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Richdg

Now some gritty forwards.

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Haven't Wings fans been saying we need to add a big, tough, gritty scoring winger/power forward since like 1998?

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No. Back then we had Shanny, McCarty, lapointe, later added Clark, Robie-who was very good down low, one of the samuelsons.... or was it sundstrom..... had some tough Dmen like Pushor, ward, chelios, etc....... It wasn't until the mid 2000's that that group retired that we developed our softness. A lot of tough gritty players that were replaced by Bertuzzi and nothing else.

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If you lay out our special teams you really see where the issues are. PK is ok with guys like: Abby, Glendening, helm, Miller, Z, datsyuk, Nyquist, Sheahan, and Jurco at F then DD, Kron, and E at D.

It is the PP that has major issues. PP1: datsyuk and Nyquist are the puck movers, no one to work in front of the net and down low with only Kronwall on the BL. Need a big body up front and a RHed shot.

On PP2 it is the same problem: Z and Weiss as your puck movers, no one down low/front of net, DD on the BL. Again need a big body for up front and a RHed shot on the BL. That makes 4 holes on the team. 1 of the 2 holes on the BL could in theory be filled by Sproul or Marchenko. But both are very young with a year or less in pro hockey at the minor level.

As for filling the holes down low/front of the net the only young guy that could possibly do it is Sheahan. That would mean 2 guys in their 1st/2nd years filling major roles. That is very risky and would be wasting Datsyuks talents and time.

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As far as "gritty forwards" go:

Steve Downie: UFA, 27 years old. 24 points in 62 games between Colorado and Philadelphia this season. Undergoing surgery on both of his ears to improve his hearing, which effects his balance. It is unsure whether he'll return to the Flyers with Hextall as GM. He's a pain in the ass to play against and can put up some points. He'd be a solid addition for the bottom 6.

Ryan Callahan: UFA, 29 years old. 36 points in 65 games between the Rangers and Tampa Bay this season. He may price himself out of the range of a lot of teams; if that is the case, we're not a frontrunner for him.

Steve Ott: UFA, 31 years old. 23 points in 82 games between Buffalo and St. Louis this season. He did not play well at all with the Blues. Another pain in the ass to play against that can chip in offensively. However, he's always had someone protecting him wherever he's played in his career. He won't have that luxury here, so I don't know how he'd fit in here. Someone to at least consider, though.

David Clarkson: Buyout/trade candidate, 30 years old. 11 points in 60 games with Toronto this season. Horribly underperformed with the Leafs. If he is bought out, I think we should give him a short contract and place him in the bottom 6. He's shown his capability to produce in the past, but he isn't someone to be relied on for primary scoring. He would also provide the physicality that we've been lacking for the past few years. He could Kenny's "reclamation project".

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