Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Zack Stortini

This is a picture of Zack Stortini training with 'the Mandelbaums' (as LT has dubbed them) apparently setting up for a power clean (note his grip width is too narrow for a snatch and his double overhead indicates he's not going to deadlift, although I think a regular clean is just as likely). There was a lot of talk during the offseason about what sort of money Stortini would be willing to take to play for the Oilers given his limited role/ability but that's all been cleared up so all is good from the Stortini camp.

Watching Stortini last year I think we saw something of a transformation in his game. He started the season and indeed his career playing a chicken with his head cut off style but his role was narrowed and focused as the season progressed last year and he turned into a pretty effective energy guy/agitator and arguably, even shutdown.

It's obvious looking at the numbers that MacT isn't exactly comfortable throwing Stortini out there against anyone; he's dead last on the team in terms of even strength ice time per game. He's also 2nd to last in terms of the competition he faced.

The good news is that Stortini did ok with the job he was given. His teammates were among the worst on the team but they were doing a fantastic job at keeping the puck out of their own end. Stortini was the very best in the team in fact.

I have to admit I'm a Zack Stortini fan; he doesn't fight well and he's not overly skilled, but he found a way to be a very useful player for the Edmonton Oilers.

Projection: 4th liner
Key Stat: 1st overall GAON/60


Sean said...

Once the notion that Zack is an enforcer is dropped, its easy to see Zach as a good player at 700k. He is a team player who is a fairly effective agitator and works his bag off. For Zach to step up his role its going to be where he gets a shift or so here and there with Gagner or Hemsky. Not in a Semenko role but to create space, bang and drop the mits if needbe.

therealdeal said...

I don't think there's any question it would be very difficult to find a player who does a similar job at a similar effectiveness for less money.

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