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Ericsson

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I haven't seen any threads on the board about him yet this year, so I figured I'd start one.

Let me start off by saying I've been perhaps the biggest Ericsson critique on the boards the past 3 seasons. His passing was horrible, his decisions baffling, he played like he was Hudlers size in the D-zone. But that was then and this is now.

Ericsson has been, at least to me, our best overall defenseman. He's making great decisions with the puck in his end consistently, his passes are tape to tape quick and hard, he's getting shots through on the offensive side of things and it's leading to offense for the team. He's got a goal and 3 assists to go along with a +2 through 8 games, pretty damn good, especially for Big E. But perhaps the best thing about his play this year, is he's taken steps forward in being that big mean defenseman he has to be. Knocking guys around the net, clearing the crease. He developed into a decent penalty killer last season, and that's stayed true this year. His hits and blocked shots #'s aren't anything to look twice at yet, but I'm sure they'll get there. Anyway, I just wanted to pump the guys tires because he has completely changed the way I think of him and look at him as a D-man. Keep er going E.

Ram likes this

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I think Ericsson and Lashoff were great today. But man has Ericsson turned his game around a lot. It seems his contract is now a discount instead of an overpayment.

Motown4013 likes this

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Big E is looking better and better and I'm down with that. I'm a firm believer that like with good wine NHL d-men get better with age.

Edited by St. Michael (the Red Wing)

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Big E is looking better and better and I'm down with that. I'm a firm believer that like with good wine NHL d-men get better with age.

Rig is in his prime. I have always liked this guy, but I always wanted him on Pav's wing instead of on D.

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I think Ericsson and Lashoff were great today. But man has Ericsson turned his game around a lot. It seems his contract is now a discount instead of an overpayment.

I dunno if I'd label Big E's contract a "discount" just yet - however I agree with ya that he's really turned his game around.

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Before the big contract, I didn't get all the bashing Ericsson took on these boards, last year with the big contract the expectations went way up, and he didn't deliver to that level by any stretch of the imagination. This season, however, he has been a lot more noticeable in a good way, playing the body instead of the puck, not getting caught up ice in poorly timed pinches, and in my opinion he has been our most consistent D-man. He finally looks like a #3 blue-liner should, let's hope he keeps it up.

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Before the big contract, I didn't get all the bashing Ericsson took on these boards, last year with the big contract the expectations went way up, and he didn't deliver to that level by any stretch of the imagination. This season, however, he has been a lot more noticeable in a good way, playing the body instead of the puck, not getting caught up ice in poorly timed pinches, and in my opinion he has been our most consistent D-man. He finally looks like a #3 blue-liner should, let's hope he keeps it up.

He got hurt last year.

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He got hurt last year.

He played 69 games last year, and when he was in he was arguably our worst defenseman until we picked up Quincey.

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He played 69 games last year, and when he was in he was arguably our worst defenseman until we picked up Quincey.

Im telling you- he played through an injury last year. Same with Lids. And they both were not as effective.

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Im telling you- he played through an injury last year. Same with Lids. And they both were not as effective.

Every hockey player plays through injuries. I'm wiling to give guys a pass, if they are less than effective but not a detriment to the team's success, as far as most people are concerned if you aren't injured enough to sit out, you should be able to be effective, which Ericsson was not.

Lidstrom at 41 and less than 100% is still an elite player and would be worth far more than $3.75mil, Ericsson at less than 100% was horrific at worst and unremarkable at best.

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Lids was bad at the end of last year. Thats why he hung em up.

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let's not get it out of perspective. when the fans were complaining and using big rig as the whipping boy, it was understandable. to say, "well why were the fans complaining" is alittle uncalled for. it was understandable for when we were complaining. he didn't want to use his body, he had rookie mistakes, and it all added into the equation of his overall game. over the past season and this current one, he certainly has improved and it's been the overall judgement of this forum that he has improved. the whipping boy has moved from big rig, and you can see that. don't hold the past, towards the future. a player can always advance their game, it's whether they do so or not. luckily, big rig stepped up his game and took a bigger role, don't use it against the fans that saw his horrible play to begin with. nowadays you don't see the hate, because it's not called for.

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E has gtten better each year, and in the end that is all we can ask him to do. Yes many here may not like him, but Chelios loves the guy. Go back and rewatch his statements at Nicky's retirement thing. For whatever reason Dmen do seem to take longer to develop. While forwards seem to reach their peaks 25 or so, Dmen seem to do it in their late 20's. On the other hand they also seem to play at a higher level longer.

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I'm gonna go against the flow and say I just am not seeing the dramatic improvement. At best, I'll say he's cut down on the bone headed plays. But he still makes them and there are way too many of them.

I think one of the reasons he seems to be improving in the eyes of some fans is because the rest of the defensive corps has collectively taken such a huge drop off in the last few years.

Basically, I still can't stop from cringing when it's a tight game and he's got the puck deep in the Wings zone and someone is bearing down on him and he has to make a quick decision. When I can stop cringing in those situations - I'll start singing a different tune.

Edited by guitard
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The degree to which I've been critical of Ericsson in the past has derived largely from the fact that he has all of the tools to be an excellent defenseman. He's got excellent physical assets, all of his screw-ups are avoidable, and all of his shortcomings are changeable. This is not the case for most d-men in the league.

He's been playing very well this season. If he'd finally learn to use that cannon of a slapshot, he'd really be roaring.

Edited by Crymson

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He's been playing very well this season. If he'd finally learn to use that cannon of a slapshot, he'd really be roaring.

I think the problem is it takes him so damn long to get it away. There was a situation yesterday when he got the puck and was wide open, by the time he wound up and got it away the lane was gone.

I've been impressed by his snarl as much as anything. Giving guys a little cross-check, shoving them to the ice when the puck has gone etc. I've been crying out for someone to do this for years.

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I think the problem is it takes him so damn long to get it away. There was a situation yesterday when he got the puck and was wide open, by the time he wound up and got it away the lane was gone.

I'm pretty sure that the issue is lack of confidence.

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I'm gonna go against the flow and say I just am not seeing the dramatic improvement. At best, I'll say he's cut down on the bone headed plays. But he still makes them and there are way too many of them.

I think one of the reasons he seems to be improving in the eyes of some fans is because the rest of the defensive corps has collectively taken such a huge drop off in the last few years.

Basically, I still can't stop from cringing when it's a tight game and he's got the puck deep in the Wings zone and someone is bearing down on him and he has to make a quick decision. When I can stop cringing in those situations - I'll start singing a different tune.

I agree with you here! E should look better than he has in years past, the comparison now is to guys like Quincey, who has been terrible, and then to the young guys Smith, Lashoff, Kindl! E has been around for 5 years, I expect more than we get from him, especially at 3.25 million! He is often out of position, obviously doesn't think the game well, and definitely is not using his size to his advantage. Personally, I have been most impressed with Lashoff this season. A young guy we hadn't heard much of before this season, stepping in and playing a very steady defense! A nice addition!

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