Monahan Staying with the Flames

Kent Wilson
October 23 2013 11:44AM

 

 

Surprising no one, Jay Feaster announced this morning that Sean Monahan will not be returning to junior this season. The 19 year old rookie has had a blazing start to his career offense-wise, but the fact that he doesn't look overwhelmed at the other end of the ice is probably the reason the club has decided to keep him around.

My pragmatic budget efficiency concerns aside, Monahan has looked like an NHL capable player through his first nine contests, so the fears of him being "ruined" by being needlessly promoted to the show - as happens with some teens - are probably not relevant. And that's even if you accept that his scoring outburst to start the year is percentages based and not necessarily indicative of his true talent level currently.

Monahan's skipped the queue is no doubt the best prospect in the club's hopper currently.

Discuss.

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Former Nations Overlord. Current FN contributor and curmudgeon For questions, complaints, criticisms, etc contact Kent @ kent.wilson@gmail. Follow him on Twitter here.
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#1 Parallex
October 23 2013, 11:58AM
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Was hoping that they could resist the urge but I guess not. Oh well, just gotta hope that it doesn't come back to bite the Flames in the future.

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#2 Monaertchi Gaudnett
October 23 2013, 12:54PM
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Why can't he go to Abby?

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#3 Jeff Lebowski
October 23 2013, 05:07PM
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#6 Jeff Lebowski September 12 2013, 12:06PM

I just finished watching A (red) win 3-2 vs B (white). A couple of changes to the lineups: -Reinhart didn't play for A, instead Jooris drew in. -The goalies were MacDonald for A and Ortio for B Also, the scrimmage was one 50 minute period. The ice got worse.

T

Also, at this time of year all these guys are coming in, in the best shape of their lives (I assume 18-35 year olds will improv their fitness year after year). It was easy to see the improved strength and power in Stempniak. He played his game but in battles with d (one in particular with Gio on end boards) he jolted guy's off the puck or off their skates.

Monahan-Although he didn't get on score sheet, he again looked like one of the better players on the ice. Moved puck quickly and smartly. One rush he anticipated the play (a turnover about to happen along side boards near blueline), accelerated past the unaware guy skating with him, picked up the puck, settled his speed and then cut into the middle of the ice (circles) and fired a shot (saved). He is really good. People think he doesn't skate well or hard. They don't know what they are talking about. He skates hard when he needs to. His anticipation is top notch. Also he just is a great puck distributor on breakouts, always putting on the tape of he headman with speed. Any doubters that think he should not play in NHL this year are wrong if they think he can't handle it. MONAHAN IS A SPECIAL PLAYER.

#4 Jeff Lebowski July 13 2013, 02:10PM

I was at scrimmage too. To my eyes most of the game was played in the Red team's end (4-1 score). There were some big guys out there so it was good to see the younger guys hang in physically.

Monahan: Smart, effective player all over the ice. Good on draws and picking up the dangerous guy defensively. Nice shot for Red's only goal. He's a young guy but he steps in and just plays with savvy. When he skates the puck he shifts guys to make open ice for himself. Head up, really good thinker and passer. Super poised. I have no doubt he will play and make an impact in NHL. Very happy to see.

#38 Jeff Lebowski September 16 2013, 01:25PM

Keeping Monahan for PR reasons OR sending him down for future 'cost savings' are two terrible, and IMO, laughable justifications.

The outcome is not how many wins will Monahan add to Calgary this year. The desired outcome is for Sean to play in the place that allows him to grow the most.

If you look at this through the rather myopic lens of on ice growth only you could easily convince yourself that junior is best. However, think of EVERYTHING that goes into maximizing human potential (how do you make an elite athlete)?

Take it out of the context of hockey and examine it a different way:

If you had a child that demonstrated 'giftedness', what would you do? Keep him/her in a regular school and expose them to convention or find an environment that accelerates their learning? Will cost win out, especially when you can afford it but in the lifetime of your child you would prefer to save money for a few years.

Now, if you can't look at Monahan and IMMEDIATELY see his giftedness then this is a pointless exercise. To me, it's gob smackingly obvious. Just watch him. I'm not saying he's Crosby or that he flashes obvious skills. What I see is an 18 year old who can control the play (sometimes that means making a routine play or an amazing play - what is the quality of your decision making?) at the NHL level. His mind is his gift.

Another point I think about is the young players who are no longer prospects but established but still growing NHLers like Brodie, Backlund, Sven and the WOWY stat. When I watch Monahan play he just screams WOWY monster (he makes people better - perhaps in more ways than shots). I think it serves the Flames better to have that happen with Flames' assets rather than unaffiliated players (junior).

#27 Jeff Lebowski September 06 2013, 11:30AM

Moving on, during the Young Star game did anyone else notice that Monahan makes whomever he plays with better (noticeable)? With development camp, rookie tourney, Monahan is one of the youngest out there but also consistently good. His positioning allows him to conserve energy and then he exploits weaknesses in opposition defence. Watch him move without the puck, watch him slip past opponents who are looking at the puck carrier. Impressive.

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#4 BurningSensation
October 23 2013, 07:31PM
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Walter white wrote:

Ok, how about now? Which one of those 3 first overall turds from the Oilers would you trade for Monahan now....? WW

I'd still trade him for Hall or the Nuge, but No on Yakupov.

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#5 Justin
October 23 2013, 07:55PM
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Should have sent him back to Jrs.

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#6 Prairie Chicken by-the-Sea
October 23 2013, 04:08PM
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@seve927

As much as I like Monahan, I'd still rather have MacKinnon than the three we have. Time will tell, as always.

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#7 Walter white
October 23 2013, 05:50PM
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Ok, how about now? Which one of those 3 first overall turds from the Oilers would you trade for Monahan now....? WW

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#8 Derek
October 23 2013, 08:07PM
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9 games and most posters are certain of the future of Monahan.

You all should be GM's.

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#9 Justin Azevedo
October 23 2013, 02:48PM
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Rockmorton65 wrote:

Another thought, if they sent Monahan down, would that make Gaudreau think twice about signing here? What would it say to these unsigned guys if they are one of the best players on the team, but still can't make it?

no. it says nothing.

let's be real here. these guys aren't morons. they're not dolls. they understand this is a business and business decisions sometimes have to be made. plain and simple. having hurt feelings about a business decision says more about the player's inability to cope with a high pressure atmosphere more than anything.

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#10 Justin Azevedo
October 23 2013, 02:52PM
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@JaromeTakesSlapShots

iggy's brute force slap shots haven't worked since, oh, 2010. hasn't stopped him from scoring. at this current rate, assuming about 10% shooting percentage, he'll have 30 by the end of the season.

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#11 Dave
October 23 2013, 11:52AM
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I'm Ok with this. Now I can watch him play more.

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#12 Justin Azevedo
October 23 2013, 02:49PM
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kittensandcookies wrote:

Remember folks, they can still send him down to junior.

if they do that it will be a colossally stupid decision.

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#13 Lober
October 23 2013, 06:29PM
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Iginla just got his first of the year on a great shift by him. GO IGGY!

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#14 Parallex
October 23 2013, 12:07PM
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Now that he's up for good I think they ought to shelter him less. I'm not saying throw him to the wolves but maybe even out his OZ starts and DZ starts and have him kill some penalties (god knows we could use a different look on the PK).

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#15 Kevin R
October 23 2013, 01:28PM
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:-} ;-} :-}

Well lick my pucks & buff my stick, I am thrilled about this decision.

:-}

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#16 Jeff Lebowski
October 23 2013, 04:13PM
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#14 Jeff Lebowski September 19 2013, 02:50PM

I can definitely see the wisdom of 'letting the fruit ripen'.

I also don't want to see Monahan in Calgary if he's only going to play sparingly (fourth line or out of position) or sat for stretches.

I think that NHL regular season tempo and personnel are different from preseason and being good in preseason means...nothing (I remember some Euro dman for Calgary leading preseason scoring one year and then nothing in regular season)

However, my point is that with ever increasing difficulty in opposition (rookie camp, prospect tourney, initial preseason) Monahan continues to improve.

If you can agree he is improving, why artificially stop this growth? Why not let him see how far he can take it?

We all have these projections of what kind of player he is. Why not let him show what kind of player he is.

If you're in Monahan's shoes you are showing you can play well against increasing competition (I imagine your confidence is growing along the way) and you say 'Thanks but see ya later'

Now, to your point, it's not like he's gonna get ruined in Junior but is it certain he is going to improve on where he is now (NHL) by going to a lesser league?

A

If the goal is to be a better NHL player, and he's currently showing he can play well against, at present, a mix of NHL vets doesn't it make sense that the NHL is the best place for him to develop? Again, if he's getting killed SEND HIM DOWN. But he hasn't shown that.

With Monahan, when I watch him play, I keep saying 'good idea'. Even plays that don't work out (ice is bad, team mate doesn't complete the play etc) and I keep saying good idea in all three zones. Let him show how far his confidence and skills can take him right now because next year is unknown. What is known is how well he's playing now. U

I'm not willing to artificially limit how good he can be right now. I know he believes he can play and so far I'm enjoying watching him prove himself right.

Yes, he's 18, yes most 18 year olds don't make it. But this is an n=1 and it's unfolding right in front of your eyes but you're sticking with projection based on aggregates of other INDIVIDUALS. Your dealing with human beings not asset classes.

f.

Personally I think he can play here and play well. Some people demand hard numbers so ok, establish some bar and test it. Don't say unequivocally, NOPE, send him down.

Maybe, I'm wrong. Regardless of where he is now, he will be better next year. But can you tell me exactly how good he will be this year in the NHL? Not based on history, just by watching him.

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#17 MichaelD
October 23 2013, 07:04PM
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@piscera.infada

I agree, Monahan seems like more of a flame too. I don't think Calgary is really ever destinied to be a high skilled dangling team haha

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#18 Jeff Lebowski
October 23 2013, 09:29PM
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jeremywilhelm wrote:

Well laaaa dee daaaaa Jeff Lebowski. Laaaaa deee daaa

haha.

"you better recognize, 'cause I know better"

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#19 Nighteyes
October 23 2013, 11:58AM
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I think that if Hartley continues to increase Monohan's minutes but doesn't put him in situations where he might get banged up and/or overmatched, I'm fine with him staying. As his confidence and other weaknesses improve, his role can increase. I feel that going back to the OHL probably wouldn't have helped Monohan, but sometimes I also feel he's just a kid with unreal expectations right now because of his scoring burst to to start the year. I wish he could have a nice long year stint the Heat, that would truly be beneficial in my opinion.

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#20 bookofloob
October 23 2013, 12:18PM
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hey guys

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#21 oldtimehockey4
October 23 2013, 03:55PM
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seve927 wrote:

Are we glad we didn't trade our 3 first rounders to Colorado? Serious question. Would you rather have Monahan, Poirier and Klimchuk, or one of those other guys? I'm glad Colorado didn't go for it.

That's a completely moot point, assuming we would have actually gotten O'Reilly back in the deal and he wouldn't have been placed on waivers.

You can't assume we would have had the 6th overall pick if we had O'Reilly, or that the trades to Pittsburgh or St. Louis would have happened.

Even assuming we made the same trades to Pitt and St. Louis, we would still have drafted Poirier and Klimchuk, but we would be without a first rounder in 2014 and 2015.

So I guess you could hypothetically look back at this trade in 2015 after we've drafted our next 2 first rounders, and see if we should or shouldn't have made the trade, but I'm betting most would have said Colorado won the trade.

EDIT: Opps, I just realized you were talking about trading the 3 picks for the first overall, ignore my stupidity and move on...

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#22 T&A4Flames
October 23 2013, 07:15PM
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Walter white wrote:

Ok, how about now? Which one of those 3 first overall turds from the Oilers would you trade for Monahan now....? WW

At this moment? NOT ONE!!

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#23 Jeff Lebowski
October 23 2013, 09:30PM
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jeremywilhelm wrote:

Well laaaa dee daaaaa Jeff Lebowski. Laaaaa deee daaa

haha.

"you better recognize, 'cause I know better"

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#24 Jeff In Lethbridge
October 23 2013, 11:55AM
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I'm glad. Not because it will help us win more... I'm still expecting a very high draft pick. But -because this is where he will develop the most.

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#25 Brent G.
October 23 2013, 06:07PM
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Walter white wrote:

Ok, how about now? Which one of those 3 first overall turds from the Oilers would you trade for Monahan now....? WW

The only one I would sort of consider is Hall. Even then likely not. Too injury prone

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#26 Jeff Lebowski
October 23 2013, 06:22PM
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#40 Jeff Lebowski September 20 2013, 10:55AM Trash it! 1 trashes 7 props Reply Edit the-wolf wrote:

@Piscera and Lebowski - your points are well-taken, but if he's supposed to be an offensive guy then building confidence by dominating and playing tons is never a bad thing. 3rd line minutes aren't good enough. The Flames don't need another checker, so unless he looks like a legit 2nd line center on most teams in the NHL during the regular season, I don't see where going down hurts him.

I completely understand the idea of playing time = improving time. The more you play the better you get.

I just find people fixate on what 3C, 2C mean. To illustrate: -If Monahan is 3C he will play 12 min per night +/- special teams. In Junior he will play 25 min. Seems reasonable.

Is it not possible that he plays more than that? Against certain teams, maybe at home, he plays 20 mins. It's not set in stone every night = 12min. No more and no less. What can he learn about how to play more NHL minutes from his NHL 'mistakes'. That doesn't mean feed him to the wolves. It means if he proves to play well against 3C opposition, stretch him a little against 2C. See how he responds. That stretching - challenge- is where you grow. Dominating against sub par competition doesn't mean the same level of growth. Consider that, again he proves he can play well against 3C. That's guys like Pavelski, Stoll. There is not many top line junior players better than those guys. The NHL weeded out the sub par guys.

I think that if he can play 3C which I think Averages closer to 15-16 min that is the low end range where he can prove capable in 20 min in the upper range some nights.

Don't assume a limit on age or draft position (only top 5 historically play as 18). Let him find his upper end. Suspend for a moment any skepticism, and just allow it to happen. After 9 reassess.

People really need to stop being so back and white in their thinking. Experiment, change some variables up. Observe result. Don't assume the result based on past. They have no bearing on Monahan's outcome. Aggregates are a terrible way to frame how you look at a member of the set. All sorts of terrible biases then distort your thinking.

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#27 Rockmorton65
October 23 2013, 07:34PM
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Walter white wrote:

Ok, how about now? Which one of those 3 first overall turds from the Oilers would you trade for Monahan now....? WW

Hmmm....two guys made of glass or a stereotypical Russian.....in the words of Alex Tanguay, "always a pass"

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#28 FireOnIce
October 23 2013, 12:00PM
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My only pre-req for Monahan staying was always that he needed to be playing significant minutes. Looking good enough to stay in the NHL is an added bonus.

His TOI has been 15+ minutes over the last 6 games, with 21:11 against the LAK and 19:26 against Phoenix. He has played PP minutes and gotten points, and hasn't been a significant detriment to the team when on the ice (-3 games against VAN aside).

Guess his staying makes sense, and I'm cool with it. Also, this doesn't preclude him being sent down later in the season if need be, or for the World Juniors. I think he should still go to the WJHC and get that medal though, as that's probably better for his leadership development than mucking with the Flames.

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#29 MichaelD
October 23 2013, 12:16PM
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@Parallex

No no no, Stay the course for now. If they start giving him tough minutes right after the decide to keep him and he falters everyone will be saying I told you so. Keep him where he is having success now, let him grow confidence and then nearer to the second half of the season, thats when minutes get tougher.

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#30 bookofloob
October 23 2013, 12:24PM
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@negrilcowboy

MONZIE?

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#31 Rockmorton65
October 23 2013, 12:53PM
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Another thought, if they sent Monahan down, would that make Gaudreau think twice about signing here? What would it say to these unsigned guys if they are one of the best players on the team, but still can't make it?

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#32 Sean Bennett
October 23 2013, 01:37PM
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bookofloob wrote:

hey guys

FU@K OFF, Loob. We dont' need an eighties Swedish guy telling us how to run things when we have a new-breed of Swedish sexy: Backlund.

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#33 BurningSensation
October 23 2013, 02:40PM
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the-wolf wrote:

I was probably the biggest proponent on sending him back, but even I'm sold on keeping him up now. He's a year ahead of where I thought he'd be. I said he had to show he was a 2nd line center on almost any team and I didn't think that possible, but he's basically done that. Incredible. Here's hoping he doesn't hit a wall (not too hard anyways).

Same boat. He genuinely proved he can play, and keeping him around shouldn't stunt his development.

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#34 backburner
October 23 2013, 04:14PM
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I sure do like Sean Monahan..

Anyone have any thoughts on him being billeted as one of the "conditions" of this decision?

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#35 Veggie Dog
October 23 2013, 07:40PM
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BurningSensation wrote:

I'd still trade him for Hall or the Nuge, but No on Yakupov.

Hall is always injured, and Nuge is a milquetoast.

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#36 Steve
October 23 2013, 08:10PM
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Interesting opinion regarding Monahan.

http://www.coppernblue.com/2013/10/23/4962158/sean-monahan-calgary-flames-staying-entry-level-contract-stupid

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#37 Veggie Dog
October 23 2013, 08:22PM
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Steve wrote:

Interesting opinion regarding Monahan.

http://www.coppernblue.com/2013/10/23/4962158/sean-monahan-calgary-flames-staying-entry-level-contract-stupid

It is a bit early to welcome his either as savior, or the oft-injured stick-like second coming of RNH. So far he is earning his spot, and the justification for him staying makes sense. Maybe it works, maybe it doesn't, but there are plenty of others staying up too (MacKinnon, Jones, etc)

More importantly, someone from a blog called Copper and Blue calling the flames stupid is hardly a surprise. Leave them to their god-awful mess, and worry about developing our team.

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#38 Scary Gary
October 23 2013, 11:59AM
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I'm a bit surprised he's playing as well as he has in these nine games. Good for him though; he's shown that he doesn't look out of place and is willing to get the 'dirty' goals.

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#39 seve927
October 23 2013, 12:00PM
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I think the easy decision would have been to send him down. The perceived "safe" call. I'm glad they had the balls to do what they think is right.

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#40 piscera.infada
October 23 2013, 12:03PM
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@FireOnIce

They've already said they'll 'loan' him to the WJHC. It's not like this team is going to need him for a playoff push or anything.

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#41 negrilcowboy
October 23 2013, 12:16PM
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great ddecision, monzie will benefit more by staying plain and simple. its up to hartley to manage the asset.

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#42 jeremywilhelm
October 23 2013, 12:26PM
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@bookofloob

Oh thank god your here. We need you to be part of this discussion!

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#43 negrilcowboy
October 23 2013, 12:50PM
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bookofloob wrote:

MONZIE?

do you approve?its a handle hie has had since youth.

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#44 Kevin R
October 23 2013, 04:34PM
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seve927 wrote:

Are we glad we didn't trade our 3 first rounders to Colorado? Serious question. Would you rather have Monahan, Poirier and Klimchuk, or one of those other guys? I'm glad Colorado didn't go for it.

That one really melts brain cells. Mckinnon is going to be elite but I think Monomoster isn't far behind & Calgary had way more holes to plug than Colorado. So personally, we need the 3 picks.

The guy that is amazing me is how Cammi is coming across. Either he & Feasty have talked & know there is no market for him until the trade deadline & his not being a team player is an issue. So either his trade ability is being shined up or he really wants to help the rebuild. I say if Stemps or Cammi are not resigned to a cap friendly deal by the deadline they go regardless & you can throw Stajan in that category.

Gio being hurt & seeing friggin Butler in the top pairing with Brodie has scared me poopless. Would Liles & a 2nd for Butler a better option in this scenario?

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#45 Rockmorton65
October 23 2013, 04:48PM
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T&A4Flames wrote:

Seriously??! I think I am more tired over this Gaudreau anxiety that is out there than the seemingly endless Jankowski debate. I can't see him not signing because he may percieve this line of thinking.

Like Janko, its still too early to concern ourselves with this. JMO.

Too early? Gaudreau can sign when he's done school this year, which I'm guessing is March or April. I wouldn't be surprised to see him in a Flames uniform sometime this year.

Its not anxiety. I think its a valid concern. Part of the Flames new "image" is the idea that talented youth will get a legitimate chance to earn a spot. What would it say about Flames management if they sent Monahan down? You can be one of the best rookies in the league, be a PPG player and still not get a shot. Its a dangerous message to send and is hypocritical of this new "image"

Corban Knight signed here because of the opportunity, Tim Erixon wanted out because it wasn't there, and now we are trying to convince Gaudreau and others its worth starting their careers with us.

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#46 Karimeeloranta
October 23 2013, 05:09PM
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Somebody has to win the Calder, it may as well be Monahan...

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#47 Captain Ron
October 23 2013, 09:13PM
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Derek wrote:

9 games and most posters are certain of the future of Monahan.

You all should be GM's.

Well Derek,

Most of us are optimistic about the kids future for some stupid reason or another.

If you are not then please go ahead and enlighten us with your thoughts about the kid since that is what the comment option is primarily for.

It is better than criticizing en mass when you don't agree.

There are lots of intelligent comments on this forum that are well thought out by the authors.

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#48 Captain Ron
October 23 2013, 12:03PM
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I'm ok with him staying on the big club. He's proven he belongs and will develop just fine even in a sheltered 15 minutes a night role. May as well hang with the NHL guys like Hudler, Geo and the boys who can show him the way to becoming a great pro. Congrats Sean you earned it.

On a selfish note he was the last addition on my fantasy team this year. With 9 points he is ahead of guys like Kesler, Parise, and Toews etc. on my team.

So yeah, I'm happy with the decision.

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#49 jeremywilhelm
October 23 2013, 12:13PM
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Shooting percentage aside. I've seen some progression in his game in just the last 9. There is some assertiveness to his game that took Backlund about 2 years to show. He was also making some strong plays in the D zone against Phoenix that probably went unnoticed. He also had two very good scoring chances right in close on the net that were almost goals.

Once Stajan is back and he and Backlund can do the heavy lifting, I think this is the right choice in the long run. Kid is already an NHLer. Ignoring the contract issue, I don't see how you could reasonably send him back without leaving a very sour taste in the kids mouth for the organization.

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#50 Parallex
October 23 2013, 12:33PM
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@MichaelD

I didn't say give him "tough minutes" (In fact I said not to throw him to the wolves) I said give him less easy minutes... balanced responsibilities.

If we're going to be developing his game in the NHL then I would want all of his game to be developed (including his D-zone responsibilities and penalty killing). Not some to the exclusion of others. Frankly, I'd like to think that if he's mature enough to stay in the NHL then he's mature enough to be able to find confidence (or whatever other sports meme someone prefer) in his performance defensively and on special teams other then the PP.

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