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Columbus Bluejackets Midseason Grades.

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Old
01-04-2008, 10:17 PM
  #1
Cyborg Yzerman
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Columbus Bluejackets Midseason Grades.

Saw this over at the Redwings board. So I think it'd be Spiffy if we all graded our fellas.

Offense

Kris Beech - Ever since we got Beech, he's had games, particuarilly the first 7 or so games, where he scored, and set up guys like Nash, and was very clutch. However, there have been many games this season where Beech has been pretty forgettable, but for the most part, he's still every bit the play maker, he can be, and is still growing.

Grade: B-

Jared Boll - Boy what a surprise he's been. He's been able to give our boys some motivation, whenever he gets in a scrap and does well. Boll make not be the most brilliant player, but he's reminiscent of a young Darren McCartney, and since he's still learning, but can still contribute to the scoreboard, he's someone to hold on to.

Grade: B

Gilbert Brule - In my own humble opinion, Gilbert Brule is our main bust, we haven't really seen much of him lately, but from we have seen, he's been pretty lackluster. People can still hold their breath that he'll grow, but I'm not.

Grade: C-

Jason Chimera - Ah Jason, he flies around the ice faster than most of our guys, and he's a descent forechecker. Why can't he finish, and why can't he stay onside, when coming in from the neutral zone. Most Jacket fans like Chimmy, and we all want to see him score, but he hasn't for a very long time

Grade: C+

Sergei Fedorov - Either you love him, or you hate him. He makes an awful lot of money, and he doesn't really play like he did back in Detroit, but when push comes to shove. He's one of our most consistent players, and arguably our best 2-way player. He's good influence on our younger guys and Hitch seems to love him, and being 3rd in overall points for our team isn't bad either. Especially lately, where he's improved from a mediocre +/- record of about -7 to a -3. He's improving as the season goes on, and hopefully his second half will be even better.

Grade: A-

Dan Fritsche - Dan's got games where he doesn't play impressively, but even when he doesn't get impressive scoring chances, he does spark offense, and he does come up with some pretty clutch goals, it doesn't hurt being one of our boys with a short handed goal. He's still young and shows prominence and a bright future. He's been pretty sturdy when we've been injury plagued. Not bad at all, in Gare's words, Itchy Fritsche.

Grade: B

Curtis Glencross - GlennX is one of those guys you just love to see score period. He won us a tough game in overtime, in which he got us his second goal. He works hard, skates impressively, and has shown more effort in some games, then some of our other boys. Sadly, he has been pretty forgettable recently, maybe it's because of the face cage, but we hope to see him back with an awesome second half.

Grade: B+

Joakim Lindstrom - He just got off a 2 point game, and is turning out to be one of our more interesting Crunch call ups, for one he can actually roof a shot, something we haven't seen Nash do in a while. He hasn't played to many games, but he's already rising on the point chart, hope we see more of him, and from him.

Grade: B

Manny Malhotra - Manny, Sadly, has been one of our more injury plagued players, he hasn't been a consistent shooter, but he has actually been pretty consistent playing as a 2-way forward, but where he really shines is the face-off circle

Grade: B

Rick Nash - Rick Nash, Rick Nash, Rick Nash, for the most part the only player on our franchise has covered since his draft. Well thing shave changed. Z and Pazzy have stolen the spotlight from Mr. Nash, but does that mean he's forgettable? He DID have the longest pointless streak in his career, to later come back with a hat trick, but since then he's been invisible. He isn't consistent, but when he plays with some interest, he's usually an awesome two way forward. Not to mention he is our point leader, and goal leader. It's a pity he isn't very consistent.

Grade: A-

Jiri Novotny - Jiri started out slowly this year because he was injured, but since then, wow! Jiri's been awesome, and one of the most hard working and memorable players for the second half of the first half of the season, if that makes any sense. And he's already climbing up the point chart. Novo's got heart, and I look forward to him coming back for the future. We need to keep this boy for I foresee a C on his sweater one day.

Grade: A

Michael Peca - Peca's been plagued with injuries for a couple years now, but he's put an effort into staying healthy this year. Peca brings something to the locker room that no other player does. He makes our team look solid, and makes them look organized. A good deal amount of games without Peca, our team has looked liked they've played with their heads cut off. He needs to stay healthy, and when he is, he can be pretty clutch, just coming off of two goals

Grade: A-

Jody Shelley - He hits, he hits, he hits, and he fights. He's sluggish, and doesn't bring anything that key to the offense, but he has scrapped with some big boys like Iginla, and somewhat rallies our team.

Grade: C-

David Vyborny - David's been injury plagued, but in the games he has played, he's been rusty, and can't seem to score. He's playing pretty physical, but he doesn't seem able of adapting to Hitch's system. Pity our original Jacket hasn't been productive this year.

Grade: C+

Nikolai Zherdev - Z's been hated, and the fanbase has wanted to trade him for a while. As Gare call's him, Slicky Nicky has been arguably our best scorer. He's already surpassed last year's point record, and is the only guy Hitch really trusts in carrying the puck up the neutral zone. Any doubt of his previous "selfish tendencies left the building after he gave up a hat trick to give beech an empty netter. If Z plays consistently in the second half of this season, he'll really turn some heads.

Grade: A+


Defense

Adam Foote - He's been sturdy, and he pushes guys around who push our guys around. He's the main presence in our locker room, and is an extremely good influence on Jan Hejda. Our captain's getting older, but I'm sure this old dog has some tricks still. Consistency is good for a defenseman.

Grade: B

Ron Hainsey - Lots of folks hate Hollywood here. I don't, he's a pretty good shooter. He may hurt the boards alot from missing the net, but I still believe in him. I believe him to be one of our core 4 defensemen this year. I hope the second half of the year is even better for Ron.

Grade: B-

Jan Hejda - I've gotta tell ya, Jan's in my top 3 favorite Jackets this year. he hits hard, and is arguably the best guy we got back. Foote's been good influence on him, and I only see him getting better. Here's to a staple in the Blue jackets organization.

Grade: A

Rostislav Klesla - Is it just me, or is Rusty really the only guy who can hit the ent from the point that's on our defense. I mean Russell can too, but not as well as Rusty here can. One of our Few Remaining original Jackets, the other being Vyborny, he's been pretty consistent on Defense, but sadly his quarterbacking roll may be in jeopardy since a kid named Russell moved in. Still he's valuable trade material.

Grade: B

Kris Russell - He started out slowly this year, but what do you expect he's a rookie, and what a rookie! Russell has just been awesome lately, and it seems like it's all up hill from here. If Z's not carrying the puck up ice, you better believe it's Russell who is! Here's to a strong finish, and a future with us. He's clearly another staple. Just one problem, even though he's got the ability to quarterback the powerplay, he can't score!

Grade: A-

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen - He's been pretty scarce lately, but he's another big boy who can hit hard, and his shot isn't to bad, to bad he isn't to good of a passer, or a skater for that matter.

Grade: C+

Duvie Westcott - He's been injured, but i see him returning to form. He's never been our best D-Man, but he isn't to bad. His shot isn't accurate, but we still need Duvie for at least the remainder of the season.

Grade: B-

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire - Sure we're watching some of our offensive players develop, and our defense has been sturdy, but the best thing this team's seen, second maybe to Hitch's awesome coaching, is the goaltending of Pazzie. Not only does he have 7 shut outs, but his Goals against, and Save Percentage are just as impressive. Many games where we are losing, it's only a one goal game, and the same goes for when we're winning games by one goal. We owe everything to Pazzie, if he plays this way in the second half, we might just make the playoffs. I hate to jinx anything, but can anyone say Vezina?

Grade: A+

Fredrik Norrena - Freddie, Freddie, Freddie has been quite good this season. Pazzie has dwarfed his performance, and even though his win lose record hasn't been impressive, he too has a very impressive Save Percentage and Goals Against Record. Freddie's been good, it's ashame his record doesn't reflect that.

Grade: A-



Anyway, that's my grading bit, anyone else care to make their own or whatever.

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01-05-2008, 01:36 AM
  #2
Timeless Winter
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Zherdev - A+
Leclaire - A+
Hejda A+
Boll - A
Peca - A
Novotny - A-
Norrena - B+
Nash - B+
Foote - B
Glencross - B
Fedorov - B
Russell - B-
Hainsey - C+
Tollefsen - C
Beech - C
Klesla - C
Malhotra - C
Lindstrom - C
Fritsche - C
Chimera - C
Duvie - C
Shelley - D
Brule - D
Vyborny - D



Alot of C's, but in reality we are just an average team.

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01-05-2008, 02:47 AM
  #3
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My ratings are based on how well I feel a player has held up to realistic expectations (consistent effort being a huge factor). So, a B+ for Boll and a C for Beech doesn't mean I rate Boll's skill higher than Beech's.

Offense

Kris Beech - I wasn't too impressed with him even when he was scoring at a nice pace in his first 7 or so games, but he was growing on me. But then, just like that, he became invisible. One game I noticed him, and the next he was gone.

Grade: C

Jared Boll - I'd bump him to an A- if he learned how to hit people and not the boards.

Grade: B+

Gilbert Brule - I won't harp on him here, because he's finally been put into a position to regain his confidence. Good luck, Brule.

Grade: C

Jason Chimera - I expected a step forward from Jason this season. He hasn't taken that step, so I'll drop him to a B-. But he isn't far off the pace he set last season.

Grade: B-

Sergei Fedorov - He has been better than I thought he'd be, and maybe as good as he could be. But he hasn't dazzled me.

Grade: B+

Dan Fritsche - A more consistent effort would bump his score. That being said, Danny is most noticeable in games where someone needs to show up--usually in the third period--for the team to have a chance at winning. I like his leadership potential. At the same time, I expected more offense from him this season. I'd drop him to a B- if I thought his lack of offense was entirely his fault.

Grade: B

Curtis Glencross - Vastly exceeded my expectations, mostly because I had none about him. I do think his face mask is what's keeping him back right now.

Grade: A

Manny Malhotra - Manny has been good in every aspect of his game. Good, but not great (face-offs aside). I think he could contribute more offensively than he does, but I did not expect him to. So, he gets a B.

Grade: B

Rick Nash - Consistent scoring threat who needs to use his linemates better. Needs to learn how to lead on the ice when he isn't scoring goals. Needs to learn how to battle harder against players like Pronger. I'm harder on you, Nash, because you have so much potential and my expectations for you are so high. Model yourself after Iginla.

Grade: B+

Jiri Novotny - Nothing to add.

Grade: A

Michael Peca - He's had some games where I didn't really notice him. But I didn't expect him to have the impact he's had.

Grade: B+

Jody Shelley - Shelley is what he is. I got what I expected from Shelley. He can't control the fact that he isn't able to act as an enforcer with as much consistency as in the past.

Grade: B

David Vyborny - One of my favorite players. I think he's worked hard and not been rewarded for it. I think he gets lost on the ice trying to play the more physical game that's expected of him. I'd coach him differently. That being said, I expected his point total to increase this season. It hasn't, and I can't put all of the blame elsewhere.

Grade: C+

Nikolai Zherdev - Our most consistent offensive player to this point, and the most consistent forward in terms of effort. I expected him to improve over last season, but even I am shocked at the turnaround.

Grade: A


Defense

Adam Foote - He's played better than I thought he would. I didn't expect miracles.

Grade: B+

Ron Hainsey - Can't knock our top-scoring defenseman too much. He panics too much when under pressure, and misses the net too much when he shoots, but again, he's our top-scoring defenseman.

Grade: B+

Jan Hejda - Solid, solid player. Had a few off games recently, but he's been a rock. Again, another player I didn't know what to expect from, so he gets a high score.

Grade: A

Rostislav Klesla - Got what I expected, not what I hoped. Solid player who suffers from the same panic Hainsey does. Also has trouble keeping the puck in the offensive zone. But all of that was expected

Grade: B

Kris Russell - Second among defensemen in PP TOI. Hitch tends to put him out in the third when we need offense. Shows progress with each game. No complaints.

Grade: A-

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen - OKT was one of the players who benefited most from the hiring of Hitch last season. He was a physical force to be feared. This season, not so much. I don't know why, because he seems to still have the same, "I'm smiling at you, dude, but you're gonna die anyway," attitude. Was he told not to take as many fighting majors? TELL ME, OLE, TELL ME.

Grade: B-

Duvie Westcott - Hasn't been his same, "Who is that Duvie Westcott?" (Brian Engblom) self, but I mostly blame his injuries. It's a shame. Still, his game is improving, so I have hope for the second half.

Grade: C+

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire - Nothing to add, other than please don't steal Christmas.

Grade: A+

Fredrik Norrena - Love Norrena's intensity.

Grade: A-

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01-05-2008, 08:25 AM
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Zherdev - A-
Leclaire - A+
Hejda A+
Boll - B
Peca - B
Novotny - B+
Norrena - B-
Nash - B+
Foote - A
Glencross - B-
Fedorov - C+
Russell - C+
Hainsey - C-
Tollefsen - D
Beech - C-
Klesla - C
Malhotra - C
Lindstrom - B
Fritsche - C-
Chimera - D
Duvie - D
Shelley - C
Brule - D-
Vyborny - D-

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Old
01-05-2008, 08:55 AM
  #5
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Hainsey does not get the credit he deserves. We should lock up him and Hejda for 5 years ASAP.

I am going to account for their salary too and grade them on performance for their price. C = doing what they should do for their price

Zherdev – B+
Leclaire - A
Hejda A
Boll - A
Peca - B
Novotny - A-
Norrena - C
Nash – B+
Foote - C
Glencross - B
Fedorov - D
Russell – B+
Hainsey - A
Tollefsen - C
Beech - C
Klesla – C+
Malhotra - C
Lindstrom - C
Fritsche - C
Chimera – C-
Duvie - C
Shelley - C
Brule - D
Vyborny - F

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01-05-2008, 09:40 AM
  #6
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Offense

Kris Beech - Conditioning is an issue. Good passer. Checking is weak at times, turns the puck over a little too much.

Grade: C

Jared Boll - Strong checker. Brings his game almost every night.

Grade: B

Gilbert Brule - Done nothing, shown nothing. Talk about a 180 from the end of last year.

Grade: F

Jason Chimera - Not great in his own zone. Plays hard almost every night, but isn't doing the little things consistantly that are needed to score.

Grade: C-

Sergei Fedorov - Don't know why people talk about his money. He's playing ok the last couple of weeks after almost 3 months of lackluster play. Here's a guy that we all expected to play as a top 6 center and has been put on the "kid line". He's still good at faceoff's and still plays a decent defensive game on most shifts. Uninspired play for someone who's going to be a HoF'er. I hold him to higher expectations, and he's completely let me down.

Grade: C-

Dan Fritsche - Mixed results. Didn't start of that great. Picked it up and has settled into a fairly consistant level of play. He plays hard most nights, getting better in his own zone.

Grade: B-

Curtis Glencross - Strong on the forecheck. Not very good in his own zone. Not great without the puck. He'll create scoring chance, but you can't count on him.
Grade: C

Joakim Lindstrom - Hard to grade a guy on a few games. But so far I am fairly happy with his play.
Grade: B-

Manny Malhotra - His faceoff ability is the only thing saving him from a C. Plays hard on most nights, but still not as good as he needs to be in his own zone. Really needs to work on his competetive play in the offensive zone. Doesn't go towards the next nearly enough.
Grade: B-

Rick Nash - Can carry this team. Am disappointed how he looks against a couple of teams. However this guy can create something out of nothing. Needs to work a little on that puck handling. Pretty responsible in his own end and can kill penalties with the best of them.

Grade: B+

Jiri Novotny - Starting taking his game to another level about 3 weeks ago. Has become very aggresive with his board play, right around the time Hitch layed into those guys. Needs to work on the faceoffs. Good forchecker. Drives to the net, uses his size pretty well. Very pleased.
Grade: B

Michael Peca - There's been a few games that he hasn't shown up. But otherwise he's pretty much what I expected.

Grade: B

Jody Shelley - Can't throw him out on the ice too much because of the trust factor. He is what he is. He gives it his all when he's out there though.
Grade: C-

David Vyborny - What a major flop. I'm amazed how someone can look like they are skating so hard and end up being that slow. Board play is horrible, on 5 on 5 he floats all over the place. Weak on the puck, rarely drives to the net. Still a pretty good passer. His PP play has improved recently.

Grade: D+

Nikolai Zherdev - Started off somewhat slow and has been probably our best overall player the last month or so.

Grade: A-


Defense

Adam Foote - Typical Foote

Grade: B

Ron Hainsey - Keep improving on that puck handling Hainsey. Most people ignored his poor puck handling and inability to consistantly get the puck through. Should be obvious to people now it wasn't great before, but I doubt it.

Grade: C+

Jan Hejda - Work on that transistion game and shot Hejda. Otherwise your an A player.

Grade: B+

Rostislav Klesla - Still can't hit the broad side of barn most of the time.

Grade: B

Kris Russell - I trust him far more the I should for someone of his age and experience. He's going to be a good one.

Grade: B

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen - Skating and transistion game need work. Decent player.

Grade: C-

Duvie Westcott - Pretty good on the PP, not so good everwhere else. He scares me a bit in his own zone.

Grade: D

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire - Team MVP.

Grade: A

Fredrik Norrena - Makes up what is probably the best 1-2 goalie combo in the NHL.

Grade: B+

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Old
01-05-2008, 10:03 AM
  #7
gocbj
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[QUOTE=blahblah;11897027]Offense



Sergei Fedorov - Don't know why people talk about his money. ... Uninspired play for someone who's going to be a HoF'er. I hold him to higher expectations, and he's completely let me down.



I think you responded accurately to your own question / statement. I think we are happy with Fedorov @ 2.5M / year, but not at $6+M / year. That's why "his money" always comes up.

We all love Boll. But if Boll was making $4M/ year, we'd be saying how we were not getting the production out of him that we should...can't pay a goon $4M / year...looks to be on the way out because Hitch plays him 5 min one night and 16 min the next night...etc.

Our complete opinions are always influenced by the dollar.

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01-05-2008, 10:08 AM
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Offense

Kris Beech - He started off hot after his call-up, and has slowly becoming unnoticed most games. However, I thought he'd play the whole season in the AHL, and considering his very cheap contract he's been somewhat of a surprise.

Grade: C+

Jared Boll - Love his intensity. Every time he steps on the ice he is instant energy. Some of his fights have given the team a boost also.

Grade: B

Gilbert Brule - Hasn't had enough playing time. And there's already an entire thread on him. I'll just say hopefully his time in the minors helps him regain his confidence.

Grade: C

Jason Chimera - I hoped he'd become a little more of a scoring threat, but he is nearly on pace with what he did last season. Hopefully, he can increase his production and cut down on some of the offsides in the second half of the season.

Grade: C+

Sergei Fedorov - A much discussed player around here. Seems as though you either hate him or like him. I'm impartial, I think he's played pretty well for his age, and pretty bad for the amount of money he is paid. But, hey it's not my money. He's really turned it up a notch the past couple weeks.

Grade: B

Dan Fritsche - He's been pretty average. I'd like to see him step up in the second half of the season.

Grade: C

Curtis Glencross - He's been decent. Made a few nice plays and hasn't hurt us when he's been on the ice. Hopefully he can continue to improve.

Grade: B-

Joakim Lindstrom- He's been a great callup from the Crunch. Hopefully he keeps playing well. Really like him on the line with Federov.

Grade: B

Manny Malhotra - Manny has been solid on the PK and is one of the best in the faceoff circle. I wish he'd score more, but I don't expect him too. He's a great role player.

Grade: B

Rick Nash - Our leading goal scorer as expected. I won't get into the argument of whether he's consistent or not or takes games off. I'll just say we need Rick Nash to get on a roll for a playoff push.

Grade: B+

Jiri Novotny - Great signing in the offseason. Solid defensive forward, and is our best at crashing the net.

Grade: B+

Michael Peca - Loved when we signed him. 13-9-4 when he plays; 6-7-2 when he doesn't speaks for itself.

Grade: A-

Jody Shelley - Playing three minutes a night he still gives the energy throwing his body all over the place with Boll. His fighting is way down this year as are his penalties. He's even made a couple nice passes. Team first guy, that's really worked on his skating and passing. Still won't be confused for a great player, but he serves his role, and never complains.

Grade: B

David Vyborny - Needs to start scoring more.

Grade: C-

Nikolai Zherdev - One of my favorite players on the team. He's arguably been our best forward all season. Niki is turning himself into a very good player and one our best. Whatever Hitch and Howson said to him bravo. And props to Nik for turning his career around and being a real good team guy also.

Grade: A-


Defense

Adam Foote - He's played better than expected, I guess.

Grade: B

Ron Hainsey -He is our top scoring defensemen. He's started to win me over a little this season. Still, he makes some boneheaded plays at times, but who doesn't? Wish he'd be a little more physical, but that's just not Hollywood's style.

Grade: B

Jan Hejda - As solid as they come. A terrific defensive defensemen. He needs to be resigned ASAP.

Grade: A

Rostislav Klesla - Pretty much what I expected from him. He's having a solid season.

Grade: B

Kris Russell - Seems to be improving every game. Only a matter of time until he scores his first goal. Youngster looks to have a bright future.

Grade: B

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen - Hasn't played much of late. Needs to improve his passing and skating, but he's an awesome physical presence on the blue line.

Grade: B-

Duvie Westcott - May never be as good as he used to be due to injuries. He's picked his play up of late.

Grade: C+

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire - First in shutouts (7), second in goals against (1.94), fourth in save percentage (.929) speak for themselves. He is having an outstanding season.

Grade: A+

Fredrik Norrena - Great backup.

Grade: B+


Last edited by Brassard Calder: 01-05-2008 at 10:14 AM.
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Old
01-05-2008, 11:50 AM
  #9
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A- Nash, Z, Leclaire, Hejda
B-Foote, Feds, Russell, Hainsey
F- Vybs, shelley

Everyone else gets a C

Modin TBD

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01-05-2008, 12:05 PM
  #10
Double-Shift Lassé
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How to grade? Is there a curve? Do we grade based on expectations? Based on how much a player is contributing to winning? Is there a way to measure a player's performance that would lead to a grade in the traditional 90-80-70 sort of way?

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01-05-2008, 12:17 PM
  #11
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Offense

Kris Beech- Beech has been a surprise to me in a few ways. First, when he was cut from the team. I had him making it at the start of the season. But when he did get to play, he also surprised me in that he put pucks in the net, made plays & was clutch. I'm glad he's been able to stay at the big club as long as he has & hope he's around for a while longer.

Grade: B

Jared Boll- When training camp ended & I saw the name "Jared Boll", I asked myself "who the heck is this guy?" I quickly learned that he could fight. I then saw that he could score goals when the puck hit his stick. He's Jody Shelley with offense & he plays like there's no tomorrow. I didn't expect him to set the world on fire, but he's done well being after being a longshot in training camp.

Grade: B+

Gilbert Brule- Bru's been a disappointment. And he's been non-existent. Maybe a trip the the Cuse will turn him around.

Grade: I, for "Incomplete". Let's see how he does after his stint with the Crunch.

Jason Chimera- Can Jason Chimera buy a goal? Doesn't look like it unfortunately. Yeah, he goes offside twice a game, but he's had a number of scoring opportunities that didn't work out for whatever reason. He's shooting, they're not going in. I think once he scores again, the flood gates may open.

Grade: B-

Sergei Fedorov- Sergei's a guy that hasn't made a whole lot of noise the last couple years & many people think is on the decline. That said, he's a guy that brings leadership & experience to the team, as well as a guy that can play the blue line if the team gets decimated with injuries. I've also seen where he doesn't play as well in the regular season as he does in the playoffs. That's something I want on my team when the CBJ gets to the P word. He seems to be improving, picking up a couple points the other night.

Grade: B+

Dan Fritsche- Dan hasn't been all that flashy this season, but he comes to play more often than not. He's got more up his sleeve, though.

Grade: B-

Curtis Glencross- Another surprise. Didn't know how well he'd do, but the way he played for a stretch during the season made me want to punch his ticket to the big club. Two-goal effort in Calgary was impressive, too.

Grade: B+

Joakim Lindstrom- Not many games, but a relatively good number of points so far.

Grade: B

Manny Malhotra- Manny's been hurt a bit this season. He comes to play however & is money in the faceoff circle. Showed he didn't forget how to score coming off an injury to score against Colorado.

Grade: B+

Fredrik Modin- Who? We still have this guy? Get well Freddy Mo!

Grade: I (incomplete)

Rick Nash- Rick Nash is Rick Nash. Nuff said. He's the leading scorer on the team, deserves a trip to Atlanta at the end of the month, and has made pretty plays this season. He's had his down moments this season, such as the recently-ended point drought. That said, he's the target of the opposition on the ice, which means the other 29 teams see him as a threat. Has the team had a player like that yet?

Grade: A

Jiri Novotny- Part of the off-season pickup crew I hadn't heard of, yet he's shined this season. I've liked what I've seen out of NoVo this season, especially since he's out there night in & night out & is willing to go to the net.

Grade: A

Michael Peca- If there's been one player that's been the difference between a win & a loss this season, for whatever reason, it's been Peca. The records speak for themselves. My favorite off-season pickup, when he's on the ice, he contributes. He's the psychological glue that holds the team together. If Peca isn't playing, the wheels fall off. Leadership possibly? Reason enough for me to re-sign him. And oh yeah, he does score goals.

Grade: A

Jody Shelley-Jody's Jody. Hit, hit, drop the gloves, sit in the box, hit, ride the pine. Doesn't contribute much offensively, but he's more than willing to be physical & lay the body when he's on the ice, something a lot of guys forget to do. He also seems to be able to motivate the team.

Grade: C

David Vyborny- Yeah, he's been injured, but when he has played, he just hasn't had it. No idea what's wrong with him, but he hasn't shown the ability he has the last couple of seasons. I wouldn't have believed that he would've had as few points as he does in the games he has played.

Grade: D, needs improvement

Nikolai Zherdev- "He's not a good teammate." "Trade him." "Selfish." "Attitude."

All stuff we heard about the Nik Zherdev of last season. I said it too. But as if somebody flipped a light switch, the 06-07 Z is gone, replaced by the Zherdev of previous years. Tricky with the puck, can go coast to coast & light the lamp, and a lot of fun to watch. He's already got more points this season than he did last year, plays well with others & puts points on the board. The 07-08 Jackets would be worse off without the new Z. I'm glad Z's showed up this year & has become a team player. The #1 example of this has to be the Carolina game, where Nik gave up a hat trick by passing the puck to an open Kris Beech who iced the game for the Jackets. He could've taken the shot himself only to have it blocked & netted at the other end, but he didn't. I'd buy this guy a 12 pack of the finest Ukranian beer out there as a reward for his turnaround.

Grade: A+


Defense

Adam Foote- I don't have much here. Can't tell if he's improved or stayed the same from last year. But we do have him & he seems to be a good linemate to Jan Hejda, both of which seem solid when paired together.

Grade: B

Ron Hainsey- He's had his moments, both good and bad, but he can and will shoot in games when others won't. And hey, he is a +8.

Grade: B-

Jan Hejda- Yet another of the "Who's this guy?" FA class of 2007. And another of the guys I'm really glad the CBJ did pick up. One of the best D-men the team has. Give this guy a contract. Now.

Grade: A

Rostislav Klesla- Fairly consistent, has 10 points & is a +5. Doesn't seem to be as strong as he was last season for whatever reason. Still one of my favorite Dmen.

Grade: B

Kris Russell- I was one of the fans who wanted to buy Russell a ticket to Syracuse early in the season. He's a rookie, but had an awful time taking passes & controlling the puck, almost looking like he didn't know what he was doing. He's improved since & is overdue for a goal, and the more he plays, the better he gets.

Grade: B+

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen- See Jody Shelley. Hits hard, fights, willing to lay the body, all good attributes. Could use some fine tuning on the offensive side, though.

Grade: C

Duvie Westcott- Duvie's been hurt this year & has had his off moments. I hope he returns to the form he's had over the years, though. I can see the same player who put up 10 points in just 23 games last season returning in time.

Grade: B-

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire- 7 shutouts, incredible in net, great saves, one of the surprises in the NHL this season. Need we say more? I wasn't a fan of the CBJ when Pazzy was drafted & wasn't impressed with how he played when he did play last season. But this year, Pazzy's back with a vengenance, and he's scary good. If he doesn't get to Atlanta in a couple weeks, I'm calling BS on the all-star game.

Grade: A+

Fredrik Norrena- Like Pazzy being a surprise this year, Freddy was the surprise last year. He's played well this season with a strong GAA & save percentage. He was clutch against Colorado stepping in late in the game & being in net when the team came back. It's too bad the rest of the games haven't helped his record be better than it is. One thing I like about our goalies is that we have to have one of the strongest goalie tandems in the league.

Grade: A


Last edited by CBJSprague24: 01-05-2008 at 12:26 PM.
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Old
01-05-2008, 03:43 PM
  #12
Xoggz22
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Offense

Kris Beech - Good depth guy but won't log big minutes. Too inconsistent for my liking and not strong enough on the boards. Shows some signs of playmaking ability.

Grade: C+

Jared Boll - The kid plays hard and has a ton of energy. Reminds me of Nash his first year....can't hit a moving target and falls down after attempted checks. Once he gets his NHL legs he's going to be a brute. Good speed, decent hands. Not enough time on the ice to see if he can play two ways. A please surprise though

Grade: B

Gilbert Brule - Should have been in Syracuse from the start of the year. Hasn't shown his "Junior" skill set yet. Needs to get confidence back. Doesn't play enough minutes to really comment much more.

Grade: C-

Jason Chimera - Big time underachiever in my opinion. Plays hard and fast but too many offsides and poor decisions this year. Speed kills both ways. He makes fast mistakes too. His head still hasn't caught up to his legs and likely never will. No more than a third liner but good for the PK.

Grade: C-

Sergei Fedorov - Clearly on the downside of his career. losing more faceoffs and turning the puck over ala Zherdev 2006 - in our own end. Can't take the money out of the equation so his overall value is lower in my opinion. Still skates well but has lost a step - or two. Has good defense zone coverage and still sees the ice well.

Grade: C

Dan Fritsche - Up and down seems to be his game. plays with energy but seems lost on this team. Is he a center, a wing, 2nd liner, 4th liner. Great flexibility and solid on most nights but looks to be a dependable 3rd line guy. Decent speed, average hands, nice shot (use it more Danny!). Would like to see him with 15 minutes or more for a period of time to see what he might bring. Need more offensive production out of him

Grade: C+

Curtis Glencross - Big time surprise. nice hands, good work ethic. Reminds me of Trevor Letowski with his game. Not big but willing to mix it up. Good offensive touch. Not sure where he fits long term but has been a good find this year. Hope he can lose the cage soon and get the game going again.

Grade: B+

Joakim Lindstrom - Too little time for a fair evaluation. Looks like a good skill set but can he play in Hitch's system long term or will he be another David Vyborny

Grade: Incomplete

Manny Malhotra - Exceptional on faceoffs. Doesn't hurt us defensively. Little offensive flair or upside. Needs to use his frame more and control the boards. Check, check, check...keep telling yourself that and maybe you'll do it more. Poor hands but then something brilliant. Need him healthy.

Grade: B

Rick Nash - Has shown maturity and looks to be a leader. minor injuries slowed him recently but he's been a beast all year. Much improved two way play and getting better all the time. A franchise player and playing like one on most nights now.

Grade: A

Jiri Novotny - For what was expected of him (4th liner) he's excelled. Good addition to the faceoff circle. Needs to win more battles but hasn't hurt us. Good on the PK. Shows some signs of skill. A big plus for this team and would be a great 3rd line center if we had a 1st and 2nd liner to play ahead of him. Won't rack up points but could be a 40 pt guy consistently with a good two way game.

Grade: A

Michael Peca - Injury riddled! A serious "glue guy" that was a great pickup. Excellent on faceoffs. decent hands and looks to have some offensive game to him still. Needs to be in more games night in and night out to get back to the level he once was. Not quite a Selke winner anymore but is outstanding all over the ice. Unfortunately another 3rd line center playing with 2nd and 1st line wings. Not creative enough to stir the offensive pot but a great addition.

Grade: A-

Jody Shelley - I'm glad he's good in the locker room which for me is the only thing keeping him on the team. He's improved tremendously from his first season but he still does not have a place on the ice. 3 min per night is only creating more work for some of our higher skilled guys. Tough guy, huge heart but no skill. Can't play in most situations.

Grade: D

David Vyborny - One of my favorites but just isn't a Hitchcock type player. Where's the craftiness, the skills, the two way game. A horrible year and can't see him being re-signed with the current coaching situation. Just hasn't shown up. Sorry David.

Grade: D-

Nikolai Zherdev - Complete 180 from last year. Still has some consistency issues but he's really coming into his own. Amazing puck skills, good vision. Needs to shoot more and use the give and go (I don't think he has a center he likes on the team to do this with). Kids been one of our best all year and though he still makes mistakes they haven't been 10 ft from our own goal this year.

Grade: A


Defense

Adam Foote - Another player who's had a 180 degree turn around. Although little offensive game exists he's not here for that. His 5v5 play and PK play has been very sound. Has slowed quite a bit and continues to struggle with clearing the puck (or so it would seem to me) but hasn't been the bust player he was the last two years. His leadership will come in handy for the 2nd half. An asset to the team.

Grade: A-

Ron Hainsey - Not physical but a good skater and improved defensive positioning. Still loses battles in his own end. Good on the point and improving. Better decisions on the breakout. Needs to use his size more. Solid player that would be good to keep around. One I thought would be driven out of town by Hitch but seems to be surviving (not yet thriving)

Grade: B

Jan Hejda - Arguably our best defenseman this year. Solid defensive game with few mistakes. Needs to improve his transition game but doesn't hurt us. Good in corners and 1 on 1 battles. PLays against the best and his +9 demonstrates his success and value to the team. Needs to be re-signed to a 3 year deal.

Grade: A

Rostislav Klesla - Quitely having a decent year. Not the top end defenseman as expected when drafted. Still nervous with the puck but a good top 4 guy who can log minutes and play in all situations. Not fleet of foot as evidenced by Cogliagno (Kings) blowing his doors off in December at the Nat. Improved positioning and good on the PK. Using his size more and a good 2nd PP unit guy. Heavy shot that needs used more.

Grade: B

Kris Russell - Clearly trying to learn the game at the highest level. Shows his skill set more often that not of recent times. Good wheels, good hands, probably the best vision of our defensemen. transition game coming along but he needs to catch up to the speed of the NHL game. Great defensive positioning and good with his stick checks. Size is an issue if caught on the ice with big, imposing forwards. Look forward to the long term potential when it becomes reality. He's going to be a good one.

Grade: B

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen - His game has not rounded out this year as hoped. Transition game is poor. Big effort to check pulls him from defensive positions. Good character guy and still has potential but his service time and contract will relegate him to the bench rather than a trip to Syracuse to get some time. Can't afford to chance losing him on waivers.

Grade: C-

Duvie Westcott - A shell of his former self. Timing continues to be off and his physical game is nearly gone due to the soft head he now has to watch out for. Good right handed shot from the point. defensive zone coverage has been less then stellar this year and his transition game not good enough. Misses too many passes and appears to have developed hands and stone and no hand eye coordination. I hope he can remain healthy and attempt to turn it around because he could be an asset but I fear he's one hit from retirement and serious damage. Should be replaced if possible.

Grade: C

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire - What can you say, maybe 2 bad games all year. 7 shutouts and gives us a chance to win every night. LAteral movement is amazing and glove hand is cat like. Stay in the net more Pascal...you scare me when you're not in your crease!

Grade: A+

Fredrik Norrena - Some bad luck early on but has been steady. Like Pascal he gives us a chance to win almost every night. Great glove hand, improved crease presence and lateral movement. Needs to improve communication with D.

Grade: A-


This is a great idea. Grading is different for everyone so it's interesting to see other's opinions. While I don't think we're quite a playoff caliber team yet I do think this group can make it this year. I see additional changes that are necessary but for what we have the overall group has performed quite well based on expectations.

Looking forward to the year end grades!

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Old
01-05-2008, 04:05 PM
  #13
CBJSlash
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I'm seeing a lot of A,B,C's there has to be more D's I'll find them

Kris Beech - A solid couple of weeks but forgetable

Grade: C

Jared Boll - I've been thrilled with his play to date. Once he shows he can play hockey he'll get more respect from the refs.

Grade: A

Gilbert Brule - Not really his fault, but I give him a D to this point. Any regularly skating NHL should have more points than Bru had. Ultimately it could be the best thing for him.

Grade: D

Jason Chimera - He has been a disappointment because of his consistency. He is pressing too much and it is not working out for him. He has so much upside and it hurts me to give him a D

Grade: D

Sergei Fedorov - I would not want to see this team without Feds. However I don't think we are getting everything out of him.

Grade: C

Dan Fritsche - The door has been open for him to take a step offensively and to this point I have not seen it. I'm not sure if he is a regular NHLer on all team given his production to this point. I expect a lot more out of Danny and I'm sure he does too.

Grade: D

Curtis Glencross - When he is playing with an edge he can be a handful for a 3rd pair of defensemen. I think he can find a nice little spot on a 4th line for a long time with those hands.

Grade: B

Joakim Lindstrom - I'm beginning to mancrush on him a little bit. I think he could be a top 6 scorer for us. I like his dangle and I hope he gets a real shot with us.

Grade: B

Manny Malhotra - Health aside, I've been happy with Manny to this point.
Grade: B

Rick Nash - I almost want to give him a B, because I think his last month (outside of the trick) has been disappointing. I know he had some health issues, but I still expect more out of him.

Grade: A

Jiri Novotny - I think when he came back to the lineup we improved a great deal. I didn't fully appreciate him until he was out for a while.

Grade: A

Michael Peca - Health health health. I've been very happy with Peca for the price at this point.

Grade: B

Jody Shelley - Not adding much, but in fairness he isn't asked to do much.

Grade: D

David Vyborny - This one hurts, but my words I do not know what happened to him.

Grade: F

Nikolai Zherdev - Gradewise he is a much higher A than Nash in my book. Exactly what he needed to get his career back on track.

Grade: A


Defense

Adam Foote - He's been steady, but he isn't much more than a bottom pair PK guy. He has some great nice that show the flashes, but he isn't capable of it every night anymore.

Grade: B

Ron Hainsey - I'm still not in love with him. Any player on the point of an NHL PP will rack up points, so I can't get too excited about it.

Grade: C

Jan Hejda - He's been a pleasant surprise, but again I think is a solid bottom pair PK guy, but not a top 2. He does make mistakes, I'm not sure why nobody here notices.

Grade: B

Rostislav Klesla - He is doing decent, but he still gets rattled. He makes good smart plays usually and is playing on his opposite d-side okay.

Grade: B

Kris Russell - He is going to be a very good player. He started out very slow and has really played much better. He's been our best d a couple of nights.

Grade: B

Ole-Kristian Tollefsen - Sophomore slump from OKT. Everyones favorite from last year, just hasn't had the same comfort level. I like his intensity, but I like defensemen who can move the puck up ice even more.

Grade: C

Duvie Westcott - Injuries injuries. Not sure what to say about Duvie. He hasn't done much that makes me excited.

Grade: C

Goalies

Pascal Leclaire -Certainly our first half MVP

Grade: A

Fredrik Norrena - Certainly our first half Co-MVP

Grade: A

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