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Canuck D Pairings -- Some Surprises

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JamesB
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40 minutes ago, Alflives said:

To fix our D will require Myers being traded and the Garland or Miller trade return getting us a 23-27 year old who can play with OEL.  I think we will need to get very lucky to find a “Devon Toews” level player to play top pair with Quinn.  

I'm hoping with all the new pro-scouting and analytics folks we have now that they do recognize a player like Toews that others arent paying attention to. 

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On 6/23/2022 at 4:03 PM, Me_ said:

So basically a whole bunch of you think Benning is the village idiot. The builder of the exact same team you watched since Green left. 
 

Well I’ll be damned.

Well not a village idiot, just not a great GM. Don't remember anyone calling him an idiot?

 

BUT you have many, many people disagreeing with you on your take on Benning but somehow at the end of the day you refuse to believe what you're being told no matter how many instances, examples and specifics are thrown at you. There is zero evidence, yesterday or today, to back up your claim that Benning is a......"Master Rebuilder":

 

A - When, and where has he ever "masterfully" rebuilt an organization?

B - He's been the general manager of (1) NHL team, the Vancouver Canucks. 

C- He was the assistant GM in Boston, so please don't go down the path of giving him all the credit there - because I know you will. 

D- Saying he drafted Hughes and Pettersson, Demko is not in itself an argument for being a master rebuilder, those are three draft picks in 7 years and that doesn't constitute "rebuilding" a team when it failed more than it succeeded, has a very poor prospect pipeline, supporting cast and has loads of abject failures in free agency and trades.

E- Blaming the coaches only is lazy, so don't bother.

F- Blaming everyone but the General Manager is intellectually dishonest and willfully ignorant 

Edited by Harold Drunken
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4 minutes ago, Harold Drunken said:

Well not a village idiot, just not a great GM. Don't remember anyone calling him an idiot?

 

BUT you have many, many people disagreeing with you on your take on Benning but somehow at the end of the day you refuse to believe what you're being told no matter how many instances, examples and specifics are thrown at you. There is zero evidence, yesterday or today, to back up your claim that Benning is a......"Master Rebuilder":

 

A - When, and where has he ever "masterfully" rebuilt an organization?

B - He's been the general manager of (1) NHL team, the Vancouver Canucks. 

C- He was the assistant GM in Boston, so please don't go down the path of giving him all the credit there - because I know you will. 

D- Saying he drafted Hughes and Pettersson, Demko is not in itself an argument for being a master rebuilder, those are three draft picks in 8 years and that doesn't constitute "rebuilding" a team when it failed more than it succeeded, has a very poor prospect pipeline, supporting cast and has loads of abject failures in free agency and trades.

E- Blaming the coaches only is lazy, so don't bother.

F- Blaming everyone but the General Manager is intellectually dishonest and willfully ignorant 

Oh lots have called him an idiot and worse. 
I think he did a lousy job overall but also recognize what he took over was a mess and what he left is a mess overall but a bit less of a mess. The difference though is Gillis left a mess trying to make a cup run. Benning left a mess trying not to rebuild a team that clearly needed a full rebuild. 

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5 minutes ago, DrJockitch said:

Oh lots have called him an idiot and worse. 
I think he did a lousy job overall but also recognize what he took over was a mess and what he left is a mess overall but a bit less of a mess. The difference though is Gillis left a mess trying to make a cup run. Benning left a mess trying not to rebuild a team that clearly needed a full rebuild. 

Yeah I agree, but the master rebuilder title (which he used to describe him) is an insane take.

 

Gillis may have left Benning with a tough start but that's what happens when you make cup runs and finish at the top of the standings for years in a row,....you're going to be missing some picks and prospects because that what teams do when they push for a cup, but Benning had 7 years to "masterfully rebuild". Let's not like act like Benning was let go after a few years. Anyway, Gillis had reasons why he left the team the way he did, they made a cup run or two.....Gillis has something (kinda) to show for it. Benning has nothing to show for it - that's the major difference. Gillis didn't draft well, that's well documented. Anyway broken record here haha. 

Edited by Harold Drunken
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15 minutes ago, DrJockitch said:

Oh lots have called him an idiot and worse. 
I think he did a lousy job overall but also recognize what he took over was a mess and what he left is a mess overall but a bit less of a mess. The difference though is Gillis left a mess trying to make a cup run. Benning left a mess trying not to rebuild a team that clearly needed a full rebuild. 

1. I am sure some people have called Benning an idiot. But a lot of people get called idiots from time to time. I have not seen Benning called an idiot on CDC very often if at all. However, he has often been referred to as "Benning", both on CDC and elsewhere, and that is pretty similar. 

 

2. But my main point is about Gillis. It Is generally regarded as accepted fact that Gillis left the team in bad shape. I disagree. There is of course a natural cycle. A team cannot be good forever. The Canucks under Gillis had a great run, including two President's trophies, coming within 1 game of the Stanley Cup, and 5 consecutive playoff appearances. After that you expect a lull and a rebuild (as Colorado has just done, literally going from worst to first in 5 years).

 

3. When Gillis left, there was a future core in place, including a future Vezina candidate goalie (Markstrom), good young players in Horvat and Tanev, and a very good D-man still young enough to be part of a rebuild (Edler). The Canucks also had a high first round pick coming up (6th overall), had Kesler demanding a trade that resulted in another first round pick and a good young player (Bonino) and Sbisa. They also had a high second round pick.

 

4. Gillis reportedly wanted to trade some older players and go through a rebuild but Aqualini vetoed it and fired him. If they had traded some other vets at that time (and, yes, I know the Sedins were untouchable) to acquire more picks, had a couple of bad years, getting more high picks, the team could have been very good again a few years later. 

 

I don't see that as a managerial failure by Gillis. However, I agree that the big question mark is whether he would have been able to draft well enough to generate a good rebuild. 

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I think regardless of what management do, we simply need a top-4 right handed defenceman. Sure, it'd be nice if they were a shutdown, physical guy. Sure, it'd be nice if they were 25ish years old. To be honest though, these guys are hard to come by. Most importantly, they need to kill penalties and be able to handle 20+ minutes a night. I wouldn't mind a puck mover as a 2nd option and then put Myers with Hughes either.

 

Most importantly, we need to keep a rotation of our bottom pairing guys Rathbone, Dermott, Schenn and Burroughs. These are some fairly solid 3rd pairing defencemen we've got, but they should only be playing top-4 minutes if we've got an injury. I know management went out and got Dermott because of his versatility, low cap hit and ability to maybe play in the top-4, but we really can't rely on that, and the same can be said for Schenn playing with Hughes because he's only going to be older and much slower.

 

My wild card for next season is Rathbone. He doesn't have much of a chance stealing minutes from Hughes and OEL, but the kid deserves a shot at least on our bottom-pairing. I know Bruce doesn't like using more than 1 puck mover, but he had Hunt on our bottom pairing wheeling and dealing offensively and it worked well for us sometimes, burnt us other times. If we play Rathbone with Schenn or Dermott on our bottom pairing I'd be happy to let Rathbone jump up in the rush every now and then. The kid was arguably the best defenceman in the AHL last season - 10 goals and 39 points in 40 games last season. He is ready to break out, we just need to give him a whiff of an opportunity. You see all these young defencemen thrive on teams like NYR because they get thrown into the deep end but they have top end skill so they do well. Rathbone would be the same, he just hasn't had much of a chance. Play him on our bottom pairing, give him more offensive starts and 2nd PP time and get OEL to mainly play shutdown and kill penalties.

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3 hours ago, DownUndaCanuck said:

I think regardless of what management do, we simply need a top-4 right handed defenceman. Sure, it'd be nice if they were a shutdown, physical guy. Sure, it'd be nice if they were 25ish years old. To be honest though, these guys are hard to come by. Most importantly, they need to kill penalties and be able to handle 20+ minutes a night. I wouldn't mind a puck mover as a 2nd option and then put Myers with Hughes either.

 

Most importantly, we need to keep a rotation of our bottom pairing guys Rathbone, Dermott, Schenn and Burroughs. These are some fairly solid 3rd pairing defencemen we've got, but they should only be playing top-4 minutes if we've got an injury. I know management went out and got Dermott because of his versatility, low cap hit and ability to maybe play in the top-4, but we really can't rely on that, and the same can be said for Schenn playing with Hughes because he's only going to be older and much slower.

 

My wild card for next season is Rathbone. He doesn't have much of a chance stealing minutes from Hughes and OEL, but the kid deserves a shot at least on our bottom-pairing. I know Bruce doesn't like using more than 1 puck mover, but he had Hunt on our bottom pairing wheeling and dealing offensively and it worked well for us sometimes, burnt us other times. If we play Rathbone with Schenn or Dermott on our bottom pairing I'd be happy to let Rathbone jump up in the rush every now and then. The kid was arguably the best defenceman in the AHL last season - 10 goals and 39 points in 40 games last season. He is ready to break out, we just need to give him a whiff of an opportunity. You see all these young defencemen thrive on teams like NYR because they get thrown into the deep end but they have top end skill so they do well. Rathbone would be the same, he just hasn't had much of a chance. Play him on our bottom pairing, give him more offensive starts and 2nd PP time and get OEL to mainly play shutdown and kill penalties.

Like most, I've thought that our right side is a total mess - that we don't just need one RHD we need two.

 

I've come around on that thought, specifically because Schenn has done such a remarkable job. If everyone is right that OEL needs a more solid, shutdown style partner - OEL and Schenn would presumably be perfect together, at least until Schenn starts slowing down in a couple years...but that gives us a bit of a runway.

 

So, if that worked, the only real issues become moving Myers and his salary out (should be do-able in some scenario, even if we get next-to-nothing back) and finding that one key piece that can play next to Hughes; that's the larger to be sure and it's a difficult one, but it's only one issue.

 

And yeah, if that could come into existence, then our bottom pairing should be pretty much set with Rathbone, Dermott, Burroughs, (Poolman?!), Bowey etc...

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On 6/27/2022 at 4:06 PM, JamesB said:

 

3. When Gillis left, there was a future core in place, including a future Vezina candidate goalie (Markstrom), good young players in Horvat and Tanev, and a very good D-man still young enough to be part of a rebuild (Edler). The Canucks also had a high first round pick coming up (6th overall), had Kesler demanding a trade that resulted in another first round pick and a good young player (Bonino) and Sbisa. They also had a high second round pick.

 

 

The ironic thing here is the bottom fell out of the team Benning was 'rebuilding' when he lost the last of the old pieces he inherited from Gillis on the defense in Marky/Tanev near the end of 2020. Further exacerbated with Edler leaving in 2021. 

 

image.thumb.png.b66f268dec7f5d0993a791abfeaeebde.png

 

 

 

 

 

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19 hours ago, Putgolzin said:

Like most, I've thought that our right side is a total mess - that we don't just need one RHD we need two.

 

I've come around on that thought, specifically because Schenn has done such a remarkable job. If everyone is right that OEL needs a more solid, shutdown style partner - OEL and Schenn would presumably be perfect together, at least until Schenn starts slowing down in a couple years...but that gives us a bit of a runway.

 

So, if that worked, the only real issues become moving Myers and his salary out (should be do-able in some scenario, even if we get next-to-nothing back) and finding that one key piece that can play next to Hughes; that's the larger to be sure and it's a difficult one, but it's only one issue.

 

And yeah, if that could come into existence, then our bottom pairing should be pretty much set with Rathbone, Dermott, Burroughs, (Poolman?!), Bowey etc...

I do worry that Schenn will be a lot worse as early as next year. He's done a good job but he's only going to slow down and we need a good skater to keep up with our top-4. Boy if Poolman came through and had a great off-season and slotted in alongside OEL that would be nice but I'm not holding my breath.

 

First and foremost is we need a good young RD to play with Hughes, that should be priority 1 this off-season. After that, a 3C. Then we can get into trading Myers and fiddling with OEL's partner, but I'd be happy (and I'm sure Bruce would be too) with an OEL-Myers pairing. Not ideal, not going to win a Cup with it, but maybe that's next off-season's problems. It seems increasingly harder to make big trades so I doubt we get two good RDs in one off-season.

 

The other option is we just ride Myer's contract out, he's only got a couple of years left. OEL looks like the sort of defenceman who will play until he's 37 and his style of play suits it so I think he'll be an anchor for a while, but it might be easier to let Myers walk after his contract ends than trade it (unless there's lots of biters, which there may well be).

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On 6/29/2022 at 5:29 AM, Putgolzin said:

I've come around on that thought, specifically because Schenn has done such a remarkable job. If everyone is right that OEL needs a more solid, shutdown style partner - OEL and Schenn would presumably be perfect together, at least until Schenn starts slowing down in a couple years...but that gives us a bit of a runway.

 

On 6/1/2022 at 12:28 AM, JamesB said:
Best Pairings  xGD
     
Luke Schenn Oliver Ekman-Larsson 1.67
Oliver Ekman-Larsson Tucker Poolman 1.05
Travis Hamonic Brad Hunt 0.83
Oliver Ekman-Larsson Kyle Burroughs 0.67

...

 

   

Based on this data, the D pair that was by far the best over the season was the OEL-Schenn pairing, and it was not close. Interestingly, the next best pairing was OEL with Poolman. 

 

One important factor not captured by the data is quality of opposition.  There is no easy way to correct for that and it makes a big difference. A given D-pairing might look good against an opposing team's 4th line and look terrible against the top line. It is possible to get a sense of how tough the minutes are by looking at O-zone, D-zone and neutral zone starts and I have checked out the actual opposing players for a few games.

 

Hamonic and Hunt make it into 3rd place in the above list because they faced very weak opposition. However, OEL played by far the toughest minutes on the team last year. If we properly adjusted for :"tough minutes" (D zone starts and quality of opposition) the OEL-Schenn paring would move even further ahead.  

 

The Hughes-Schenn pairing and the OEL-Myers pairing (not shown) were both close to the team average. So was the Hughes-Myers pairing. 

 

 

I'd like to see OEL - Poolman next season. I wonder if he's getting better over the summer, haven't heard any updates on his health. 

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3 hours ago, VancouverHabitant said:

 

I'd like to see OEL - Poolman next season. I wonder if he's getting better over the summer, haven't heard any updates on his health. 

Do you have Myers gone or on the 3rd pairing?

According to the quoted - I still like the idea of OEL Schenn.

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4 hours ago, Putgolzin said:

Do you have Myers gone or on the 3rd pairing?

According to the quoted - I still like the idea of OEL Schenn.

That's a tough one to answer...  I wouldn't have issues with OEL - Schenn but that pairing would be getting all the tough defensive assignments and so you'd have Schenn out there for 20 minutes every night.  

 

Myers - Hughes 

Schenn - OEL 

Poolman/Burroughs - Dermott / Hunt Rathbone 

 

Myers and Quinn did pretty well when looking at Corsi For.  They were a high event pairing but still came out ahead in % of expected goals for.  

 

 

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9 hours ago, VancouverHabitant said:

 

I'd like to see OEL - Poolman next season. I wonder if he's getting better over the summer, haven't heard any updates on his health. 

Poolman's agent was interviewed about a week ago and said Poolman was working out and hoping to get back on the ice soon and that if there was any problem he (the agent) would have heard about it. That does not sound great to me. It was a long way from "yeah he's ready to go". 

 

It would be good if Poolman was available. While I did not like that signing he is is solid defensively and could play with Hughes or OEL.

 

If he is healthy that improves the picture. But I would not count on him being available. It looks kind of like the Ferland situation. It would not surprise me to see him on LTIR.

 

Sooner of later something will happen on the trade front and obviously the Canucks will try to add a good young RD if they can. But they don't need another 3rd pairing RD; they need someone who projects as a solid top 4 who can play shutdown and that is not easy to get.

 

From the fan's points of view it is just a waiting game right now, at least until the draft.

 

I kind of hope the Canucks take Mateychuk at #15. He reminds me of another D taken at #15 (Erik Karlsson). 

 

 

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On 6/30/2022 at 5:12 PM, VancouverHabitant said:

 

I'd like to see OEL - Poolman next season. I wonder if he's getting better over the summer, haven't heard any updates on his health. 

Just curious, why do you want to see Poolman in the starting lineup next season? 

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42 minutes ago, Harold Drunken said:

Just curious, why do you want to see Poolman in the starting lineup next season? 

He was good enough for the starting 6 when he played... In theory, he has potential to be a 2nd pairing RHD... But that's in theory. 

 

If you want specifics, he's big and skates well. 

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Just now, VancouverHabitant said:

He was good enough for the starting 6 when he played... In theory, he has potential to be a 2nd pairing RHD... But that's in theory. 

 

If you want specifics, he's big and skates well. 

He can barely handle the puck was was a healthy scratch many times being outplayed by Burroughs. He's big, again some people on here seem to think that alone makes you a good defenseman or it's some sort of skill. He's big is not an argument for him being "better" than another d-man. Shaq is big, doesn't mean he's a good defenseman. 

 

They both aren't good

They are are fringe NHL players

 

 

 

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13 minutes ago, Harold Drunken said:

He can barely handle the puck was was a healthy scratch many times being outplayed by Burroughs. He's big, again some people on here seem to think that alone makes you a good defenseman or it's some sort of skill. He's big is not an argument for him being "better" than another d-man. Shaq is big, doesn't mean he's a good defenseman. 

 

They both aren't good

They are are fringe NHL players

 

 

 

Just another of the many Benning parting gifts.  Thanks Jim! :picard:

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16 minutes ago, Harold Drunken said:

He can barely handle the puck was was a healthy scratch many times being outplayed by Burroughs. He's big, again some people on here seem to think that alone makes you a good defenseman or it's some sort of skill. He's big is not an argument for him being "better" than another d-man. Shaq is big, doesn't mean he's a good defenseman. 

 

They both aren't good

They are are fringe NHL players

 

 

 

You are talking about a 15 game stretch during the coaching changes where he really struggled and lost all confidence. 

 

I liked what I saw in the first 15 games and in the last 10 games before he got hurt. 

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Posted (edited)
1 minute ago, VancouverHabitant said:

You are talking about a 15 game stretch during the coaching changes where he really struggled and lost all confidence. 

 

I liked what I saw in the first 15 games and in the last 10 games before he got hurt. 

I'd be willing to see what he can do with a fresh season start for sure, but at $2.5m per his game has to improve.... a lot. 

Edited by Harold Drunken
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