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Our Pick From a Year Ago


Derlique

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This thread is not meant to bash Larsson in any way shape or form. Many people felt that even if we picked #1 overall, we'd take him. From what you have seen from Larsson and other rookies like RNH, Landeskog, Couturier and others, who would you have taken #1 overall? Also, has anyone felt like we had TOO high expectations for Larsson, or would you say he's played "as advertised"?

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This thread is not meant to bash Larsson in any way shape or form. Many people felt that even if we picked #1 overall, we'd take him. From what you have seen from Larsson and other rookies like RNH, Landeskog, Couturier and others, who would you have taken #1 overall? Also, has anyone felt like we had TOO high expectations for Larsson, or would you say he's played "as advertised"?

I'd say for a 19 year old he's done excellent overall. You can tell his confidence has dropped since the beginning of the season (and especially after Subban rocked him), but the tools and skills are there. He's not a RNH or Landeskog who will impact immediately, but he has a big upside. I don't think we'll see what he really has to offer for another 2-3 years. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if next year isn't pretty either, depending on how much the team decides to use him in certain situations.

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This thread is not meant to bash Larsson in any way shape or form. Many people felt that even if we picked #1 overall, we'd take him. From what you have seen from Larsson and other rookies like RNH, Landeskog, Couturier and others, who would you have taken #1 overall? Also, has anyone felt like we had TOO high expectations for Larsson, or would you say he's played "as advertised"?

Hard to say really. He did look pretty good especially in the games right before his injury, but has since regressed since he has come back. I'd say a way too early to call him a bust or anything like that.

Also we have to remember that he is a defenseman and they usually seem to take longer to develop as they are logging in more minutes and doing more of the grunt work. Also the expectations (some at the time called him Lindstrom-lite) were probably too high coming into this season. He might mature into that high expectation, but still too early.

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Larsson is a 19 year-old defenseman. His year has gone exactly as I thought it would. I'd take him #1 overall all day, and wouldn't think twice about it. Wait about 2-3 years and you won't even remember this year. I'm not worried about Larsson at all.

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I think he had a very difficult year, in a lot of ways, both on and off the ice...I think he really feels like a kid playing among men, and that's accurate...the kid's only 19! Right now I think he's probably a little overwhelmed and maybe homesick as well. It wouldn't surprise me if he wanted to get away and forget about hockey for a while. I don't necessarily think he'll pull it all together next season, but I do think he'll be stronger mentally and physically, and on his way to becoming a better player.

Edited by Colorado Rockies 1976
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Just remember it took Pronger and Lidstrom, two of the absolute best d-men of this generation and first ballot HOF'ers, YEARS to develop. I highly doubt Hartford would've done that Pronger for Shannahan trade if they could've peaked 3 years into the future.

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well there was no way Larsson was going to EXCEED our expectations, simply because we talked about him all the time. but yes, he is still a teenager, and that is amazing. he is obviously gonna get better and he could be a monster.. time will tell.

keep in mind, that even though a defenseman should not be judged on the amount of points he gets, he needs just 5 points to tie the most points any one of our defenseman had last year... and he's just 19

:cheers:

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Just remember it took Pronger and Lidstrom, two of the absolute best d-men of this generation and first ballot HOF'ers, YEARS to develop. I highly doubt Hartford would've done that Pronger for Shannahan trade if they could've peaked 3 years into the future.

In fairness, Pronger had gotten into barfights and had had a DUI, and I think the trade shook him up a bit. I'm not sure he develops into such a great defenseman if he had stayed in Hartford.

But, yeah, while it pains me to see Couturier doing so well for the Flyers, as long as Larsson can start to avoid those big hits, I don't think there'll be any regret regarding his selection.

Edited by Triumph
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In fairness, Pronger had gotten into barfights and had had a DUI, and I think the trade shook him up a bit.

But, yeah, while it pains me to see Couturier doing so well for the Flyers, as long as Larsson can start to avoid those big hits, I don't think there'll be any regret regarding his selection.

Didn't realize Pronger had those off ice issues (not really surprised either lol) early in his career. But I think anyone who even remotely understands the game of hockey knows it takes defensemen a lot longer to develop than forwards, and a rookie d-man will rarely if ever make an immediate impact. I really hope there weren't fans that expected Larsson to step in to an NHL lineup at 19 and make an immediate impact, because that would be assinine.

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In fairness, Pronger had gotten into barfights and had had a DUI, and I think the trade shook him up a bit. I'm not sure he develops into such a great defenseman if he had stayed in Hartford.

But, yeah, while it pains me to see Couturier doing so well for the Flyers, as long as Larsson can start to avoid those big hits, I don't think there'll be any regret regarding his selection.

He also either finished last or very close to last in Mike Keenan's physical endurance tests when he arrived in St. Louis. Supposedly Keenan went ballistic and screamed "Do you ANY idea what we gave up for you?!" That was supposedly the first domino to fall that got him to start straightening himself out.

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Just remember it took Pronger and Lidstrom, two of the absolute best d-men of this generation and first ballot HOF'ers, YEARS to develop. I highly doubt Hartford would've done that Pronger for Shannahan trade if they could've peaked 3 years into the future.

I wouldn't say it took years for Lidstrom and Pronger to develop. Well, it took years for them to become Norris defensemen, but these guys were studs the day they walked into the league. I don't think Larsson is in that category. Lidstrom did come into the league at 21 (and not 18), but he had a ridiculous first season. Pronger, had some issues like Tri mentioned, but was pretty solid early in his career.

Larsson has played most of the season at 18 (Mistake on my part. Turned 19 in November. Thanks CR76). And before the Subban hit, I felt he would be up for the Calder. He was leading all Devils D in minutes and was looking fantastic. He's had a few rough moments, but he's been going through a lot, including a death in the family to someone he was very close to and maybe coming back too soon after his injury.

Edited by devilsrule33
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It was a long time ago, so you probably can't find it online, but there was an SI article on Mike Keenan that quotes him during a practice screaming at a young Chris Pronger saying something to the effect "I can't believe we traded Brendan Shanahan for you".

With Larsson, he looks a little slow out there, which is a bit troubling (you can't learn speed). I hope he's performing better than Hedman in the next two years.

I also won't go too nuts about Courturier yet, although I always felt that the Flyers made an absolute steal with him. I know sabrematricians don't like the traditional stats, but he's got 25 points in 72 games, compared to Larsson's 18 points in 64 games as a defenseman on a lower scoring team. I'm not saying that Larsson's or any other defenseman's success is built on goal/assist numbers, but the fact that Courturier (a center) has a relatively small point advantage over a 19 year old defenseman should temper one's impression about how good Courturier is right now.

To compare him to other draft picks, he's one of four or five players in that draft who immediately made the jump to the NHL. RNH and Landeskog were already gone, so their success (perceived or otherwise) is really irrelevant to assessing how wise it was to pick Larrson. Also, must of us would still be going apesh*t if Lou had selected someone like Zbinejad instead.

Even if he turns out to be a bust, he's the type of bust that you can't go too crazy about. He was considered can't miss by virtually everyone. Same way you can't fault Ottawa for taking Alexander Daigle.

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Just remember it took Pronger and Lidstrom, two of the absolute best d-men of this generation and first ballot HOF'ers, YEARS to develop. I highly doubt Hartford would've done that Pronger for Shannahan trade if they could've peaked 3 years into the future.

lol are you serious? i wouldn't say it took YEARS for either of them to develop.. at all. Lidstrom had 60 points in his first year in the NHL and earned above 40 points in each of his first 3 years.

Pronger wasn't bad either, in his first year he had 30 points

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Larsson has played most of the season at 18. And before the Subban hit, I felt he would be up for the Calder. He was leading all Devils D in minutes and was looking fantastic. He's had a few rough moments, but he's been going through a lot, including a death in the family to someone he was very close to and maybe coming back too soon after his injury.

He turned 19 on November 12, but he's obviously still practically a baby in NHL years.

It was a long time ago, so you probably can't find it online, but there was an SI article on Mike Keenan that quotes him during a practice screaming at a young Chris Pronger saying something to the effect "I can't believe we traded Brendan Shanahan for you".

That's the story I posted before...Pronger reported to St. Louis in worse shape than just about all of his teammates.

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lol are you serious? i wouldn't say it took YEARS for either of them to develop.. at all. Lidstrom had 60 points in his first year in the NHL and earned above 40 points in each of his first 3 years.

Pronger wasn't bad either, in his first year he had 30 points

Ok perhaps I should've clarified- it took YEARS for both of them to develop into multiple Norris Trophy winning, dominant shut-down defenseman, which is what we all hope Larsson will be. The bottom line is we need to be patient with Larsson.

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He's done great, and you can't expect anything more from a 18/19 year old dman who is put in a #1 role and takes a vicious hit in his first year. If you put any normal 18 year old rookie defenseman in Larsson's shoes, he'd likely be -40 by years end.

By comparison, how did Hedman do his rookie year? Curious to compare the numbers.

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By comparison, how did Hedman do his rookie year? Curious to compare the numbers.

Almost identical in all aspects (even where they went in the draft is very close):


Hedman: 2009-2010 LIGHTNING 74GP 4 16 20 -3
Larsson: 2011-2012 DEVILS 64GP 2 16 18 -7

Edited by Amberite
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With Larsson, he looks a little slow out there, which is a bit troubling (you can't learn speed). I hope he's performing better than Hedman in the next two years.

Hedman is really an excellent young defenseman. Both Larsson and Hedman don't have a great offensive game, and I know Hedman got embarrassed last night by Parise, but he is playing top minutes, difficult minutes, and doing okay with them. He's still only 21½.

I also won't go too nuts about Courturier yet, although I always felt that the Flyers made an absolute steal with him. I know sabrematricians don't like the traditional stats, but he's got 25 points in 72 games, compared to Larsson's 18 points in 64 games as a defenseman on a lower scoring team. I'm not saying that Larsson's or any other defenseman's success is built on goal/assist numbers, but the fact that Courturier (a center) has a relatively small point advantage over a 19 year old defenseman should temper one's impression about how good Courturier is right now.

What's impressive about Couturier is not his offense, which I don't think will ever be near the top of the league. Couturier is basically already an excellent checking line center in his rookie year. He's got the lowest zone start on his team and he's able to not drown. He's a top penalty killer. The Flyers have got themselves a French left-shooting Zajac. It's easy to imagine the Devils with a future of Zajac, Couturier, and Josefson down the middle as being simply incredible defensively. But again, Larsson's been an average player and that's quite a feat for a rookie defender.

Edited by Triumph
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Almost identical in all aspects (even where they went in the draft is very close):


Hedman: 2009-2010 LIGHTNING 74GP 4 16 20 -3
Larsson: 2011-2012 DEVILS 64GP 2 16 18 -7

Interesting- I kind of figured the numbers would be similar. I think Larsson is right where he needs to be. He's had a good rookie year given all of the circumstances- his age, the adjustment to the NHL (I'm sure it helped that he played against men in the SEL), the fact that he lost his grandma earlier in the season, which is very tough. I really think we have the gem we thought we'd have. Patience is the key though.

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He looks slow and a little soft.

Good passer though.

I'm sure once he starts bulking up and has played at NHL speed after another season he will be better.

Like you guys are saying he's only 19 and has dealt with a lot of on and off the ice issues. His injury & grandmother passing away probably didn't help his progression much.

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What's impressive about Couturier is not his offense, which I don't think will ever be near the top of the league. Couturier is basically already an excellent checking line center in his rookie year. He's got the lowest zone start on his team and he's able to not drown. He's a top penalty killer. The Flyers have got themselves a French left-shooting Zajac. It's easy to imagine the Devils with a future of Zajac, Couturier, and Josefson down the middle as being simply incredible defensively. But again, Larsson's been an average player and that's quite a feat for a rookie defender.

True, but at the fourth pick, I would rather have a center (if the pick wasn't Larsson) who can have much more of an impact on the offensive end. Obviously too early to tell with Courturier that he won't add that dimension to his game, but so far he hasn't.

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