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The 2019-2020 MotherFucking Season Thread

leafman101

Well-known member
Its not a question of whether Muzzin is good now. Its a question of how much you should pay him, and for how long, given the overwhelming livelihood that he will significantly decline over the course of a long term deal.

Muzzin has been great here. But generally I do not like the idea of signing 30 year old UFAs to long term deals. Actually, I don't like signing any UFA's to long term deals, the only exception being legit elite players. But even for a guy like Pietro his age has to raise concerns.

This is the ideology that has led to us letting some very good players go in Kadri, Gards and JVR.

The price, and more importantly term, have to be right to be worth considering. He will get worse over the next few years. Meanwhile kids we have that play the same position, like Sandin and Dermott, will get better.
 

Preston

Well-known member
Bobo brought it up on overdrive actually.

Anyway the thing is who's to say this management doesn't see him as elite? I agree that you need to pick a select few to pay at this age but if Dubas and his team of nerds think that 1. He's elite and 2. He's currently worth 7 or 8 million in terms of true value he brings to his team then they'll do it happily.

And honestly I do believe they see him in that light. I might too.
 

CH1

The Artist Formerly Known as chiggins.
Definitely not elite but very good, consistent 40 point D-man who would be hard to replace.

Dubas got him on the cheap (late first round pick and crap) and wants to hold on to what was a very good deal.
 

Preston

Well-known member
Because that would be fucking crazy
But if it's only worth signing elite players this age to four year deals then why would Dubas and his team of nerds do it? If they're as analytic-driven as we think and if they sign him for four years then maybe just maybe there's a decent chance they see him as better than you guys do.
 

CH1

The Artist Formerly Known as chiggins.
As for your earlier post ME, about age curves, it’s fascinating to me how much younger the NHL has become. Muzzin, surprisingly, is on the old side even now

Only 44 of the 218 regular defencemen in the league this year are older, putting him in the bottom quarter. (Source:The Athletic)
 

Leafin'

Well-known member
Why are we resigning Muzzin? Don’t we want to see what Sandin and Dermott can do? At 31 years old I pass. Aging curve being what it is, his skating what it is. No thanks to an extension beyond 2 years.
 

GEEMAN

Well-known member
Rielly, and maybe a few teams, yeah. "Many" is a over stating it.

I really don't think you guys are accepting the age curve here, or how much younger the league has trended the last few season. For all intents and purposes, he's 31 (he turns 31 on Feb 21). A 4 year extension would carry him through his age 31-34 seasons.

I'll borrow a Zeke tactic for a moment and use TOI/G as a rough analog for quality of play.

There are currently 95 defenders averaging 20 minutes a night. 20 of them are 31+. 18 of them are 32+. 14 of them are 33+. But this is where it starts to get interesting. Here's that group of 14

Burns, Suter, Weber, Keith, Gio, Goligoski, Edler, Niskanen, J Bo, Stralman, Chara, Green, Greene, Hainsey.

It's made up of a few distinct groups imo. The top end of the group are the obvious guys who were perennial norris candidates/winners. The elite of the elite. Another group is guys who were plus skaters or offensive defenders who have just aged relatively well. Then there's the group that I think Muzz would belong to if he got here. Edler-Niskanen-Greene-Hainsey. Greene and Hainsey are only here because they play for dreadful teams. So our aging curve comparables imo are Edler and Niskanen. 2 defender of roughly Muzzins calibre who make it to 33 yrs old while remaining a legit top 3 defender.

It gets more grim though when you look at 18+ minutes a night (now we're up to 22 defenders of 140). That only adds 4 additional defenders to the sample above. Yandle, Jack Johnson, Seabrook, Sekera. Basically a 33 yr old Tyson Barrie and 3 guys who are unplayable. 17+? Add another 4 (26 of 159). Marc Staal, Boychuk, Engellund, Braun

The aging curve for a player of Muzzin's calibre isn't gentle like Presto's post from earlier (Good top pairing to good 2nd pairing to meh 2nd pairing to good 3rd pairing defender, nice and gentle decline), it's a lot more likely to go Fringe top pairing-mediocre 2nd pairing-sheltered veteran 3rd pairing-albatross.

The defenders that age gracefully are the ones who peaked at the very top. Muzz isn't that guy.
Excellent post
 

Volcanologist

Well-known member
They’re going to re-up him, and yeah, in ideal terms you’d let a guy like this go, but I don’t see any choice here. Our younger guys aren’t ready for the kind of defensive minutes Muzzin gets and will still be developing next season too.
 

Leafin'

Well-known member
Rielly - XXXX
Dermott - Liljegren
Sandin - Holl

If someone gets hurt our depth would really be tested. Maybe even fucked. But are we really willing to put 5+ million into a 31 year old with big mileage? It is possible Muzzin maintains his level of play for a couple years but that last 2+ years could be pretty bad. If we win 1 up with him as a top 4 it'd all be worth it but damn it'll hurt to have to move a younger piece some day because we kept Muzzin. Thinking back to Chicago having to move younger guys in their title years.
 

LeafGm

Well-known member
I honestly have a hard time figuring out what exactly my opinion is on re-singing Muzzin.

I wasn’t comfortable signing Tavares until he’s 34, and I’m not really comfortable signing Muzzin until that age either. So my natural inclination would be to play out this season with him, and then roll with the kids in-house plus some younger-than-Muzzin outside additions going forward.

But I'm not convinced that any of the kids we have in-house will be ready for a steady diet of the opposition's top forwards anytime in the near future. I certainly can't picture any of them being capable of partnering up with Nikita Zaitsev, playing almost exclusively against Marchand-Bergeron-Pastrnak and somehow managing to be pretty effective. Or partnering up with Justin Holl and being an effective shut-down pair.

I'm also starting to question the dogma that I and a number of other posters around here have subscribed to about aging curves for defensemen. The belief has generally been that swift-skating, skilled players will age far more gracefully, and the big defensive guys who aren't as fleet of foot or blessed with high-end talent will fall off a cliff far sooner.

But looking around the league in recent years, I'm kind of seeing the opposite. PK Subban hasn't really been great for a couple of seasons now, but at least up until his latest injury, Shea Weber was a legit top-pairing defenseman still. 42 year-old, plodding Zdeno Chara, who I thought would be out of the league years ago, is still playing and was certainly damn effective against us in the playoffs at 40 & 41.

Maybe that's far too anecdotal, but it does make me wonder if the guys who've already long-since adapted to being impact players without being the fastest or most skilled can better adapt to diminishing with age than a Jake Gardiner, who doesn't have anything else to fall back on when the mobility and reflexes that used to set him apart from most of the other players on the ice aren't quite there anymore.
 
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