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Old
12-07-2016, 11:33 AM
  #1
Flameshomer
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T.J. Brodie

The star players have finally bought in, they've shaken off the cobwebs from extended off seasons, and the flames have seemingly turned the ship around. Our defensive play of late has been miles beyond where it was to start the season, and Chad Johnson is showing how badly he wants to play for his hometown team.

One player is still languishing: What's up with T.J?
The excuses that he's being dragged down by other defenders he's paired with just aren't holding water: every defenceman on our team has had worse numbers when paired with Brodie, and has improved when moved away.

I got **** on a lot at the beginning of the year for advocating trading him instead of Dougie, but given the way they've played that's an absolute no brainer right now.

Is he just not buying into Gulutzan's system? Is he not as talented as we thought? Maybe someone's heard about some off-ice issues that have taken away his focus?

He's lost all of the swagger and confidence that made him a stalwart. He looks hesitant while he's skating the puck up the ice, and looks afraid to attack forwards with his stick when they enter the zone. Further, his pinches have been absolute garbage this year.

What's going on??

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12-07-2016, 11:38 AM
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I think it's all related to playing his off side. He seems to do everything better coming from the right side .

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12-07-2016, 11:45 AM
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He plays with Dennis Wideman.... Remember how your boy Dougie looked with Wideman?

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12-07-2016, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by snipetype View Post
He plays with Dennis Wideman.... Remember how your boy Dougie looked with Wideman?
Last year? Much much better.

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12-07-2016, 11:46 AM
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Originally Posted by Flameshomer View Post
I got **** on a lot at the beginning of the year for advocating trading him instead of Dougie, but given the way they've played that's an absolute no brainer right now.
You know, the Flames don't have to trade a defencemen, right?

This really just reeks of [MOD] personal agenda. It's been said over and over that

a) Brodie's fiance was diagnosed with MS

and

b) He's playing on his offside

So, even if your ignore the Wideman/Engelland loadstones he's forced drag around, then the simple fact is, he's not as good on the left side as he is on the right side and there's an extremely valid personal reason why his head might not be 100% on the game a 100% of the time. And the Flames, given they try to pride themselves as being a players organization, are going to do everything they can do help him (aside from giving him a decent partner and playing him on his natural side apparently), not trade him.

Seriously, give the guy a bit of slack because at the end of the day, he's still more than worth his contract.

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12-07-2016, 11:50 AM
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wow, didn't know that about his soon to be wife, that's horrible...That said, I'd say the biggest reason he's struggled (although lately he's been fine) is playing on the left side. Brodie had his greatest success while playing on the right, not sure why Gully demands he play left, but it may payoff in the long run I guess.

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12-07-2016, 11:51 AM
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Flameshomer
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Originally Posted by Calculon View Post
You know, the Flames don't have to trade a defencemen, right?

This really just reeks of [MOD] personal agenda. It's been said over and over that

a) Brodie's fiance was diagnosed with MS

and

b) He's playing on his offside

So, even if your ignore the Wideman/Engelland loadstones he's forced drag around, then the simple fact is, he's not as good on the left side as he is on the right side and there's an extremely valid personal reason why his head might not be 100% on the game a 100% of the time. And the Flames, given they try to pride themselves as being a players organization, are going to do everything they can do help him (aside from giving him a decent partner and playing him on his natural side apparently), not trade him.

Seriously, give the guy a bit of slack because at the end of the day, he's still more than worth his contract.
Honestly had no idea about this, and it does explain a lot.

I've never bought the argument that his side affects his play that much- if it does than he does not have the hockey IQ that we claim he does. That's just a fact.

I'm not saying we have to trade a defenseman at all. I'm very happy with the build of this team. All i ever said was that if it came down to Dougie v Brodie, you gotta take Dougie.

He's absolutely worth the contract. It's just surprising to see a #1 defenceman become a pylon over the course of one year.


Last edited by InfinityIggy: 12-07-2016 at 11:58 AM. Reason: QEP
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Old
12-07-2016, 11:53 AM
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wow, didn't know that about his soon to be wife, that's horrible...That said, I'd say the biggest reason he's struggled (although lately he's been fine) is playing on the left side. Brodie had his greatest success while playing on the right, not sure why Gully demands he play left, but it may payoff in the long run I guess.
Agreed. MS is a terrible disease. If you've never done it and are a cycler, I highly recommend the Johnson MS Bike Tour- Starts in Hinton AB and goes through the rockies. Great ride, great crowd, great cause.

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12-07-2016, 12:01 PM
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It's hard to have this conversation in light of his off-ice stuff, because we don't know how much it's affecting him. Sometimes players struggle during off-ice adversity. Other times, they excel. It's entirely possible that Brodie's game is suffering as a result of it. It's also possible that it's struggling in spite of it.

I will say, the part of his game that I really hate right now is the part that happens seemingly ever period of every Flames game. TJ Brodie has the puck behind the net, stood still. There are no Flames players moving in the defensive zone, with his partner stood still in the corner and the forwards presumably in the neutral zone. He turns, and slaps the puck hard into the corner and up into the neutral zone, either for icing, for a turnover, or (at best) a chip in.

Brodie's best two assets are his skating and his passing. Why we have a breakout strategy which uses neither is confusing, to me.

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12-07-2016, 12:10 PM
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Yeah TJ has that rare ability to breakout the puck with just his skating ability. He seems really reluctant to jump into the play when he's playing with Wideman though. When he's not using his feet then he's not that great. If the coach isn't going to let the guy play his game then trade him for a guy that fits the system (not the thing to do).

We need another top 4 d. Trading one of our top 3 D is about the most ridiculous suggestion I've heard on these boards.

The biggest problem with Gulutzan is he seems to over coach at times. Certain players, ie. Gaudreau and Brodie you just tell them to do what they gotta do when they have the puck.
Their skill>>>any breakout/system.

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12-07-2016, 12:31 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flameshomer View Post
Honestly had no idea about this, and it does explain a lot.

I've never bought the argument that his side affects his play that much- if it does than he does not have the hockey IQ that we claim he does. That's just a fact.

I'm not saying we have to trade a defenseman at all. I'm very happy with the build of this team. All i ever said was that if it came down to Dougie v Brodie, you gotta take Dougie.

He's absolutely worth the contract. It's just surprising to see a #1 defenceman become a pylon over the course of one year.
Not really. Can Giordano play the right side? Can Hamilton play his left? Both Engelland and Wideman have shown they can't be trusted on their opposite sides. So how is it a knock on Brodie alone for not being able to play his off side? Yeah, the LHS on the right side makes this slightly unorthodox but it's not exactly unique; Laine's a RHS that prefers the left wing. And given how good Brodie has been on the right side in the past, it's absolutely perplexing that Guluztan is struggling with this concept.

There's a reason why versatility is considered exceptional to the point where it's explicitly mentioned for those applicable. E.g., Frolik and Versteeg. I mean, that's it; those are the only players on the team that can play all three positions.

There's this weird notion, maybe the result of EA's NHL, that any player can play any position. You see that with fans thinking left handed shots like Tkachuk or Bennett or Ferland or Shinkaruk can easily play right wing beside Gaudreau and Monahan. Except they can't and it's shown again and again.

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12-07-2016, 12:37 PM
  #12
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It is because I got a Brodie jersey to replace my Lombardi jersey (who got traded 2.5 months after I got it)

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12-07-2016, 01:11 PM
  #13
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I think the main issue isn't the defensive zone, that is just being exaggerated and highlighted by the goals against (some of which are Brodie, some of which are Wideman, and some of which are Johnson/Elliott). Brodie has struggled in the offensive zone to generate anything. That is where he needs to find his game. He is being out-played in the O zone by Engelland. Brodie has struggled to be a "traditional" defenseman - He is a rover who is scared to rove with his partners unable to cover the way Giordano and Russell can. We need to pair him with Kulak because it will bring back Brodie Orr.

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12-07-2016, 01:25 PM
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Originally Posted by OvermanKingGainer View Post
I think the main issue isn't the defensive zone, that is just being exaggerated and highlighted by the goals against (some of which are Brodie, some of which are Wideman, and some of which are Johnson/Elliott). Brodie has struggled in the offensive zone to generate anything. That is where he needs to find his game. He is being out-played in the O zone by Engelland. Brodie has struggled to be a "traditional" defenseman - He is a rover who is scared to rove with his partners unable to cover the way Giordano and Russell can. We need to pair him with Kulak because it will bring back Brodie Orr.
Yeah I'd like to see a Kulak-Brodie pairing as well.

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12-07-2016, 01:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OvermanKingGainer View Post
I think the main issue isn't the defensive zone, that is just being exaggerated and highlighted by the goals against (some of which are Brodie, some of which are Wideman, and some of which are Johnson/Elliott). Brodie has struggled in the offensive zone to generate anything. That is where he needs to find his game. He is being out-played in the O zone by Engelland. Brodie has struggled to be a "traditional" defenseman - He is a rover who is scared to rove with his partners unable to cover the way Giordano and Russell can. We need to pair him with Kulak because it will bring back Brodie Orr.
Brodie has never been an offensive-zone stud, though. He's great in transition and on the rush, but in the neutral zone, he's just another guy. It's what prevents him from having great offensive numbers. He doesn't have a dangerous shot or quick hands or the greatest hands in the world. Kind of similar to Dougie Hamilton, though Hamilton's shot is better.

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12-07-2016, 01:50 PM
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The system change seems to be effecting him more than some other players. Brodie's game under Hartley played to a lot of his strengths. He's a great skater who generated a lot of his offense from joining the rush and is more comfortable on his offside, probably because his great backhand. Switching him to the left side, giving him new defensive partners who aren't as good at covering for him as Giordano and limiting his ability to join the rush and its easy to see why he's appeared to lose confidence. It's a lot of adjustments he's had to make. That with his fiance's health issues that I'm sure have taken a toll on him mentally and it makes sense why his confidence isn't where it once was. I think moving him back to the right side and giving him a better d partner will go a long way in helping him get his game back on to where it was previously.

I still believe he's the last defenseman we should trade and that we really shouldn't be trying to trade any defenseman that isn't Wideman or Engelland.

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12-07-2016, 02:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Calculon View Post
Not really. Can Giordano play the right side? Can Hamilton play his left? Both Engelland and Wideman have shown they can't be trusted on their opposite sides. So how is it a knock on Brodie alone for not being able to play his off side? Yeah, the LHS on the right side makes this slightly unorthodox but it's not exactly unique; Laine's a RHS that prefers the left wing. And given how good Brodie has been on the right side in the past, it's absolutely perplexing that Guluztan is struggling with this concept.

There's a reason why versatility is considered exceptional to the point where it's explicitly mentioned for those applicable. E.g., Frolik and Versteeg. I mean, that's it; those are the only players on the team that can play all three positions.

There's this weird notion, maybe the result of EA's NHL, that any player can play any position. You see that with fans thinking left handed shots like Tkachuk or Bennett or Ferland or Shinkaruk can easily play right wing beside Gaudreau and Monahan. Except they can't and it's shown again and again.
I've seen Engelland play left side at times, and Giordano played a few times on the right side with Russell no?

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12-07-2016, 02:51 PM
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I've seen Engelland play left side at times, and Giordano played a few times on the right side with Russell no?
Big difference between "can play on their opposite side" and "aren't trash on their opposite side". Brodie's proving right now he CAN play on the left, but he's also proving he shouldn't.

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12-07-2016, 03:31 PM
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wow, didn't know that about his soon to be wife, that's horrible...That said, I'd say the biggest reason he's struggled (although lately he's been fine) is playing on the left side. Brodie had his greatest success while playing on the right, not sure why Gully demands he play left, but it may payoff in the long run I guess.
It's easy to figure out why Gulutzan wants him to play his left side, he clearly feels that of our 5 best defnesemen 4 play the right side and when playing his natural side his level of play drops less than that of Engelland or Wideman.

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12-07-2016, 03:36 PM
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It's easy to figure out why Gulutzan wants him to play his left side, he clearly feels that of our 5 best defnesemen 4 play the right side and when playing his natural side his level of play drops less than that of Engelland or Wideman.
I guess, seems to be working now, but at the start of the year it was a tire fire. I seem to remember Wideman being fine on the left side...But at this point run with it, the team seems to be gelling well and I wouldn't move anyone around.

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12-07-2016, 03:38 PM
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Originally Posted by Flameshomer View Post
Honestly had no idea about this, and it does explain a lot.

I've never bought the argument that his side affects his play that much- if it does than he does not have the hockey IQ that we claim he does. That's just a fact.

I'm not saying we have to trade a defenseman at all. I'm very happy with the build of this team. All i ever said was that if it came down to Dougie v Brodie, you gotta take Dougie.

He's absolutely worth the contract. It's just surprising to see a #1 defenceman become a pylon over the course of one year.
I've brought up this example in the "wrong side" debate before: Ovechkin was terrible on his strong side, and he's a high IQ (offensively) player. I don't think versatility is inherent to all players with high hockey IQ, and if someone has become attuned to playing a particular side of the ice for the majority of his career, it makes sense that he'd be thrown off by being switched to the other side.

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12-07-2016, 03:53 PM
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It is because I got a Brodie jersey to replace my Lombardi jersey (who got traded 2.5 months after I got it)
I thought I was the only one...

Not worried about Brodie at all. I still think he is one of the best skating defenders in the NHL. Most of his mistakes are of the mental variety, very fixable IMO. Sometimes a bad run is all that it is, a bad run; and especially considering the personal life stuff it's pretty forgivable. And despite this boards hate for him Dennis Wideman is still the right partner for him if it's not going to be Gio and Wideman has to be in the lineup, both move the puck relatively quickly and Dennis has that shot from the point.

He'll turn it around, even though I kind of doubt he hits 40 points this year.

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12-07-2016, 04:13 PM
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Originally Posted by SmellOfVictory View Post
I've brought up this example in the "wrong side" debate before: Ovechkin was terrible on his strong side, and he's a high IQ (offensively) player. I don't think versatility is inherent to all players with high hockey IQ, and if someone has become attuned to playing a particular side of the ice for the majority of his career, it makes sense that he'd be thrown off by being switched to the other side.
We won a playoff series with Brodie playing the left side being our best player. It's not like he has exclusively played the right before this seaso .

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12-07-2016, 04:22 PM
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We won a playoff series with Brodie playing the left side being our best player. It's not like he has exclusively played the right before this seaso .
Good point. So maybe it's not an off-side thing at all. My main beef was just with the idea that all smart players have to be versatile.

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12-07-2016, 04:59 PM
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Yet another foolish agenda.

Before this year Brodie played for 1 count it 1 NHL head coach. Now as we all know it takes Dmen longer to develop and when they are younger it takes them longer to adjust to new systems. (Look no further than Dougie last season.)

Couple that with some personal life issues and it is not difficult to see why Brodie has lagged a little behind the others.

That said Brodie is one of the smoothest skating D-men in the league. He is an elite playmaker and great hockey IQ.

That said some are suggesting we trade a younger defenseman that many analysts view as a potential future Norris trophy candidate instead of 2 mediocre older defensemen. Factor in the fact his contract is one of the few bargains in the NHL and I have to ask are some of you sniffing glue?

The largest factors facing the Flames moving forward are:
1.) Can Wideman and Engelland be moved so some of the younger prospects can get some NHL time.
2.) Which of the bottom 6 forwards do you move to bring up prospects with higher potentials. (Bouma, Stajan, Freddie Hamilton, Backlund, Ferland)
3.) Can Calgary buy a development machine to make the prospects in the AHL develop faster. Might be worth having a look on E-Bay.

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