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The Analyst

KT's Player Breakdown after 10% of the season

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CDC, you never cease to amaze me.  From bandwagoners to fanboys and the few actual knowledgable hockey fans on here, we seem to blow up and scrutinze the minute details of the team we love, or love to hate.  So I thought I'd get in on the action.  Agree, or disagree, but here is my non-fanboy, non-bandwagoner point of view.

Let's begin with the Hot Topic Players get them out of the way first.

Zack Kassian (A) - Zack has captured the attention of Vancouver fans.  His Youthful exuberance, combined with his stature has made him a physical force in this early season.  He's protected the puck well, shown great vision and certain not afraid to get dirty on the ice.  But before we crown him the second coming, we need to remember that, like cody, he's is being put in a position that makes him look better than he really is.  Playing with 22 and 33 gives him the time and space to make plays.  His career has been inconsistant so far and nothing stands out to tell me he won't continue to struggle with consistancy.  He also need to learn to make smarter decisions out there.  He needs to remember he's a skill player as much as a power forward.  He shouldn't be just parked in front all game nor fighting every other game.  His potential is sky-high, and learning the game from Henrik and Daniel will help, but let's hope he can keep humble, work hard and remember his game.

Jordan Schroeder (B-) - For a rookie, I found Jordan to be what I expected.  A few mistakes chalked up to inexperiece, but nothing I think that hurt the team.  With the puck, Jordan is smart.  He's shown good vision along with foot speed.  He's not afraid to shoot when given the opportunity and is looking like he can be an effective NHLer.  He is NOT Ryan Kesler, but he is the best available option (barring trade) we have at 2nd Line centre.

Alex Edler (D-) - Edler has had numerous defensive lapses this season.  His decision making has just been horrendous.  Part of this is due to lockout, but he struggled throughout last season as well.  On the PP, his breakout is the definition of insanity. (Repeating the same thing over and over and expecting a different result)  He skates to the same place on the breakout every time and drops back to Henrik at the same spot everytime.  When paired with Garrison, he's elects to shoot too often.  A poor choice when you have a roaming Defensive partner in Garrison (Circa Jovanovski)

Jason Garrison (C+) - In the few games that he's played here, he certainly isn't being utilized correctly.  With Edler the self-proclaimed triggerman, Garrison has been forced to play set-up man.  His rare opportunity to shoot, he's been more focused on power than accuracy.  When moving into the slot, he looks out of place.  Defensively, he hasn't been great, aside from last night's give away, he's not as bad as everyone is making him out to be.

Cory Schneider (B-) - It's hard to hang all the loses on Corey.  The defensive breakdowns have been abysmal.  You can argue that a goalie should be able to steal one for you, but hard to do when your team can't find consistant offense.  From what I've seen is that Corey is deep in his net.  Luongo struggled with this 2 years ago, he isn't cutting down the angle enough and staying deep leaves openings.  This is likely a by-product of not trusting your defense.  Having full confidence in your D allows you the luxury of challenging the shooter knowing the back door is covered. As usual, his puck handling has been suspect but in the end, Goaltending isn't the problem here.

Dan Hamhuis (C-) - It appears that the lockout has just sucked all the hockey sense right out of him.  He looks so lost and slow.  I'm fully confident he'll get into game shape, just afraid we'll be too far below the playoff bar when he finds it.

Kevin Bieksa (C+) - Shown some nastiness, and I like that he tries to move the puck up the ice.  He hasn't been terrible but nothing like the Bieksa we had last year or years prior.

Keith Ballard (B+) - Him and Tanev are by far the Best 2 Defensemen we have right now.  Ballard is playing for his life with the Amnesty buyouts coming this off season.  And If I'm MG, I'm seriously reconsidering.  Ballard has been tough on the opposing forwards, shown great passing and even shown a bit of the edge that he had in Florida.  He's performing above expectations which is why I give him good marks.

Chris Tanev (B+) - See Above.  Tanev is the cool customer that makes the smart play everytime.  I'd like to say he's the Dan Hamhuis of 2 years ago.  Always defensively sound, he's gotten stronger this season and it shows.  He took the big hit from Clowe (I think) and was able to shake it off without incident.  He also is looking for an extension, I hope we resign him around 2 million per.

Henrik / Daniel (C+) - I'm lumping them together because the analysis is the same.  They look like their timing is off.  They haven't been AS dangerous as Art Ross Trophy winners are, but the foundation is there.  AV benched them to send a message.  They need to find their game, but only playing more games will help with that.

Rest of the team has been pretty invisible.  My only other critique is with the coaching staff.  I made a post prior to the season that AV needs to have more faith in youth.  It does look like that is happening, but I see serious flaws in the PP and the breakout.  Teams have figured us out.  And so we haven't adapted to try and put that extra wrinkle into our offense.  We've added tools like Garrison and Kassian.  We are seeing a re-emergance of Mason Raymond and an upstart like Jordan Schroeder.  Yet we continue to try the same schemes over and over.  Team needs to sit down and re-hash some plans after the LA game tonight.

I do predict another Vancouver Loss, we'll definately have jump in this game, but we seem to unorganized to beat the defending champs.Edit: I said the rest of the team was invisible and that's not true.  I do like what Aaron Volpatti brings to the 4th line.  He'll throw his weight around and isn't afraid of a challenge.  He was a skill guy in Junior as well and so can chip in with the odd one (1 a year).  Also Dale Weise has looked decent.  Obviously the Dutch league has given him an extra bit of confidence but he needs to remember his role and contribute physically and give 21+45 space on the ice.Mason Raymond, I like that he's come back fully healthly and is creating plays with his speed on the ice.  He needs to make better passes but I think he'll take a step forward in being a legitamate scoring threat this year.  His health is the main factor.

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your.not really rating players upon performance.bit rather expectations and predictions. no one expected kass to have three goals so he gets an A? but the sedins who make this team go and are responsible for kass goals are given a c+?

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Half the fanbase wants Cory Schneider as the #1 goaltender here for the next decade ... and they can't even spell his name correctly. :picard:

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your.not really rating players upon performance.bit rather expectations and predictions. no one expected kass to have three goals so he gets an A? but the sedins who make this team go and are responsible for kass goals are given a c+?

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Yes, there is a heavy weight on expectation. Of course if the player is playing at or above expectation then I'd say they deserve better marks. The Sedin's are responsible for 2 of Kassian's Goals. But Kassian's grade is also based on his physical play and desicions with the puck. Henrik and Daniel are not playing up to par. 5 on 5 they seem to be creating the same amount of chances as the Raymond line.

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Edler and Garrison's giveaways last night for the first two Sharks games were BRUTAL. But other than that, I haven't been overly disappointed. I do think that Garrison should be our 2nd PP point man, because he's not being utilized properly where he is. Having him tee them up and our 2nd unit grinders either deflect it in or scoop up the rebounds is probably our best shot at being effective on the PP even when the Sedins are resting.

Hansen and Burrows were invisible for the first few games, but looked fantastic last night. If it weren't for the frickin goal posts, they may have got us back into that game.

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Good list, agreed with most if not everything. Although i dont know if you left Hansen out on purpose but i think he brings it every night and plays his role to perfection. Id give him an A- or B+ so far.

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i think your basing this a lot on the last game. before the loss to SJ Edler was decent defensively, he maybe had 1 or 2 turnovers that werent costly prior, and now that he had 1 that resulted in a goal your saying hes crap. before last game i guarantee you would have given him at least a B.

Bieksa hasnt been great defensively at times but he has brought a lot more physicality to the team.

Garrison was solid defensively before last nights give away. last night was not a good game for our defense.

I think your weighing far too heavily on how everyone performed last game. one game doesnt make them bad. if they are consistently bad then you can say those rating are justified

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I think Schroeder and Schneider deserve a better grade, maybe a bump to a solid B. Like other posters on here, I don't think Kassian should be above the Sedins just yet, yes the Sedins aren't playing to expectation but that bar is already so high. Kassian has been great, but I don't know if he's been THAT great.

Our D looked horrible last night, in particular Edler-Garrison. I'm not sure what these two were doing but their giveaways led to 2 goals against in the first 5 mins. It's pretty hard to come back from that.

Ballard-Tanev has easily been our best pairing. Hamhuis has been good, but Bieksa has taken a few bad penalties already.

I think Raymond is deserving of a grade, while Higgins gets the big old FAIL stamp. Hansen is up to game speed, he's added some offense and looks good with Burrows.

In terms of toughness I think Volpatti and Weise are both deserving of passing grade, while Lapierre has looked sluggish (I know he's injured). I'm not too worried about this team, it's just another typical slow start.

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Markings are always going to cause people to jump all over you, but I agree with most of them actually. The ones I really don`t agree with though are the Sedins. Daniel is over a point per game pace, and Henrik I think has 5 in 5? To me thats not C plus, even if you are marking versus expectations, and the beginning of the season how many points did you expect them to have after 5 games? Maybe you could have hoped for a few more, but I think they are fine. At times have looked great and at times have looked a bit out of synch, no different than the rest of the league coming out of the lockout. Just my opinion

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Some valid points, of course, the purpose of posting my thoughts and grades is to create discussion.

Maybe Kassian is over graded, I'm sure that over the course of the season his grade will balance out to a Solid B.  He's just been one of the stand outs, gives him the top grade.

Sedin's could be graded higher.  When you look at who we've played.  ANA, EDM, CGY, ANA, SJ.  The Sedin's point totals could be much better.  They also just seem out of sync and aren't as dominant as we are accustomed to.

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Don't disagree with your assessment to date. Very concerned with Edler and Hamhuis. Edler's giveaway last night was one of the worst I have ever seen. Tape to tape pass to Pavelski breaking in the slot.Hopefully with another week under their belt it will get better. Thought Hansen and Burrows were better last night which was good to see.

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Here's what I would have given everyone.

Sedins: A-

Kassian: A-

Burrows: B

Schroeder: B

Hansen: B+

Higgins: C

Lapierre: C-

Weise: A-

Volpatti: B+

Malhotra: C

Ebbett: D

Hamhuis: C+

Bieksa: C-

Edler: C+

Garrison: C+

Ballard: B+

Tanev: A-

Schneider: B

Loungo: B

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i think your basing this a lot on the last game. before the loss to SJ Edler was decent defensively, he maybe had 1 or 2 turnovers that werent costly prior, and now that he had 1 that resulted in a goal your saying hes crap. before last game i guarantee you would have given him at least a B.

Bieksa hasnt been great defensively at times but he has brought a lot more physicality to the team.

Garrison was solid defensively before last nights give away. last night was not a good game for our defense.

I think your weighing far too heavily on how everyone performed last game. one game doesnt make them bad. if they are consistently bad then you can say those rating are justified

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Dammit, there's another Kassian's Tooth...

OK i'll change when available.

Honestly I don't feel like I'm basing on SJ game only. Edler in my opinion has been terrible all year. Yes he's has points but he's been making bad decisions since the start of the season.

Maybe I have my blinders on, but I think Edler needs to find his game.

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Dammit, there's another Kassian's Tooth...

OK i'll change when available.

Honestly I don't feel like I'm basing on SJ game only.  Edler in my opinion has been terrible all year.  Yes he's has points but he's been making bad decisions since the start of the season.

Maybe I have my blinders on, but I think Edler needs to find his game.

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What my eyes have seen so far this year

(watched almost every minute of every game)

Luongo A (off-ice) Class act pretty much throughout, be nice to see him kill it tonight and not crap the bed.

Schneider C+ (inconsistant so far , at times horrific at handling the puck , its ridiculous how bad he is at playing the puck, not exactly making a strong case to cut Luo lose, strong shutout performance but a couple soft games, )

Bieksa C- (Pretty poor start so far , shown a bit of grit bringing him up from a D rating)

Hamhuis D- (Horrible, not enough training by the looks of it, he looks terrible, not a good sign in a short yr)

Edler D (Horrible at times, picked up where he left off last year when he stuck out the playoff series vs L.A , now with a fat contract he's back and showing very little interest, begging to be bundled w/Lu +Booth for a superstar sniper )

Garrison B- (i think he's gonna be very solid for us once we get him a new partner)

Ballard B (Been pretty good)

Tanev B (Been pretty good)

Volpatti B+ (Love this kid, still think we need a super thug that can deal with 225-250lbers)

Lapierre D (injured shouldn't even be playing, that penalty yesterday was beyond stupid)

Wiese B (Dont forget to play hard Danish 99 )

Higgins C- ( needs to switch gears soon, been almost invisible)

Malhotra C- (Outside of winning some face-offs the guy hasn't done much on the ice, off ice he gets an A)

Ebbett D ( too small and not impressive enough to be effective in the NHL from what ive seen so far, more of a depth guy on a no depth organization unfortunately or AHL player)

LaPierre D ( rest his groin for and get Vandy up for a look)

Schroeder B (too small come playoff time, hope to be proved wrong)

Raymond B+ (by Raymond standards) too small come playoff time, hope to be proved wrong

Burrows B (looked slow first few games)

Hansen C+ inconsistant so far

H.Sedin B (somewhat inconsistant so far()

D.Sedin B ( inconsistant so far)

Kassian A ( so far so good this year, needs to stay hungry or he will be a huge disappointment , this organization has desperately been lacking this type of guy, now only if we could 2-3 more we might be playoff built)

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