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Is Coburn or Mez worthy of being a #1 D-man on other teams?


Guest pilldoc
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Ok there was some discussion in the game chat to whether Coburn and Mez (when he returns/ and healthy) are a true #1 D paring in the NHL. Some said yes and others said that they would be a #2 pairing. Well listed below I have the #1 D pairings for every team and you make the decision yourself. To earn a (Y) in the column eiher Coburn or Mez had to be better than at least 1 of the players listed in the pairing. I compared Coburn first then Mez. They got a (N) if I believed the other teams both #1 #2 D are better than either Covurn or Mez. Caution..I am not treating Coburn / Mez as a pair. Just as individuals.

Ok there was some discussion in the game chat to whether Coburn and Mez (when he returns) are a true #1 D paring in the NHL. Some said yes and others said that they would be a #2 pairing. Well listed below I have the #1 D pairings for every team and you make the decision yourself.

Coburn Top Line (Y/N)

Meszaros Top Line (Y/N)

Anaheim Ducks

Cam Fowler

Francois Beauchermin

N

N

Boston Bruins

Zdeno Chara

Dennis Seidenberg

N

N

Buffalo Sabres

Tyler Myers

Chritian Ehrhoff

Y

N

Calgary Flames

Mark Giordano

Dennis Wideman

Y

Y

Carolina Hurricanes

Joni Pitkanen

Joe Corvo

Y

N

Chicago Blackhawks

Duncan Keith

Brent Seabrook

N

N

Columbus Blue Jackets

Jack Johnson

Fedor Tyutin

Y

Y

Colorado Avalance

Erik Johnson

Jan Hejda

Y

Y

Dallas Stars

Alex Goligoski

Stephane Robidas

Y

Y

Detroit Red Wings

Niklas Kronwell

Jonathan Ericsson

N

N

Edmonton Oilers

Ryan Whitney

Justin Schultz

N

N

Florida Panthers

Brian Campbell

Dmitry Kulikov

Y

N

LA Kings

Drew Doughty

Slava Voynov

Y

N

Minnesota Wild

Ryan Suter

Tom Gilbert

N

N

Montreal Canadiens

Andrei Markov

PK Subban

N

N

Nashville Predators

Shea Weber

Kevin Klein

N

N

New Jersey Devils

Henrik Tallinder

Andy Greene

N

N

New York Islanders

Mark Streit

Lubomir Visnovsky

Y

Y

New York Rangers

Daniel Girardi

Marc Staal

N

N

Ottawa Senators

Sergei Gonchar

Erik Karlsson (IR)

N

N

Phoenix Coyotes

Keith Yandle

Oliver Larsson

N

N

Pittsburgh Penguins

Kris Letang

Paul Martin

N

N

San Jose Sharks

Dan Boyle

Brad Stuart

Y

N

St. Louis Blues

Alex Pietrangelo

Kevin Shattenkirk

N

N

Tampa Bay Lightning

Eric Brewer

Victor Hedman

Y

N

Toronto Maple Leafs

Dion Phaneuf

John-Micael Liles

Y

Y

Vancouver Canucks

Alexander Edler

Kevin Bieksa

N

N

Washington Capitals

Mike Green

John Carlson

Y

Y

Winnipeg Jets

Dustin Byfuglien

Tobias Enstrom

N

N

Would be interesting to see what other believe. Please forgive me if I made any obvious errors, I try to watch alittle of each team, but soemtimes I just can't.

EDIT: Damm ...sorry for the skewered look. it was in nice neat table format. errrrrr

Edited by pilldoc
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I think you may have undervalued Jack Johnson, Dennis Wideman, and the Dalas team of Goligoski and Robidas... but overall pretty well presented. Your team would be a lot different with a #1 d-man. Holmgren bet on Timonen and he's just not all that anymore.

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@pilldoc

When I saw your thread title in the shoutbox I smiled. I'd considered posting this topic myself, but it's better that it came from you.

I like the way you presented the comparison and would probably agree with @Polaris922 on his changes.

You can "like" Mez and Coburn but still realize they are NOT top pairing defensemen. They simply don't stack up against the pairs of other teams. To tell you the truth, I'm not sure they are better than a Grossman/Schenn pairing and they certainly are not as good as many top pairing the Flyers have had previously.

They don't stack up against Howe/McCrimmon, the Watson brothers, Desjardins/Therien, Pronger/Carle, etc.

Mez is a good defenseman. He brings some things not currently present on the roster, so I look forward to his return. However, there are significant enough holes in his game. Coburn, depending on the night, has more holes than..well, he has a LOT of holes.

If you brought in one--just one--top pairing dman then, barring injury, you'd probably solve your defense.

Racer X/Mes

Grossman/Schenn

Timo/Coburn

You could flip flop or shuffle around any of the bottom 4. I'd even flip flop Grossman and Mez depending upon who Racer X truly is. You could spot Gus in there without too much worry. But you get Gervais, Foster, etc. off the ice. And it would put Timo in a position that is more manageable at this point in his career. And the others would be better off playing against lines that are one tier down and with more manageable ice time.

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@Polaris922

Depends on how you prefer your defencemen. I prefer mine to be able to play defence.

So do I, which is why I probably put Jack Johnson, Dennis Wideman, and the Dalas team of Goligoski and Robidas above our guys. Not that the guys on that list are defensive heroes. Just saying ours aren't either. So the differentiating factor is their ability to bring a little offense.

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@ruxpin

I can't imagine playing D in front of Bryz. Our defence needs an upgrade, no doubt. But its tough to play with any confidence when you know any mistake you make will end up in the back of the net.

I haven't seen enough of Johnson lately, but Wideman? Goligoski? Robidas? Maybe if we're talking over the last few weeks, but not seriously. Look at Paul martin in Pittsburgh, the guy was a buyout candidate to start this season, he's been their best defenceman so far this year (yes I know about Letang and his shiny points,I'm talking about defence)

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@ruxpin

I can't imagine playing D in front of Bryz. Our defence needs an upgrade, no doubt. But its tough to play with any confidence when you know any mistake you make will end up in the back of the net.

I haven't seen enough of Johnson lately, but Wideman? Goligoski? Robidas? Maybe if we're talking over the last few weeks, but not seriously. Look at Paul martin in Pittsburgh, the guy was a buyout candidate to start this season, he's been their best defenceman so far this year (yes I know about Letang and his shiny points,I'm talking about defence)

Letang...+6

Martin...Even

Juuuuuuust sayin'.... ;)

FWIW - Simon Depres is tops among our d-men at +8. 3-4 w/o him in the line up. 13-4 with him in the line-up.

Memo to Shero: I like Bortuzzo and love Eaton's veteran stability...but enough with Depres being a healthy scratch (last night's hang nail not withstanding).

So as not to hijack the thread, I agree with that list about Coburn & Mez.

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@B21

So this year, you think Letang has been a better defenceman than Martin? Not in the Sergei Gonchar/Matt Greene look at me I'm a forward playing D aspect, but as a player who actually plays defence? If I'm down a goal, I'd want Letang, no question. But if I'm up a goal, I'd rather have Martin out there...this year.

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@B21

So this year, you think Letang has been a better defenceman than Martin? Not in the Sergei Gonchar/Matt Greene look at me I'm a forward playing D aspect, but as a player who actually plays defence? If I'm down a goal, I'd want Letang, no question. But if I'm up a goal, I'd rather have Martin out there...this year.

As defencemen? Equal.

Letang has 22 points. +6. Martin 15 points. Even. That means they have been on the ice for almost exactly the same number of goals against.

Sure, Martin is steadier. Letang is flashier. Letang will make a few "plays" that lead to a goal. He'll also make a few more to prevent them that Martin could not.

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I think you may have undervalued Jack Johnson, Dennis Wideman, and the Dalas team of Goligoski and Robidas... but overall pretty well presented. Your team would be a lot different with a #1 d-man. Holmgren bet on Timonen and he's just not all that anymore.

Technically, Holmgren bet on Pronger. Timonen wasn't intended to be the #1 and really shouldn't be now.

Having put all the eggs in the Pronger basket, when the bottom fell out and smashed the eggs on the ground, Homer was left picking up the pieces - one of which was re-signing Timonen for next season (yes, at an inflated rate) because there were few other viable options.

One could argue he rushed the signing, but that's among the least of the blunders which Homer has foisted upon this organization*.

* term used loosely

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@B21

OK, so equal. And after last season you guys wanted to hang Martin. I'm just pointing out the same issues we have with Coburn. He can be good, and bad. He isn't suited for #1 and when he is forced into that position due to injuries (Pronger and Mez and the loss of Carle) he looks bad. Imagine Orpik as your #1.

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@pilldoc

From your list--which I'm fine with--I'm gathering you are of the opinion that Coburn is better than Mezarrios?

Let me think about that a bit before agreeing or disagreeing. I haven't liked Coburn's play lately, but Mez hasn't even played, so I'm not sure where I fall there.

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@ruxpin

thanks for your input....

as @radoran mentioned above, Pronger was brought in here to be THE #1 d-man on this team. Sadly no one for saw the tragic turn of events that has essentially ended his career.

once he was injured, Homer had to find a true #1....i present exhibit A, the pursuing of Suter / Weber over the summer. When that fell through there was no Plan B. Homer felt the need to keep Kimmo and once again showing very little knowledge of cap issues signed him for 6 Mill for next yr. A panic move in my opinion.

Regarding to the topic at hand. IMHO, Coburnm, while a nice player at times, is not what I call your prototypical shutdown #1 d-man. Hence the discussion which started last night in chat and I cont. here with this thread.

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@B21

OK, so equal. And after last season you guys wanted to hang Martin. I'm just pointing out the same issues we have with Coburn. He can be good, and bad. He isn't suited for #1 and when he is forced into that position due to injuries (Pronger and Mez and the loss of Carle) he looks bad. Imagine Orpik as your #1.

Yeah, I don't dislike Coburn but he would be better suited for the 2nd pair.

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@pilldoc

I don't think there's much of an argument to your table. Some tweaking, but I think the general consensus is we need help on the blueline. Take 3 of the top 4 defencemen off any blueline and they're going to need help. That's what's happened in Philly.

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@pilldoc

From your list--which I'm fine with--I'm gathering you are of the opinion that Coburn is better than Mezarrios?

Let me think about that a bit before agreeing or disagreeing. I haven't liked Coburn's play lately, but Mez hasn't even played, so I'm not sure where I fall there.

I agree it is hard to judge Mez. How many games has he actually played? I don't know. I just know he has been on the shelf quite alot. Does that show a bit bit of bias or short sightness on my part, probably. Even at the start of the season, many of us commented on how out of sync or step slower Mez seemed to be. i will admit it is a hard comparison to make considering how many games Mez has missed.

i agree. I don't dislike Coburn, I just don't envision him as a true #1 top line d-man.

Edited by pilldoc
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@pilldoc

I think the injuries probably have to factor into "is he top pair?" Given the fact that Coburn stays fairly healthy (knocking on wood) and Mez doesn't, I'm comfortable with Coburn > Mez for the purposes of this discussion.

Nice chart, by the way. A lot of work in that, I would think.

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@ruxpin

thanks rux. Yeah I did that last night after the game when I should have went to bed. However it was too fresh in my mind to waste a good idea. As much as I love the platform for this forum, the one big negative is the ability to either create a chart or import/copy one made form either excel or word.

i love making charts for some reason. to me charts (especially in my line of work) gives me the clarity of comparison when needed. Appreciate the positive feedback. :)

Back to the topic at hand. I do wonder what kind of player Mez would have had without the injury issues he has had since joining this team.

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@B21

OK, so equal. And after last season you guys wanted to hang Martin. I'm just pointing out the same issues we have with Coburn. He can be good, and bad. He isn't suited for #1 and when he is forced into that position due to injuries (Pronger and Mez and the loss of Carle) he looks bad. Imagine Orpik as your #1.

Not hang. Tar and feather. That said, he deserved it. He was close to awful last year and didn't have any offense to make up for it. I'll be the first to admit Letang will make the occasional 'poor judgement' play but he more than makes up for it with his offensive skill. I wouldn't want 6 Letang-types making up my D....but I will take 1.

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@Polaris922

Depends on how you prefer your defencemen. I prefer mine to be able to play defence.

I agree Timonens best days are behind him, but theres no lineup to give the Flyers a #1. I was shocked to see him get $6 million though.

I don't see Timonen as being able to play defense anymore. Was it the Kunitz goal last night that was taken from him right at the Pens blue line? He's just slow now, and he was always a positional defender... without his speed he's going to be out of position more and more. Wait till a regular season wears him down again... you can't have a number one defenseman that you have to watch how many minutes he gets played or he's useless come playoffs. You need at least one solid d-man stud back there.

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@pilldoc

When I saw your thread title in the shoutbox I smiled. I'd considered posting this topic myself, but it's better that it came from you.

I like the way you presented the comparison and would probably agree with @Polaris922 on his changes.

You can "like" Mez and Coburn but still realize they are NOT top pairing defensemen. They simply don't stack up against the pairs of other teams. To tell you the truth, I'm not sure they are better than a Grossman/Schenn pairing and they certainly are not as good as many top pairing the Flyers have had previously.

They don't stack up against Howe/McCrimmon, the Watson brothers, Desjardins/Therien, Pronger/Carle, etc.

Mez is a good defenseman. He brings some things not currently present on the roster, so I look forward to his return. However, there are significant enough holes in his game. Coburn, depending on the night, has more holes than..well, he has a LOT of holes.

If you brought in one--just one--top pairing dman then, barring injury, you'd probably solve your defense.

Racer X/Mes

Grossman/Schenn

Timo/Coburn

Do you realize what you've done?!?! You've put Timonen as a #5 defenseman! When I suggested that would be where he'd play on a lot of other NHL teams I got hell for it! Just sayin'... LOL

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@B21

OK, so equal. And after last season you guys wanted to hang Martin. I'm just pointing out the same issues we have with Coburn. He can be good, and bad. He isn't suited for #1 and when he is forced into that position due to injuries (Pronger and Mez and the loss of Carle) he looks bad. Imagine Orpik as your #1.

Actually we've been pretty stalwart defenders of Martin. A LOT of Pens fans who don't know hockey wanted his head on a stick, but I think B21 was with me when I said Martin has great potential, and was a great defender in Jersey, we just wanted him to return to form. This season he has done so.

Normally I would jump on your Orpik comment as he has been one of our best defenders through the years. He is SOLID as hell on defense most of the time. However, about five games ago he took a shot off the foot or something, and he gimped his way to the bench. HIs game since then has been soft at best, and I seriously think he is playing injured. Otherwise, I would gladly keep him top pairing with Letang, as he has always been the steady guy covering when Letang pinches and gets caught up ice. Right now they have him pairing mostly with Martin, and that seems to be working out just fine as well, even if he is off his game.

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Do you realize what you've done?!?! You've put Timonen as a #5 defenseman! When I suggested that would be where he'd play on a lot of other NHL teams I got hell for it! Just sayin'... LOL

When you're right, you're right.

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