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The Shanahan Debate


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#1 bekim

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 10:54 PM

I know it's been discussed in other threads, but hey, it's summer and it's slow, so here is another thread dedicated to the question of Shanahan: Does he have a place on this team, assuming he is a 1m or less signing? I've read all the Lou quotes, but Lou quotes don't indicate anything. He'll always say he's exploring all options to make the club better. So sure, if Shanahan wants to sign for 500k, then I might be able to see the benefit over a glut of rookies, but other than dollars and cents, where does he fit in our 09-10 lineup?

Line 1A
Parise-Zajac-Langs

This line is as close to a sure thing as you get in the NHL, so I see no reason why we won't start the year with these guys together. Parise hasn't demonstrated any particular touch at the center position when put there, and having found a great game at LW, hard to imagine him moving to center. And Langenbrunner had a career year on this line, so no reason to think NJ will suddenly change that.

Line 1B
Elias-Rolston-Bergfors

I've made this case before, but Rolston at 5mill, and a guy Lou has said he expects to score 30 goals, absolutely must be used in a 2nd line capacity, and has to develop a chemistry with Elias, even if it doesn't click right away. Rolston will again play a point on the PP too, but for his money, we need him to be more than a specialist, and he can't score 30 PP goals anyway. Lou has essentially also as much said or implied Bergfors will be given every chance to succeed and have a shot in the NHL, and since no one much comments on his defensive prowess, I tend to think that means a top-6 role, at least to start with.

Line 3
Pandolfo-Pelley-Clarkson

A bit of a mashup, but same idea with Pelley... Lou has stated he expects him to replace Madden, and while we could potentially see Zubrus try the role as well, I think we'll see Pelley first on line 3. Clarkson is here because he played parts of last season on line 3, and also, Lou said he wants to get him more ice time... not sure how that can be done, but I think it definitely means no less ice time (ie, no move to the 4th line). Pando at 2.5 mill, I expect him to re-find his game and be a constant shadow out there. At 2.5 mill, that put's him on par with some of the higher paid checker specialists (and definitely not as skilled as a Malhotra who may demand only 2m this off season, but that's another story), so I don't see him rotting on a 4th line. Without Madden, at least line 3 looks affordable.

Line 4
P3L-Zubrus-Pikkarainen

Here we have Zubrus, the highest paid 4th line center in the game. Try and tell me he fits in the top 6 somewhere with all the quotes we've read from Lou. Bergfors would need to be bumped, and I don't think we want to develop offensive prospects on the 4th line, or Rolston would be bumped (see prior rationale for Rolston), so it's a bit of an odd man out. So here he is. A far cry from the 1st line replacement for Gomez, but it is what it is. Until we can snooker EDM or the Isles to trade for him, he'll be in the top 12 forwards. P3L signed a multi-year deal, a replacement for Rupp, and a guy who may not be in the lineup every night, but then again, he could well be. Pikkarainen as an overseas project is an x factor since I have no clue if he'll make the team, but I do believe that is the hope, and again, Lou stated directly that he might like Pikka with P3L in a retro Crash Line role. Zubrus as a big body might complement that well.

Always the chance of other rookies making the team (Halischuk), but I will assume they won't. So is it worth it to sign Shanahan in a role that sees him rotated in/out of the lineup? His supposed PP benefit was pretty insignificant last season. He's a veteran guy, sure, but you sign those types of guys at the trade deadline if needed. I'd say the only rationale for Shanahan is the argument that 3 rookies in the line up is too much on a nightly basis, and maybe 2 on one line could be a mistake. However, for me, I'd rather not waste the money until its necessary. Let the new Crash Line have their 7 minutes a game. I predict nothing with Shanahan happens (at least with NJ) until much later in the summer and maybe even pre-season when NJ gets a good look at Pikka and P3L and Bergfors. If they're uncomfortable, they can sign Shanny to a low-end deal. Otherwise, I'm not sure how it makes sense or why so many on this board are calling for Lou to "get'r'done" on Shanahan, a guy who is old as time immemorial and who clearly wants to be a Ranger. I don't believe he has a spot on this roster, but weigh in and say otherwise if you like.

*All this, of course, is on the assumption we don't sign another free agent center (since I don't believe we will), and if we do (and no one is traded [Zubrus]), then I'd call say Shanhan chances are nil.
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#2 Devils Pride 26

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 11:21 PM

I would like to see Shanny back in a limited role. If Shanny starts becoming Lemaires go to shut down guy, there's going to be problems. In an ideal world, Shanny gets 40 games while splitting the other 40 with Halischuk.

pzl
rollie - elias - bergfors
Halischuk/Shanny - Zubrus - Clarkson
Pandawful - Pelley - Pikka

The thrid line would be very difficult to play against, they could raise some hell in the offensive zone. Also, depending on how the 2nd PP unit looks, Shanny would be able to help out an other wise weak unit.

PP1
Parise - Zajac - Elias
Rolston/Langs - Martin

PP2
Shanny - Zubrus - Bergfors/Clarkson
Langs/Rolston - Oduya
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#3 HellOnICE

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Posted 22 July 2009 - 11:56 PM

P3L doesn't need to be in every game. Neither does Pikk...and who even knows how they both pan out. All I know is Shanny in a limited role for cheap and 1 year deal, is a good thing with. Especially, with the youngsters.
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#4 Devs4LIFE

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 12:19 AM

I wouldn't mind Shanny on a one year contract where he plays 4th line and Poweplay, I'd also put him as a backup PKer if one of our main guys gets a penalty.
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#5 sundstrom

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 12:28 AM

say all you want about zubrus - the thought that pelley is getting more TOI than him is ludicrous.

i find it amazing that most on this board feel he's borderline ahl material.

as for shannahan, without him, the team realistically looks like this at forward:

parise - zajac - langenbrunner
elias - rolston - bergfors
pandolfo - zubrus - clarkson
pl3- pelley - pikka

sure, halischuk might be able to make the team or maybe zharkov or vasyunov make the team out of camp, but i doubt it. here's the thing though - the team above IS missing something: either another center (moving rolston to wing where he belongs) or winger (thankfully keeping the P platter of pando, pl3, pelley & pikka on the 4th line or press box).

shanahan can accomplish this by putting him on the 3rd line and dropping pando down from above.

if i lose my bet and lou does get a malholtra or moore on a one year make good deal, the devils will be much more balanced as zubrus can return to play with elias and rolston could pair with the newly acquired center.
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#6 DevilinLA

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 12:30 AM

The thing about Shanny is people here are going to expect to get him for the number he signed for last season in JAN (Which was prorated)

Instead of what he'll be looking to get for a whole season.

I say he easily make 1M somewhere, maybe a shade more in NY.
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#7 maxpower

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 12:37 AM

The thing about Shanny is people here are going to expect to get him for the number he signed for last season in JAN (Which was prorated)

Instead of what he'll be looking to get for a whole season.

I say he easily make 1M somewhere, maybe a shade more in NY.


well, someone has to be offering it, I'm guessing if the Rangers were willing to go there, it'd already have happened. I really dunno what he does for them, though. he'll grind Torts' game to a hault, so needless to say, he'll be on the fourth line with someone who likes to fight.

if Lemaire is going to continue being a dinosaur, he's perfect for the "system", because he won't have to forecheck and can just stand somewhere in the neutral zone. if that fails, then he stands somewhere in the defensive zone. fvck, he can play 15 minutes a night doing that, just ask Sutter.
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#8 Colin226

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 12:46 AM

If all Shanny does is divulge some wisdom on our young team than I'll take him for another season

I watched him very closely last season and it was very interesting.. Even the grinders on other teams would go easier on Shanny out of (what I thought was) respect.. He also seemed to be a great role model and leader for the younger guys.. He's a good asset for this season.. After that, we retire his number ;)

Edited by Colin226, 23 July 2009 - 12:49 AM.

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#9 brickwall30

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 03:19 AM

I think there are many reasons to want shanny back and for as much as 1mil/1yr:

1) Shanny-Zubrus-Clakson is much more intimidating than any of the realistic alternatives

2) Asking either a rookie in bergfors or clarkson as a near rookie and borderline PP guy to begin with to switch their wing is gonna be rough (PP2 would be either Bergfor-Zubrus-Clarkson or Clarkson-Zubrus-Bergfors and they are both RW's)

3) Continueing the PP thought, the second unit would have absolutely no QB on the boards or down low and would have to depend solely on the point men to get things going which is to easy to defend, so if for no other reason shanny would be worth it for that

4) His obvious welth of experience would be a more than welcomed addition to the "youth movement" to under-state the obvious

5) Shanny is just still a very solid player as shown by raking up very respectable numbers for a 40 year old startig mid-season for us and I still think this first ballot HOF'er has another year or two in him

6) As a sort of culminating point, at ~$1mil which we can easily spare for this year, you would be VERY hard pressed to name me any person available in the league that would be able to contribute more to this team as a whole.

Clearly my vote is yes get him and put him in the lineup. I would like to see him on the 3rd line (above) and working on the 2nd PP unit with 1st or 2nd emergancy sub in for our usual PK guys. I also like him as a last seconds of a 1 goal game lock down group.
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#10 Jerrydevil

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 03:19 AM

Over a long season, he's an anchor. He'll have stretches and stretches where he's not productive. He can shoot the puck. It's not enough. I would pass.
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#11 LakeErieLord

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 07:14 AM

If all Shanny does is divulge some wisdom on our young team than I'll take him for another season


I agree with that 100%. This is a guy who has been around a while and played for five different NHL teams. While he may not be at his best anymore, he used to be pretty good and he always had a good attitude coming into a game and leaving a game which I believe could help our younger new guys develop into better professional hockey players. From a mental game point of view that is.
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#12 LucifersDog

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 07:24 AM

Sign him for 1 year and then put him in the coaching organization in the Trenton or Lowell.
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#13 Triumph

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 08:06 AM

The thing about Shanny is people here are going to expect to get him for the number he signed for last season in JAN (Which was prorated)

Instead of what he'll be looking to get for a whole season.

I say he easily make 1M somewhere, maybe a shade more in NY.


yeah but 800k pro-rated was like 500k.

as for the OP:

c'mon, zubrus is way better than rod pelley. i'd even go so far as to say he's a better center than brian rolston, who is totally ill-suited for the position.

as for shanahan, while he makes the team a little better, he'd instantly negate that by getting 15 minutes a game, and playing over players like clarkson and bergfors. i don't know - there's not anyone the devils can get who can play LW/RW, conceivably fill in on a top line in case of injury, and who's probably willing to play only 70 games. on the other hand, it's hard to see him scoring more than 30 points in those 70 games.
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#14 NCDevsFan

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 08:22 AM

I like Shanny, but he got sloppy towards the end there and started taking some dumb penalties.
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#15 Devils Pride 26

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 08:23 AM

if i lose my bet and lou does get a malholtra or moore on a one year make good deal, the devils will be much more balanced as zubrus can return to play with elias and rolston could pair with the newly acquired center.

Yuck. I don't want that to happen for a few reasons. I think if Zubrus was Elias' center Brian Rolston or Nick Bergfors would drop to the thrid line, something I'd rather not see happen. Both of these guys are better off getting top 6 minutes and playing with Elias. Zubrus is a slug out there (in a top 6 role) and can't finish anything Elias creates. Throw Elias at pivot and they'll be fine.
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#16 Jdub

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 09:45 AM

I think Zubrus would be a pretty good 3rd line Center. Smart enough to know where to be, but he can't be a top 6 because he can't finish anything. Being on a 3rd line with Clarkson is a good spot. You can either put Shanahan/Halischuk/Zharkov on that left wing and I think it will be a pretty decent 3rd line.

Shanahan would fill a good leadership role on the team but he could maybe play in only half the games during the year to be effective during the playoffs.
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#17 msweet

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 10:04 AM

When I made Lou's quote on Pelley the POD it was because he is the 12th forward on this team (or any team).... Zubrus is not the 12th forward on any NHL team and I was his biggest knocker last year.

We'll start the season:

parise - zajac - langenbrunner
elias - zubrus - rolston
pandolfo - pelley - clarkson
pl3/pikka- XXX/Halischuk - bergfors - shannahan? (maybe a rookie line with Shanny?)

As much as I absolutely hate Zubrus with Elias (See my blog from May 19th) , like last year, he is our only option. As Tri said Rolston can not play center and Putting Elias there, well, been there done that.

Lemaire is going to check with pandolfo - pelley - clarkson. Anyone doubt that?

And finally Lou even said Rolston will be there to replace Gio's numbers.... and in his position.

What is becoming more interesting is the stock piling of defenders... something has got to give.
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#18 MantaRay

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 10:07 AM

I would rather see the $ for Shanny applied to acquiring another set-up center. We still need that before an ancient winger.
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#19 Maddog

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 10:46 AM

I would rather see the $ for Shanny applied to acquiring another set-up center. We still need that before an ancient winger.


Hopefully Shanny signs on for 1M or less, then Lou still could get another center to play with Elias.
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#20 Pepperkorn

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Posted 23 July 2009 - 10:48 AM

My first inclination at the start of the off season and with the advent of Sutter's departure was that we'd need him. But now with Lemaire ... hmeh ... if he WANTS to be here I'd say he's welcome. But if he wants to be integral to the team or to feel massively needed (which I can understand actually) then I'd say he may want to look elsewhere. But if he'd enjoy carving out a place for himself then I think it would be fun to have him back.

and someone put a bag over my avatar's head -- he's too cute! It's distracting me even!! Seriously dont you all think Stevens is just HOT?!?!
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