Monday, March 9, 2009

"finishers" that didn't actually finish

I enjoying watching the rangers show their youth. I was happy with the deadline deals. They aren't making the rangers a legit cup contender, but they do make the team better offensively, and I was happy to see Dawes and Prucha go. I guess I was in the minority of fans that was not a huge fan of either player. I love giving young guys a shot, but those guys were too one dimensional. Neither could pass (Prucha didn't even try), they didn't hit (Prucha tried, but it had no effect given size), they were awful defensive players, and usually Dawes' biggest impact on games were lazy passes out of his own zone that were intercepted and turned into a breakaway goal on hank (like the one against the caps with Ovechkin that helped blow the 4 goal lead). Both guys were just "finishers" that didn't actually finish. (In part because they got inconsistent playing time, but really, Prucha hasn't been the same since he got to play with Jagr on the power play in 2005-2006 when the league was just getting used to the new rules and Jagr was in an mvp season, and Dawes has shown flashes, but never puts it together) And neither played in front of the net, which we desperately need. Avery and Andropov for Dawes and Prucha is a massive offensive upgrade, but it also makes us a lot more physical, and gives us some guys who will screen the goalie.

I like giving young guys a shot, but when they don't pan out, they need to be moved while they still have some value. I don't expect Dawes or Prucha to come back to bite the rangers. And getting rid of Kalinin....well we never should have got him. He was awful from day one. There's a reason he was a third liner in buffalo, not sure why we were so eager to get his services. Morris's career numbers aren't great, but he was pretty solid when he played with Colorado (the only good team he's played with). Even from last night I really like seeing him actually shoot (and take one timers and slap shots, something he needs to teach Girardi, Staal, Rosival and Redden to do), his shot is low and accurate, and pretty hard. He will be a solid addition. At the very least, he is an upgrade over Kalinin and much more physical, since Kalinin had NO physical presence.

Next on my hit list is Dubinsky. I know they like some parts of his game, but I see ZERO development from him in the last year, if anything, regression. Every time he gets the puck and is moving towards the opposing goalie he ALWAYS takes it wide, rather than trying to get it to center of ice, to avoid a hit. Then when he is real wide, he takes some awful angle wrister with nothing on it that most decent high school goalies would have no problem with given the angle, or he ends up holding the puck, skating wide around the net, and all the way back out to the blue line on the other side, never even getting a shot off! He doesn't know how to create his shot, he doesn't have a good wrister anyway, and he just doesn't play in front of the net enough to get any loose pucks. They like his size and skill set, but I have never been a huge fan, I would explore a trade before he becomes the 12 goal, 20 assist man he appears he is going to be, and his value is completely shot.

- Bruce

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