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Good And Bad Play From Ryan Suter

from Chip Scoggins of the Star Tribune,

Suter looks like a guy still learning a new system and how to play with new teammates. He's not paired with fellow stud defenseman Shea Weber in Nashville anymore. Now he's surrounded by younger, more unproven players on the blue line, and chemistry doesn't form overnight or in one week of training camp.

That unfamiliarity can breed uncertainty, which leads to trouble like what happened Sunday night. Suter stood in the defensive zone as St. Louis' Chris Stewart got behind him and parked in front of goalie Niklas Backstrom for a deflection that tied the score in the third period. In overtime, Vladimir Sobotka fought off Suter in front of the goal for the winner. Those are plays Suter should make.

Yeo countered that fans and media should focus as much attention on the good plays Suter makes as well. And he doesn't buy the notion that Suter might be feeling the weight of his contract and expectations.

"I don't think he's having difficulty with the pressure," Yeo said. "I think the pressure comes from himself. Probably the more you have to answer about it, the more that compounds. I'm just focused on where his game is getting to and every game I see what he brings to our group. I know one thing, I'm very happy he's on our team."

Nobody's arguing that, but people just want to see more.


Filed in: NHL Teams, Minnesota Wild, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: ryan+suter



is there a defensemen that has left a team in the past 5 years and lived up to the expectations and money he has made in his new contract?  I think of Redden.  He played great for Ottawa, then the Rangers sign him for big money and he stinks so bad they elect to have him play out his contract in the AHL (until the new cba saved both of them).  Or Jay Bow… the media is going nuts about this guy and where he will go, and he ends up in calgary and playing horrible.  Or Cambell going to the hawks and really stinking up the joint.  Or Hamhuis, ending up with the canucks and not playing nearly as well as everyone expected.  Pronger… playing like a 50 year old man in Philly before he got hurt.  Gonchar leaving the pens and all Ottawa wants to do is unload the contract.

... and now sutter.

Is there even a case for teams to go crazy and spend big dollars on proven defensemen from other teams?  It seems like forwards have much higher success transitioning from one team to the next than do defensemen.  I thnk some GM’s get that, and others don’t.

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 01/29/13 at 09:56 AM ET

duhduhduh's avatar

Chara has rocked everywhere he’s been

Posted by duhduhduh on 01/29/13 at 10:47 AM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 01/29/13 at 08:56 AM ET

Don’t forget Uwe Krupp…. LOL

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 01/29/13 at 11:00 AM ET

redxblack's avatar

Jack Johnson and Kevin Shattenkirk are both doing very well on their new teams.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 01/29/13 at 11:20 AM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

He wanted to be “The Man”...BFD.

Posted by mrfluffy from the phone, calling Detroit, telling them it's on 01/29/13 at 11:59 AM ET


Jack Johnson and Kevin Shattenkirk are both doing very well on their new teams.

defintely exceptions for sure… but it seems like the odds are against the GM’s when it comes to signing an “all-star” defensmen to a mega type deal when the defensemen is from another team.  These defensmen seem to be tied more to the system they plan in than forwards do.

Another example would be Paul Martin of the penguins.  A true defensive stud in NJ, and a real dud for the penguins.  This year he is showing some signs of progress, but this is his third year of a 5 year contract.  It should be a real buyer beware for all GM’s when dealing with UFA defensmen. 

—see also Z Mickalek for the penguins.  Great with coyotes, horrible with the penguins, great again with coyotes.


Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 01/29/13 at 12:32 PM ET

w2j2's avatar

Niedermeyer brought a Stanley Cup to the Ducks.
Rafalski played well for the Wings.

From Wings’ fans: Regarding Suter’s performance without Shea Weber:
Karma is a b*tch!


Posted by w2j2 on 01/29/13 at 12:42 PM ET

henrymalredo's avatar

I think it’s a rather small sample size to determine GM’s are getting burned by signing defensemen to big deals.  Chara has been good, Rafalski was good, Gonchar was good when he signed with the Pens, Pronger’s problem has been injuries, not lack of skill.  The big issue is that guys like Martin and Wishneiwski perform well on teams with deeper and more talented defenses, get big deals with teams that expect them to handle a bigger role that they don’t really have the ability for.

Posted by henrymalredo from Lansing on 01/29/13 at 01:15 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

That is because Bylsma is a Moron & Tippett isn’t

& on Martin the Pens FO & Coaching staff finally learned after 2 seasons the Martin is not a offensive D Man

Gonchar was good when he signed with the Pens UMM no Gonchar wasn’t good! 1st 2 years he was bad Then the rest of contract up until near the end he was very good

Posted by Evilpens on 01/29/13 at 01:32 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

I had typed the same Rafalski/Needawhile and even included Brad Stuart, but deleted them because they were fairly old deals that brought them to their last teams. It’s really been since the big splash free agencies like Kovalchuk, Hossa, Suter, Parise etc that we’ve seen insanely overpaid all-stars fizzle in new markets. Of course, it’s arguable whether a player like Brian Campbell was ever that good in Buffalo (big fish, small pond), Chicago certainly did overpay for the ginger defenseman.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 01/29/13 at 02:32 PM ET

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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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