Saturday, August 30, 2008

Sheldon Souray

07-08 Prediction:

Appropriately labeled a 'chaos defender' by Lowetide. Is often as likely to cause a goal against as a goal for. Has given up a couple of unsightly highlight reel one on one situations, although cut down on that 'issue' in the most recent season. Has an absolute boomer from the point and a real mean streak. Is a physical presence. Appears to be well respected by players. Is absolutely not as good a player as Ryan Smyth despite his pay scale.

07-08 Evaluation:
I must admit, looking back, I've been a bit hard on Souray. I think everything I wrote about him in my 07-08 prediction holds pretty true, but when he first went down with shoulder trouble last season I made the comment that the Oilers were probably better off without him playing. His counting totals weren't very impressive and he seemed to be on for a lot of goals against. From that point on Souray really only made cameo appearances for the Oilers, but he was surprisingly effective. Bare in mind this is an extremely small sample size.

Sure, his GFON was brutal (worst for defenceman, 2nd worst on the team), but look at his competition and his teammates; MacT was giving Souray pretty tough assignments and making him babysit his linemates - surprisingly he pretty much came out on top. MacT wasn't totally throwing him under the bus like Stoll or Reasoner (or Staios) judging from IOF's handy little graph, but he was obviously being challenged.

Souray's most promising statistic? His GAON - 3rd on the team and first for defenceman. Isn't that supposed to be his weakness?

Obviously last year could have been an anomaly both in terms of play and in sample size, so this year will be a real test for Souray.

Still, I'd rather have Smyth.

Projection: 1st pairing defenceman
Key Stat: 3rd overall GAON, 1st for defenceman

1 comment:

Paper Designer said...

I'd rather have 5.4 million in cap space than either of them.