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Best Defensive Forward.

View Poll Results: Best Defensive Forward?
Saku Koivu 8 9.52%
Jan Bulis 32 38.10%
Niklas Sundstrom 11 13.10%
Steve Begin 5 5.95%
Andreas Dackell 3 3.57%
Joe Juneau 23 27.38%
Jason Ward 2 2.38%
Other (who?) 0 0%
Voters: 84. You may not vote on this poll

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Old
01-15-2004, 02:33 AM
  #1
Medicine Twin
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Best Defensive Forward.

Who do you guys think is the best defensive forward in the Habs line-up?

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Old
01-15-2004, 03:54 AM
  #2
Bob Bastards
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Bulis hand down on this one. He is such a smooth and wicked fast skater, is sense of inticipacition on the play make him the best defensive forward for the Habs.
Second place to Koivu, by not much, but Koivu all around game is a lot better then Bulis.

For the fun of it:
Koivu: Best all around player.
Bulis: Best defensive forward.
Ribeiro: Best playmaker.
Dagenais-Zednik: Almost tie for the best sniper. Little advantge to Zednik.
Begin: Best grinder. Honorable mention to Ward.
Langdon: Best enforcer. This one was easy...
Souray: Best dman.
Brisebois: Best offensive dman.
Quintal: Best defensive dman.
Theo: Best goalies.

When you look at this team with some perspective, you can see that we have some really good player. 1 awsome player, 1 hell of a playmaker, 2 sniper, 2 grinder, some effective defensive forward, 3 or 4 really effective dman, 1 good coach and an ex-captain as GM. As long as they play togheter, we are good to go for the playoff...

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Old
01-15-2004, 04:59 AM
  #3
Darz
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I'd probablely say Bulis as well, although I think Juneau and Dackell deserve some credit as well. If Juneau would of been 100% healthy up to this point in the year, I think he would be the best for sure.

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01-15-2004, 05:06 AM
  #4
Medicine Twin
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Can you really say Bulis though? He's a good PK'er but, playing on the top line, he doesn't go up against other teams' best offensive forwards very often. I've never seen him be assigned to shadow a particular player...



I'd say Sundstrom, Juneau, Dackell, then Bulis.

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01-15-2004, 05:07 AM
  #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob ********
For the fun of it:
Koivu: Best all around player.
Bulis: Best defensive forward.
Ribeiro: Best playmaker.
Dagenais-Zednik: Almost tie for the best sniper. Little advantge to Zednik.
Begin: Best grinder. Honorable mention to Ward.
Langdon: Best enforcer. This one was easy...
Souray: Best dman.
Brisebois: Best offensive dman.
Quintal: Best defensive dman.
Theo: Best goalies.
Agreed except for the D-men. Souray is the best offensive, defensive and overall.

I also voted for Bulis. He's one of the few players in the game that skates just as hard backchecking as he does on offence.

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01-15-2004, 05:35 AM
  #6
Bob Bastards
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Habber
Agreed except for the D-men. Souray is the best offensive, defensive and overall.

I also voted for Bulis. He's one of the few players in the game that skates just as hard backchecking as he does on offence.
Hum! Perhaps I did not phrase it correctly, Souray IS the best dman. Brisebois and Quintal are kind of, the best of the rest in their particular categorie.

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01-15-2004, 05:45 AM
  #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob ********
Hum! Perhaps I did not phrase it correctly, Souray IS the best dman. Brisebois and Quintal are kind of, the best of the rest in their particular categorie.
Gotcha. I probably should have inferred that but my mind is pretty bogged down right now. Man I can't wait for the weekend.

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Old
01-15-2004, 06:01 AM
  #8
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I'd give that honor to Joe Juneau for the last few years. However, strictly speaking of this year, Bulis and Begin were definately moving up on that list with some better skating or aggression. Juneau has amazing defensive coverage and hockey sense but is starting to slow on his feet allowing skaters to get around him even if he plays his angles right.

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Old
01-15-2004, 06:08 AM
  #9
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Juneau-Bulis-Dackell maybe Sundstrom would be my picks for to defensive forward

Juneau has played very well this year and no one really hears about him

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01-15-2004, 07:15 AM
  #10
Mike8
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Past few seasons: Juneau.

This year: Koivu. He's been exceptional on the PK and has been matched up against the opposition's scoring line every game and has done a great job. He struggles sometimes down low but, more often than not he's able to compensate with smart stick positioning and good leg drive.

Juneau has been too slow and weak down low to be an effective shadow this year. He is still an intelligent player though, but doesn't bring all the tools that Koivu does defensively right now.

Bulis is solid, but the center position has much more impact and responsibility than the wing position. He is also prone to some bad turnovers in the neutral zone, some of which have led to goals of late.

Sundstrom would be my second choice. He's clearly the most talented and intelligent defensive player on the team in my opinion, but has floated and avoids physical contact too often to get the nod. His ability to anticipate plays, his stick positioning, ability to get into passing and shooting lanes is outstanding. Very strong along the boards and crafty with his stick in beating larger opponents. Strong PKer as well.

Dackell has impressed me this year. He is a responsible and reliable PKer, and is solid in the neutral zone, but I feel he struggles in his own zone five on five. He doesn't have the hockey sense or crafty stick play as Sundstrom does to compensate for his lack of size and as such can be beaten along the boards by bigger defensemen. He has more tenacity than Sundstrom, but not enough leg drive to compensate for other deficiencies. In terms of backchecking, playing PK, causing obstruction and problems in the neutral zone, and getting into passing/shooting lanes, he is rock solid though.

Begin is pure tenacity, but not as much hockey sense as any of the above mentioned players. As much as I like him, if he's ever the team's top defensive player then we're in trouble.

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01-15-2004, 07:35 AM
  #11
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I took Bulis. He as the speed that help him breaking the plays and getting breakaways often, causing a lot of damage to other team's offense. He is also great on the penalty kill.

Sundstrom was my second choice but I feel that he might be better than Bulis given his ability to read the play and anticipate the passes to break it before the plays can happen. It his a great talent.

Jason Ward, since his return, has shown the same ability in that reguard as Sundstrom but I feel he's not as good.

Koivu is third in my book, he is making great defensive plays too..

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01-15-2004, 07:44 AM
  #12
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I'd say Koivu. Seriously. He doesn't spend his time on checking lines as his services are needed elsewhere. But when he's on the PK, he's smart and not only knows what to do, but gets it done to boot.
After that probably Bulis or a healthy Juneau - Juneau has the brains to read plays but not always the body to get the job done.

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01-15-2004, 08:03 AM
  #13
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Tie between Sundstrom, Dackell and Koivu for me, but I voted Sunny.

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01-15-2004, 09:05 AM
  #14
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Where's Audette on this list? *harumph*

And for that matter, Perreault has to get consideration!!!

Ohhhhhhhhhhh....

Best *defensive* forward. Not deficient. My bad.

Tough call. For short stretches of games after a bit of a break, Juneau, hands down. But overall for the year? Going to have to go with Captain Courageous who's become an all-around player and a really good PKer as well. Julien has heaped on a few more responsibilities and is now using Sax like you would any star player in the league - in all situations.

ACF

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Old
01-15-2004, 01:34 PM
  #15
G Man 77
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To have Koivu even as a choice is a joke... he doesn't even belong in the category. Julien needed to put Bulis on his line just to cover his ass.

I'd say Bulis because he has the unique combination of speed/size/defensive awareness to effectively cover guys.

Juneau is the smartest defensive player... he's slow, small, yet his superior defensive mind allows him to make up for it.

It's funny how players coming into the league as an offensive force, can so effectively adapt their style later in their career to become as good as they are defensively.
But I would have preferred it if he could have kept a smidgen more of his offensive capabilites.

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Old
01-15-2004, 02:04 PM
  #16
tinyzombies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike8
Past few seasons: Juneau.

This year: Koivu. He's been exceptional on the PK and has been matched up against the opposition's scoring line every game and has done a great job. He struggles sometimes down low but, more often than not he's able to compensate with smart stick positioning and good leg drive.

Juneau has been too slow and weak down low to be an effective shadow this year. He is still an intelligent player though, but doesn't bring all the tools that Koivu does defensively right now.
Did you see Koivu get smoked at his own blueline while playing D on the PK last night? Koivu is an adequate defensive player, but he's not an exceptional defender by any means.

Juneau in my opinion is the best defensive player on the team when he's healthy (which hasn't been often lately). He's capable of shutting down Thornton and the small fast guys too. His positioning is excellent and he has better hands than Bulis and is much more sure with the puck in his own end. He also doesn't panic when under pressure and that saves the line from a lot of extra work as well.

Bulis is our most aggressive defender, but he can be caught out of position in his own end at times and his hands are pretty average. His vision is average as well. He is our best forechecker by a country mile though.

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Old
01-15-2004, 02:32 PM
  #17
Mike8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raketheleaves
Did you see Koivu get smoked at his own blueline while playing D on the PK last night? Koivu is an adequate defensive player, but he's not an exceptional defender by any means.
Yeah, but that has nothing to do with how good he is as a defensive forward.

I'm not trying to say Koivu's phenominal defensively. He has deficiencies. But Montreal isn't filled with stalwart defensive forwards, and Koivu's been the best competitor down low among all of Montreal's centers this season.

I don't see how you can claim Juneau is capable of shutting down Thornton and the 'small fast guys too'. The quality 'small fast guys' are by and large in the West, and Thornton always wreaks havoc against Montreal. Theodore is capable of shutting Thornton down; not Juneau. In the Boston series, it was Quintal and Souray that were towers of power against the Thornton line, while Juneau was stumbling in the playoffs after having been overworked by Therrien.

I won't deny that Juneau is superior to Koivu defensively when he's on his game. But he hasn't been on his game this season.

You're bang on with your commentary on Bulis. As I said previously, he struggles sometimes in the neutral zone and he can turn the puck over. That will hopefully change as he matures.

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Old
01-15-2004, 03:00 PM
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by G Man 77
To have Koivu even as a choice is a joke... he doesn't even belong in the category. Julien needed to put Bulis on his line just to cover his ass.


..........

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01-15-2004, 05:04 PM
  #19
tinyzombies
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike8
Yeah, but that has nothing to do with how good he is as a defensive forward.

I'm not trying to say Koivu's phenominal defensively. He has deficiencies. But Montreal isn't filled with stalwart defensive forwards, and Koivu's been the best competitor down low among all of Montreal's centers this season.

I don't see how you can claim Juneau is capable of shutting down Thornton and the 'small fast guys too'. The quality 'small fast guys' are by and large in the West, and Thornton always wreaks havoc against Montreal. Theodore is capable of shutting Thornton down; not Juneau. In the Boston series, it was Quintal and Souray that were towers of power against the Thornton line, while Juneau was stumbling in the playoffs after having been overworked by Therrien.

I won't deny that Juneau is superior to Koivu defensively when he's on his game. But he hasn't been on his game this season.

You're bang on with your commentary on Bulis. As I said previously, he struggles sometimes in the neutral zone and he can turn the puck over. That will hopefully change as he matures.
I disagree. We seem to handle Thornton very well. And Juneau is the guy on him one-on-one. Of course he gets help from the D, all checking line centers do.

Maybe Juneau is just the right player for us right now because Thornton seldom initiates physical play and neither does Sundin, so that let's Juneau be effective.

I like Juneau's skills and patience and playmaking even on the checking line right now, but we definitely need to do better if we're going to be contenders in the coming years.

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Old
01-15-2004, 05:15 PM
  #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vicious
..........
Exactly what I was thinking.

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