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Don't know if your post was prompted by the Torey Krug signing, but yes, seeing someone that's a defensive liability get $5 mil a year is a head scratcher. Then again, they overpaid McQuaid and Miller too.
It's a four man attack now, so D men that can join the rush and man the point on the PP are the desired commodity.
But, it's also becoming a north-south game, so those end-to-end rushes will be replaced by a good first pass.
And, that leads to the Next Big Thing. The D man with mobility, hands AND size. Think Noah Hanifin. Remember, he's only 19. Seth Jones. Still just 21. Parents of young, big D men are pushing that skillset, because they know that, in the end, if the skills are approximately equal, the kid with size will get the nod again.
Now, how long it takes for that to reach the Junior and college level is anybody's guess. I'm sure you know coaches, too, that are "stuck" and slow to adapt.
You can teach hands. You still can't teach size.
And you can't teach speed. Speed kills in todays NHL. I'll take a crushing bodycheck check from a 5'8" speed demon that crushes people over a slow footed 6'4" crusher that can't skate.
Today it's the 6'4" speed demon they want...5'8" players need not apply.
Seems the world is short or responsible defensemen and everyone claims to want them but every college that contacted my son their first question has been about how many points he had. Not his play on the PK or his + / -. No reward for being a defense first defensemen!
The way the Junior and club teams keep track and fail to post #'s they always have to ask. Heck, half of them can't produce a roster. The real answer to the question is, "do you play on the PP?"
Sorry, college scouts look at everything at their disposal and that includes stat sheets. Sorry, my kid didn't want to play for those easily impressed coaches anyway.