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06-28-2009, 01:42 PM
  #1
LeftCoast
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Size Matters

First of all, I want to be clear that I am not criticizing the Schroeder pick - it was a gift that he dropped to us and a no-brainer pick. One day after the draft is a bit early to criticize picks (unless its obviously another Pat White) so rather than criticize the picks, I prefer to look at what the clubs needs (long term, not immediate) are after the draft.

However, that said, going into this draft, our depth chart was rich in undersized, speedy skilled forwards and depleted of big physical forwards with skill and offensive defensemen who can skate and move the puck (just to avoid the "power forward" and "puck moving defenseman" labels).

After the draft, we are pretty much in the same boat. We significantly improved the quality of our undersized, skilled, speedy forwards, and we added a couple of defensemen who "might" develop into the role we really need, but no clear top 4 NHLers. We now have a log jam of moderate to undersized centres and speedy winger. So all this means is that through mechanisms outside of the draft, we need to address these needs.

Hodgson, Wellwood, Raymond, Grabner and Shirokov are all going to be competing for top 6 minutes and none of them are ideal 3rd liners.

Sauve and Ellington (who has limited offensive upside) are a long ways from being NHL ready.

Simply put, the club cannot succeed without being able to move the puck from the back end and with team smurf up front. We have seen Edmonton, Ottawa and Montreal try this approach in the past and it doesn't work in the playoffs.

Gillis is going to have to be busy in the UFA/RFA market this summer or we can expect some trades in the near future. At least we now have some talent to deal with.

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06-28-2009, 01:47 PM
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http://redwings.nhl.com/team/app?ser...rs&type=roster

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06-28-2009, 01:48 PM
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The Pucks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LeftCoast View Post
First of all, I want to be clear that I am not criticizing the Schroeder pick - it was a gift that he dropped to us and a no-brainer pick. One day after the draft is a bit early to criticize picks (unless its obviously another Pat White) so rather than criticize the picks, I prefer to look at what the clubs needs (long term, not immediate) are after the draft.

However, that said, going into this draft, our depth chart was rich in undersized, speedy skilled forwards and depleted of big physical forwards with skill and offensive defensemen who can skate and move the puck (just to avoid the "power forward" and "puck moving defenseman" labels).

After the draft, we are pretty much in the same boat. We significantly improved the quality of our undersized, skilled, speedy forwards, and we added a couple of defensemen who "might" develop into the role we really need, but no clear top 4 NHLers. We now have a log jam of moderate to undersized centres and speedy winger. So all this means is that through mechanisms outside of the draft, we need to address these needs.

Hodgson, Wellwood, Raymond, Grabner and Shirokov are all going to be competing for top 6 minutes and none of them are ideal 3rd liners.

Sauve and Ellington (who has limited offensive upside) are a long ways from being NHL ready.

Simply put, the club cannot succeed without being able to move the puck from the back end and with team smurf up front. We have seen Edmonton, Ottawa and Montreal try this approach in the past and it doesn't work in the playoffs.

Gillis is going to have to be busy in the UFA/RFA market this summer or we can expect some trades in the near future. At least we now have some talent to deal with.
In Gillis I trust.

This team finally has some depth coming in, some competition. I am certain Gillis is as aware as any of us that there is a need for some more size. Last summer he went after Backes and Bernier. Will he make similar moves this year? Is a guy like Colby Armstrong on his radar?

I think the true direction of the team will revolve around the Sedins in the next 5 days. If they resigns he goes on to fill a few holes. If they dont, he must have a plan to build a 1st line and that will help determine if this team is small or big.

As for the 3rd line, I can see Hodgson cutting his teeth there, a line of Raymond, Hodgson and Bernier would seem a nice point to start in training camp.

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06-28-2009, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by LeftCoast View Post
...
Like many have said, a GM shouldn't draft on what's the teams needs, but what's the best player available.

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06-28-2009, 01:51 PM
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Originally Posted by CrosbyCrosby View Post
To be fair though, Detroit does have a lot of bigger players.

The main thing to take away from this is drafting talent is more important than drafting for size or anything else for that matter.

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06-28-2009, 01:52 PM
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Your point is well taken, although Detroit may be the excption to the rule, with Zetterberg and Dats so good defensivly they make up for alot of other deficiencies.

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06-28-2009, 01:52 PM
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They do, but they also have more under 6 ft skaters than the Canucks.

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06-28-2009, 01:55 PM
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Barney Gumble
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1) Our prospect pool heading into this draft was pretty shallow
2) Given (1), beggers can't be choosers
3) Can go for more players with size the next draft
4) These guys (beyond the 1st round) likely aren't going to be making an impact for a number of years - who knows what our roster will look like then
5) A team full of "Jim Sandlak's" ain't going to help the team much.

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06-28-2009, 01:55 PM
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parabola
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Originally Posted by The Pucks View Post
Your point is well taken, although Detroit may be the excption to the rule, with Zetterberg and Dats so good defensivly they make up for alot of other deficiencies.
Doesn't everyone say that Detroit is the best drafting team in the NHL? That may have to do with development more than anything, but the fact we're drafting more like Detroit lately is a good thing right?

When Detroit is drafting there is no guarantee that Zetterberg will actually progress to where Zetterberg is right now. But they draft talent regardless of anything else, and then let their awesome development system do the rest. Gillis has basically started to do the same.

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06-28-2009, 01:55 PM
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Originally Posted by parabola View Post
To be fair though, Detroit does have a lot of bigger players.

The main thing to take away from this is drafting talent is more important than drafting for size or anything else for that matter.
I dunno, comparing rosters from top to bottom Vancouver seems to be bigger overall. The Sedins are as big as any forward they have other than Franzen, then add in Bernier, Kesler and the entire defence and Vancouver seems to project bigger.

We would all love to have a Lucic or two on our teams but there not very plentyfull.

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06-28-2009, 01:57 PM
  #11
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Originally Posted by parabola View Post
Doesn't everyone say that Detroit is the best drafting team in the NHL? That may have to do with development more than anything, but the fact we're drafting more like Detroit lately is a good thing right?

When Detroit is drafting there is no guarantee that Zetterberg will actually progress to where Zetterberg is right now. But they draft talent regardless of anything else, and then let their awesome development system do the rest. Gillis has basically started to do the same.
You are very correct and I am all in favor of the way Vancouver is now drafting. My main point to all the guys who have concerns about the prospect list having smaller players is they are developable assets who can either play for the team in the future or be dealt for assets that are needed.

In Gillis I trust.

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06-28-2009, 01:58 PM
  #12
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Steve Anthony will solve all our problems with forward size in a couple of years

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06-28-2009, 02:01 PM
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Sure size matters, but if you want to look potentially years down the line we have players with some size to inject into our top 6.

Schroeder and Hodgson will be fixtures, likely on the top line. We have guys like Steve Bernier and Ryan Kesler who are fairly big and physical, and if Steven Anthony is able to develop into a sheer 7th round steal (this has happened with 7th rounders, and the kid does have all the tools), then we have 3 big physical players to go along with two smaller players with outstanding offensive abilities.

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06-28-2009, 02:14 PM
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During the Nonis years, we all *****ed and whined about how stupid this team was in drafting by position. This was especially evident when we took Bourdon over Kopitar because we were going to lose Jovanovski. Two years after that, it was apparent that Kopitar was the type of player we needed, not another Jovanovski. And our team would have been excellent this year as well with Kopitar, and most likely even worse with a Jovanovski type player with our poor defense.

Our forward depth might be a little undersized, but honestly, who cares? We're in an excellent position right now with Gillis as our GM. He's done nothing but impress me, and I have faith in his draft picks and overall team view. If he doesn't think that it's a concern, then I don't think it's a concern. And down the line, who knows? Anything can happen. The Sedins might not re-sign or seriously regress in their quality of play, and we would need a new second line behind Kesler, or maybe even a first line. Then all of our skilled players, who might be a little small, will come in handy.

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06-28-2009, 02:32 PM
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The reason you draft BPA and not by position (*cough....like Ellington over Moller for example, FFS Nonis) is so when you look to swing a deal clubs actually have interest in some of your prospects...

Anyways, Gillis shines once again bringin 3 1st round talents at forward into our system in JS, Rodin, and Anthony. Im glad Cheeseburger depot is running to Tim Hortons and getting donuts for Burke, and not running our team anymore.

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06-28-2009, 02:37 PM
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The Pucks
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Cody Hodgson was listed at 6' 188 last season in juniors, can anybody confirm about where he is now? He is still only 19 years old, there is more room for growth, especially weight.

Looking at the Canucks roster last year the only guys under 6' last season were Wellwood and Rypien. I dont think to many guys are going to complain about Rypiens size.

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06-28-2009, 02:39 PM
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Originally Posted by y2kcanucks View Post
Sure size matters, but if you want to look potentially years down the line we have players with some size to inject into our top 6.

Schroeder and Hodgson will be fixtures, likely on the top line. We have guys like Steve Bernier and Ryan Kesler who are fairly big and physical, and if Steven Anthony is able to develop into a sheer 7th round steal (this has happened with 7th rounders, and the kid does have all the tools), then we have 3 big physical players to go along with two smaller players with outstanding offensive abilities.
Alex Burrows isn't small either, and shows a willingness to go to the net and has great hand eye.

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06-28-2009, 02:43 PM
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I think pitselsh brought up a very interesting point in a previous thread on the size issue.

That maybe it's better to actually draft and develop talent and then use other/cheaper assets to add size. IMO this has a lot of logic around it.

Traditionally, big players have taken longer to also develop... often they get devalued during their development process when they show signs of struggling at stages before they are able to adapt. We've seen this first hand with Bertuzzi - bought him low, and sold him much higher, even though he was struggling again when he dealt him... we saw a similar situation with Bernier this past year... a former 1st round pick in a very strong draft, that was moved for much less.... and we just saw this is past draft as well, with another 1st rounder from that draft and 6'7" Boyle, who was just moved for a 3rd round pick, and remains very much a project overall... as does huge 2003 1st rounder Jessiman!

If the Canucks really believe in their development system, it seems to make sense to me that they would focus their drafting on talent overall - something that's harder to actually develop, while trading for project-type big players that they can bring in to this system and develop. I believe this was the thinking about the Bernier pickup (and they had targeted Backes before).

All things being equal, I think they still take the bigger player, but if there's a guy they have high on their list because of their talent level, I think size becomes a secondary issue, and one that can be addressed via trades, as they were last year (with both Bernier and O'Brien)

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06-28-2009, 02:48 PM
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Both Schroeder and Hodgson were slam-dunk selections given their availability where we were selecting. When you have as shallow a prospect pool as the Canucks and you draft two smallish guys, your pool

You don't win the Cup by being small. You don't win it by being big either - what's required is diversity and the Canucks don't have enough prospects for any kind of diversity/heterogeneity. You look at the guys Gillis has drafted Schroeder/Hodgson aside, size is definitely considered - Yann Sauvé, Mats Froshaug, Peter Andersson, Jeremy Price, Kevin Connauton, Steven Anthony are all big guys, and the smallest forward he's taken is 5'11.

Get talent. You can trade for the rest.

Edit - I agree with everything NFinTO just said, too, except for his opinion of Jessiman (he's not a project, he's a flat-out bust).

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06-28-2009, 02:50 PM
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I'm not going to comment on the Gillis philosophy, because I don't really know much what it is, and how it will evolve from year to year. I do like the Schroeder pick because I think if you pick 22 and you can add a good offensive prospect, you gotta take it.

Same time, I think people in this forum severely underrate how rare a young skilled power forward is in the NHL. We have a difficency in skill and speed, but we also have a diffency in high end physical talent as well.

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06-28-2009, 03:01 PM
  #21
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In Gillis I trust.

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Old
06-28-2009, 03:22 PM
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good point but it is probaly easier to trade a highly skilled player for the bigger player(unless he is very good)

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06-28-2009, 04:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nuckfan in TO View Post
If the Canucks really believe in their development system, it seems to make sense to me that they would focus their drafting on talent overall - something that's harder to actually develop, while trading for project-type big players that they can bring in to this system and develop. I believe this was the thinking about the Bernier pickup (and they had targeted Backes before).
And I think the other thing to consider is that because size takes longer to develop, you aren't getting the benefit of players on cheap contracts making an impact on your team (generally speaking). They got one year out of Bolland and will be giving him a big raise for next season. They got one year out of Brouwer who will be getting a raise. They will get two years out of Ladd because he didn't break out until this past season after signing his second contract. On the other hand the Canucks will get three years out of Hodgson and Schroder and likely at a higher level of play than Chicago got from their big players. Ryan Getzlafs are pretty rare.

Drafting big guys is so much more of a crapshoot because the quality ones get taken early in the draft and you have to reach in order to get a player that is inferior to other players in skill around his draft position because many teams put value on size. If you've got a quality prospect pipeline you can take those risks but otherwise taking big guys for the sake of taking big guys can kill you. Just look at Oiler drafts from 1998-2004. Every year in the second and third rounds they'd take mulitple giants (if you're too lazy to look, they are names like Alex Henry, Brad Winchester, Alexei Semenov, Doug Lynch, Ed Caron, Kenny Smith, Brock Radunske, Marc-Antoine Pouliot, Colin McDonald, Jean Francois Jacques, Geoff Paukovich, etc. - all of them huge and all of them suck) and the best players they got were Zach Stortini and Matt Greene. That's a lot of high picks wasted.

...

I think people often forget size is a means to an end just like any other skill or attribute. Detroit had three top-9 players over 6'0" (Franzen, Hossa, Samuelsson) and Samuelsson is probably the softest player on their team. Size helps you do things like recover the puck and play in traffic more effectively but it's not the only way you can be good at those things.

Obviously it'd be very difficult to make a team full of players Schroeder's size effective because there aren't a ton of players who play at that size who can do those things effectively. But by all accounts Hodgson and Schroeder don't play small, perimeter style hockey.

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Old
06-28-2009, 04:47 PM
  #24
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Originally Posted by Barney Gumble View Post
5) A team full of "Jim Sandlak's" ain't going to help the team much.
Ph man, toooooo funny.

Draft big and you will end up with a team full of "Jim Sandlacks"

too funny.


Can't wait to see AV send out the buck 70 line!

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06-28-2009, 04:49 PM
  #25
Barney Gumble
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Ph man, toooooo funny.

Draft big and you will end up with a team full of "Jim Sandlacks"

too funny.


Can't wait to see AV send out the buck 70 line!
Who are you going to draft that has both size and skill beyond the 1st round? Nah, a guy like Gionta you wouldn't draft - he's a shrimp, let's go for a guy like Taylor Pyatt 'cause he's big.

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