Cornuck wrote:I've thought about this in the past, but I figure that great players should be able to work with any linemates.
Farhan Lalji wrote:On paper, Nash-Getzlaf-Perry would be MUCH better than Penner-Getzlaf-Perry, but how does experience and familiarity factor in? (to the point where Penner would actually be a better fit than Nash on a hypothetical Getzlaf/Perry line combo).
BingoTough wrote:That doesn't mean you take the top 13 forwards & 7 defensemen (or whatever it is), you take the players who give you the best team. Should we bring along 6 puck moving defencemen in lieu of a couple stay-at-home ones? I wouldn't. I would first map out needs, then find players who can fill those needs. If a player who can fill one or more? So much the better. Then they play in whichever position they're relatively more skilled at by comparison to the other players.
Island Nucklehead wrote:Iginla-Crosby-Nash
....or something along those lines.
Puck wrote:Has anyone questioned whether Thornton and Marleau will be able to elevate their play to match the intensity of this tournament? They've shown they are not great post-season guys. The pressure of the Olympic stage may be even worse. Just wondering...
Island Nucklehead wrote:Obviously Farhan, chemistry is going to be a HUUUUGE part of how this team does. So on this front I agree with you. That being said, I don't think you can build your entire team around this.
1. Mike Richards is on this team. That's a certainty so long as he's healthy. He's the best all around player Canada has.
2. Dustin Penner has no international experience. While he's having a great start to the season in Edmonton, I'm not sure how he would do in a fourth line role (with fourth line ice-time). We know how he did when put in that role in Edmonton. If you're looking at guys like Morrow and Doan, they are more suited to a checking (ie limited ice time) role and have proven they can succeed at it.
One critical element we need to look at with Forwards (not just defense) is the ability to play a shut-down role. Special teams are going to be critical to getting wins. We'll need powerplay goals, but also a solid penalty kill. I know Penner is getting all sorts of ice-time in Edmonton, but are you really going to throw him on the PK ahead of guys like Doan, Richards, Morrow, Nash, or Marleau?
Similarily, is he going to replace Crosby, Iginla, Nash, Richards, Getzlaf, Perry, Heatley, Thornton, Marleau or even a guy like Stamkos on the PP? At 5on5 Penner ranks 43rd in Canadian Forward ice time. Given that he's not very likely to see special-teams duty on this club I'd rather go with a guy who can fit in almost anywhere.
3. The problem with going Talent-v-Talent is pretty obvious. Much like a guy like Phaneuf on the back end, forwards are for the most part very offensive creatures. Backcheckind doesn't come naturally to a guy like Dany Heatley. So if you throw him out there against Ovechkin, chances are that if Russia gets us trapped in our end, we could be fishing the puck out of our net.
I hear what you're getting at re: overwhelming offensive talent, but we might have to face the facts that our Defense/Goaltending could be the reason (and IMO WILL be the reason) we win or lose. To that end, while I'm all for having the best snipers and offensive players Canada has to offer on the team, we NEED a certain amount of players (at least 2-3) that are better or at least equally suited to a defensive role.
Farhan Lalji wrote:
Agreed, but do you think being "the best all rounded player in the game" outweighs someone having won a Stanley Cup AND being a part of the best line in hockey on the best team in recent memory? (For the record, I am not saying 'no' here....I'm just trying to play devil's advocate). For that statement alone, do you think a guy like Dustin Penner could conceivably be a better fit than a guy like Mike Richards assuming that the final two spots come down to them?
Here is my other response: While it's true that guys like Morrow and Doan are more suited to checking, is that to say that other guys on Team Canada (i.e. Iginla and Nash) couldn't do the same? If Morrow and Doan are only *slightly* better than guys like Iginla and Nash in terms of shutting down the opponent and checking, but guys like Iginla and Nash (or whoever) are FAR FAR better at scoring and capitalizing on turnovers, etc., then is the presence of guys like Morrow and Doan really necessary?......ESPECIALLY in an Olympic setting where there is far less clogging and checking anyways (i.e. far greater emphasis on skill and speed).
Island Nucklehead wrote:
You're going overboard here. Dustin Penner is not good enough. Period. He's playing very well on a crappy team in Edmonton, and that's great for him.
Mike Richards is better at everything than Penner. This shouldn't be a thought.
Because that "slight" difference is still huge when you're facing a line that includes Kovalchuk and Ovechkin. You want Iginla and Nash to get their icetime in the offensive zone so as to create scoring chances.
Also, this Olympics will have MORE emphasis on "clogging and checking" because it's played on an NHL ice rink. This favours Canada's tight checking style VERY well. Playing a wide-open game against Russia is a recipe for defeat.
Basically, Farhan, you're building your entire roster out of "proven chemistry". I think Chemistry is important, but these are professional hockey players, and very good ones at that. You don't take a guy like Mike Richards off this team to throw Dustin Penner on it for the sole reason that you think it MIGHT ignite some three-year-old chemistry... no way.
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