Chris Neil?

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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby meecrofilm on Wed Jan 21, 2009 9:55 pm

Oh, oops, yeah, I was. Sorry for the confusion :oops:
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby brwi on Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:24 pm

NJ5934 wrote:
meecrofilm wrote:I think the whole team is floating right now.


You know whats sad? When you say the whole team (I say it too) we're really referring to 4 or 5 forwards because I think we've got pretty decent third and fourth lines. Furthermore, you would be hard pressed to argue Sid and Malkin float because they are the hardest working guys on the ice, hands down. So realistically, we're talking about Sykora, Satan, Staal, Dupuis and whoever else is filling the top lines. The fact of the matter is not one of these guys is capable of contributing on a regular basis without 87 or 71.

Don't get me wrong, I agree with you, I believe Therrien is a big system guy, not a big energy guy and I think its evident in the way this team plays. The four wingers on our top two lines are typically standing around waiting to be spoon fed a pass. There is very little in terms of driving to the net, digging in the corners etc.

This team is desperately in need of a new identity. Right now, we are a team that is maxed in payroll, plentiful in skill both up front and on the blueline, yet plays a very soft trap. New Jersey and Minnesota have both been crucified over the years for playing a boring game, "sucking the life out of the building." But the fact of the matter is the Penguins play the same system. The difference is the Devils and Wild are both very well coached and hard working teams, the Pens are not. The Wild and Devils both play a defensive minded game but manage to create alot of opportunity (and shots) through hard work. As if playing the trap with Crosby and Malkin isn't a sin in itself, the Penguins choose to play it without a fraction of the work ethic that the Wild or Devils do. The result is the nightmare we are becoming used to seeing on a regular basis. As fans, I think we tend to see the team with selective vision. We over analyze some things, over embellish others and ignore other parts of their game all together. I think what bothers me most is when I have the time to watch other games around the league on Center Ice, I can't help but notice that we have become one of the most boring, lifeless teams in the league.

My point, if there is one, is that what Shero has tried isn't working right now. This team needs an identity, some personality and it has to start with the coaching staff. Therrien's system and Yeo's PP dry erase board are sucking the life out of this team and sucking the energy out of those who support this team. Its time for some change, both personnel and coaching staff.

Sorry for the long rant.


I don't think the Pens' blueline is anywhere close to being able to handle run-and-gun hockey, nor as skilled as some believe. Take out the trap, and the Pens and MAF are going to get beat consistently. The team defense that was often touted last year definitely is TEAM defense that requires a lot of buy-in by forwards and covers up some very noticeable deficiencies on the blueline.

If at some point the Pens decide in the future to really open it up, they are going to need to unload the salary of either Sid or Malkin because they lack the parts to play anything but a trapping system, mainly because of how much salary is tied to Sid and Malkin.

The Devils and Wild give strong efforts more consistently than the Pens because they lack the star power to beat teams on talent and it's either out-work and out-goaltend the opponent or lose. There is no margin of error for them. Pens are in a situation where they can sometimes win without going all-out and that sometimes seems to be in the back of their heads when they are on the ice. It happens to younger teams that know they have the talent to burn but haven't learned that the most talent doesn't mean the most wins.

When the Pens follow what they have obviously been coached to do successfully, they look pretty damn good to me. I didn't hear anyone saying how "bored" they were with how methodically the Pens dispatched the Rangers or Ducks. When the players start playing 80% of the system and 20% their own agenda, it's ugly and the performances are inconsistent.

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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby NJ5934 on Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:47 pm

brwi wrote:If at some point the Pens decide in the future to really open it up, they are going to need to unload the salary of either Sid or Malkin because they lack the parts to play anything but a trapping system, mainly because of how much salary is tied to Sid and Malkin.

The Devils and Wild give strong efforts more consistently than the Pens because they lack the star power to beat teams on talent and it's either out-work and out-goaltend the opponent or lose. There is no margin of error for them. Pens are in a situation where they can sometimes win without going all-out and that sometimes seems to be in the back of their heads when they are on the ice. It happens to younger teams that know they have the talent to burn but haven't learned that the most talent doesn't mean the most wins.


I cannot disagree more on your first point. The Penguins are one of a handful of teams that trap, yet a majority of the teams in the league have at least two players making in excess of 5+ million. Some of the better teams have even more. The Penguins are relatively average in terms of how they have spread out their payroll.

I agree with your second point to an extent. I completely agree the skill the Penguins possess has made the team as a whole very lazy in that they've become accustomed to winning games in which they put forth minimal effort. This is perhaps the biggest issue with the Penguins. They become the spoiled rich kids of the NHL. That this attitude/ethic exists is a reflection on the coaching staff and leadership among the players. I don't think the Devils are hard workers because they have no choice, I think they've been taught that hard work is the only effort that will be tolerated. Again, I think it all comes back to identity as a team. In this case, I don't think being the spoiled rich kids of the NHL is a good thing. I think its time for a change and its starts with Therrien and his staff.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby Bob McKenzie on Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:55 pm

I like Neil. He's a character player for the locker room. I said I liked Neil, but I don't like him for the Pens. We need #1 and #2 line wingers. Not #4 line wingers.

With Schubert, I've said before, he's one of the strongest players in the NHL (in terms of strength). I think he needs to be surrounded by guys like Gill/Gonchar, who are older and can show him the ropes. He could turn into a solid player (plus he plays forward/defense).
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby NJ5934 on Wed Jan 21, 2009 10:56 pm

neophool wrote:Neil is a less skilled, less controlled, arguably uglier version of Rutuu imo. no thanks.


You've obviously never looked at Neil and Ruutu's career stats. Uglier......I'll give you that.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby NJ5934 on Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:14 pm

Bob McKenzie wrote:I like Neil. He's a character player for the locker room. I said I liked Neil, but I don't like him for the Pens. We need #1 and #2 line wingers. Not #4 line wingers.


Bob, we've had Kennedy, Dupuis, Satan, Talbot and Fedotenko playing on our top lines this season.

My point is that maybe we should start looking towards guys with alittle more presence. Cooke isn't a top liner but the game he plays has made a difference on the top line. In a couple games he has had more immediate impact than any of the other guys mentioned above. Neil has better hands than Cooke. Neil is not going to stand around while Orr is punching Sid in the back of the head up against the Rangers bench.

Honestly, if you could choose between Dupuis scoring 20 on Sid's wing and Neil scoring 15 on Sid's wing, who would you choose? Seriously. Dupuis is the same guy as Kennedy, Talbot and Fedotenko. This team is filled with duplicates! Neil brings so much more to the overall table than Dupuis ever could and it would be well worth the five goal difference for all other intangibles he brings when he's on the ice.

Please don't respond that Dupuis, Kennedy and company shouldn't be on the top lines, because the fact of the matter is that they are. That's what we have to choose from and that's what I would take Chris Neil over any day of the week.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby Bob McKenzie on Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:20 pm

NJ5934 wrote:
Bob McKenzie wrote:I like Neil. He's a character player for the locker room. I said I liked Neil, but I don't like him for the Pens. We need #1 and #2 line wingers. Not #4 line wingers.


Bob, we've had Kennedy, Dupuis, Satan, Talbot and Fedotenko playing on our top lines this season.

My point is that maybe we should start looking towards guys with alittle more presence. Cooke isn't a top liner but the game he plays has made a difference on the top line. In a couple games he has had more immediate impact than any of the other guys mentioned above. Neil has better hands than Cooke. Neil is not going to stand around while Orr is punching Sid in the back of the head up against the Rangers bench.

Honestly, if you could choose between Dupuis scoring 20 on Sid's wing and Neil scoring 15 on Sid's wing, who would you choose? Seriously. Dupuis is the same guy as Kennedy, Talbot and Fedotenko. This team is filled with duplicates! Neil brings so much more to the overall table than Dupuis ever could and it would be well worth the five goal difference for all other intangibles he brings when he's on the ice.

Please don't respond that Dupuis, Kennedy and company shouldn't be on the top lines, because the fact of the matter is that they are. That's what we have to choose from and that's what I would take Chris Neil over any day of the week.


I would choose Cooke and not trade for another 3rd/4th liner. We don't need anymore fringe players for the Pens. We need quality over quantity.

If you're going to get rid of one of the 4th liners, then Neil would be a nice addition.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby Bob McKenzie on Wed Jan 21, 2009 11:22 pm

Also, Neil has been in the league 7 years. His highest goal output is 16 goals in one year. The next highest year, he scored 12. Other than that, he scores 4 to 10 goals a year. Better hands than Cooke? I don't think so.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby NJ5934 on Thu Jan 22, 2009 12:16 am

Bob McKenzie wrote:Also, Neil has been in the league 7 years. His highest goal output is 16 goals in one year. The next highest year, he scored 12. Other than that, he scores 4 to 10 goals a year. Better hands than Cooke? I don't think so.


Cooke has yet to score 16 in a season.

Besides, I'm not comparing Cooke to Neil. I'm pointing out how effective Cooke has become in a short period of time on the top line simply because he plays a more well rounded game than any of the floaters who have been rotated in and out earlier in the season. Neil brings alot of Cooke's game and more. Cooke is a hard hitter and a master agitator. He is perfect for third line duty. As a matter of fact I would love to see a guy like Jordin Tootoo playing alongside him (but thats a whole other topic). Neil has size, he's a beast along the boards and on the forecheck. He is able to retreive the puck and drive to the net in a way Satan, Sykora, Fedotenko, Kennedy, Minard, Taffe, and Dupuis will never be able to. He has scored 16 before on Ottawa's 2nd line so he doesn't have hands of stone. On top of that he's not afraid to stick up for his teammates (you might recall that he answered the call and then held his own against Godard this year). That is alot of ju ju to bring to a top line.

Bottom line - he's a tougher, less skilled version of Malone. Malone's absence has hurt us the most this year and Neil is probably the most realistic option available to fill that hole. Neil is not a replacement for Cooke or Godard, he should be a replacement for Satan or Dupuis.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby WWGRD on Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:21 pm

A team containing Neil, Godard, and Bissonnette would be very not soff.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby Bob McKenzie on Tue Jan 27, 2009 6:00 pm

NJ5934 wrote:
Bob McKenzie wrote:Also, Neil has been in the league 7 years. His highest goal output is 16 goals in one year. The next highest year, he scored 12. Other than that, he scores 4 to 10 goals a year. Better hands than Cooke? I don't think so.


Cooke has yet to score 16 in a season.

Besides, I'm not comparing Cooke to Neil. I'm pointing out how effective Cooke has become in a short period of time on the top line simply because he plays a more well rounded game than any of the floaters who have been rotated in and out earlier in the season. Neil brings alot of Cooke's game and more. Cooke is a hard hitter and a master agitator. He is perfect for third line duty. As a matter of fact I would love to see a guy like Jordin Tootoo playing alongside him (but thats a whole other topic). Neil has size, he's a beast along the boards and on the forecheck. He is able to retreive the puck and drive to the net in a way Satan, Sykora, Fedotenko, Kennedy, Minard, Taffe, and Dupuis will never be able to. He has scored 16 before on Ottawa's 2nd line so he doesn't have hands of stone. On top of that he's not afraid to stick up for his teammates (you might recall that he answered the call and then held his own against Godard this year). That is alot of ju ju to bring to a top line.

Bottom line - he's a tougher, less skilled version of Malone. Malone's absence has hurt us the most this year and Neil is probably the most realistic option available to fill that hole. Neil is not a replacement for Cooke or Godard, he should be a replacement for Satan or Dupuis.


I'm not disputing your point. The only thing I'm disputing is that we don't need anymore 3rd/4th liners. We need another first/second liner before filling out the bottom 6 with the 12 guys we've had here already this year.

I like Neil. I'd love to see Cooke - Staal - Neil or Cooke - Sid - Neil but we have a plethora of quantity over quality on this team at the moment. Right now, we're fat with Boucher, Eaton, Satan, and the elevendy billion AHLers that have come up. Before adding anymore fat, it'd be best to trim it first. If you catch my drift.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby Ginger on Tue Jan 27, 2009 8:03 pm

Mad City Mike wrote:The same Chris Neil who was so awful in the series against us last year? He took one selfish penalty after another. No thank you to giving up anything to get a guy like that. This team isn't Cup contender material, even with him, so why would you give up an asset to get him?


I was thinking the very same thing! Please, those who want this guy give me details why you think so? He is borderline dirty & spends most of his time sitting in the box. This can help us how?
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby NJ5934 on Tue Jan 27, 2009 9:30 pm

Bob McKenzie wrote:
NJ5934 wrote:
Bob McKenzie wrote:Also, Neil has been in the league 7 years. His highest goal output is 16 goals in one year. The next highest year, he scored 12. Other than that, he scores 4 to 10 goals a year. Better hands than Cooke? I don't think so.


Cooke has yet to score 16 in a season.

Besides, I'm not comparing Cooke to Neil. I'm pointing out how effective Cooke has become in a short period of time on the top line simply because he plays a more well rounded game than any of the floaters who have been rotated in and out earlier in the season. Neil brings alot of Cooke's game and more. Cooke is a hard hitter and a master agitator. He is perfect for third line duty. As a matter of fact I would love to see a guy like Jordin Tootoo playing alongside him (but thats a whole other topic). Neil has size, he's a beast along the boards and on the forecheck. He is able to retreive the puck and drive to the net in a way Satan, Sykora, Fedotenko, Kennedy, Minard, Taffe, and Dupuis will never be able to. He has scored 16 before on Ottawa's 2nd line so he doesn't have hands of stone. On top of that he's not afraid to stick up for his teammates (you might recall that he answered the call and then held his own against Godard this year). That is alot of ju ju to bring to a top line.

Bottom line - he's a tougher, less skilled version of Malone. Malone's absence has hurt us the most this year and Neil is probably the most realistic option available to fill that hole. Neil is not a replacement for Cooke or Godard, he should be a replacement for Satan or Dupuis.


I'm not disputing your point. The only thing I'm disputing is that we don't need anymore 3rd/4th liners. We need another first/second liner before filling out the bottom 6 with the 12 guys we've had here already this year.

I like Neil. I'd love to see Cooke - Staal - Neil or Cooke - Sid - Neil but we have a plethora of quantity over quality on this team at the moment. Right now, we're fat with Boucher, Eaton, Satan, and the elevendy billion AHLers that have come up. Before adding anymore fat, it'd be best to trim it first. If you catch my drift.


Fair enough Bob. I should have been more clear. I wasn't suggesting adding Neil to the lineup and then finding a place for him among the rotation of regulars and AHL call-ups. I was suggesting replacing Satan or Dupuis with Neil. I have no use for either and I think we'd be better suited having a guy like Neil on Sid's wing than a floater like Satan or a guy like Dupuis, who while certainly a hard worker, is nothing more than a pair of wheels. At this point, to me anyway, Neil is a major upgrade over Satan or Dupuis for obvious reasons. I would be more than happy to see Satan and Dupuis moved even if solely to clear roster space.

It will be interesting to see what Shero does here. Its definitely the moment of truth as far as the season goes. If he waits and the teams works its way back into the 5-6 spot, everyone calls him a genius and starts reciting cliches like, "the best trade is the one that wasn't made." If he waits and the team continues to fall, March may be too late and no one player may be able to turn things around. Furthermore, the more we wait, the more likely we are going to get fleeced, as desperate teams usually do.

I'm pretty clear about what I want to see in this team. I'm a big fan of hitting and intensity. As you could expect, I'm hurting big time right now watching this team. I've said it before, this team needs an identity. Right now they are the spoiled rich kid team that has become accustomed to winning without playing hard. I don't think it helps we have a coach that pushes this team to force turnovers by way of key positioning and clogging center ice as opposed to an aggressive forecheck. Regardless of what everyone thinks about Neil, he's a worker bee. He's the hardest working Ottawa Senator on most nights. He's also a fan favorite and from what I understand a fav in the lockerroom. There's alot to be said for that. Sometimes skill isn't everything. Sid has more than enough skill to carry an entire line. Having a big body to dig out loose pucks and on occasion send a message to someone crossing the line may be enough. In that regard, I think Neil has alot of what this team and probably Sidney Crosby's line could use right now.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby KG on Tue Jan 27, 2009 10:00 pm

Ginger wrote:
Mad City Mike wrote:The same Chris Neil who was so awful in the series against us last year? He took one selfish penalty after another. No thank you to giving up anything to get a guy like that. This team isn't Cup contender material, even with him, so why would you give up an asset to get him?


I was thinking the very same thing! Please, those who want this guy give me details why you think so? He is borderline dirty & spends most of his time sitting in the box. This can help us how?


Neil is still a tough player who would be a spark to this soft forward group. Not to make excuses for him, but I would think that he probably needs a change of sceneary...
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby 71 on Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:37 am

Chris is a tough hard nosed player that fights for loose pucks and sticks up for his teammates but he doesn't help the Pens. He's a fringe 3rd line, solid forth line guy of which we have an abundance. As opposed to some opinions, he doesn't have good hands and he isn't a productive even strength player, as is evident by the fact he has never scored more than 9 even strength goals in a season. Matt Cooke, Tyler Kennedy, Pascal Dupuis, and Ruslan Fedotenko are all more productive at even strength and are better players than Neil. The only way I'd want Chris Neil playing on this team is if he was playing on the 4th line as an energy player but frankly I don't see him having much of an impact playing only 5-6 minutes a night.
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Re: Chris Neil?

Postby Idoit40fans on Wed Jan 28, 2009 2:49 am

Did I say "No" here yet?
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