Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 02/05/12 at 11:12 AM ET
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Submitted for your approval in this season during which there has been no offensively dominant defenseman: Dan Girardi for the Norris Trophy.
It certainly would be a twilight zone of a choice, given the throwback nature of the bedrock Ranger’s game, but hockey people have argued for years that if the worth of strict defensive play has not quite been ignored in the voting for the prestigious trophy, it certainly has been overshadowed by the value of dynamic offense from the blue line.
Girardi, who has gotten more ice time per game at 27:34 than any player in the NHL in five years — since Zdeno Chara averaged 27:57 in 2006-07 in his first year in Boston — is the personification of the defensive defenseman who does all of the grunt work all of the time matched against every opponent’s top line while also possessing the ability to make the outlet pass and get up on the play in joining the rush.
No one will be blinded by Girardi’s offensive stats. At the same time, the modesty of his 17 points (four goals, 13 assists) should not blind anyone to his value on the club with the best points-per-game record and second-best goals-against average in the league.
more plus opening NHL season in Europe may be in jeopardy…..
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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