This is just like every other Babcock cliche. It's not saying much to say "the best players will play" when there's no competition for jobs at the moment. Bring Dats, Z, and Weiss back and there will be, and I'd be amazed if "the best player played".
He might as well say, "the best player (who can effectively alleviate cap constraints) will play". Which is no different than two months ago when Tootoo and Eaves were waived.
Talk is cheap. It's time for Holland and Babs to actually DO SOMETHING to prove that "the best players will play". And that doesn't mean waiving Sammy either.
Well, the blame is passed from one to the other in different circumstances.
It is on Babcock when he can pick and choose who he wants to play and he picks incorrectly.
It is on Holland when everyone is healthy, and we have to send down guys who make the team better because he kept signing a bunch of guys we didn't need.
LOL, I'm embarrassed to say that I've thought about this as well.
Pav was having seemingly a career year and he goes down, but Cleary has stayed healthy all year? Mule was starting to heat up then gets hurt, but Quincey has been available to lead the team in penalties and play every game? Cool....
Like it has been mentioned, I'll have to believe it when I see it.
I'll be at full optimism mode when Bertuzzi, Cleary, Samuelsson, Quincey, etc. are no longer on the team.
We have been scorned by the Holland/Babcock duo enough to lead us to not be sure what to expect. I thought there wasn't a chance in hell that Cleary would be back. And then the season started, and Tatar was sitting while Cleary was falling over his own feet.
They do a lot of head scratching things, so I dunno...
How does training avoid Darren Helm's wrist injury? Or Pavel Datsyuk getting clocked in the jaw? Or Patrick Eaves taking a puck to the face? I realize people are upset by the injuries and are grasping at straws, but there just isn't any solid evidence that the Wings aren't well trained. Just exactly how do you train to avoid a concussion? Sure you can play smart to avoid open ice hits, but these aren't Eric Lindros/Scott Stevens type hits. I think the increased awareness has quite a bit to do with more players missing due to concussions.
The injuries in question aren't concussions or wrists or broken jaws.
They are muscle strains, groin pulls, etc. There is a difference....
They can kick Boston's ass out of the building and win 2 out of 3 against them, but they lose 2 straight to a team who doesn't beat anyone, they get manhandled by a bad Ottawa team at home, all the issues with Columbus and Calgary last year, etc.
We were riding high after winning 5 of 6 (and should have beat Philly) until we ran into Tomas Kopecky and the big bad Florida Panthers.
Valuable points being flushed down the toilet.
***The Red Wing teams that competed for Cups in 2000s would take the bad Central Division teams behind the woodshed.