Petshark: Talking Stick
by petshark on 10/21/11 at 04:00 PM ET
When I first saw that Benn Ferriero had been called up for the Sharks’ road trip, I worried that this meant Martin Havlat’s visit to the doctor had not gone well. After all, Ferriero was the Havlat placeholder for the majority of training camp. It might be safe to say he wasn’t used anywhere else but with Couture and Clowe on the second line.
Of course it is a relief to discover that Havlat will in fact be starting, that the trip to Cleveland went very well. Yay! Granted, there is no way he can live up to the hype this wait has generated but yay anyway.
So what the heck was Ferriero doing with the team yesterday, and, according to Kevin Kurz, practicing on the 4th line? Ferriero ended up on the 3rd line, but why would they even try him on the 4th? Once I start to worry a subject, I have to worry it to death.
McLellan even explained how Ferriero doesn’t belong on the 4th line:
“I also think he is more of a second and third line player instead of a fourth line player and we don’t need that right now,” McLellan continued. “We need some production from lines two and three – one, two and three. We think he could move up a line if he had to, or two lines if he had to.” -Working the Corners
Maybe Kurz read his jerseys wrong.
Ferriero can only play 5 more NHL games before he loses his waiver exempt status. Calling him up means something really needs fixing. So how bad is it? All signs point to Desjardins and Wingels sitting for the Devils game. Wingels I get, he is very green and has been a little at sea. Also, he can be sent down without danger of being claimed since he is still exempt. He doesn’t have to be sent down yet, there is still room, but it could be done.
But Desjardins? He did not have good games in the last couple of outings, but prior to that he seemed to have a pretty deep stamp of approval on him from the team. Maybe McGinn really did play that well, not only to my eye. But he’s been used as a winger, Desi as a center, it hardly seems likely that McGinn bumped Desi. It doesn’t exactly make sense.
I don’t understand why Winchester is so untouchable. He must be doing something very subtle that I cannot appreciate.
And that is all I understand about Ferriero being called up. The team feels that something is so wrong and so far from being fixed that they need to spend even one of Ferriero’s games, and play him on a line he has spent very little time with. That’s essentially what McLellan said:
“We’re not very happy with some of our players and their performance,” he said. “We think that Benny can come in and maybe he can steal a job right now, which would be a great thing.” -Sharks Talk
All my instincts say it is still too early to throw the towel in on any of these players, that more time gaining familiarity with linemates would pay off. Sure, the team is becalmed, but I didn’t realize they were hulled and in need of patching already. That is just plain depressing.
I’m probably overreacting, treating Ferriero like a harbinger of doom (no fault of his, just his waiver status). I know I do that, overreact. Does McLellan?
We will see.
Speaking of harbingers and overreactions, I wondered about Couture and whether or not he is having an unusually bad start. Dave Lozo’s article yesterday made me wonder. While it is a very small sample size, Couture has never earned more than one point in his first 4 NHL games of a season. He has always earned one. His plus/minus is worse than it has ever been by 1. But when you are talking about a sample size of three, it is really pretty ridiculous to try and draw any conclusions. Yes, we can expect him to make better starts instead of the same one over and over. At some point, not improving is getting worse. On the other hand, the more games he plays, the more other teams know about playing against him, so…. Besides, we’re talking about four games. If a worry-wort like me isn’t worried, I don’t think there’s much to worry about.
Don’t get me wrong. I am pulling my hair out a little over this losing streak, even as I try to put it in perspective. The Leafs and the Jackets and the Blues all had some good streaks early last season, how far did that get them? Good starts don’t guarantee anything. But it still bugs me like a burr in my sock that the Sharks aren’t raking in the wins like they should be. Because they should be, they just should.
@PollakOnSharks: “NJ coach DeBoer says he expects desperation in #SJSharks game tonite and McLellan says four games into the season isn’t too soon for that.”
Good. Glad to see we’re all on the same page. When Dany Heatley scoring in the last second of a game for the Wild is the bright spot in my hockey week, something is wrong, very wrong. Fix it, Sharks, fix it please.
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About Petshark: Talking Stick
Native of Northern California. Hockey fan since 1998... sort of... there's a hiatus in there that I still can't explain.
I want to know about anything and everything related to the sport and the spectacle. I watch, I react, I write it down.
My interest in the Sharks was initially a matter of geographic convenience and regional loyalty because that seemed to be how it worked. I had no prior interest (at all-- AT ALL) in professional sports of any kind. When I met hockey, it might have set off a chain reaction of general sports fandom. It hasn't, I don't think it will. At all.
Since then, that interest developed into full blown (mostly sort of usually almost completely) exclusive loyalty to the Sharks.
I started blogging a couple years ago on wordpress. I still occasionally put things there that I don't think fit here because they are not about the Sharks. Wherever my words wander, here on Kuklas Korner, they will (usually) hang on to a teal thread.
I can be found in cyberspace on Twitter @petshark47, or emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org