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SCSU Euro
09-30-2009, 12:51 PM
It’s well known that the Gopher defense will need to make adjustments from last year. The leadership, talent and maturity is stronger this season. Along with Helgeson and Leddy, the quality and composition of the defense is significantly different from last year. There’s no question it will be improved.

Wisconsin in losing McBain will need to make a huge adjustment. Losing McBain’s on-ice leadership and 34% of his scoring on defense is significant and ominous. He played a major role in Wisconsin being ranked third in scoring in the WCHA last season. Smith and Gardiner are very good defenseman but have a significant task ahead to fill that void.

There’s often a disparity between what’s on paper and future reality, but since you kept referring to last year let’s look at it. Based on last year’s numbers alone, the Gophers actually have more defensive scoring returning than Wisconsin.

Aaron Ness’s freshman season was better than the freshman season’s of 75% of Wisconsin’s top returning defensivemen and he will most likely improve on that. Cade Fairchild doubled his offensive output from the previous season, led the defense last year in scoring and is regarded by many as a possible Hobey candidate. He actually had a better sophomore season than Jordan Leopold or Jamie McBain did. No returning defenseman on Wisconsin has those numbers and widely recognized talent.

Add to that, Nick Leddy, Mr. Hockey, highest drafted college player in the 2009 NHL draft whom coaches and the media believe is a possible candidate for WCHA rookie of the year, and Helgeson's grit and the Gopher defense on paper looks even stronger than Bucky. It’s still early so I’m calling it “dead even” just to be nice.;)

Ok, you may know some things about Gopher hockey, but you obviously don't know what's going on in Badgerland these days. This pains me to say, 'cause I hate the Badgers a great deal, but Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year. Minnesota's got a good defense, but when he said UW had a significantly better one, it wasn't an insult to Gopherdom. And losing McBain is going to hurt UW's points scored, but going to help them keep the puck out of their net. McBain may have been an offensive weapon, but was a HUGE liability in their own zone.

And why are Brendan Smith and Jake Gardiner talented, yet they have something to prove, whereas Ness and Fairchild are for sure going to improve, and Leddy and Hegelson it sounds like will just jump in as freshmen and have no issues?

All you keep doing is throwing out offensive numbers. Hockey's about a lot more than scoring points, ESPECIALLY on the blueline. McDonough, Smith, Goloubef, Gardiner, Schultz, Little, Springer, Ramage, P. Johnson. Nobody in the WCHA, and probably all of college hockey, has a blueline with that much talent and depth. MN is not "dead even" with UW on defense coming into the season, and the realistic Gopher posters, even the ones who can't stand the Badgers or myself, would agree with me there.


Minnesota could return every player from a FF team and you'd still question their upcoming season.

Totally agree. And when sfo makes a ridiculous statement, feel free to attack it. But when he said that UW's defense will be better than MN's, at least going into the season, that looks like a pretty safe bet.

Comparing the two teams for the 2009/2010 season:
Goaltending: substantial edge Gophers
Offense: slight edge Gophers
Defense: big edge Badgers

ScoobyDoo
09-30-2009, 01:05 PM
Ok, you may know some things about Gopher hockey, but you obviously don't know what's going on in Badgerland these days. This pains me to say, 'cause I hate the Badgers a great deal, but Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year. Minnesota's got a good defense, but when he said UW had a significantly better one, it wasn't an insult to Gopherdom. And losing McBain is going to hurt UW's points scored, but going to help them keep the puck out of their net. McBain may have been an offensive weapon, but was a HUGE liability in their own zone.

And why are Brendan Smith and Jake Gardiner talented, yet they have something to prove, whereas Ness and Fairchild are for sure going to improve, and Leddy and Hegelson it sounds like will just jump in as freshmen and have no issues?

All you keep doing is throwing out offensive numbers. Hockey's about a lot more than scoring points, ESPECIALLY on the blueline. McDonough, Smith, Goloubef, Gardiner, Schultz, Little, Springer, Ramage, P. Johnson. Nobody in the WCHA, and probably all of college hockey, has a blueline with that much talent and depth. MN is not "dead even" with UW on defense coming into the season, and the realistic Gopher posters, even the ones who can't stand the Badgers or myself, would agree with me there.



Totally agree. And when sfo makes a ridiculous statement, feel free to attack it. But when he said that UW's defense will be better than MN's, at least going into the season, that looks like a pretty safe bet.

Comparing the two teams for the 2009/2010 season:
Goaltending: substantial edge Gophers
Offense: slight edge Gophers
Defense: big edge Badgers

Harley at least provided stats in his argument. All you provided were platitudes.

SJHovey
09-30-2009, 01:19 PM
Harley at least provided stats in his argument. All you provided were platitudes.

Harley did? He cited two statistics. The first was that Aaron Ness was better than 75% of Wisconsin's defensemen. The second was "losing McBain's on-ice leadership and 34% of his scoring on defense" is a huge blow. I don't even know what that second one means. They lost 100% of McBain's scoring. He didn't have anywhere close to 34% of the team's scoring, was 31% of the scoring of defensemen, and 23% of the goal scoring of defensemen.

Both posts lacked any sort of statistical basis in fact, and both were just opinions.

state of hockey
09-30-2009, 01:22 PM
I am roughly 73% sure that no one knows jack yet, but am 98% sure that >75% won't admit it.

ScoobyDoo
09-30-2009, 01:23 PM
I am roughly 73% sure that no one knows jack yet, but am 98% sure that >75% won't admit it.

I'll admit that I know 1+1=2. And that's about it.

SCSU Euro
09-30-2009, 01:59 PM
Harley at least provided stats in his argument. All you provided were platitudes.

True... but I was pointing out that Harley is really just fixated on offensive numbers, and I said that its hard to quantify how good defensive players are in their own end by numbers. What do you wanna go by? +/-, your team's GAA, or SOG given up... they're all flawed. And I never said I didn't have anything more than an opinion.

Oh... and you know how I know I said some things that you guys agree with, or at least can't argue? I posted something on the Gophers season thread saying the Badgers were better in an aspect of the game 2 hours ago... and nobody came on here to tell me how wrong I am. :D

ScoobyDoo
09-30-2009, 02:21 PM
True... but I was pointing out that Harley is really just fixated on offensive numbers, and I said that its hard to quantify how good defensive players are in their own end by numbers. What do you wanna go by? +/-, your team's GAA, or SOG given up... they're all flawed. And I never said I didn't have anything more than an opinion.

Oh... and you know how I know I said some things that you guys agree with, or at least can't argue? I posted something on the Gophers season thread saying the Badgers were better in an aspect of the game 2 hours ago... and nobody came on here to tell me how wrong I am. :D

Can't be sure. We all know around here that Wisconsin has been kiping a lot of the top defensemen talent for a while now. Both scoring and defender types. At least those that have finally made the team or haven't rescinded the offer.

Still, defense is hard to quantify, like you said, and conventional wisdom is all about Kangas getting hung out to dry last year. If it continues this year it may be a long season. Somehow I don't think it will.

HarleyMC
09-30-2009, 04:46 PM
Harley did? He cited two statistics. The first was that Aaron Ness was better than 75% of Wisconsin's defensemen. The second was "losing McBain's on-ice leadership and 34% of his scoring on defense" is a huge blow. I don't even know what that second one means. They lost 100% of McBain's scoring. He didn't have anywhere close to 34% of the team's scoring, was 31% of the scoring of defensemen, and 23% of the goal scoring of defensemen.

Both posts lacked any sort of statistical basis in fact, and both were just opinions.

Ah no, but I'll spell it out for you. You misquoted me in your first statement. I wrote that Aaron Ness had a better FRESHMAN season than FRESHMAN SEASONS of 75% of Wisconsin's TOP RETURNING defensemen (I'm assuming these are McDonough, Smith, Goloubef, Gardiner).

I may have not been as clear with the McBain stat (total points). I only looked at defensemen that had significant ice time last season: McBain, McDonough, Smith, Goloubef, Gardiner. The others: Springer, Little and Johnson averaged only approximately 20G (half a season) with a total of 8 pts. Including only the top defensemen from last year, McBain's contribution in points among the top defensemen was 34%. If you want to include the others and the 8 points it's 31%, an insignificant difference.

I think there's plenty of "statistical basis in fact" there to chew on. As I intimated at the end of my post (which it appears you hardly read), of course there's a degree of opinion and speculation at this stage. It's "early" and yet "on paper" the Gophers have more proven scoring from returning defensemen based on last year's stat's than Wisconsin's TOP returning defensemen. In terms of talent, at the very least "dead even". We can break that down too if you like.


True... but I was pointing out that Harley is really just fixated on offensive numbers, and I said that its hard to quantify how good defensive players are in their own end by numbers. What do you wanna go by? +/-, your team's GAA, or SOG given up... they're all flawed. And I never said I didn't have anything more than an opinion.

Oh... and you know how I know I said some things that you guys agree with, or at least can't argue? I posted something on the Gophers season thread saying the Badgers were better in an aspect of the game 2 hours ago... and nobody came on here to tell me how wrong I am. :D

Ok I'll go slow. It's fascinating to see guys like you come on here with an axe to grind and inaccurately read the post your trying to refute. I wrote, "There’s often a disparity between what’s on paper and future reality" and "on paper" the Gopher returning defense is offensively better than Wisconsin's TOP returning defensemen.

So I'm fully aware that there are areas of the defensive game that are best judged by observation and are not quantifiably measurable (breakouts, clearing the net, etc.). So your presumption that I'm "fixated" on numbers is simply based on the "fact" that you didn't read my post thoroughly enough. However, banter without fact is just banal redundancy.

So stats are "all flawed"? Which ones? All of them or just the ones you don't use? Can you prove and operationalize your statement, "Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year" without them? Enlighten us, but don't use any stats to prove it.;)

Slap Shot
09-30-2009, 05:52 PM
Totally agree. And when sfo makes a ridiculous statement, feel free to attack it. But when he said that UW's defense will be better than MN's, at least going into the season, that looks like a pretty safe bet.

Yes and yes.

SCSU Euro
09-30-2009, 05:53 PM
Ok I'll go slow. It's fascinating to see guys like you come on here with an axe to grind and inaccurately read the post your trying to refute. I wrote, "There’s often a disparity between what’s on paper and future reality" and "on paper" the Gopher returning defense is offensively better than Wisconsin's TOP returning defensemen.

So I'm fully aware that there are areas of the defensive game that are best judged by observation and are not quantifiably measurable (breakouts, clearing the net, etc.). So your presumption that I'm "fixated" on numbers is simply based on the "fact" that you didn't read my post thoroughly enough. However, banter without fact is just banal redundancy.

So stats are "all flawed"? Which ones? All of them or just the ones you don't use? Can you prove and operationalize your statement, "Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year" without them? Enlighten us, but don't use any stats to prove it.;)

All I heard was, "Blah, blah, blah... I'm a dirty whore."

If you wanna stick your fingers in your ears and not listen to anything anyone has to say that doesn't put your Gophers in good light (and so far, nobody's even attacking the Gophers, just saying the Badgers' D will be better), fine, then go back in your cave.

4four4
09-30-2009, 06:38 PM
All I heard was, "Blah, blah, blah... I'm a dirty whore."

If you wanna stick your fingers in your ears and not listen to anything anyone has to say that doesn't put your Gophers in good light (and so far, nobody's even attacking the Gophers, just saying the Badgers' D will be better), fine, then go back in your cave.

On paper...

ScoobyDoo
09-30-2009, 06:39 PM
Yes and yes.

I bet Minnesota ends up the better group on both sides of the ice by year end.

Slap Shot
09-30-2009, 07:18 PM
I bet Minnesota ends up the better group on both sides of the ice by year end.

Not saying that won't happen, but I can't argue with ranking their D ahead at the beginning of the season.

SCSU Euro
09-30-2009, 11:50 PM
On paper...

Hey, all I'm saying is on paper. On paper, SCSU had a ton of talent last year and should've had a much better season, but it turns out when you don't show up for half of the games....


I bet Minnesota ends up the better group on both sides of the ice by year end.

I'd take that bet, but that's not a preposterous statement to make.

Handyman
10-01-2009, 12:04 AM
All I heard was, "Blah, blah, blah... I'm a dirty whore."

If you wanna stick your fingers in your ears and not listen to anything anyone has to say that doesn't put your Gophers in good light (and so far, nobody's even attacking the Gophers, just saying the Badgers' D will be better), fine, then go back in your cave.

Then just explain how Sconnie is bringing in a "Defense for the Ages" since apparently you are the expert on all things defense...I wont hold my breath though. :D

HarleyMC
10-01-2009, 12:23 AM
All I heard was, "Blah, blah, blah... I'm a dirty whore."

Ah, reverting back to your typical eisegetical epistemology. Very entertaining.:D BTW, I'm not interested in your personal hygiene.;)


If you wanna stick your fingers in your ears and not listen to anything anyone has to say that doesn't put your Gophers in good light (and so far, nobody's even attacking the Gophers, just saying the Badgers' D will be better), fine, then go back in your cave.

Don't be too sensitive my third culture friend...;) Everyone is entitled to an opinion. That's why they call this a discussion board. I did feel you misread my post...again.

Remember, you initiated the discussion and have yet to prove your statement, "Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year" w/o the use of stats which you indicated are "flawed". I'm basing my opinion on a few stats, some hopeful speculation on new recruits and a likely improvement in the defense. IMHO based on that, I feel they are "dead even" with Bucky's defense. We shall soon see. But that's what I'm goin' with right now, which is in part more consistent with the USA Today Poll. Of course the poles don't matter anyway.;)

Shot, SAVE Kangas!
10-01-2009, 01:57 AM
It's officially October! :D

SCSU Euro
10-01-2009, 02:17 AM
Ah, reverting back to your typical eisegetical epistemology. Very entertaining.:D BTW, I'm not interested in your personal hygiene.;)

Don't be too sensitive my third culture friend...;) Everyone is entitled to an opinion. That's why they call this a discussion board. I did feel you misread my post...again.

Remember, you initiated the discussion and have yet to prove your statement, "Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year" w/o the use of stats which you indicated are "flawed". I'm basing my opinion on a few stats, some hopeful speculation on new recruits and a likely improvement in the defense. IMHO based on that, I feel they are "dead even" with Bucky's defense. We shall soon see. But that's what I'm goin' with right now, which is in part more consistent with the USA Today Poll. Of course the poles don't matter anyway.;)

Why should I put up facts? So you can shoot them down? If I talk about how highly touted they have been coming in or where they were drafted, you'll bring up examples of potential stars people have gotten wrong. If I talk about how they turned Connelly into a passable goaltender the past two seasons, you'll tell me how talented he was (and maybe it was just what I saw of him, but I thought ol' Wobbles was a pathetic excuse for a WCHA starting goalie, not to mention at a program that elite).

I don't have a ton of "facts" to throw at you. But if you and Handy can't recognize that Ryan McDonough, Brendan Smith, Cody Goloubef, Jake Gardiner, Justin Schultz and John Ramage isn't a HELL of a blueline group... then what I'm typing now is probably a waste of time too. But remember that I'm an SCSU fan, so in a comparison of MN to UW, I don't have a horse. Frankly, I don't like either side. All I've said from the beginning is that my opinion is that UW's D-men are better, and I REALLY believe if you swapped them, so all those guys were in maroon and gold, and Ness, Fairchild, Leddy and co. were in Wisconsin, you'd agree with who the better squad was.

For God's sake, Slap Shot is agreeing with me, and if you've been around here long at all, you know that that's a pretty rare occurance. But if you wanna stand your ground, hey, its your right to do so.

EDIT: By the way, the polls have MN ahead of UW because of offense and goaltending. And while Kangas looked shaky at times last year, I certainly give you guys the edge in net. I think Bennett has a lot of potential, but Kangas is something that no UW goaltender is at this level: proven.

Dude Love
10-01-2009, 02:21 AM
Ah, reverting back to your typical eisegetical epistemology. Very entertaining.:D BTW, I'm not interested in your personal hygiene.;)

Someone invested in word of the day toilet paper.

HarleyMC
10-01-2009, 05:21 AM
Why should I put up facts?

Because a fact or stat based argument, logically presented, has a better likelihood of success than an appeal that's rooted in your emotions and the banality of your own opinion? Of course if you believe stats are "flawed" as you indicated, you're likelihood of success drops like rock.


If I talk about how highly touted they have been coming in or where they were drafted, you'll bring up examples of potential stars people have gotten wrong. If I talk about how they turned Connelly into a passable goaltender the past two seasons, you'll tell me how talented he was (and maybe it was just what I saw of him, but I thought ol' Wobbles was a pathetic excuse for a WCHA starting goalie, not to mention at a program that elite).

Sounds like a presumptuous excuse to me. But I'll give you a pass.:p


I don't have a ton of "facts" to throw at you.

Nothin', huh? When you make an outlandishly bold statement like "Wisconsin is bringing a defense FOR THE AGES this year" w/o sufficient evidence or resources to substantiate it, your argument really has no validity. From your statement it sounds like you believe they have the best defensive corp ever assembled. That's very hard to prove at this point. Especially if you believe that stats are "flawed".:)


But if you and Handy can't recognize that Ryan McDonough, Brendan Smith, Cody Goloubef, Jake Gardiner, Justin Schultz and John Ramage isn't a HELL of a blueline group... then what I'm typing now is probably a waste of time too.

A waste of time because we don't agree with YOU? If that's the criterion for interacting with you on this board, your time is probably better spent somewhere else.

No one is saying they're not talented. But in addition to what I've already written, input from coaches and journalists representing each of the six DI conferences, as well as composite votes from officers of the AHCA and USA Hockey Magazine, the most widely distributed hockey magazine in the world, rated Wisconsin 14th and the Gophers 6th for a reason. The standardization of the norms and predictive validity of the USA Today Poll is more reliable (poles don't matter) than previously published polls for this season.

I don't think it is because of Kangas and the offense only that the Gophers got there either. If anything, although I believe Kangas is the real deal, many feel he is one of the question marks going into this season. There's apparently a consensus that the Gopher defense will be substantially better than last year. I think it's also an assessment of Wisconsin's weak offense, goaltending and somewhat "overrated" defense.


But remember that I'm an SCSU fan, so in a comparison of MN to UW, I don't have a horse. Frankly, I don't like either side. All I've said from the beginning is that my opinion is that UW's D-men are better, and I REALLY believe if you swapped them, so all those guys were in maroon and gold, and Ness, Fairchild, Leddy and co. were in Wisconsin, you'd agree with who the better squad was.

No. You REALLY believe your opinion is right, but you have no facts to substantiate it. BTW you just might be a closet Gopher fan.;)


For God's sake, Slap Shot is agreeing with me, and if you've been around here long at all, you know that that's a pretty rare occurance.

The man has the heart of a Teddy Bear.:)