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Looking at our roster...I expect a great season

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Old
07-27-2009, 01:51 AM
  #26
190Octane
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Originally Posted by kenabnrmal View Post
Regardless of how the lines shape up at forward, there is more than enough ability to make it work, both offensively and defensively.

My concern, like most, is the defense. Not so much how the 7 or 8 players will do "defensively", but what effect not having Pronger and Beauchimen will have on the break-out, transition, and puck retrieval. Having Niedermayer and Whitney on different pairings will certainly help, as both are expert skaters and passers, and should be able to move the team forward. However, we'll have to see how the newcomers do. Without a calm, poised group of defensemen, I see the team getting pinned down in their own-zone too often by teams like the Wings, Sharks, and Flames.

That's my only concern. If the younger defensemen step into their roles effectively, then I expect very good things from this lineup.
This is why I pray that Salcido is the 5th or 6th defenseman instead of having another 40-50 point AHL season this year.

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07-27-2009, 09:33 AM
  #27
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This is why I pray that Salcido is the 5th or 6th defenseman instead of having another 40-50 point AHL season this year.
Doesn't it worry you though, that Salsa couldn't break into the lineup last year even when guys like Mikkelson and Festerling were looking very shaky? If the team felt he was worse than those guys, then he must have serious problems with his game.

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07-27-2009, 01:23 PM
  #28
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Doesn't it worry you though, that Salsa couldn't break into the lineup last year even when guys like Mikkelson and Festerling were looking very shaky? If the team felt he was worse than those guys, then he must have serious problems with his game.
Bobby Ryan had trouble cracking the lineup when guys like miller and carter were getting called up too. I think that the main reason festerling and mikkelson held the 6th spot is because the team had enough offensive defensemen. This year the team could use a good puck mover and breakout guy and I think Salcido will get his chance. He's been NHL ready for a while, if he doesn't make the club this year he'll probably get traded to a team that will play him.

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07-27-2009, 01:54 PM
  #29
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Originally Posted by Paul4587 View Post
Our bottom 6 needs more muscle and presence along the boards and our defense needs to prove itself before I'm willing to believe we're a contender. I can see us finishing anywhere from 5th to 12th in the West.

Although R.Niedermayer was overpaid at $2M, the third line won't be the same without his strength and ability to control the puck along the boards for extended periods of time. Right now I see nobody in the bottom 6 even close to his ability along the boards, hopefully either someone can step up, or Murray can acquire someone better suited to third line duties than Drew Miller/Mike Brown.
I don't believe the Ducks will ever be a contender again if they continue to try to force play along the boards as a means of controlling the game.

The league has been trying to promote the speed and athleticism of the game, and knows they can sell skating and passing and shooting. Obstruction rules are ever-tightening and being more strictly enforced, and having players and teams and coaches trying to force play along the boards is not going to be tolerated.

This is the main reason why the game officials have the Ducks spending more time short-handed than any other team in the league, in my opinion. It's not because they don't like us, or we are "dirtier" than others; it's because they don't like us clogging up the flow of what they are trying to sell.

And they have been pretty successful at forcing us out.

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07-27-2009, 02:00 PM
  #30
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The defense is a big concern. Boynton is horrible. He had the easiest matchups in the league last year and still posted team lows in ESGA/60. He contributes nothing except for the fact that he sticks up for his teammates.

Sbisa was clearly outmached in his NHL stint last season. While he'll probably improve, it's unlikely that he'll be able to field a lot of ice time next season and not look out of place.

Whitney has tremendous offensive potential but needs to revert back to his form from a couple seasons ago.

The Ducks defense certainly has the potential to be good, but I think you're asking a lot if you expect Sbsisa, Whitney, and Boynton to all fit their roles.

Overall I think that defense needs a lot to go right for it to be respectable.

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07-27-2009, 02:31 PM
  #31
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Originally Posted by Feed Me A Stray Cat View Post
Sbisa was clearly outmached in his NHL stint last season. While he'll probably improve, it's unlikely that he'll be able to field a lot of ice time next season and not look out of place.
Though I think you make some good points, that statement is out to lunch. Or at least in the vast minority.

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07-27-2009, 04:58 PM
  #32
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You don't know it won't be nearly as effective. You only know it won't be the same. We still have three of the top power play producers in the league, plus Ryan and Perry, plus guys like Whitney who have had success there before.

There's plenty to like about how our power play might look. If you want to worry about a special situation, worry about the penalty kill.
Obviously I don't know for sure if it will be as effective. Like I said, I think Pronger is the best PP quarterback in the league, and what I do know is that Getzlaf will not get as much open space on the powerplay as he did when Pronger was here. We have guys that will try and help fill the hole left by Pronger, but IMO they won't do as well as he did, which is why I think the PP will decline this season.

I think the penalty kill will struggle too. How would it not? We lost arguably the best defensive defensemen in the game. Again, someone will try and pick up their game to replace Pronger, but IMO they won't do it as well.

My point is that while everyone here realizes that our offense will be much better; our special teams and defense will decline, which means our offense much be better. Obviously this is my own opinion, but I don't think it's far off to assume that our special teams and defense will struggle sense we just lost a hall of fame defensemen playing great hockey.

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07-27-2009, 05:08 PM
  #33
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I dont think our special teams will struggle.. we might not be in the top 5 on the PP but i think we can still be in the top 10 on the PP, as far as penalty kill goes.. we werent really great to begin with so i think we'll stay probably around the middle-lower half...

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07-27-2009, 05:16 PM
  #34
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We were top 5 PP last year with Ebbett and Bobby Ryan on the 2nd unit. Add Koivu and Lupl in the mix...I expect to stay in the top 5.

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07-27-2009, 08:20 PM
  #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeepItDeep View Post
I don't believe the Ducks will ever be a contender again if they continue to try to force play along the boards as a means of controlling the game.

The league has been trying to promote the speed and athleticism of the game, and knows they can sell skating and passing and shooting. Obstruction rules are ever-tightening and being more strictly enforced, and having players and teams and coaches trying to force play along the boards is not going to be tolerated.

This is the main reason why the game officials have the Ducks spending more time short-handed than any other team in the league, in my opinion. It's not because they don't like us, or we are "dirtier" than others; it's because they don't like us clogging up the flow of what they are trying to sell.

And they have been pretty successful at forcing us out.
Well if that's the case why was the Kunitz/Ryan - Getzlaf - Perry line so successful last year? The majority of 5 on 5 scoring chances those guys created were created by controlling and cycling the puck along the boards and forcing their way to the net with their size and skill. I don't see how controlling the puck along the boards can lead to obstruction and holding penalties, if anything it should draw them, especially when you have guys as big and strong as Getzlaf and Ryan cycling the puck down low.

I'm not saying Rob Niedermayer is worth $2M or even that the Ducks should resign him specifically, I'm saying our bottom 6 is alot weaker and alot more vulnerable along the boards than it was last season and expecting Nokelainen and Miller to be able to fill the void that Niedermayer leaves is a huge risk.

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07-27-2009, 08:37 PM
  #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feed Me A Stray Cat View Post
The defense is a big concern. Boynton is horrible. He had the easiest matchups in the league last year and still posted team lows in ESGA/60. He contributes nothing except for the fact that he sticks up for his teammates.

Sbisa was clearly outmached in his NHL stint last season. While he'll probably improve, it's unlikely that he'll be able to field a lot of ice time next season and not look out of place.

Whitney has tremendous offensive potential but needs to revert back to his form from a couple seasons ago.

The Ducks defense certainly has the potential to be good, but I think you're asking a lot if you expect Sbsisa, Whitney, and Boynton to all fit their roles.

Overall I think that defense needs a lot to go right for it to be respectable.
I agree and disagree with you here. I think Boynton will fare better here as he's not really expected to be one of our top defensemen. I didn't watch Florida a whole lot last year, but what I did see was Boynton thinking and trying to do too much, which in turn negatively effected his play. Here he won't have as much pressure on his shoulders, which I think will help him greatly. His tendency for bad penalties, however, worries me a bit.

Couldn't agree with you more on Whitney. I like him, and I saw promise last year, but I'd be thrilled if he played like he did a few seasons ago. Sbisa I assume will be paired with Scotty, which does help young guys coming up. Festerling played pretty well with him for a stretch, and (IMO) made Beauchemin a better player than what he was before we acquired him. Say what you will about him, Scotty does have a calming presence for the young guys, which is what a player like Sbisa needs. People who think he'll turn into Pronger2.0 right away will most likely be very disappointed, but I think Sbisa will have a pretty good season here, just as long as he keeps it simple.

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07-27-2009, 09:08 PM
  #37
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Originally Posted by KeepItDeep View Post
I don't believe the Ducks will ever be a contender again if they continue to try to force play along the boards as a means of controlling the game.

The league has been trying to promote the speed and athleticism of the game, and knows they can sell skating and passing and shooting. Obstruction rules are ever-tightening and being more strictly enforced, and having players and teams and coaches trying to force play along the boards is not going to be tolerated.

This is the main reason why the game officials have the Ducks spending more time short-handed than any other team in the league, in my opinion. It's not because they don't like us, or we are "dirtier" than others; it's because they don't like us clogging up the flow of what they are trying to sell.

And they have been pretty successful at forcing us out.
Except fans of finesse (and Eastern) teams are complaining that the officiating of obstruction is going back toward pre-lockout standards. They would appear to be arguing the exact opposite of your theory.

Interestingly, the pre-season officiating mandate (just like how it was neutral zone obstruction in 05, 06, and I believe hits to the head in 07 or 08) was to call more obstruction as related to board play in the offensive zone. Getzlaf and co should have actually benefited (I had mentioned this back in the preseason discussion). Although I don't feel like there was actually much of a change in the officiating.

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07-27-2009, 11:54 PM
  #38
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Officiating took a palpable step back around the season midpoint, and slowly declined from there, to the point where in the playoffs they weren't even calling the old automatics like high-sticking. It's really worrisome.

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07-28-2009, 09:29 AM
  #39
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Originally Posted by Spankatola Jamnuts View Post
Officiating took a palpable step back around the season midpoint, and slowly declined from there, to the point where in the playoffs they weren't even calling the old automatics like high-sticking. It's really worrisome.
But they were calling interferences. On perfectly legal hits.

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07-28-2009, 09:33 AM
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It's like they were trying to suck. And the worst guys kept getting picked to advance further. That's a pretty clear message.

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07-28-2009, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Paul4587 View Post
Well if that's the case why was the Kunitz/Ryan - Getzlaf - Perry line so successful last year? The majority of 5 on 5 scoring chances those guys created were created by controlling and cycling the puck along the boards and forcing their way to the net with their size and skill. I don't see how controlling the puck along the boards can lead to obstruction and holding penalties, if anything it should draw them, especially when you have guys as big and strong as Getzlaf and Ryan cycling the puck down low.

I'm not saying Rob Niedermayer is worth $2M or even that the Ducks should resign him specifically, I'm saying our bottom 6 is alot weaker and alot more vulnerable along the boards than it was last season and expecting Nokelainen and Miller to be able to fill the void that Niedermayer leaves is a huge risk.
It's not the cycling of the puck down low that's the problem, it's the strategy of trying to slow the game down by forcing as much of the play along the boards as possible, especially your opponent's. Carlyle thinks the game completely as a defenseman (only natural), and knows the closer to the boards you keep the puck, the safer and more controllable it is.

The poster boys of the NHL didn't earn their value to the league by mucking the puck along the boards. The Alexander Ovechkins and Sidney Crosbys need open ice to do their thing. That's what the league wants to see, because that is what they can sell.


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07-28-2009, 12:31 PM
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Except fans of finesse (and Eastern) teams are complaining that the officiating of obstruction is going back toward pre-lockout standards. They would appear to be arguing the exact opposite of your theory.

Interestingly, the pre-season officiating mandate (just like how it was neutral zone obstruction in 05, 06, and I believe hits to the head in 07 or 08) was to call more obstruction as related to board play in the offensive zone. Getzlaf and co should have actually benefited (I had mentioned this back in the preseason discussion). Although I don't feel like there was actually much of a change in the officiating.
Exact opposite?

I am claiming that the league wants to see open ice hockey where skating and puck-handling and shooting skills are showcased. And they are using the obstruction calls to prevent teams that don't trap (like us, Columbus, Calgary, etc.), but rather force the play to the boards, from clogging things up.

I think the epitome of what the league doesn't want to see is our shut-down line in its prime: forechecking the snot out of the other team to the point where they are getting so beat up on their own end of the ice that they can't get their skating game going.

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07-28-2009, 04:10 PM
  #43
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Exact opposite?

I am claiming that the league wants to see open ice hockey where skating and puck-handling and shooting skills are showcased. And they are using the obstruction calls to prevent teams that don't trap (like us, Columbus, Calgary, etc.), but rather force the play to the boards, from clogging things up.

I think the epitome of what the league doesn't want to see is our shut-down line in its prime: forechecking the snot out of the other team to the point where they are getting so beat up on their own end of the ice that they can't get their skating game going.
Yes, exact opposite. You claim obstruction officiating is getting more strict, to open up the game.

But I'm saying there's lots of fans saying it's getting more lenient. Thus allowing more trapping (and leading to more board play as teams dump it in to compensate).

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07-28-2009, 04:26 PM
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Any chance of Belesky making the team out of camp?

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07-28-2009, 04:30 PM
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I think Belesky will get a long look. It's up to him.

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07-28-2009, 05:02 PM
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But I'm saying there's lots of fans saying it's getting more lenient.
First of all, you qualified those fans as those of EC or finesse teams. Fans like that will cry about anything, especially toward the end of the season and into the playoffs. Refs traditionally let the guys play as the games become more important, just as they do in overtime.

Secondly, and more importantly, there were more hooking penalties called by the end of December this past season than there was all of season before. Obstruction penalties as a whole were way up also over previous seasons (Darren Dreger at TSN wrote about it last Nov or Dec). So, whoever claims that the league is becoming more lenient on obstruction is flat wrong.

As a Ducks fan, haven't you noticed the inordinate amount of penalties called on us? Because for most of the season, we led the league in Times Shorthanded, which we did in 07-08 by a wide margin. The year we won the Cup, we were 16th in the league in Times Shorthanded. This is a huge issue that you never see considered.

Everyone makes a big deal out of us leading the league in penalties, but it doesn't hurt you all that much if you aren't on the PK because of it. In fact, it used to help the Ducks tremendously because they would be dragging the opponents into the penalty box with them, thus getting them to play our game.

It's going shorthanded that kills you.

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07-28-2009, 05:12 PM
  #47
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We were top 5 PP last year with Ebbett and Bobby Ryan on the 2nd unit. Add Koivu and Lupl in the mix...I expect to stay in the top 5.
Pronger was very valuable on the power play. He was a great passer, great accurate shot. He made great decisions on the PP. I attribute a lot of our sucess to him.

Getzlaf is the closest person to fit those shoes, and he does tend to play on the blue line anyways, now defense can play everyone tighter because they know we don't have Pronger back on the blueline.

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07-28-2009, 06:09 PM
  #48
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Bobby Ryan had trouble cracking the lineup when guys like miller and carter were getting called up too. I think that the main reason festerling and mikkelson held the 6th spot is because the team had enough offensive defensemen. This year the team could use a good puck mover and breakout guy and I think Salcido will get his chance. He's been NHL ready for a while, if he doesn't make the club this year he'll probably get traded to a team that will play him.
If you're talking about last season, Bobby Ryan had trouble cracking the line-up because the team couldn't afford him. Before that, he had trouble cracking the line-up because he wasn't in NHL shape, and Anaheim felt it was necessary to be patient with him. Salcido is 24 years old. He's running out of time.

Salcido is a one-dimensional defenseman, and you generally don't want an offensive defenseman like Salcido in the 5th or 6th spot. How much offense will he generate? And this is Carlyle we're talking about, who wants players to be responsible defensively first. Salcido might be a good addition to the 2nd PP unit, but let's face it, he's on the outside looking in, and for good reason. Sbisa, Weaser, Whitney, and Niedermayer are all more likely fits on the PP, and that leaves Salcido playing, almost completely, even strength minutes (because he certainly isn't going to be a favorite on the PK).

I expect him to get a nice long look by the Ducks, but let's face it, he has to prove he belongs on the team over 6 other defensemen who all look better than him right now and have NHL experience. Then he has to prove he should be on the team over Mitera, Mikkelson, and Festerling. With Mitera, part of that will likely be an ice time issue... but with Mikkelson and Festerling, who fits better in a 5th or 6th defense role?

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07-28-2009, 08:52 PM
  #49
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Pronger was very valuable on the power play. He was a great passer, great accurate shot. He made great decisions on the PP. I attribute a lot of our sucess to him.

Getzlaf is the closest person to fit those shoes, and he does tend to play on the blue line anyways, now defense can play everyone tighter because they know we don't have Pronger back on the blueline.
I dunno about accurate shot.. but definitely was a HUGE part of our powerplay success

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07-28-2009, 09:13 PM
  #50
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Originally Posted by KeepItDeep View Post
First of all, you qualified those fans as those of EC or finesse teams. Fans like that will cry about anything, especially toward the end of the season and into the playoffs. Refs traditionally let the guys play as the games become more important, just as they do in overtime.
But the whole basis of your argument is that officiating is tightening up because of some kind of huge NHL conspiracy. As fans of finesse teams, they should be the ones most benefitted. Furthermore, if there was a conspiracy, you would expect refs to call things MORE as the games get more important, since the NHL supposedly wants there to be more skill and excitement, and they would certainly want that showcased more in the playoffs when everybody is watching.
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Secondly, and more importantly, there were more hooking penalties called by the end of December this past season than there was all of season before. Obstruction penalties as a whole were way up also over previous seasons (Darren Dreger at TSN wrote about it last Nov or Dec). So, whoever claims that the league is becoming more lenient on obstruction is flat wrong.
Great. So it was true for the first 3 months of the season. What about the next 3.5 months + 2 months of playoffs?
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As a Ducks fan, haven't you noticed the inordinate amount of penalties called on us? Because for most of the season, we led the league in Times Shorthanded, which we did in 07-08 by a wide margin. The year we won the Cup, we were 16th in the league in Times Shorthanded. This is a huge issue that you never see considered.

Everyone makes a big deal out of us leading the league in penalties, but it doesn't hurt you all that much if you aren't on the PK because of it. In fact, it used to help the Ducks tremendously because they would be dragging the opponents into the penalty box with them, thus getting them to play our game.

It's going shorthanded that kills you.
Absolutely true. Our team has had problems the past couple seasons a) going shorthanded and b) not killing the penalties when they're shorthanded. You may have never seen talk of times shorthanded vs raw PIM totalss considered, but I can tell you that we have certainly discussed it here before.

I see the increase in penalties, though, as a team that has had consistent breakdowns defensively as the 6 million dollar dmen, and really all the defenders (and checking line), have a number of errors with clearing the puck, moving the puck up, and just plain covering their guys. The team was out of sync, and a lot of penalties resulted from that.

In fact, you could even make the claim that the "taking it to the boards" route is hurting us, because the team becomes quite predictable and it's much easier for opposing teams to shade toward the boards and defend it. In fact I have long been a proponent of having 2 styles of offensive lines (thunder and lightning), and was worried when Burke signed Bertuzzi last year that it would hurt us offensively (especially when McDonald was jettisoned for Weight to try to mesh with Bertuzzi). So I agree with you that the team can't be too one-dimensional.

But to say it's some kind of league-wide conspiracy, and that they are consciously and deliberately trying to take away the grinding style as demonstrated by our Cup in 07?

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