Ah, now you find the time to respond to me. Too bad you didn't have the common courtesy to return emails or reply (even when called out) in Marketplace when i sent you pics of an item and you dissapeared. Pick your battles a little better.
do you have a personal issue with everyone on this board? take it somewhere else. are the supporters a little full of themselves? sure they are. still, it's been a huge positive for the team and season where there hasn't been much. but we upset the forum dad so he's going to set us all straight.
I wasn't in support of signing Mark Fayne in the off-season - I figured he'd be another Nathan Perkovich, a player who hadn't been impressive at the college level who would just jam up the works here. In my eyes, he's gone from useless organizational depth at the beginning of the year to a legitimate bottom pairing NHL defenseman.
In his first game, the thing that impressed me most was his speed. He's got NHL speed - he skates well. For defensemen who don't have that, it's an uphill battle - they have to develop the other things a defenseman needs pretty quickly.
Sure his three goals are all a bit fluky, but what about his assists? I can remember 3 of them already - a great keep in that Elias eventually put home against the Flyers, a pass-shot that Zubrus tipped in against the Leafs, and an excellent cross-ice pass to Rod Pelley that he put home.
In his 31 games, he has only 5 minor penalties. That's not excellent, but it's very good, especially for a rookie just learning the NHL game.
I'll spare you the advanced stats breakdown, just be aware that none of them indicate that his play is somehow a mirage. To me, he's done with the minor leagues, and I think he should be penciled in on the Devils' back pairing next season. It just goes to show that stats aren't everything, especially when it comes to defensemen playing inferior competition in college.
Hurricanes maybe are a good comparison, but the Flyers are not. They had much more depth going into and out of their bad season. Their young guys on the upswing were Richards/Carter, who are much better than Tedenby/Josefson will be.
in the devils' case, the improvement will come from having parise for a full season and having kovalchuk score like normal. let's not go painting these parallels too close. i'll start looking for comparable teams but there aren't going to be many who end up outshooting the opposition and yet ending up a lottery team. toronto last year was one, but their penalty killing was horrendous. right now the devils are -2 on special teams and -38 at evens despite outshooting teams. that's hard to do.
What makes you think that? As it stands now, and all things being equal, the main differences will be: Parise for the entire year, Tedenby/Josefson improving, maybe a 19 year old Larsson/Coutier; no Langs, Arnott and maybe no Rolston, Clarkson, Andy Greene; other players past their prime getting older (White, Brodeur, Elias).
You don't stink this badly for it just to be a fluke. No, we're not late 90s Islanders bad. There's a good core of players. But the depth, especially at the blue-line, is more than a year away from being good enough to comfortably make the playoffs.
the flyers made the playoffs in 06. they made the playoffs in 08. in 07 they finished dead last.
the hurricanes made the playoffs in 09. they were the 7th worst team in the nhl last season. they are around nhl average this season, things could go either way for them.
a big part of things would be either getting rid of brodeur or getting a 1B goalie who can spell brodeur for 40 or so games.
I'm starting to think somewhere in between. Assuming no new disasters, next year we'll probably be between missing the playoffs by 10 points and eeking in. Parise playing a full year, plus Kovy, Tallinder, Volchenkov (just by virtue of getting used to things, IMO anyway) improving will help. Brodeur, White being one year older plus even less defensive depth than this year will hurt.
Not bad enough to blow the whole thing up, not good enough for a major bounceback. 2012-13 season is probably when things start to turn around to everyone's liking. Maybe we'll have Larsson plus Jon Merrill (who is doing very well at Michigan, statwise anyway) to fill out the D. Tedenby/Josefson should both be solid NHLers by then. With Rolston gone, maybe enough cap space to sign another solid defenseman.
what's the deal with this plus and minus at the bottom right of posts - looks like a way to 'rate' posts. i've never been on a board that does this, but i've always heard it leads to exceptionally juvenile use/abuse.