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Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

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Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby The Snapshot on Fri May 29, 2009 1:36 pm

Jim Kelley writes a fairly balanced analysis (although there are several details that could be challenged) of the upcoming Finals:

http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/2009/05/28/kelley_column/

Overall, I agree with a lot of what he writes, although I do find his omission of any mention of Gonchar when saying the Pens have nobody to match the incomparable Lidstrom somewhat annoying. He also says that our D is slightly worse, which I thoroughly disagree with.
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby Pitt87 on Fri May 29, 2009 1:43 pm

Ironically, this is almost identical to what Matthew Barnaby said on ESPN.

I am so pumped I can't take it anymore.... DROP THE PUCK!!!!
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby newarenanow on Fri May 29, 2009 1:49 pm

Although Gonchar is good, he doesn't match Lindstrom, and their D is better than ours. They have mobile Dmen that can move the puck. Gonchar is about the only one that can do it for the Pens.

Other than that, he makes very good points, and I think this will be one heck of a series. I seriously do think it's a coin toss.
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby The Snapshot on Fri May 29, 2009 2:03 pm

newarenanow wrote:Although Gonchar is good, he doesn't match Lindstrom, and their D is better than ours. They have mobile Dmen that can move the puck. Gonchar is about the only one that can do it for the Pens.

Other than that, he makes very good points, and I think this will be one heck of a series. I seriously do think it's a coin toss.


Compared to last season, our D is much more capable offensively. While Whitney was subtracted, Letang was out of sorts by the Finals and I would not agree that he can't move the puck. Eaton and Orpik can move the puck as well. The only guys we have that are offensively challenged are Scuderi and Gill.

I don't say that Gonchar matches Lidstrom, but it is a serious oversight to not mention him - since he is as steady of an influence on our team as Lidstrom is on theirs.

In terms of forwards, if Datsyuk and Draper are not OK that is a serious blow to them. While Helm is a good player, I find the sudden fascination with a guy who has 3 goals in the playoffs as kind of interesting. Could it be that he just had a good game, and not that he will now become the resurrection of Butch Goring?

I think that the forward depth of both teams is also pretty close, although almost everyone in the press seems to think the Wings are clearly superior. I will give them that they have 5 guys up front that can take over a game - Z, Datsyuk, Franzen, Holmstrom and Hossa - but is that really that much superior to Crosby, Malkin, Guerin, Kunitz and Fedotenko - especially thus far in these playoffs?

It is a toss-up, I would agree, but I have a feeling that this team is going to push through as the underdog and server notice that they are the better, younger team.
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby Dickie Dunn on Fri May 29, 2009 2:24 pm

The Snapshot wrote:
newarenanow wrote:Although Gonchar is good, he doesn't match Lindstrom, and their D is better than ours. They have mobile Dmen that can move the puck. Gonchar is about the only one that can do it for the Pens.

Other than that, he makes very good points, and I think this will be one heck of a series. I seriously do think it's a coin toss.


Compared to last season, our D is much more capable offensively. While Whitney was subtracted, Letang was out of sorts by the Finals and I would not agree that he can't move the puck. Eaton and Orpik can move the puck as well. The only guys we have that are offensively challenged are Scuderi and Gill.

I don't say that Gonchar matches Lidstrom, but it is a serious oversight to not mention him - since he is as steady of an influence on our team as Lidstrom is on theirs.

In terms of forwards, if Datsyuk and Draper are not OK that is a serious blow to them. While Helm is a good player, I find the sudden fascination with a guy who has 3 goals in the playoffs as kind of interesting. Could it be that he just had a good game, and not that he will now become the resurrection of Butch Goring?

I think that the forward depth of both teams is also pretty close, although almost everyone in the press seems to think the Wings are clearly superior. I will give them that they have 5 guys up front that can take over a game - Z, Datsyuk, Franzen, Holmstrom and Hossa - but is that really that much superior to Crosby, Malkin, Guerin, Kunitz and Fedotenko - especially thus far in these playoffs?

It is a toss-up, I would agree, but I have a feeling that this team is going to push through as the underdog and server notice that they are the better, younger team.


You basically stole what I was going to post about the Pens defenseman, so I won't elaborate any further other than to say that I agree.

As far as the Wings' forwards go, I think its a stretch to say that Holmstrom is the type of player that can take over a game. He only has 5 points so far in the playoffs and doesn't contribute much outside of a 10 foot radius around the crease.

I have been largely unimpressed by Zetterberg so far in the playoffs, which is a trend I hope continues. He always a beast defensively, but offensively I have been underwhelmed. He has 9 goals so far, 4 of them are empty netters and 2 more were the 5th and 6th goals of the game four blowout against Chicago.

Outside of his domination of the fourth game in each series, the same can be said for Hossa. I have been able to watch multiple Detroit games without hearing his name called once.

The two Wings who scare me coming into this series are Franzen and Cleary. Cleary has been fantastic so far for the Wings and Frazen's size and physicality makes him extremely difficult to deal with. Our defenseman need to take the physical play to Franzen and not let him come barreling at them with a full head of steam.

I think on paper the Penguins have the better higher end talent, the Wings have the better depth for top two line players, and both teams seem to be equal when it comes to depth through the 4th lines, though the Penguins give a lot more ice time to Satan, Adams, and Dupuis (if he plays) than the Wings give their young guys. To win this series the Penguins need to get production from all four lines.
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby Sarcastic on Fri May 29, 2009 2:27 pm

This is a great read. Why can't more writers be as professional as this guy? No hate, not stupid siding with one team, just a well thought-out analysis. :thumb:
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby Bob McKenzie on Fri May 29, 2009 2:37 pm

The only time you have to be concerned about Holmstrom is on the PP. He's ineffective anymore when he's not on the PP. There are a lot of Detroit fans that are hoping he retires this year so they can use his money to help save Hudler, etc.

The Pens have to be concerned of the following regarding Detroit's offense:

1) Franzen - been the best player for Detroit in the playoffs in the offensive zone.

2) Tie between Zetterberg and Filppula - Zetterberg has been leading with his steady play and Filppula has been doing an awesome job at exploiting teams with his speed and filling in for Datsyuk.

3) Blocking shots/passing lanes for the Detroit defense
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Re: Jim Kelley on Sportsnet.ca - a fairly balanced view

Postby newarenanow on Fri May 29, 2009 2:39 pm

The Snapshot wrote:
newarenanow wrote:Although Gonchar is good, he doesn't match Lindstrom, and their D is better than ours. They have mobile Dmen that can move the puck. Gonchar is about the only one that can do it for the Pens.

Other than that, he makes very good points, and I think this will be one heck of a series. I seriously do think it's a coin toss.


Compared to last season, our D is much more capable offensively. While Whitney was subtracted, Letang was out of sorts by the Finals and I would not agree that he can't move the puck. Eaton and Orpik can move the puck as well. The only guys we have that are offensively challenged are Scuderi and Gill.

I don't say that Gonchar matches Lidstrom, but it is a serious oversight to not mention him - since he is as steady of an influence on our team as Lidstrom is on theirs.

In terms of forwards, if Datsyuk and Draper are not OK that is a serious blow to them. While Helm is a good player, I find the sudden fascination with a guy who has 3 goals in the playoffs as kind of interesting. Could it be that he just had a good game, and not that he will now become the resurrection of Butch Goring?

I think that the forward depth of both teams is also pretty close, although almost everyone in the press seems to think the Wings are clearly superior. I will give them that they have 5 guys up front that can take over a game - Z, Datsyuk, Franzen, Holmstrom and Hossa - but is that really that much superior to Crosby, Malkin, Guerin, Kunitz and Fedotenko - especially thus far in these playoffs?

It is a toss-up, I would agree, but I have a feeling that this team is going to push through as the underdog and server notice that they are the better, younger team.


I don't disagree with you at all that our dmen are better than last year. I think they are.

I thought you were comparing them to Detroit's, who I think are still better than the Pens, although the margin has closed.
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