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Brendan Smith watch thread

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Well after being 5th in AHL defensemen scoring (with a lot less games played from suspension), and playing a nasty brand of hockey it seems redwings top prospect Brendan Smith is getting his shot on the big club finally. Babcock said in an interview toady that he wanted him on the team from the start of the year but Holland said no.

Seems like they want him to split with Kindl from here on out to see who to play in the playoffs. What does everyone expect of him?

I think he'll actually end up stealing Kindls job and mihgt even see some second PP time here and there. I think before the end of the season we'll see him in 2 fights trying to prove he is well rounded and can back up his teammates to help earn a full time spot. Babcock wants toughness, trading away Commie hurts that but putting Smith in the lineup might even make them tougher and he can provide in other areas as well.

Seems like hes just too god to keep down anymore so the wings actually moved a vet from their depth to get him on the roster down the stretch, that bodes well.

Good luck out there Smitty, make it count :clap:

Cloune, Rick D, Bar Down and 1 other like this

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I'm usually pretty conservative with prospects, I think. But allow me to make a bold prediction:

Smith is going to tear the place up. He's going to be for us what other teams always seem to have: A crazy good rookie who's going to blow the lid off the joint.

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I have said it all along that I think Smith should be playing in front of Kindl AND Ericsson. When Smith played a few games up here earleir in the season he was fantastic. He is a good passer, has excellent positioning, and can provide offence for the team as well. IMO the final D pairings going into the playoffs should be:

Lidstrom- White

Kronwall- Stuart

Quincy- Smith

Rick D, Opie and redwingfan19 like this

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I have said it all along that I think Smith should be playing in front of Kindl AND Ericsson. When Smith played a few games up here earleir in the season he was fantastic. He is a good passer, has excellent positioning, and can provide offence for the team as well. IMO the final D pairings going into the playoffs should be:

Lidstrom- White

Kronwall- Stuart

Quincy- Smith

+1 100% agree

Like I said in another thread, I hope Smith keeps Kindl in the press box and makes it incredibly hard on the staff to put Ericsson back into the lineup when he returns.

I'm usually pretty conservative with prospects, I think. But allow me to make a bold prediction:

Smith is going to tear the place up. He's going to be for us what other teams always seem to have: A crazy good rookie who's going to blow the lid off the joint.

Agreed, why can't it be us for once, we have had rookies come in and be solid in the past, but never take over a game/series.

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At first I heard an eventual poor man's Scott Niedermayer. Now I'm hearing a poor man's Keith Yandle.

You wont find a better comparison then Niklas Kronwall.

He has the booming slapshot, really good hands and a really good all arond offensive skillset like Kronwall. He has some questions in his own zone like Kronwall used to but Kronwall has ironed them out with age. He has a penchant for the big hit and a nasty side to his game. He cant hit like Kronwall can (not many can) but he makes up for it with his nastier play in the corners and by fighting.

The thing that will surprise most people about Smith is his ability to read the play and jump up and intercept passes, he does it like clockwork in the AHL.

I've watched him plenty and you will never think of a better comparison then a bit grittier version of Kronwall, the similarities are scary almost

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Not only can he read play tremendously in the AHL, but when he played a few games for the Wings this season he was reading plays very well for a rookie... stepping up to intercept passes and send our forwards quickly the other way, and challenging the other team from gaining our zone. The way I see it is this... Ericsson will never be better than he is (which sucks for us) and Kindl, though I like him, is not on the same level as Smith. Smith is our best D-man prospect and will turn out to be a great player for us going down the road (like the comparison to Kronners. With that said, he should be cracking the lineup now because he is better, but more importantly so he can see NICK LIDSTROM on a daily basis and learn from him while he can.

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Per Red Wings Central

Strengths: High-end power-play quarterback … Outstanding skater … Loves to rush the puck … Terrific vision and a crisp first pass … Fantastic smarts in the offensive zone … Smooth … Rarely panics … Hard point shot … Strong competitive nature … Doesn’t punish physically but plays with a chip on his shoulder and is willing to get his nose dirty.

Weaknesses: Defensive game has progressed, but continued improvement will be key … A real offensive risk-taker who can get caught pinching … Maturity and character have come under scrutiny after a number of off-ice incidents, a team suspension and being a healthy scratch during three seasons at Wisconsin.

Hear he's been doing a lot of work on that risk taking

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You wont find a better comparison then Niklas Kronwall.

He has the booming slapshot, really good hands and a really good all arond offensive skillset like Kronwall. He has some questions in his own zone like Kronwall used to but Kronwall has ironed them out with age. He has a penchant for the big hit and a nasty side to his game. He cant hit like Kronwall can (not many can) but he makes up for it with his nastier play in the corners and by fighting.

The thing that will surprise most people about Smith is his ability to read the play and jump up and intercept passes, he does it like clockwork in the AHL.

I've watched him plenty and you will never think of a better comparison then a bit grittier version of Kronwall, the similarities are scary almost

Yeah I really didn't mean for that comment to indicate that I didn't know all that kind of stuff about him. It was just an interesting change in comparisons over time. My bad.

Offensively I actually think he has a better shot than Kronwall and has more of a taste and confidence to execute dangles. Passing ability between the two is probably equally impressive and yes they both have that as a definite strength.

Actually the way Smith hits players along the boards as they're trying to beat him wide kind of reminds me of Stuart a little. He's very aggressive and nasty when he knows a forward has run out of room/options. In that situation, I feel like Kronwall does just enough to neutralize any potential threat while Smith wants to actually make it hurt.

I'm not exactly sure if Kronwall is the best in the league right now at reading when a player is vulnerable to an open ice hit and timing it effectively but I can't think of anyone better right now. Jollymania will probably say that Kronner is at least one of the best right now.

Defensively, well, you say Kronwall has ironed out his issues with age. I think that's being just a tad generous for Kronwall. I feel like he's making strides towards getting there but not exactly at a rate in which people hoped. Kind of like Filppula on offense.

Or maybe that's just the whole comparison to Nick Lidstrom in his virtually mistake-free prime (which he's no longer in) comparison that some Wings fans have when they watch other dmen.

With more muscle on him and some more years of experience then I think you have a legit #2 or top pair defenseman.

The past several years, out of an 82 game season, I'd say I watch around 35-50 (mostly painful because of the losing) Griffins games thanks to the generous people here. Yet, I still don't quite have a handle on if he's better on the left or right side. Like a lot of left-shooting skilled defensemen, he passes better when he's on the left side but is more active and jumping when he's on the right. Or at least that's how I see it.

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I don't expect much from him. I've heard this kind of hype before and most of the time it doesn't pan out (Grigorenko comes to mind).

I think he will be nervous and will be pushed around by the NHL forwards he plays against. He may tear it up in GR, but he is playing the cream of the crop of scrubs there. This is the NHL and if anyone thinks he is going to outplay Ericsson (who I really wanted to be replaced with Commodore when I heard he was signed, but alas...) they may be in for a disappointment.

But, hopefully I'm wrong and he goes out and does a Scott Stevens impression every night.

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I don't expect much from him. I've heard this kind of hype before and most of the time it doesn't pan out (Grigorenko comes to mind).

I think he will be nervous and will be pushed around by the NHL forwards he plays against. He may tear it up in GR, but he is playing the cream of the crop of scrubs there. This is the NHL and if anyone thinks he is going to outplay Ericsson (who I really wanted to be replaced with Commodore when I heard he was signed, but alas...) they may be in for a disappointment.

But, hopefully I'm wrong and he goes out and does a Scott Stevens impression every night.

He's been up before and he's done pretty well

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Like all other Red Wing players, I expect him to step up and fill his role. I don't know much about him but from what I've read on here and other sites, he has the talent, has the size, just might need to work on the maturity and gameplay a little.

I am not going to say he is going to be amazing. I'm not going to say he is going to be piss poor. I think he will step up, find his groove, (might take a few games) and will fill the void he needs to fill. Once he does this, it'll be up to his character and his willingness to bust his ass to get to the point where he is becoming a game changing player. Best of luck Smith....hope you blow us away and show us what you're made of!

Let's Go Wings!

He's been up before and he's done pretty well

The few games he was up earlier this season I liked what I saw. He seemed to be aggressive and had a good offensive mind set. Just a little scared about the pinching that was mentioned earlier because as we all know, the Wings are a little prone to odd man rushes.

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Babs has never been afraid to throw a rookie in a the deep end if he thinks they're good enough - Helm in 08, Abdelkader in 09.

Smith-Quincey could turn out to be a massive upgrade over Kindl-Ericson.

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With Quincey being picked up and becoming the 5/6th "D-Man" currently where does this leave Smith filling a spot? I know big E is out for a month due to injury, but I don't understand that once he comes back they're willing to sit him over Brendan Smith. We just signed a new contract, in all honesty he hasn't been playing that bad, actually has used his body and we've seen a decrease in his dumb forced passes. I LOVE Brendan Smith, but I just don't see this being anything more than just a injury call up.

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With Quincey being picked up and becoming the 5/6th "D-Man" currently where does this leave Smith filling a spot? I know big E is out for a month due to injury, but I don't understand that once he comes back they're willing to sit him over Brendan Smith. We just signed a new contract, in all honesty he hasn't been playing that bad, actually has used his body and we've seen a decrease in his dumb forced passes. I LOVE Brendan Smith, but I just don't see this being anything more than just a injury call up.

well quincey definitely automatically jumped over ericsson leaving him as the 6th dman, i think the 6th dman spot is never certain and you would think smith can outplay ericsson when he is on his game, ericsson will have the benefit of more nhl eperience. Maybe they will rest stuart and lids for bits of time to keep them fresher.

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Smith was brought up to be Stuarts replacement. He's leaving in the off season, they want to see what the kid has. To say he should be playing in front of E, is a stretch though. E has the playoff experience and has produced in the playoffs. Anyone remember 09? He was outstanding. Either way I'm liking the depth the Wings have on D. Especially now that you have both Kindl and Smith as your 7th and 8th D men.

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It will be nice to have a Brendan on the ice again. :D I am excited to see where this kid can take it, we need a little spark out there some night.

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Clear the zone and no turnovers --- ya do that, I am content.

Honestly I think that's a lot to ask for the game he plays.

He's going to be carrying the puck a lot and trying to make nice outlet passes, not just chipping it up the glass like a stay at home bottom end guy would. So unfortunately that's gonna come with some painful turnovers as he adapts to the NHL game.

I definitely think he should keep it simple at first, but he's gonna make some mistakes as he stretches his game a bit. I just hope he lives up to the promise he shows already.

Pretty interesting quote from Babcock regarding Smith. I don't think he's always a fan of Holland's "over-ripe" philosophy.

“He came on the West Coast with us, he was good enough to play on the team at that point,'' coach Mike Babcock said. “We felt the minutes in the minors were important. We felt he’d be on the team by the end. We think he’s an NHL player. He could’ve probably played all year, probably could’ve played last year.

“What this gives us is an opportunity to give him some nurturing. Actually, if the truth be told, the coaching staff wanted him, the general manager wanted to make sure he got some seasoning.''

http://www.mlive.com/redwings/index.ssf/2012/02/red_wings_anxious_to_see_brend.html

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I don't think he's always a fan of Holland's "over-ripe" philosophy.

You're probably correct - I remember him saying Abdelkader and Leino (!) were the best players he'd ever sent down to the minors. But thats the difference between a coach and a GM - the coach wants the best possible team to win NOW, the GM must keep an eye on the next season, and the season after that, and the season after that...

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