No kidding. The guy played a whopping 13 games for the Wings, at 13:28 TOI. I thought he played respectably as a plug, but don't get all the Janik love here.
As someone else mentioned, he's basically a 30 year old 7/8th defenseman. Last season he was in the lineup only because of injury and was behind Lilja, Ericsson, Lebda, and Meech. But now he could be 2nd pairing??
And Ericsson cannot handle 27 minutes a night. Maybe physically he could, but it would be a disaster. After how he played last season, suddenly he's ready to be the #1 D man?
And Kindl's big weakness is brain farts that lead to brutal turnovers coming out of his own zone. And that's in the AHL. I'd be scared of him on the 2nd pairing unless something magical happens to his game.
There is serious crack smoking going on in this thread.
Assuming they don't sign Lilja or anyone else, and our bottom pairing is Ericsson-Meech/Kindl/Janik, then our defense is worse than last season. Unless someone steps up and is a major surprise. I'm hoping Ericsson rebounds this season, but that still leaves the other half of that pairing as a major question mark.
And I know I'm beating this to death, but aside from experience,they need someone who can battle guys in front of the net.
1. I did not say Ericsson should play 1st paring. If you bothered to read what I wrote, I said he played a solid 27 minutes and provided the source to back it up. He's still evolving, but my point was he has way more upside than many here seem to admit or believe and Babcock should increase his minutes (maybe an extra 2 minutes per game at most) to help make up for less minutes for the 1st paring. I do believe he'll have a better season this year than last. But nowhere did I say he should play 1st paring, just pointed out that he played a SOLID 27 minutes in one game when Stuart was out, Lidstrom was sore (or whatever reason Babcock sat him for the rest of the game).
2. Holland has a spare $1.2ish million if he decides to move Miller and Meech (and re-signs Abby for under a million). So if he thinks finding a 6th physical dman is as important as you do, he can pick a FA as he has some pocket change to play with.
3. I'd be happy if Holland re-signs Lilja for a cheap 2-way contract and calls it good.... unless something better falls on his lap.
Ericsson won't play 1st paring minutes, but I expect him to step up big time this season. Kindl's the question mark.
/edit - here's the post I wrote about Ericsson. Where did I say he should play 1st pairing?
I think Babcock has been talking about lowering Lidstrom's minutes for the past 3 years. I doubt he lowers his ice time that much if any. Lidstrom get's paid $6.2 million... if he can't handle the ice time, then he shouldn't be getting paid for it. If ice time was a concern, then Lidstrom should have signed for less so Holland could have the cap space to sign a top 4 d-man to rotate with Lids and Ralfi.
Lidstrom should play 25+ minutes per night.
That said, Ericsson can handle 27 minutes. <--source for Harold) In fact, he was a beast in that game. I think Ericsson has a future here in Detroit and is better than he gets credit for. He had some HUGE gaffs in his rookie season that didn't help his cause, but when he's on, he's a stud. He's only been playing the defense for like 5 years. I would expect growing pains. Hell, even Jiri Fischer had a lot of gaffs in his first rookie season (and even seasons after), but he had a relatively young(er) Chelios there to bail his ass out and show him the way. Don't underestimate the Big Rig!
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