If they are going to give him 4th line minutes they are not getting the best of Kuzia. He is the best when he is a real part of the team. Knowing Oates, Kuznetsov will be available for the right price soon. I would trade Mantha+ for him.
PS I followed his career closely. When something goes wrong, when game is on the line, when you are loosing the most important game of the season you put Kuznetsov on the ice. He usually find a way to score.
I'm sure the long term plan isn't to have him on the 4th line. They are just keeping the pressure off him and also avoiding relying too heavily on a rookie without disrupting team dynamics in the middle of a playoff push. He will work up the lineup soon.
There was some discussion in the GDT today about his rebound control and puck handling skills having an affect on the outcome of games. There HAS to be a reason why the team scores about 1 goal per game more in front of monster than howard. Often times I see a soft dump in that howie steers to the corner where the dman has to dig it out while the forecheck comes hard on them. Monster seems more capable of controlling that puck and settling it down for the dman to break out of the zone and defeat the forecheck. Thats just what I see. We seem to get trapped in our zone less. Howard also tends (in my opinion) to leave rebounds out on top of his crease that lead to mad scrambles in front of the net (especially in the last minutes of periods) whereas Monster has kicked more rebounds out wide or absorbed them.
Worst of all I have seen howard give up on plays in 2 recent games where it lead directly to a goal (once in NJ). If anything, when down on your luck you should put in a full effort to give yourself a shot at success.
Anyone know the goals for and against when each goalie plays?
I actually think there is something to be said for how goalies do the little things that affect wins. Rebound management, puck handling, communication all make a huge difference. I dislike when the puck comes in slow on howie and instead of steadying it for the dman beside the net he just chucks it into the corner and allows the forecheck to come in on the dman trying to dig it off the boards.
God I can't stand the anti-Wings NBC commentating. ENOUGH with this bulls*** about intentional interference. Thats like a commentator saying the canucks are the best divers in the league (which they would never say). I'm sure all our rookies who have been with the team for less than 60 games already learned how to interfere without getting caught by taking special lessons from babcock who is the mastermind behind it all.
No, I agree the trade makes little sense, I'm just saying I wouldn't worry what happens five years from now, I think we'll be fine.
I used to think Holland planned like 10 years in the future but today proved that isn't really the case. I - just like you - just want to see the team hoist cups for many years to come. Lets hope you are right on this one!