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Kovalev and Neal numbers discussion

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Old
03-23-2011, 04:35 PM
  #101
cassius
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Originally Posted by UnderratedBrooks44 View Post
The Kovalev hate is due only to the hater's unrealistic expectations of him as JTG said. People were living in the past when they got him and then when he helped the team to that win versus Toronto they let themselves continue to believe this was some return to form.
When you look at the players on this roster, Kovalev is cut from a much different cloth. He does not play a blue collar, grind it out brand of hockey.

You could argue that his style of play is the antithesis of Dan Bylsma / Ray Shero hockey. He's not a grinder so if he isn't skating around like a maniac people automatically assume he's being lazy.

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03-23-2011, 04:44 PM
  #102
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Originally Posted by cassius View Post
When you look at the players on this roster, Kovalev is cut from a much different cloth. He does not play a blue collar, grind it out brand of hockey.

You could argue that his style of play is the antithesis of Dan Bylsma / Ray Shero hockey. He's not a grinder so if he isn't skating around like a maniac people automatically assume he's being lazy.
I was just talking about his production, especially without any centers that can find him in the right areas. I honestly think he's giving the system his best shot, but as usual DB doesn't care about optimizing a player's talents.

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03-23-2011, 04:52 PM
  #103
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Bylsma is able to make an average group of forwards competitive against far superior teams. It's very impressive and one of the main reasons we haven't tanked these past few months. With that said, I still think he's going to struggle to utilize Malkin properly. As well as utilize our big guns on the PP. Sid is Sid and will make the right decisions and adapt his game every year to make him that much better.

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Old
03-23-2011, 05:11 PM
  #104
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Originally Posted by UnderratedBrooks44 View Post
I was just talking about his production, especially without any centers that can find him in the right areas. I honestly think he's giving the system his best shot, but as usual DB doesn't care about optimizing a player's talents.
He's maybe not great at optimizing Kovy, but at least Kovy seems to be buying into the system and DB in turn seems to be lenient in terms of letting Kovalev try to use his skill. It's easy to look at Kovy and say he's not producing so let's bench him but DB has not done that and continues to try to get Kovalev going by giving him minutes. I think Kovalev appreciates that and he's been giving honest efforts for the Pens. I think the reason people think he's lazy is because he just doesn't have much for wheels any more and the Pens as a whole are an excellent skating team.

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03-23-2011, 05:13 PM
  #105
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Originally Posted by Shady Machine View Post
I understand what you are trying to say, I think, but the way you said it makes it seem like it matters little who Neal plays with and he will produce similarly regardless which I think is very incorrect. Neal will definitely produce more with Crosby or Malkin then he is now. A lot of it has to do with linemates now. Now sure how you can argue it isn't at least a factor in his lack of production.

edit: bad run on sentence and poor sentence structure aside, I stand behind the point of my post haha
No matter how I word it, it's going to sound like an excuse.


What I'm saying is that right now, Neal isn't going through what one would expect him to go through when put with a center who probably shouldn't be in the top 6. He's getting the puck on his stick, he's getting great scoring opportunities, he just hasn't had luck.

Now will that change with Crosby or Malkin? It may. In fact, it probably will. He'll get an overabundance of time, even more than he is now, he'll have some pressure taken off of him, and playing with either one of those two, some pucks are bound to just bounce off his stick and jump in the net.

What I'm trying to say is, the circumstance is not why Neal is having a hard time scoring goals. He's getting shots and opportunities. He's just snake bitten. It happens to every single player. Doesn't make him a bad hockey player, doesn't mean he sucks, and doesn't mean that I don't think he's the greatest thing I've seen since Marian Hossa on the wing. What is factual is that he's getting opportunity and shots (of those opportunities and shots, some of them won't get better regardless of who he plays with), but things just aren't going his way.

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03-23-2011, 05:28 PM
  #106
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Originally Posted by JTG32005 View Post
No matter how I word it, it's going to sound like an excuse.


What I'm saying is that right now, Neal isn't going through what one would expect him to go through when put with a center who probably shouldn't be in the top 6. He's getting the puck on his stick, he's getting great scoring opportunities, he just hasn't had luck.

Now will that change with Crosby or Malkin? It may. In fact, it probably will. He'll get an overabundance of time, even more than he is now, he'll have some pressure taken off of him, and playing with either one of those two, some pucks are bound to just bounce off his stick and jump in the net.

What I'm trying to say is, the circumstance is not why Neal is having a hard time scoring goals. He's getting shots and opportunities. He's just snake bitten. It happens to every single player. Doesn't make him a bad hockey player, doesn't mean he sucks, and doesn't mean that I don't think he's the greatest thing I've seen since Marian Hossa on the wing. What is factual is that he's getting opportunity and shots (of those opportunities and shots, some of them won't get better regardless of who he plays with), but things just aren't going his way.
Absolutely correct. He's going to do well here because he creates opportunities on his own. That is a far more dangerous proposition for opposing teams to face than a complementary sniper like a Cammaleri, Sykora 2.0, etc. alongside Crosby/Malkin. He can impact a game as much as Staal can but with even more physicality, more finish and at a position we are weak at.


Last edited by mpp9: 03-23-2011 at 05:35 PM.
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Old
03-23-2011, 05:48 PM
  #107
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Neal is certainly snakebit, that's for sure. 2 goals in his last 23 games.

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03-23-2011, 05:57 PM
  #108
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I still have faith that Staal is gonna come up big for us in a 2nd line role in the playoffs alongside Kunitz and Neal will get hot at the right time.

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Old
03-23-2011, 06:21 PM
  #109
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Originally Posted by mpp9 View Post
Absolutely correct. He's going to do well here because he creates opportunities on his own. That is a far more dangerous proposition for opposing teams to face than a complementary sniper like a Cammaleri, Sykora 2.0, etc. alongside Crosby/Malkin. He can impact a game as much as Staal can but with even more physicality, more finish and at a position we are weak at.
Yeah, and those people who say he can't create on his own are wrong, IMO. He can without a doubt create offense. He is just being plagued by with 99% of 23 year old hockey players are plagued with. He's inconsistent and streaky.

Right now with Neal, you cannot use a stat sheet. It's useless. You have to watch the game and see how this guy plays.

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Old
03-23-2011, 08:36 PM
  #110
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With Kovy, he is what we paid for, he is a older skilled player. Not much unlike what we got when we traded for Bill Guerin. A very skilled player in his own right, but mostly over the hill. The only reason Bill Guerin did so well after the trade here was obviously invigorated motivation for getting to play with ether Sid or Geno. And the simple fact that he was playing with one of the greatest players in the world.

Who does Kovy have dishing him pucks? Staal, Jeffrey, or Letestu... Staal a solid center in his own right. But he is no Crosby or Malkin. And Jeffrey and Letestu have both been pleasant surprises this season. But they can not make up for the losses of two of the best players in the world. The team has stepped up and overall played well, but you can not expect to have the same offensive punch with those two gone.

Switch trades and time lines. If we would have traded for Kovy back in 09, and gotten Bill Guerin this year to infuse talent/skill then we without a doubt would be seeing Guerin in the same light we see Kovy.

He is a skilled guy, just older... And we are getting what realistically should be expected from him. People really need to take a breath on the subject of Kovy.

With Neal, he is a shoot first kind of player. He plays with a physical edge, and has a decent set of well rounded tools in his game play, but he is a shoot first player. He needs a play maker in the middle for him to be successful. Once we get to see him with extended time with Crosby or Malkin we will see the Neal we traded for, which is another thing people just need to take a deep breath on.

Calm down guys.

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Old
03-23-2011, 09:16 PM
  #111
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This thread is sad.

Only took a couple pages to start in with Poni and Hossa references (equally stupid for different reasons), and assessments of Neal's "streakiness" over his whopping 2.5 year career before he made the transition here.

I can't wait until this guy makes some of you eat your words. I'm going to dig this thread up when he does and point out how ****ing impatient some people are. Virtually ALL goal-scorers have streaky spells and spells of bad luck where they're hitting iron, not getting the tip-ins, goalies robbing them, etc. Then it turns around and everything goes in. That's hockey. I'm glad there are some folks here who have eyes and can see what Neal is going to bring to this team for a long time, and are not judging him by his goal total during this cluster **** of a transition / season.

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03-23-2011, 09:23 PM
  #112
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Couldn't agree more, Malkochalek. Neal is nothing but a great addition to this team.

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03-23-2011, 09:23 PM
  #113
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Kovy is washed up, the fact that he can still skate on NHL ice is a feat in itself.

Neal isn't quite as talented as most people thought, but he's good enough. Like most goal scorers he's streaky, it's not uncommon for Neal to go 10 games without a goal.

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03-23-2011, 09:39 PM
  #114
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Originally Posted by Play4Miracles View Post
Neal isn't quite as talented as most people thought, but he's good enough. Like most goal scorers he's streaky, it's not uncommon for Neal to go 10 games without a goal.
I think most people in this board tend to measure and think of talent relative to the two all-world players we have so that's a bit of a skew factor right there. Neal has plenty of talent and upside; very good skater for his size, great hands, good vision and anticipation... pretty much the full package.

He does have a couple 8-10 gamers a year but hey pretty much everyone not named Sid, Stamkos or Ovechkin goes multiple 6-8 game streaks a year without a goal so saying Neal has a couple 8-10 gamers here is not a big deal. Everyone loves Eriksson's skill from Dallas too and he does the same thing. 6-10 game scoreless streaks, 2-3 times a year. It's not like basketball where great players always score well no matter what.

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03-23-2011, 09:52 PM
  #115
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the 8 to 10 gamers will be few and far between once sid and geno get back.

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03-23-2011, 10:05 PM
  #116
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the 8 to 10 gamers will be few and far between once sid and geno get back.
True but I hate to see what happens when he does go through 8-10 game cold streak. I feel like people will jump of a bridge.

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03-23-2011, 10:11 PM
  #117
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the 8 to 10 gamers will be few and far between once sid and geno get back.
Well let's face it, Geno can slump too sometimes. They're human. The idea is you balance out the lines enough and develop enough chemistry that the other two guys can carry the guy who is slumping, and vice-versa when the tides change. As long as he keeps doing all the good stuff he's doing and scores 28-32G likes he's capable of and spreads those out, I don't care if he has a couple cold streaks. I'm just thrilled to have the guy on our team.

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03-23-2011, 10:53 PM
  #118
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Ive watched the encores of recent games and neal really is doing everything short of getting the puck past the line. So many chances he created himself. Staal goal against new york was all him. The fact he hasnt gotten discouraged in this stretch by maintaining his tenacity around the puck and displaying some playmaking should be the topic of this thread. I am honestly as excited to see him play with sid as i am to see staal take on a 2nd line role in the playoffs.

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03-24-2011, 07:09 AM
  #119
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Originally Posted by Play4Miracles View Post
Kovy is washed up, the fact that he can still skate on NHL ice is a feat in itself.

Neal isn't quite as talented as most people thought, but he's good enough. Like most goal scorers he's streaky, it's not uncommon for Neal to go 10 games without a goal.


i wouldnt say kovy is totally washed up, yea i thought hed prob have at least another goal at this point but im in awe with some of those passes hes been making, just no one has finished, they all look shocked when they get the puck. but he was brought here to score and hes not really doin that not mention his bad defense and overall slowness. but if people start puttin his set ups in the net hes still got some use.

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03-24-2011, 07:23 AM
  #120
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I hope Kovalev kicks it up a notch in the playoffs. He's definitely lost some desire and passion. Hopefully a run at the Cup will inspire him.

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03-24-2011, 07:31 AM
  #121
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Originally Posted by Malkochalek View Post
This thread is sad.

Only took a couple pages to start in with Poni and Hossa references (equally stupid for different reasons), and assessments of Neal's "streakiness" over his whopping 2.5 year career before he made the transition here.

I can't wait until this guy makes some of you eat your words. I'm going to dig this thread up when he does and point out how ****ing impatient some people are. Virtually ALL goal-scorers have streaky spells and spells of bad luck where they're hitting iron, not getting the tip-ins, goalies robbing them, etc. Then it turns around and everything goes in. That's hockey. I'm glad there are some folks here who have eyes and can see what Neal is going to bring to this team for a long time, and are not judging him by his goal total during this cluster **** of a transition / season.
He is the definition of a streaky player, and his peaks and valleys are extreme.

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03-24-2011, 07:41 AM
  #122
Ugene Malkin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Malkochalek View Post
This thread is sad.

Only took a couple pages to start in with Poni and Hossa references (equally stupid for different reasons), and assessments of Neal's "streakiness" over his whopping 2.5 year career before he made the transition here.

I can't wait until this guy makes some of you eat your words. I'm going to dig this thread up when he does and point out how ****ing impatient some people are. Virtually ALL goal-scorers have streaky spells and spells of bad luck where they're hitting iron, not getting the tip-ins, goalies robbing them, etc. Then it turns around and everything goes in. That's hockey. I'm glad there are some folks here who have eyes and can see what Neal is going to bring to this team for a long time, and are not judging him by his goal total during this cluster **** of a transition / season.


Exactly, imagine this team without either of these guys at the moment. Kovalev may not be on the score sheet much but he created a lot of the plays that ended up being scored upon.

Neal is kind of in the same position.

This team is better for them than not.

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03-24-2011, 12:27 PM
  #123
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I'd say the main reason would be Jeffrey and Letestu not being Brad Richards and Jason Spezza.

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03-24-2011, 05:01 PM
  #124
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My only gripe about Kovy is his recent "passing up on good shot opportunities". Towards the end of the Rags game Saturday, while the score was 3-2, he had a nice look from the left side and decided to pass instead which resulted in a turnover.

Then Monday night he passed up a nice "close look" and decided to try for a highlight reel pass to Staal instead, which turned out to be a botched pass attempt.

Surely he knows he was brought here to get pucks on the net. Before Mondays game he's had 15 SOG in 11 GP. It just drives me crazy to see him pass up on good chances to get the puck on net.

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03-24-2011, 05:29 PM
  #125
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2 goals that COUNTED. You forgot about the other 2 that they scored in shootouts that WON US THE GAME. So, unofficially, 4 goals. Factor in the assists that they've made. Trades were WELL worth it. Clutch ability is number one.

The ability to play clutch hockey, when it counts, under pressure, is worth more than any statistical evidence to me. How do you statistically measure a guys ability to cover for a goaltender by jumping in and blocking those last second shots to win, in a Stanley Cup Finals game? How do you measure leadership, experience, guts? You can't.


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