Fast B wrote:Martin was pretty bad, but coaching matters too. Gonchar was also horrid when he joined the Pens but by the time they won the Cup he was a crucial component of the team (and his loss was immediately evident on the power play).
I also don't know why "Engelland still has room to improve" and "he's a decent bottom-pairing defenseman" are mutually exclusive. He's not likely going to discover any well of talent at this point, but he could certainly refine what game he does have. Nothing wrong with that.
Good points - no doubt the system/coaching contributed to Martin's poor year and he could well turn it around - just not here. His departure certainly won't be as evident as Gonchar's - there will be no voids to fill other than minutes played and whipping boy.
Engelland is a fine bottom pairing D. His game has improved to a point that Lovejoy (formerly considered the better option) is now expendable. He may not be a 19 year old sensation but his game is steadily improving well beyond dropping the gloves. The sky may not be the limit for Engelland, but his team first attitude and desire to improve can't be knocked... at least not to his face