Friday, September 18, 2009

Depth...You Want Depth!

Last season most of us would agree was one of the deepest most talented Hershey teams ever. They played 4 lines every night all night which was truly the biggest difference over other teams. When your skating 4 lines while other teams are only skating 3 that gives you a distinct advantage.

After the season I was sure we would see lots of changes to the roster. I didn't think Bourque, Giroux or Joudrey would come back. And I wasn't sure about Alzner and Carlson and where they would end up in 09-10.

But I figured that this years Hershey team would be a little less talented and a little less deep. Well I might have been mistaken.

Looking at the roster I honestly think this team might be DEEPER then last years team. Assuming Bourque and Laing make the Caps opening night roster (which is VERY possible) this would be the potential opening night lineup in Hershey:

  • Michael Neuvirth
  • Jason Bacashihua
  • Karl Alzner
  • John Carlson
  • Tyler Sloan
  • Sean Collins
  • Patrick McNeill
  • Bryan Helmer
  • Greg Amadio
  • Dylan Yeo
  • Keith Aucoin
  • Alexander Giroux
  • Andrew Gordon
  • Kyle Wilson
  • Jay Beagle
  • Steve Pinizzotto
  • Oskar Osala
  • Mathieu Perreault
  • Francois Bouchard
  • Boyd Kane
  • Brandon Sugden
  • Anton Gustaffson
  • Andrew Joudrey
  • Darren Reid

That is an amazing roster. But now consider the players NOT mentioned there. Oh and if you count that includes 2 extra defense and 2 extra forwards for a complete lineup!

  • Braden Holtby
  • Zach Miscovic
  • Victor Dovgan
  • Josh Godfrey
  • Josh Hauswirth
  • Michael Dubuc
  • Trevor Bruess
  • Grant McNeill
  • Joe Finley

Any of the players just listed would start for damn near EVERY OTHER TEAM IN THE AHL! Dubuc scored 35 goals in 49 games last season for South Carolina. And by my count he is not in the top 14 forwards on the roster.

That is depth.

Obviously lots of things can still happen. Beagle is playing great during camp and is going to make it hard to send him back down. But facts are facts and there are currently 11 forward spots locked up (not counting Flash and Fehr) in Washington so Beagle is going to have to beat out an incumbent.

Any way you look at it this team might not be as strong on the first line...especially if Giroux doesn't come back...but top to bottom this team is (on paper at least) better than last years team.


Dougeb said...

I hope Gustaffson sticks with the Bears this year. It would be a major disappointment if the kid couldn't make the Bears roster.

SteckelFan2039 said...

I totally agree about the depth, and go back to my comment I made here during Rookie camp, I think Godfrey and Duboc are "barometer" players. It will be amazing if they don't/can't make this team.

GM said...

Doug - Gustafsson is stuck in a numbers game right now. If Beagle and Aucoin both end up in Hershey there is probably not a spot for Anton here. I don't think it says as much about his game as it does about the strength of the center position in the organization.

SteckelFan - Dubuc is a great offensive player and could be in line for a spot on the second line IF Bourque is indeed not coming back to Hershey. Godfrey is unlikely to make the team in my opinion, at least not as an everyday guy. There are just too many players ahead of him. UNLESS of course Alzner and or Carlson make the Caps.