Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 10/12/05 at 11:50 AM ET
The true victims so far, caught in the collateral damage of the NHL's new unobstructed path to offensive nirvana are the defencemen. How is a player like Senators defenceman Anton Volchenkov supposed to stop a guy like Montreal's Alexei Kovalev down low? The answer last night is he doesn't. The principal weapons of the NHL defenceman, the hook with the stick and the grab with the free hand, have been eliminated. If the rules continue to be called this way, the qualities scouts look for in defenceman will be re-ordered. "Already, it's changing what we look for in defencemen," said one NHL scout watching last night's game. "The two most important qualities now are quick feet," he said, and tapping his temple: "A quick mind."
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