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Thread: 2022 -= 2023 Season (Camp-pre-season-regular season)

  1. #101


    There might be something wrong with Bedard, but I"m not too sure. Maybe he's tired, maybe he's playing hurt. It's the end of the season, so it wouldn't surprise me if a few players are playing hurt. It does seem like Bedard is not playing anywhere near his World Junior Championships level. I think that can be said for most players in the last game. I don't think (m)any were playing to their potential. I did notice that Oremba was flying around the ice pretty good against Lethbridge and was making and / or trying to make things happen. Stringer took some for the team etc.. But Bedard hasn't put up many points lately. I"m not sure if he's hurt or if teams are just doing a great job of shutting him down, or both.

    One thing I noticed is that a lot of decisions that the Pats have made have been strange and / or bad. Instead of selling big over the last couple of years or adding a few players to support Bedard and co. They slightly dismantled the team and added young and older mediocre players. Instead of loading up in 2016-2017, they slightly dismantled the depth and it costed them a Championship. The Pats haven't made the playoffs since 2018, meanwhile Seattle is set to make the WHL final's for the third time since 2017. After this season, the Pats will likely be in bad shape for many years. There's something fundamentally wrong with the Pats' strategy. They might make the playoffs this year, but they're far from being a serious contender for a Championship.

    The Pats have depth problems throughout their line up due to the aforementioned reasons, but one thing I want to mention here that doesn't make any sense to me is how small / mediocre / young they are at center. After Bedard, it's Spencer, Whitehead, and Michels. Why? What other GM in the league would do that? At the start of the 2016-2017 season, the Pats had Adam Brooks, Sam Steel, Jake Leschyshyn, and Luc Smith at center, before they traded Luc Smith away. If the Pats wouldn't have made the (bad) decisions that they have over the last couple of years, they could have Bedard, Stanick, and Dubinsky (or Englot) as their top 3 centermen, then maybe have one of Spencer, Whitehead, and Michels to round out the line up, or something along those lines. Dubinsky and Stanick are both established 20+ goal players in the WHL. The 3 centermen behind Bedard right now are not. Stanick has 23 goals so far this year. Dubinsky has 18, but he was injured for a while and may still get 20 again this year. Armstrong is another player that the Pats traded away recently and he has 19 goals this year.

    Did JP do this because he wants his centermen to have good speed instead of other attributes? Because Spencer, Whitehead, and Michels are all good skaters, I will concede that, but they could certainly be faster. In fact, I agree with you, the Pats as a team aren't exactly a fast skating team. It seems like teams such as Brandon, Portland, Medicine Hat, Saskatoon etc.. have better team speed than the Pats. In 2016-2017, the Pats had Austin Wagner, who was arguably the fastest player in the league, by a fair margin. His speed had to be respected. And even when it was respected, he still found himself on a lot of breakaways etc.. the Pats don't have anyone near Wagners speed and they could certainly use some faster skaters this year as other teams are often able to out skate, out play, and out shoot the Pats etc... which would be a major problem for the Pats if they didn't have Bedard, Suzdalev, Svozil, and Howe etc., who have done a fairly good job this season of capitalizing on their scoring opportunities. The Pats are still able to win some of the games that they get out played. Without Bedard and Svozil next year, the Pats may have a long season.

    The Pats probably will make the playoffs. Especially if they win a couple of more games. WHL fans were talking about playoff match ups recently. Apparently the top teams in each division get the #1 and #2 playoff positions, even if they don't finish #1 and #2 in the conference. For instance, Red Deer won their division, but are currently in 3rd place in the Eastern conference. However, Red Deer will still be in the #2 spot when playoffs start, so if the Pats finish in 6th, where they currently are, they'd play Saskatoon and not Red Deer. However, if the Pats fall down to 7th place, they would play Red Deer in the first round. I"m not sure if that's correct or not, but if it is, it wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing, if the Pats finished in 7th place. Medicine Hat seems like a better match up for Saskatoon (than Regina), and Regina and Red Deer seem like a better match up than Regina and Saskatoon.
    Last edited by Reider; 03-12-2023 at 07:45 PM.

  2. #102

    Default Pats make it to the Dance!

    After Fridays game, it was looking pretty grim. They played an absolutely horrible game top to bottom. However to their credit they found a way to gut out a win on Saturday, thus punching their ticket to the playoffs. It's a credit to them and a nice change from the usual hockey landscape around here every spring. On Sunday they once again gutted out a win in Saskatoon. From what I can see it looks as if they have got 6th place locked. I suppose it is possible for Calgary to tie them in points if certain things happen, but the Pats would have more wins. A tie breaker would be needed for positioning. So it appears that the Pats have a series date with the Blades!!

    The Pats have been consistently inconsistent all season for a fact. Their fortunes are dependent on which team shows up and for how long, and how far Bedard can carry them. They have given up 40, 48, 44, shots per game over the last three games. They need to find away to bring that down a bunch or they will wear out their goalies. They need to find a way to create more offensive zone time so that it can cut back the defensive zone time, as they've been under siege there for the last little while. That's not a recipe for success. The Blades are a deeply talented, well coached team. They have played very good and very consistently all season.

    What I have liked the most is the play of the bigger guys like Barnett, Ginnell, and Oremba. They have been giving teams a lot of trouble with their play along the wall. It's too bad management couldn't have seen fit to keep or get a couple more like that. This time of year is where size and grit come in handy. Playing a heavy game has it's rewards.
    Last edited by chopper; Today at 03:56 AM.

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