This Generation's Stan Weir

Lowetide
July 07 2010 07:41AM

This is Stan Weir. He is a very important figure in Oilers history, because of his role on the first three Oiler NHL teams. He was a vital part of the group in 79-80, his role began to fade the following season (as detailed by Peter Gzowski in his classic book The Game of Our Lives).

Weir did the difficult work until the gifted kids could take on the chores, and in that way lives forever in Oiler lore. 

In the past few days, we've heard Steve Tambellini talk about adding a veteran presence (wanted a C, would settle for a W) and the truth is the club could use both of those player types (a Mike Peca and a Fernando Pisani).

Free agents don't flock to 30th place teams, but they will in future years with the opportunity to play alongside more mature versions of Hall, MPS and Eberle.

In the absence of this free agent signing (unlikely this summer as the quality UFA's slowly sign with other teams) the "Stan Weir" role will probably fall to Shawn Horcoff. He is the most complete player among the forwards (which is not the same as most talented) and he has displayed a willingness to do whatever is asked of him.

He has been to a SCF, he blocked a shot with his face in an important playoff game, he is a leader and he can help show the way. He did not (apparently) associate himself too closely with the veteran group (Souray, Moreau) that has been flushed (or will be flushed).

Horcoff will likely start the season on the top two lines, but as the kids develop (and possibly by next year) the trip down the depth chart will begin (as it did with Weir). By this time next season, Sam Gagner might be the 1C, the top 4 wingers might include Hall, MPS and Eberle, and Shawn Horcoff might be on the checking line.

Fans associate Shawn Horcoff with his massive contract and that's human nature. I do hope the boos give way to cheers at some point, as Horcoff's role on the new Oilers will be the most difficult one on the roster.

C2a6955161684b5e3189319acfa5ebe4
Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
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#151 DC
July 07 2010, 01:52PM
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Wow this article started an awesome debate. Love Horcoffs heart, desire, drive, and leadership. Hate Horcoffs offense, salary, shoulders and one-timer. I won't lie I like Shawn Horcoff. He needs to play better though.

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#152 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 07 2010, 01:52PM
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@ GCS

I guess we'll see. I'm confident he can put up 50 - 55 next year. I'd be satisfyied with that.

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#153 Chris.
July 07 2010, 01:59PM
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Dollars and Boxcars... Dollars and Boxcars... Round and Round we go. The real debate surrounding Horcoff's relative value to the franchise should be more complicated than this.

IMO, Horcoff is exactly the kind of transitional player this roster needs as it moves forward. Despite injury, poor timing, and a horrible overpay: Renny probably feels fortunate that Horcoff is the property of the Edmonton Oilers.

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#154 GSC
July 07 2010, 02:01PM
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Ball Buster wrote:

Re: Plekanec and Kesler being 4 and 6 yrs younger . . . now they are. Horcoff signed his contract over 2 years ago, when he was 29.

The contract was offered on the basis of his 50 pts in 53 games in 2007-08. Coming off a Stanley Cup run the year before that.

Did Lowe overpay? Absolutely and the term stinks too. Did he overpay to the extent that the Oilers are saddled with a 4th line centre that can't win draws, can't skate and has no chance of ever scoring 10 goals again? Also no. But you read through this entire thread, and the other 5,000 of them scattered all over the Oilgosphere, you get past the two or three original thoughts on the issue and all you are left with is a whole lot of whining. Repetitive whining. The kind that gets most people slapped.

I thought we were all over this and moved on to better things? I thought we had accepted that he is going to be paid the money regardless and he will be with this team to the end of the contract, also regardless? All Lowetide is blogging on is the role of this player going forward. Doesn't matter any more what he gets paid.

I think Daft Punk said it best when they wrote: "It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter. It doesn't matter." and so on.

Horcoff on you and your family.

Someone has to keep the author honest, the same author who proclaimed that Horcoff is a #1 centre when it is quite obviously not the case.

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#155 mike
July 07 2010, 02:03PM
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No doubt he was below contract last year. Maybe his shoulder reduces his value going forward. But some of the valuations are hilarious. I want to be a GM in your league.

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#156 Ball Buster
July 07 2010, 02:04PM
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@GSC

Agreed. I like him as a 3C and promotion to 2C when the need requires but I'm guessing Tom Renney knows better than I.

His salary is no longer relevant at this point though, yes? Sunk cost and all.

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#157 Bandwagon jumper
July 07 2010, 02:07PM
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I think we need to stop expecting Horc to score 50 - 55 pts. He just isn't that player. That is why we have the Halls/Eberles/Paarvi (sp?)

As long as Horc keeps stopping pucks with his face he will have a role. Yes he may be overpaid, but you can't fault him for his heart.

Does Horc still have all his front teeth?

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#158 Ender
July 07 2010, 02:09PM
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@ Arch
150.

;-)

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#159 Ender
July 07 2010, 02:09PM
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The Other John wrote:

It is a bad contract (when I am grumpy I usually say "ridiculous") but he is also a very useful player and if he is your second line center you will win a round or 2 in the playoffs. If he is your 3rd line center you will get to see 4 playoff series.

After reading the last 100 or so comments, I think this line comes closest to summarizing. It may be a trifle overstated; there are other factors on going to the playoffs or the finals (the biggest of course being what everyone else on the team looks like) but the gist is correct. You can play Horcoff as a 1C, 2C, or 3C depending on what your expectations for the team are. In a year like the coming season where making the playoffs at all would be a nice surprise, playing Horc as your 1C is not the unmitigated disaster some people would make it out to be, conceding that he may well be in the bottom 25% of 1C's in the league statistically by year's end. In a year where making the playoffs is expected and a Cup would be gravy, Horc as a 2C with a solid 1C above him is not ridiculous. In a year where you have a team poised to take it all and and you buy a rental or two for a legitimate shot at the Cup, Horc should probably be 3rd in the depth chart for that.

Horc is a decent centre. The only thing that defines him as 'good' or 'bad' in the eyes of many of the posters here is how high their expectations were.

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#160 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 07 2010, 02:10PM
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GSC wrote:

Someone has to keep the author honest, the same author who proclaimed that Horcoff is a #1 centre when it is quite obviously not the case.

When did he last claim this? Because by the looks of this article he's talking about his potential value in a leadership role.

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#161 Eddie Shore
July 07 2010, 02:14PM
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This horse is dead.

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#162 GSC
July 07 2010, 02:16PM
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Ball Buster wrote:

Agreed. I like him as a 3C and promotion to 2C when the need requires but I'm guessing Tom Renney knows better than I.

His salary is no longer relevant at this point though, yes? Sunk cost and all.

Agreed, the Oilers are stuck with it.

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#163 GSC
July 07 2010, 02:17PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

When did he last claim this? Because by the looks of this article he's talking about his potential value in a leadership role.

He isn't talking about it here, but he's been parading it on his blog for several years now.

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#164 BBOil
July 07 2010, 02:19PM
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Here's a fact, whether anyone likes it or not. If Horcoff is playing on our top line (which he will likely be doing on and off with Gagner this year), and playing the most minutes of our forwards, he is our number one center. Where he compares to other top centers is irrelevant really. On our team he is our most reliable and consistent center. Are there better centers out there, ya, are there worse, ya. He's middle of the pack, but he is the best we have at the moment so show him some love, because we've already showed him the money.

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#165 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 07 2010, 02:19PM
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GSC wrote:

He isn't talking about it here, but he's been parading it on his blog for several years now.

When did he last claim this?

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#166 Quicksilver ballet
July 07 2010, 02:21PM
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So lets all get this straight...from now on when we're trashing Horcoff we should refer to him as a 6.5 million dollar hockey player, and not the 7.5 from last year?

If someone could please verify this it would help us greatly...thanks.

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Hmmm, now the isles are parting ways with their assistant. I guess Edmonton isn't the only one to wait to make decisions.

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#168 GSC
July 07 2010, 02:24PM
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rickithebear wrote:

The fact that your are part of the HF CLOWNS who:

1. Do not understand the Point production rates for the simplton review of hockey value. 1st line, 2nd line, 3rd line. But a 60 point guy is a third line center.

2. Do not understand the oilogosphere review of stats.

3.do not understand situational value of a player.

4. Do not understand that Zone play dictates results.

Well being accused of foot in the mouth from a HF CLOWN just makes me laugh. Shawn Horcoff generated .70ppg in the last 23 games of the year playing a Shutdown role facing the other teams best. With Pisani and Moreau being a mojor part of his wing play.

He is a 12.6% career shooter who averages 2.0 shots per game. That on average should yeild 20 goals/YR. He averages .48 assists/game which is 38 assits /year.

In start of his last two contracts he produced slow then moved into his .7-.96 point production range. Then being consistent over the rest of the contract.

I Hope for this over the next 5 years of the contract!!!!!!!!!!!!!

This would be accurate.

HF CLOWN, eh? Name-calling is fun.

So what does cherry-picking the final 20-odd games of last season to dictate Horcoff's production value make you?

Not to mention, I didn't make the "foot in mouth" remark to you. In fact, I haven't said a word to you. You, sir, make me laugh.

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#169 rickithebear
July 07 2010, 02:25PM
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My abpology to @GSC meant to be a reply to liquor. The super elite HFC.

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#170 GSC
July 07 2010, 02:31PM
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rickithebear wrote:

My abpology to @GSC meant to be a reply to liquor. The super elite HFC.

Well, I agree with I Am The Liquor more often than not so you might as well lump me into the HF CLOWN category.

GSC the HFC...has a nice ring to it.

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#171 NiceInHere
July 07 2010, 02:54PM
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Wow! So nice to see that the oil blogosphere has avoided trolling and immature name-calling... Oh wait! Nevermind. Back to seeing the same thing on TSN's website, I guess.

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#172 rickithebear
July 07 2010, 03:05PM
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@GSC

you could get Badge numbers and Special avatars.

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#173 mike
July 07 2010, 03:21PM
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"He isn't talking about it here, but he's been parading it on his blog for several years now."

~ Hey. I just noticed his OLD posts are still open for comments. So you can go and argue there. Depending on the year of the post be sure to argue from actual ppgs.

07-08 .94ppg = 1C 08-09 .67ppg = 2C 09-10 .47ppg = 2C/3C bubble. ~

Whether Horcoff bounces back this year or not I agree with LT:

"Horcoff will likely start the season on the top two lines, but as the kids develop (and possibly by next year) the trip down the depth chart will begin."

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#174 Giant Moo
July 07 2010, 03:30PM
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rickithebear == oilerbear

The person who thinks that points per cap hit is all that matters in the NHL, and that Horcoff is better than Crosby.

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#175 Woodguy
July 07 2010, 03:43PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

Both of those guys closest to Horc's career numbers are also coming off of career years where they just scored DOUBLE what Horc did last season. Horcoff has never in his career matched what Kesler just did, 25 goals and 75 points.

Points per game in contract years

Horcoff (07/08) 50pts in 52 games = .94pts/gm

Kessler (09/10) 75pts in 82 games = .91pts/gm

Plekanec (09.10) 70pts in 82 games = .85pts/gm

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#176 Archaeologuy
July 07 2010, 03:58PM
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Woodguy wrote:

Points per game in contract years

Horcoff (07/08) 50pts in 52 games = .94pts/gm

Kessler (09/10) 75pts in 82 games = .91pts/gm

Plekanec (09.10) 70pts in 82 games = .85pts/gm

And why did Horcoff only play 52 games that year? Oh, right, massive trauma to his Shoulder requiring season ending surgery. Surgery that apparently 3 seasons later he still hasnt fully recovered from.

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#177 Cru Jones
July 07 2010, 04:14PM
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Horcoff once saved a family of five from a burning home in MillWoods. Upon seeing who their savior was, the father exclaimed "You're not a first-line centre!" and asked him to put them back in the house.

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#178 Woodguy
July 07 2010, 04:24PM
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Yup, injuries are a bitch.

I hope he's better this year.

Context is important, and everyone forgets he was an allstar in his contract year and had a pts/gm ratio that was top drawer, especially for a tough minutes center.

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#179 KenMcC
July 07 2010, 06:21PM
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Cru Jones wrote:

Horcoff once saved a family of five from a burning home in MillWoods. Upon seeing who their savior was, the father exclaimed "You're not a first-line centre!" and asked him to put them back in the house.

That is super funny!

And, the next team Horcoff scores five points in a single 6 or 7 game road trip or home stand, we can all remember this story and thank our lucky stars that Horcoff saved us.

But until then, I say we keep him the Hell off the ice when we're short-handed or on the power play. Or 5 on 5. Minus 29 anyone? What a total wipe out.

Have you noticed how many times Horcoff gets beat in the defensive zone? He makes Strudwick look quick.

Give the minutes to someone else who doesn't hurt my eyes.

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#180 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
July 07 2010, 07:14PM
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Hey LT: Do you think Horcoff is in a long-lasting funk and can eventually get back to 55-65 points and a complete all-round game, or do you think horcoff is going to fade from now until his career is over?

Personally I think Horcoff is going to turn it around and get back to where he should be at, a nice 2-way second line center...

Kinda sounds like you've given up on him.

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#181 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 07 2010, 07:28PM
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DSF wrote:

And which way are their "arrows pointing"? And why would you chose an injury shortened (small sample size) comparision that is two years old to state your case?

Oh, it's because you don't have one.

...because that was their production before they all signed their similar deals.

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#182 David S
July 07 2010, 07:45PM
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I'm still wondering about this "gotta keep the author honest" thing. When exactly did Oilers blogs turn into the critical review section at Scientific American?

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#184 Woodguy
July 07 2010, 08:42PM
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DSF wrote:

And which way are their "arrows pointing"? And why would you chose an injury shortened (small sample size) comparision that is two years old to state your case?

Oh, it's because you don't have one.

Its the year they all had before signing the contract, like I stated.

Oh, I'm sorry I didn't see it was DSF.

I assume your read:

BLAH BLAH BLAH BLAH HORCOFF BLAH BLAH BLAH

Or had someone read all the words with more than 2 syllables to you.

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#185 Woodguy
July 07 2010, 08:43PM
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DSF wrote:

He was an all star because the league has a tradition of including one player from each team whether they deserve it or not.

If his points per game is the top drawer context you want to use to lionize Horcoff, you must absolutely adore Kesler with his Selke nominations and his putting up similar numbers as a tough minutes centres, albeit at a much younger age.

10 percent cheaper too.

I think Kessler is a great player.

Why do all the haters like you assume people who see value in Horcoff don't see it others.

You are the close minded simpleton, not us.

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#186 Bendelson
July 07 2010, 09:20PM
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Wow... great comments. Thank you for feeding the quality discussion on your blog LT. I really hope it continues.

Spending time reading the comments here is more than a little painful. The phrase 'waste of time' comes to mind.

Get it together Oilernation!

Woodguy; thanks for trying. See you on Lowetide's 'other' site.

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#187 Crackenbury
July 07 2010, 10:14PM
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@I am the Liquor

"Well done Bozo. Ive seen Nigerian emails that make more sense and have more credibility than the garbage that you try and pass off as reliable and unbiased statistics."

It's my priveldge to making your most honorable acquaintence. My sister is married to the Nigerian presidents most trusted advisor and has been awarded with a vast sum of ............

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#188 The Other John
July 07 2010, 11:07PM
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Geez....... I thought there were polarizing views posted on LT's site.

Wow, Just WOW!!!

Horcoff is nowhere near as bad as many argue here and, what is sadder, nowhere near as good as some try to argue he is, or worse, can be. Maybe the polarizing views come from people saying someone who is clearly a 6.5 or 7/10 is a 3 or a 4 while others try to argue he is an 8.5 or a 9

Alas he is neither. Notwithstanding that, he is a pretty decent hockey player, works his bag off and the immutable fact is that he will be an Oiler for the next 6 years. Live with it

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#189 rickithebear
July 07 2010, 11:50PM
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check

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#190 GSC
July 08 2010, 12:06AM
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David S wrote:

I'm still wondering about this "gotta keep the author honest" thing. When exactly did Oilers blogs turn into the critical review section at Scientific American?

If he's going to put himself out there like this, why not?

Or would you rather we all just sit here like nice little lemmings and agree?

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#191 DSF
July 08 2010, 07:55AM
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Woodguy wrote:

I think Kessler is a great player.

Why do all the haters like you assume people who see value in Horcoff don't see it others.

You are the close minded simpleton, not us.

You've been able to throw in "hater", "close minded" and "simpleton" in two sentences. Your name calling skills are right up there.

Perhaps you should consider the real issue is how much the Cult over values Horcoff.

Earlier in this thread, you trotted out an incomplete season where he scored well, his suspect selection to the all star team and comparables in a contract year (when in fact Horcoff was re-signed a year before his contract expired) as evidence.

"Horcoff (07/08) 50pts in 52 games = .94pts/gm

Kessler (09/10) 75pts in 82 games = .91pts/gm

Plekanec (09.10) 70pts in 82 games = .85pts/gm"

And this:

"Context is important, and everyone forgets he was an allstar in his contract year and had a pts/gm ratio that was top drawer, especially for a tough minutes center."

The only "context" that seems important to you is any context that makes Horcoff look like a better player than he really is and you ignore all other "context" that easily refutes your position.

I recall us having a conversation a few months back where you insisted the Sedins have fear in their hearts when they have to go up against the "Mighty Horcoff" until I showed you numbers that indicate the Sedins destroyed Horcoff in their 6 games last season.

As I recall, you resorted to name calling on that occasion too.

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#192 Woodguy
July 08 2010, 08:09AM
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DSF,

You are correct in that name calling is never right, and I apologize.

However, you have your memory is wrong.

When we were discussing the Sedin's your own information showed they scored at a 5v5 rate substantially lower against Horcoff than what they average.

You kept pointing at the 5v4 numbers, which we weren't discussing.

As usual, you kept moving the ball when someone would hit it.

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#193 rickithebear
July 08 2010, 08:48AM
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Liquor: Tried two posts last night they did not go thru.

The reason simple look at playerws bother me. IE: your aproach.

Horcoff faces the other teams best. Is asked to take a heavy load of Defensive draws. Relied heavily on the PK and is given a secondary role on the PP.

It is your belief that situational play makes no differene.

Which means you believe That if Horcoff was facing the other teams easiest, Getting mostly Offensive draws, Not playing the PK and playing 1st PP. his results would be the same.

This is constantly argued on THE BOARD.

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#194 rickithebear
July 08 2010, 08:51AM
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And the name calling moniker was never mine it was thought up long ago because of the above thought process.

JIM ROME has CLONES

The BOARD has ...........

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#195 I am the Liquor
July 08 2010, 09:37AM
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rickithebear wrote:

And the name calling moniker was never mine it was thought up long ago because of the above thought process.

JIM ROME has CLONES

The BOARD has ...........

If that is what you think about me then you dont know me very well. While I have my problems with some on that board, your characterization of it is neither accurate or fair. I can honestly say that no one I have encountered thinks that way.

I have, however, seen people make fools out of themselves trying to fudge numbers or find favourable stats to back up preconceived ideas of certain players. Horcoff being the obvious one. In fact many times they have no idea what it is they are arguing, they are merely parroting what they have seen others say.

It is in a word............embarrassing.

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#196 rickithebear
July 08 2010, 10:01AM
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//My problem comes with people that will skew numbers and try to make him look like something that he is not. He may have approached or even been a legit top line center right after the lockout, but he really isnt that anymore.//

Thanks for your perspective.

I too cringed when I saw 5.5M for a cap hit.

But then I looked at his situation and looked for players asked to do the same thing. You know from One of my Board posts what I found.

In UFA contracts the average Cap hit was 5.5M and for RFA it was 3.8M around what he maid for a RFA.

So what do you get from this. Well fans and the MSM (Toronto sports Network) hate the deal but the rest of the league pays for that shutdown skill in droves.

What is critical is this year. You know once again from my posting on the board he has displayed a stall in the first half of his first year of a new contract. Happened three times. Horcoff even commented on the Phsycology.

The real question is the jump back to traditional results for the last 23 games going to continue for next year.

I believe it will. You do not. That is the whole god/bad of the beat to death horcoff dicussion.

On to readding about the "blue"

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#197 I am the Liquor
July 08 2010, 01:10PM
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Anonymous Coward wrote:

Jesus Christ, reading this discussion has made me very aware of why LT fans were worried about him posting here. Far more vitriol, far less civil debate. Some of you guys need to calm the hell down.

The days of ganging up on Traktor and his lone dissenting voice are over. Of course they are worried. Groupthink was the word of the day over there. Everyday. It was like someone morphed Groundhog day into a Sesame Street episode.

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#198 PerryK
July 08 2010, 01:30PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

LT: You're absolutely right. While there's reason for optimism with the new wave of Hall, Eberle and MPS etc., Horcoff is going to be a key transitional player.

He's well-suited to that role for several reasons, and I won't be surprised if/when he's named captain.

I agree that he is by far the best candidate for the C. However, how is his shoulder? Clearly he should have been LTIR'ed last year.

Playing with that bum shoulder he was nothing more than a caricature of himself!

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#199 mike
July 08 2010, 04:02PM
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Horcoff's ppgs line up as 1C for 07-08, 2C for 08-09, and the 2C-3C margin for 09-10.

He has value beyond ppg, but no one is arguing that the rebuild will end up with him as a 1C.

Anyone recall what we were talking about before the chest thumping?

Oh, right. LT's top 6F and sliding down the depth chart.

Hoping Horcoff's healthy and Gagner wins 1C the hard way.

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#200 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
July 08 2010, 05:56PM
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Lowetide wrote:

Max: I haven't given up on Horcoff. Still like him, think he is quality.

But we have to look at his age and games missed, and those are important tells moving forward. He's a fitness nut and apparently working like a bugger, so his season should be a good one (compared to last season).

But when a player turns a certain age and starts getting injured a little each season--or in the case of Horcoff has the same problem over a two or three year period--then we have to assume this will eventually end his career.

Certainly before the end of his contract.

Ooooh! This hurts LT! The points you make here are enough to make me a little more leary of expecting a good season from Horcoff Next season (55-65 points, 50+ fo%, 75 Games played) but none the less I have faith in Horcoff.

He has to pick it up or he's not gonna have a job in a couple seasons. I sure hope he pulls through, after all good things should happen to good people, and as far as I've ever known hard work almost always pays off.

That and I'm either going to look like a genius or a fool in a year for predicting a bounce back season for Horcs. I'm getting tired of telling everyone I talk to "Look, he doesn't make 7 mil anymore as*hole and 55 points for him is earning his 5.5 cap/salary"

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