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Assessing the Canuck D: Some Interesting Numbers

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Defensive Depth Chart Next Year  

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Good analysis. 

 

One thing that the stats can’t show about Pouliot is that he was actually pretty good early on when the team was playing well. He was even used on the top pair with Edler for a while and didn’t look out of place. When the injuries racked up and the team started to play badly, so did he. And his mistakes just led to more mistakes. I think it’s pretty clear that he has confidence issues but when he’s on his game he’s a valuable puck moving dman with a skill set that this team needs.

 

I’m hoping Juolevi can move ahead of Del Zotto and Hutton on the depth chart, which shouldn’t be hard if he’s ready. I would pair him with Tanev.  I think Pouliot will end up Edler. This leaves Stecher and Gudbranson to fight for the right side on the 3rd pair, and Hutton/Del Zotto on the left. But I don’t think Green would bench DZ or Gudbranson let alone both. 

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i appreciate the post

including the explanation you gave of your view of some of the stats

overall your assessment matches my views of the canucks d

not even an average group as a whole

 

we can dream about winning the draft lottery

and i certainly am prepared to wait for that outcome

 

if the likely does occur, and the canucks do not land first place overall

and if it appears unlikely after the tea has acquired a dman in the draft who can likely step in and perform at a high level fairly quickly

i think the team really needs to use a chunk of available cap space to spend on a quality dman

the team should be prepared to offer annual value and term (4 to 6 years)

there is likely no quick fix coming to this d corp

and an upgrade is required for next season

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Posted (edited)

I kind of follow all the western teams, and it kind of reminds me a lot of the Flames of a few years past.  When Giordano and Brodie were on the ice, the team was good, when they stepped off the ice, the team was a tire fire.  The pairing of Edler and Tanev are good, and if we had 2 other good pairings, we wouldn't be having this conversation at all.  On a good team, Edler and Tanev are your 2nd pairing that you'd trust in all situations, and would probably safely put up between 20-35 pts.  On our team, we're mad because they aren't a good first pairing compared to competitive teams first pairings.  It isn't their fault, its ours, and we're lucky we still have the both of them, and we'd be worse without them.

  Stecher is a complimentary piece that will play well with a good defensive partner, but will not make a pairing good on his own.  Gudbranson is the kind of defenseman that needs a player akin to Dustin Byfuglien or Erik Karlson.  He's a support player that is best paired with an offensive threat.  Sort of like Methot.  Poulliot needs a steady hand to allow him to range.  Hutton....needs to come back in in better shape and show that he's NHL calibre.  He has upside, but I don't know if we have the person to play with him to bring that out, and at best he's looking like a fringe #4.  Biega is a perfect 7th defenseman in the mould of Rome.  Feisty, tenacious, makes safe plays, but really doesn't bring more to the table than what you've already seen.  God I wish someone would give him some vaseline, so that his hands were silky soft.

  I think we have the recipe for something better with some of the pieces we have, but by the time the ship is righted, I'm pretty sure we'll be left with only 2-3 of what we have at the moment.  With defensemen, in my mind, you have to work at making a stable pairing, not having individuals.

  As to our poster, I love your analysis, and break down of each defenseman, and I concur.  I just don't see us being 1 guy away from righting the ship.  Even with Dahlin, we'd have to hope that Juolevi could slot in on the left, and that we have a break thru of season from our right side defensemen.

 

 
Edited by Solinar
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Let me preface this by saying I don't necessarily disagree with the OP....but essentially what is being said is that our defense is a disaster (outside of some decent play by Edler and Biega).

 

After watching about half the games this year i'd say that is fairly accurate, and that we are years away from rectifying this problem.  Offense looks bright and with Demko on the rise I am hoping goaltending isn't an issue but the best way to get good Dmen is to develop them and sadly we are lagging way behind and when we want to contend this could will be a serious issue.

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Don't be surprised if the Canucks upgrade Baumgartner, even this off season.

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Tanev is interesting because his on-ice value is much higher than his trade value because of frequent injury.

 

But yeah I agree that none of our D have much trade value. Juolevi is an unknown but he's not getting traded.

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Good post OP thanks for crunching the numbers and giving the rest of us some solid information to process.

Something that screams out to me being a sports player (not hockey) is that without offense it is very difficult to apply pressure to the opposition. They can continue to put pressure on  your defence relentlessly. That was evident so much this year for the Canucks. If you recall there was a few games when the Canucks got away early and ended up winning with 5 or 6 goals. In those games the Canucks defence held solid and looked good.

I truely believe once the Canucks get some of these young hotshots hitting the back of the net a fair amount of pressure will be lifted from the defence and players like Pouliot and Hutton wont struggle to get the puck out of their own end. 

If the forwards can apply their own pressure to the opposition the defence will look so much better statistically.

Some better goal tending wouldnt go astray either. Those soft goals early in the first period really make a defenders game that much harder. 

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1 hour ago, Industrious1 said:

Let me preface this by saying I don't necessarily disagree with the OP....but essentially what is being said is that our defense is a disaster (outside of some decent play by Edler and Biega).

 

After watching about half the games this year i'd say that is fairly accurate, and that we are years away from rectifying this problem.  Offense looks bright and with Demko on the rise I am hoping goaltending isn't an issue but the best way to get good Dmen is to develop them and sadly we are lagging way behind and when we want to contend this could will be a serious issue.

I'm as worried about our blueline as anybody but I think one should add to your post but stating....*provided* the blueline stays 100% healthy, it should be "ok enough".  The problem is, the only depth on the roster is towards the bottom pairing.  

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Thanks for putting in the effort @JamesB

Our D is horrible, I was saying it all season and I don't see it changing any time soon.

To be fair, I feel like you under-sold Stecher. His game has been steadily improving which is more than we can say about ANY of our other D. So Edler was a more dedicated pylon this year, that was great, real gud.

 

I want to defend Guddy. I expected more from him though. Hopefully next year he's FINALLY healthy for the first time since coming to town.

 

MDZ is average, Hutton and Pouliot are horrible. 

 

If Juolevi can't chase Hutty or Pouliot I'll be greatly disappointed. I couldn't pick him in your polls though. Bit soon IMO

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5 hours ago, JamesB said:

1. Edler is far and away the most valuable D. At least he was last year. Calls to "trade Edler" only make sense if the objective is to tank next year.

Most underrated Canuck.  

Image result for edler gif

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1 hour ago, luckylager said:

Thanks for putting in the effort @JamesB

Our D is horrible, I was saying it all season and I don't see it changing any time soon.

To be fair, I feel like you under-sold Stecher. His game has been steadily improving which is more than we can say about ANY of our other D. So Edler was a more dedicated pylon this year, that was great, real gud.

 

I want to defend Guddy. I expected more from him though. Hopefully next year he's FINALLY healthy for the first time since coming to town.

 

MDZ is average, Hutton and Pouliot are horrible. 

 

If Juolevi can't chase Hutty or Pouliot I'll be greatly disappointed. I couldn't pick him in your polls though. Bit soon IMO

I would pretty much say the same. All in the the defense on this team is well below average for an NHL team and most of these guys don't have a lot of upward potential.

 

Stecher is certainly a fearless warrior, he gets by ok defensively but I would like to see some offense from him to be deserving of a roster spot.

 

Pouliot has had some glimpses but far too often when there has been a bad goal he seems to be the one out of position. I hope he gets better though as he is one of the few who possibly has room to grow.

 

I would love to see a healthy Guddy play most of a season, maybe then we could really tell if he is real Gud or real bad.

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Thanks for posting this. I know Edler was our best Dman this year, but I didn’t realize how valuable he actually is. I also didn’t realize our D was THAT bad. Some pretty big red flags there. 

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