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LA Kings: Ryan Smyth’s Absence Exposes Bigger Problem

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11-25-2009, 07:00 PM
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FrozenRoyalty
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LA Kings: Ryan Smyth’s Absence Exposes Bigger Problem

LA Kings: Ryan Smyth’s Absence Exposes Bigger Problem

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11-25-2009, 08:33 PM
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Primakov!
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Besides the goalie and defensive inconsistencies that you mentioned were exposed with the dip in offensive output, the team is also showing that there are depth issues on the NHL club to consider as well.

When a player goes down with an injury there's a certain level of expectation that the players still on the roster will be able to step up and at least maintain the status quo. That (to this point) is unfortunately not happening.

I think it's a pretty good indication that the talent level between replacement candidates from line to line is too wide and needs to be shored up going forward. Injuries are invariably going to happen and if your roster is unable to cope it's a bad sign.

The first test was looking at how the defense managed with O'Donnell out of the lineup due to suspension. It did a respectable job, ignoring the disastrous game against the Coyotes, so there's some confidence there.

The second was when Williams came out of the lineup on right wing and Simmonds filled in admirably. So, check, and check.

Ryan Smyth comes out of the lineup so the team bumps Frolov up to the top unit. He is then replaced on Handzus' line by... Ivanans? Ouch.

I know talented left wing depth is hard to acquire on a league wide basis, as some have pointed out before, but getting someone functionally capable shouldn't be that hard to pull off, right?

One would hope?

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11-25-2009, 11:11 PM
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FrozenRoyalty
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Originally Posted by Primakov! View Post
Besides the goalie and defensive inconsistencies that you mentioned were exposed with the dip in offensive output, the team is also showing that there are depth issues on the NHL club to consider as well.

When a player goes down with an injury there's a certain level of expectation that the players still on the roster will be able to step up and at least maintain the status quo. That (to this point) is unfortunately not happening.

I think it's a pretty good indication that the talent level between replacement candidates from line to line is too wide and needs to be shored up going forward. Injuries are invariably going to happen and if your roster is unable to cope it's a bad sign.

The first test was looking at how the defense managed with O'Donnell out of the lineup due to suspension. It did a respectable job, ignoring the disastrous game against the Coyotes, so there's some confidence there.

The second was when Williams came out of the lineup on right wing and Simmonds filled in admirably. So, check, and check.

Ryan Smyth comes out of the lineup so the team bumps Frolov up to the top unit. He is then replaced on Handzus' line by... Ivanans? Ouch.

I know talented left wing depth is hard to acquire on a league wide basis, as some have pointed out before, but getting someone functionally capable shouldn't be that hard to pull off, right?

One would hope?
Depends. If you subscribe to the "sacrifice everything to win now" approach, yeah...make a big splash with a big trade, even if it mortgages away your future.

Otherwise, you don't risk everything to make such a deal. The rebuilding that the Kings are in the process of (no, they're not finished yet) still needs time to build a perennial contender that always has solid talent coming up through the ranks. They're not there yet. Another 1-2 years before that happens.

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11-26-2009, 12:21 AM
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MxK1NGS
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Good read!

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11-26-2009, 12:30 AM
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Even with Smyth LA's scoring was slowing down the last couple weeks.
1 vs CHIC
5 vs CAR
0 vs ATL
1 vs TB
3 vs FLO

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11-26-2009, 12:44 AM
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MxK1NGS
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Originally Posted by nK View Post
Even with Smyth LA's scoring was slowing down the last couple weeks.
1 vs CHIC
5 vs CAR
0 vs ATL
1 vs TB
3 vs FLO
Yeah but it would still help with Smyth alot. No matter what, there were chances there.

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11-26-2009, 12:50 AM
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Originally Posted by King Doughty8 View Post
Yeah but it would still help with Smyth alot. No matter what, there were chances there.

True but IMO way too much credit is being given to Smyth. Heck Handzus has done a good job screening on the PP and resulted in two JJ PP goals.

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11-26-2009, 12:58 AM
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MxK1NGS
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Originally Posted by nK View Post
True but IMO way too much credit is being given to Smyth. Heck Handzus has done a good job screening on the PP and resulted in two JJ PP goals.
Very true.
But I am finding it harder for Kopitar mainly b/c he doesn't have his main guy, but again Smyth wasn't threatening even when he was healthy for a couple games.

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11-26-2009, 01:14 AM
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Primakov!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozenRoyalty View Post
Depends. If you subscribe to the "sacrifice everything to win now" approach, yeah...make a big splash with a big trade, even if it mortgages away your future.

Otherwise, you don't risk everything to make such a deal. The rebuilding that the Kings are in the process of (no, they're not finished yet) still needs time to build a perennial contender that always has solid talent coming up through the ranks. They're not there yet. Another 1-2 years before that happens.
That's not what I suggested in the post at all.

I fully acknowledged that acquiring talent at the left wing position is difficult. What I advocated for is the acquisition of simply someone "functionally capable" who can play ahead of Ivanans.

That's it.

A move of that kind does not require the mortgaging of the future in any shape or form. Honestly, that's taking the bar of expectation and putting it on the floor.

An Ian Laperriere, Tom Kostopoulos, Dan Bylsma, Eric Lacroix, Jon Sim level of player is all I'm calling for because that itself would be a vast improvement over Ivanans and helps to bridge the Grand Canyon like gap in ability between he and Frolov when looking at line-by-line talent level by position.

If an injury forces you to bump players up a line, having a decent player who can skate a regular shift filling in for a period of time is ultimately better than forcing your enforcer to play beyond his abilities.

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