20. Marc Staal, NY Rangers: Physical rearguard is blending in some offense to his no-nonsense game.
...i'm going to preference this by saying I think Staal is a great defenseman and deserves the 20th ranking. Having said that, to me, he hasn't lived up to expectations. I expected a complete defenseman when he came in. And while his defensive skill cannot be denied he has struggled on the offensive end. Maybe I'm being unrealistic but I was counting on double digit goals every year. Staal hasn't eclipsed eight yet. And how about a little snarl in front of the net or god forbid a big hit?
...not sure what it is about Staal but I am way more excited about guys like McD, Sauer, Erixon and Del Zotto on the backline. I even feel for how good Staal is on defense that Girardi might be the Rangers best overall defenseman.
...criticize away. I can take it.
As usual you dont know what you are talking about!!! I love how your rip a guy for not meeting YOUR expectations. This has the stink of a guy writing stupid comments to create traffic on his blog.
I like Staal, and I totally get what you are saying. However, he is the one that held guys like Ovechkin without a goal (regular season). Having said that, I actually think he is going to put up 14 goals this year. Quote me.
I wouldn't say I'm disappointed with Staal, but I was hoping he was going to have more top end skill like Eric. Of course, I thought Jordan was too, and he was a #2 overall and hasn't shown it yet.
That being said, he's easily our best D. Girardi is caught out of position way more often, makes poor decisions way more often.
And i'm excited for McD, not as much for Sauer or MDZ.
I think staal is one of the best defensive d-man in the league he shuts down players. I totally agree he needs more offence and i think he will step it up a bit and have more consistent points like the beginning of last season. I think if he puts up double digit goals he has a shot at the norris. But defensively i think he is one of the best. Yes he does lean on people a decent amount and his crease protection is average at best but all around hes extremely good and he will lay people out if he needs to, just youtube marc staal hits and you'll see them. he deserves to be hire, no way hes worse then mike greene Im sorry, green is a scrub.
I disagree. This guy has been the most reliable defensman along with girardi this team has had since leetch. Hes so good and quiet in his play you dont even recognize how many good plays he makes. Seems like every shift he makes a big play. Hes always in the right position and takes the body very well. I think we'd all like him be more assertive on the offensive end which he started to do towards the end of last season and i think with more confidence and some success youll see alot more of that from him.
Usually find myself nodding in agreement with ya Kev, but think you're way off here. I think the guy is a quiet leader who just goes out and does his damn job, and he and Girardi have become one of the better tandems in the league. Finally,with those two and the other Ranger D-men, we dont have to worry about our D.The goofballs are gone (wont mention names but two of them begin with a R) and our D is solid.
Part of the problem is the the Leetch comparison. The "next Leetch" label was placed on him from the get-go and who can live up to that? We're talking about one of the greatest D-men of all time, hard not to disappoint with those lofty expectations.
He's not flashy, but he is rock-solid. And one hit in four years, cmon Kev.
Big hit? Matt Stajan last year??? It looked like Scott Stevens on Eric Lindros..... I have to disagree with you Kevin. I'm glad you realize people would disagree with you also.
I absolutely hear what you're saying as far as Staal goes, Kevin. I love Staal and think he provides a sound game, but yes like you, I've come expect more from him. Perhaps it is just because of his last name?
Honestly, I don't ever recall Staal being lauded as a "2-way defenseman", always moreso as a stay-at-home. However, when he was a rookie, he showed signs of offensive promise. I agree, I don't believe that he has fully discovered his offensive ways. I think there are times when he would like to do more, however naturally, he is more concerned about his end of the rink; and rightfully so. There is no doubt he has offensive skill (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Eh2-NcgqubI), he's just a touch too tentative (you also have to see in the clip, that the offensive rush is kind of produced because of Staal's defensive gaffe along the boards). No doubt, he is a great defenseman, but I gotta agree with Kevin, he could be much more.
On the topic of these Puck Daddy rankings, I was surprised to see that Girardi wasn't an honorable mention (he had the most blocked shots in the league last year (!) AND didn't get injured from them [Cally should take notes]). Aside from that, I am VERY pleased to see Rangers representation for ALL of these lists, only on right-wing they didn't have someone listed, however Callahan was an honorable mention, and we all know for a fact that Henrik will be on the goalie list.
totally think we Sather deserves A lot of credit for this off-season!!! A little positive support and maybe somehow the media will follow and stop harping on the Rangers mistakes in the past and give credit where it is due ..!!! Staal is one of many I feel is gonna lead this team to the cup sooner rather than later..what do you guys thinlk???
I would still rank Staal as being the most reliable and best D-man on the rangers, but yes, I agree there is definite room for improvement on the offensive end of his game. I remember the praise of comparison to Leetch, but that still has a lot to be desired. He is from a family suited for hockey, so I think he has yet to crack into his prime.
"Maybe I'm being unrealistic but I was counting on double digit goals every year."
This is where the real problem lies. Here's the list of guys that have done it each of the last 3 years:
Ok then. Sure it's cheating a little, Lidstrom and Chara randomly were only single digits in '09-'10, plus Mike Green and probably Mark Streit hit 10 if not hurt last season.
But the point is that 10 goals year in year out is seriously lofty, especially for a defense-first defenseman whose offense is just developing now. Staal's tied for 28th in defenseman goals over the last two years, which is quite good.
Do we want him to have another level? Sure, but you gotta give him time to get there.
failed to live up to expectations? A first round draft pick who becomes your #1 defenseman after 2 years and shuts down every teams top offensive players night in and night out - how is that not meeting expectations? To me, if staal is scoring double digit goals, that means he is pressing offensively and losing his defensive responsibilities. When he is on the ice, he is facing off against crosby, malkin, ovechkin, etc... so his first concern is shutting them down. I wish everyone on the rangers would score double digit goals, but that is not what makes a team. we have a true #1 defenseman in his prime and in his mid 20's.
Let me rephrase, Kevin, you're off the mark on this one. You do a helluva job but I don't agree on this one. I would love to see Staal score 15 goals and throw his body around but that hasn't materialized yet. I think Staal could easily score 10+ goals especially PPGs if he gets to play with Richards on the point.
I love the guys but you arent going to get offensive production from your defense when you have Prust and Boyle playing 20+ mins a night and Gabby playing 16mins.. I think that the system works to keep the team in the game and keep the score low because the puck spends so much time behind the net or in the corners but man oh man would I love to see a few more 5 goal games from the Rangers.. I think if that happened Staal would get his due credit.. and #20 to me seems a little far down the list I honestly see this guy in the top 15
Kev I think that the lack of offense has a lot to do with the slouches he has had up front for much of his career ..you cannot expect a defensemen to LEAD the offensive rush and although there are many puck moving defensemen out there who technically lead the rush as they establish the blue line by carrying the puck in, their job is to do so then dish it off to the guys up front. Goals for defensemen often occur on rebounds or hard shots from their point positions and to be honest I have watched every Rangers game I can for many years and havent since Leetch was on the Blueline seen a system in which the shot from the point was properly used. This team spent much of the year behind the net last year, kinda hard for a defenseman to join in on the offense when the puck is 50 feet from his stick. On the defensive side you have to give him his props. he plays a hell of a lot of minutes against some great players and as far as I can rememebr he hasnt allowed them really to be a factor in many games. last year the Rangers were in a lot of games (if I remember correctly they lost what 22 games by one goal ??) and had the pp worked on a regular basis and a few calls gone their way theyd have had a tremendous year and much of that can be attributed to Staal .. so too can the leaps and bounds Girardis game has taken since he became a reglar pairing with Staal as he has a hell of a partner backing him up.. Stall hands down best Defensemen on this team ..
You're clearly fishing for comments with this post... "god forbid a big hit?" ... How quickly some people forget: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qHibz-pZ0o
@Fleisch14 If your conspiracy is true, nice work contributing to the stink...LOL
@Fleisch14 Don't ask me to go golfing this weekend.
@Enzo83 He is a beast against Ovechkin. There is no denying that.
@GregMichelman I think if you watch him closely he does get beat a lot as well.
@CinciMike I mean we all expected more from gabbi but hes known to have offseasons I think he can put up 50 with us. And i agree staal is a great all around leader and player, great post though! this is taking off!
@CinciMike Sick video. He really is a beast. Love the hit he put on his brother a few years back. Always seems to play ovechkin so tough. Gives him a run for his money!!! I cant wait for hockey that video gives me goosebumps lol!!!
@CinciMike awesome video!! great song!!
@CinciMike Great video, dude's a beast and the best D man the Rangers have.
@CinciMike I hear you and I'm not saying he isn't a very good defenseman. I just expected more.
@KingBadaBing I knew I'd take a beating on this one. Although I've received a lot of support on Twitter.
@JakeB Being part of the Staal family hurts him to. I see what Eric and Jordan are doing and I wonder why Marc isn't at that same level. Still time to get there though.
But he hasn't hit double digits once. I do, however, need to realize that the guy is just 24 and still developing.
@drywpd I agree that the first responsibility is to "shut down" the big guns of the opposing team, however that can also be done by scoring on them.. after all the offensive lines of most teams are oftentimes (some exceptions) the most defensively inept. Staal needs help to do so but the Rangers need to stop standing back and trying to shut down others but instead score on them.. I remember Torts saying that "safe is dead" if it reflected how this team played for the last half last year Staal's point totals would be higher no doubt.
@chrisfilipski better hahaha saved yourself on that one... alwasy bad to call the creator of the blog an idiot ...hahah
@andrewstamant29 I really can't argue with you but for some reason more often than not I find myself disappointed with Staal than excited. Just something I need to get over I guess. Again, I think he's great I just expect more.
@PuckyTheWhale Clearly my blog is about sharing my unfiltered opinion on the Rangers and one big hit in four years doesn't really help your argument.
@KevinDeLury I dont disagree but he is human. The amount of outstanding plays he makes against the leagues best players trumps any missed play from time to time. Especcially in big games, he always seems to be in the thick of everything. I think we as rangers fans may take him for granted a bit.
@ChrisP I think I just changed my mind based on that video.
I felt the same way about Gabby,expected alot more
@KevinDeLury It takes defensemen longer to develop into their prime. It takes much longer to perfect the defensive side of the game, and because Stall is so thorough, he hasn't devoted sufficient time to developing his offense yet. Obviously he's been working on it, as seen last year. We can only assume, he will be better in that respect this year. I don't think he'll start to level off offensively for another year or two.
@KevinDeLury True, he hasn't, but 15 goals over two years while playing top competition is something that isn't really matched by many in the league, especially at 24. It's a group of Keith, Weber, Doughty, Carle, Myers, and Bogosian.
So again, sure he could be better, but he's the best we got.
@KevinDeLury all that being said by me .. I truly expect more too but this guy is young .. he seems like a veteran but he is just developing those man muscles.. look for him to have a big year..
@KevinDeLury Being that im a huge met fan i totally agree. I always liked beltran never had an issue with him. I will be ruiting for him as long as we're not playing against him. lol
@GregMichelman I agree with that. Almost like Beltran with the Mets.
@ChrisP How can you not love hockey? I dont understand people that dont like this sport. Greatest sport in the world!!!!
@CinciMike Last year.
@KevinDeLury thats what I should have written my guest blog about!!!! so foolish....!!!! entitled I Love Sather!!!! lol
@andrewstamant29 Ha! No chance.
@KevinDeLury isnt it rediculous.. this guys is only 24 cant even grow a beard and we are talking about him like he is a grizzled vet .. we got a lot more to see from this guy I think.. personnally Im psyched about the youth of this team.. cant even believe what a great job Slats has done to redeem himself.. he deserves a DO NOT FIRE SATHER RALLY !!!hahah
@andrewstamant29 That's one thing I need to remember also that despite him being in the league for four years he is still just 24 years old.