I'm not sure playing under Mike "every-dayer" Babcock is the right place to bring out the best in Semin's game, where he's more likely to get benched than where he currently is (in Carolina, on the bench until last night). I'll give you he's a pheneomenal goal scorer with one of the best shots in the league, which is precicesly what the Wings could use to round out their top six. But he takes days off. He doesn't play a complete game. And this has been something consistent with him throughout his career. Before he signed in Carolina that was the big knock on him. He did well to regain his reputation for the first part of his contract in Carolina, but late last year he fell apart again, and from that point throughout the entirety of this season so far Semin has been more of a liability than an offensive threat. Perhaps Babcock can clean up his game and get him working for 200 feet and bringing it every night, and if that happens he would be an awesome acquisition. But if he continues to be Alex Semin as we curently know him, I think he'll be riding pine with Cleary for many nights, or playing on the third/fourth line, because I don't think Babcock will tolerate it as much as other coaches may have in the past.
Just a side note: the more I think on it, the more I realize how difficult it is to actually be an offensive powerhouse in Babcock's system. Everyone plays defense first. Everyone plays 200 feet. Nobody takes risks to try to earn an odd-man rush or force a turnover if it means being out of position with noone to back you up. They win as a team. They lose as a team. That's why I think it was so devastating to have lost out on Hossa, because he was one of the few players in the league who could do what Semin does, but also fit perfectly into a defense-oriented coaching philosophy.
I agree. And I've said so a couple of times already. Babs would hate his guts.
But there's always a little bug in my brain when I think about this. Remember when we had Brunner, and he didn't play s*** for defense, and he was largely invisible in every other way except that in the first part of the season he was scoring goals?
There was a quote from Babs (that I'm trying to track down now) where he says something to the effect of "It's hard to take a guy out of the lineup if he's scoring".
Also, and I said so in the GDT as well...If I've heard once, I've heard a thousand times about how Mike Babcock is the best at getting the most out of players. "Every second, of every shift, of every game" seems to be the consensus when it comes to how well Babs' maximizes talent. All last year we heard about how he dragged a bunch of kids into the playoffs through his ability to get the most out of guys. Ok, prove it. Give him this guy. Huge talent, inconsistent. Let's see how true it is. Everybody can coach Pavel Datsyuk. It would take a great coach to get the absolute most out of Semin.