguer. You saw what York did with Boyle in switching him from F to D at BC last year. I'm not equating Boyle's transition at the NCAA level to Axe at the NHL level, but York was willing to gamble and try something creative. Axe is a tremendous skater with great d instincts. He hardly ever PANICS with the puck. Like I said, if Dandeneault can be switched and Boyle can be switched, why can't Axe at least be looked at in practices. Last time I checked Mike Vrabel never was used as a TE in the NFL until Bill came up with the idea. I say try being creative, if Axe doesn't look good in practices don't try it. If he does, spot him on D a few shifts a game if someone like Alberts is playing horribly or if they are getting shelled. Its at least worth considering it. The B's defense right now is one of the worst in the NHL.

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10-17-2007, 10:59 AM
  #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by umassfan View Post
I understand your concern about Axe's ability to play physically enough to contain forwards, however there are DMen who don't play physically but play well (Rafalski, Paul Martin to name two). I have zero faith in Alberts, I think he is just a terrible NHL dman. I have nothing against Bobby Allen, he gives you his best, but he is a career minor leaguer. You saw what York did with Boyle in switching him from F to D at BC last year. I'm not equating Boyle's transition at the NCAA level to Axe at the NHL level, but York was willing to gamble and try something creative. Axe is a tremendous skater with great d instincts. He hardly ever PANICS with the puck. Like I said, if Dandeneault can be switched and Boyle can be switched, why can't Axe at least be looked at in practices. Last time I checked Mike Vrabel never was used as a TE in the NFL until Bill came up with the idea. I say try being creative, if Axe doesn't look good in practices don't try it. If he does, spot him on D a few shifts a game if someone like Alberts is playing horribly or if they are getting shelled. Its at least worth considering it. The B's defense right now is one of the worst in the NHL.
First of all, I have to say that I think your assessment of the D is a little too harsh. We're not in the upper eschelon of defenses to be sure, but the way they have played (so far anyways) is not "one of the worst in the league" quality. It could change, but I think they'll be middle of the pack to a little below this season, but not worst. They do need improving, I won't argue that, but Axe just isn't it.

Axe does take a beating on the boards true, but he takes a winger's beating, not a defenseman's beating. I think you're underestimating just how different that is. Defense is the most physical position on the ice, much more so than wing, and Axe's body would likely not stand up to that. Even the defensemen you mention who don't play physical still take more of a beating than their wingers. It may not be that they initiate the contact, but they are contacted all the time by opposing forwards, and they still have to use body positioning and leverage in every game even if they don't always seek out a hit.

You're also forgetting to mention that Brian Boyle is 6'7" 220lbs., which is actually much more suited to defense than center. York was taking a risk, but with a kid who's very talented and has enormous size. Mike Vrabel is actually as big/bigger than many NFL tight ends. Axelsson is just not big enough to handle playing defense. There are not very many regular NHL defenseman, if any, who are Axe's age and weight. If you're a 18/19/20 year old kid still growing, than maybe, but not a 30 year old veteran defenseman.

I understand the idea and I know that Axe's defensive abilities as a forward make you think that those same abilities would translate to playing defense full-time, but they are two separate, distinct kinds of defense. The defense a winger plays just isn't the same as the defense a defenseman plays. It just wouldn't work out, and with Axe's value to the team as the #1 PKing winger and defensive forward, it's not worth the time to even try.

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Old
10-17-2007, 11:14 AM
  #35
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They could obviously use a d-man but I say as long as long as they can tread water and stay near or above .500 they minus well wait until the 25-30 game mark and evaluate at that point. Right now Ward is playing pretty solid...who knows how long that will last...Marc Stuart looks ok but I imagine his confidence will grow and he will become more assertive and become one of our best d-men as the season moves along....Wideman & Alberts may have a prayer of finding some consistentcy to their games. Chara & Ferrence should continue to be solid. Also you never know who will be available at that point...

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Old
10-17-2007, 11:34 AM
  #36
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BB8,

I agree that the pounding a Dman takes is different from the pounding a winger takes, however you make it sound as if Axe has no strength or guts. I also saw a lot of Boyle on D last year. While he more than held his own, his value didn't come only becuase he was 6-7 220. He read plays well, had good instincts and could handle the puck on the wall. I've seen on too many occasions several of our D be unable to handle the puck on D to D passes around the boards. Again, we don't have any idea how Axe would do unless you try it. Your points about Boyle don't apply to Dandeneault, he made the transition on a team that didn't need dmen nearly as much as the B's. I've watched the sport at many levels over many years, I've also coached and in opinion very good defensive forwards with the ability to skate (back, forward, lateral), read plays and not panic with the puck
can make the transition much easier than you think. Another example of F to D was Dave Christian with the US Oympic Team. He had never played D in his life and Herb Brooks had him on D against the Swedes, Czech & Russians. You can say the pounding of F against D, or Axe's strength makes it not worth doing, but there are too many examples of it being succesfully done. How many unsuccessful examples can you give me?

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Old
10-17-2007, 05:22 PM
  #37
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Bruins in 2 is on.

Game against Phoenix, for anyone who is interested in Seeing Morris- this is a good look

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