Is Schenn Hurt?
I’ve been watching Luke Schenn closely this season, looking for creep of the sophomore jinx. Everyone is a little banged up at his junction of the schedule, but he might be playing through some hurt. The rust is off in the NHL, and players are hitting stride, making the young blueliner vulnerable as the games get more intense.
While there’s been an improvement statistically, that may not be an accurate indicator of his performance.
He’s upped the 15:02 of ice time in October to 16:13 in November – with an asterisk on the 19:40 against Minnesota with the Leafs down to five defensemen with Mike Komisarek lost a little over two minutes into the game.
Has also improved from the rotten minus-5 in October marking plus-3 in November.
But there are issues.
He’s been caught flatfooted a lot this season in various situations and seems to start momentum from a static position. Players are zipping by due to sheer momentum. Footspeed was a concern entering the season and he should keep his feet moving to maintain momentum.
In foot races, he’s losing his balance and falling down upon contact along the boards and in open ice.
He’s watching the puck and becoming a swatter with a plus/minus effect here, developing a more active stick and using it in front of him to take away forward space off the rush. However, he depends on swatting away the puck instead of taking the man. Players are slipping by along the boards, especially with speed and change of pace. There’s a need for balance here with a developing stick and getting back to using physical strength to take his men.
Regarding body work, he hasn’t been using his enough, especially along the boards, and it led to the third goal last night. Instead of taking the man out of the play by trying to contain him, he threw an insignificant cross check and allowed the man to twist away with the puck to develop the play from behind the net, to the corner, then out front where Koivu scored amidst three Leafs, including Schenn coming out from behind the net after the failed attempt.
There was a play in the first period where he was in good position in front of the goal with the Wild buzzing. The puck went behind the net to Martin Havlat who came out on a wraparound attempt .. Schenn saw him and had him in sights beside the net, and could have (should have) put put Halvat on his ass, sending a statement to the sniper and his teammates “this is my area.” But he let up with a slight nudge. This was a pivotal moment that could have swung the momentum with a big clean hit. I have to add a lack of confidence on this play as well.
He’s shown mixed aggression and a prominence for taking restraining fouls, leading the NHL with four interference penalties.
Individually these don’t mean much, but tallied together, it paints a different picture. I have to conclude from his stationary positioning, slower footspeed, lack of progressive aggression and a slight dip in confidence, Luke Schenn must be playing hurt.
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frick its too late now,, shenn's bin overrated 4 a longtime now,, we probably could of sent him to the bruins 4 kessel and kept our future draft picks,, and he is not hurting,, i would of took the 5 pick columbus got instead of shenn at 4 could u imagine that russin as one of our fowards, with our depth at d ,, we should of took the russin instead of the pilon
I'm calling for Bozak. Not for Burke to blow up the team and call up all the kids. Just Bozak, but maybe now he's being reunited with Stalberg and Hanson he should play 4-8 games down there and see if he gives BB no choice but make a move to clear sallary for him.
But we didn't win and everything is not good on the good ship Maple Leaf. We are having a horrendus start and our players we are showcasing for trade... their value if anything has gone down.
What makes me think he's so good???
Go back and read cause I have umpteen posts answering that question for you.
I was hoping Schenn's indifferent play was more a result of injury than head issues,but I think the latter is true now.Attitude and confidence can be harder to heal than tissue.
Remember what Cherry once said about Gilmour`s indifferent play?"There's only room for one alpha in the room",and in Dougie's mind,he had to be the go to guy.When Sundin arrived,it was the beginning of the end for Gilmour.
Last year Schenn was our stud on defense.Nobody hit as often or as hard.He fought his battles and teammate`s,even against heavyweights.
To Paso's point,Komi and Beauch are the new alphas,both in stature,ability,tenure and toughness.
I think this is what has affected Luke,and it`s not a good sign if correct.
Maybe he should be bunking with Whitey,who could teach the man what proving yourself in the face of competitive adversity is all about.
All this bring up Bozak talk, is just a bit crazy, yes maybe after the pre-season he had maybe he deserved better fate but it didn't happen and as we know the cap is our enemy here. The problem here is, if we had beat Minny there would be no of this talk right now and all would still be ok on the good ship Maple Leaf
Much like the standup defenceman he was throughout his rookie season, Luke Schenn is big enough to admit his second year has been a struggle thus far.
What he won't accept is the notion that he's suddenly been lulled into the comforts of life as an NHLer.
"I haven't been my best so far, but I'm working at it," Schenn said following practice yesterday.
"I'm going to get better. At times maybe I'm just thinking a little too much instead of reacting and using my instincts. I've got to be more physical."
Schenn hasn't been the dominant force as often as he was in his rookie season and has been prone to rookie-style mistakes. On Tuesday, he got caught behind the net on Mikko Koivu's third goal for the Wild in a 5-2 loss.
But Schenn remains one of the team's harder workers and invariably is the last player off the ice after practice.
"You've got to earn everything you get here and it's a privilege to play in this league," Schenn said when the complacency notion was raised yesterday. "I don't feel that way at all. I've got to keep working hard. Things haven't gone great off the start. But the only way to get through that is to continue to work hard."
Leafs coach Ron Wilson says some of Schenn's growing pains have been evident. But Wilson believes such struggles are to be expected and he intends to have the big defenceman work through it.
"I keep on his rear end every day in practice," said Wilson, who has reduced Schenn's ice time in part because the team has more depth on the blue line. "It's up to Luke to start playing with the intensity we need from him.
"The first year kind of went (his) way and you come in and relax and don't have the same drive and hunger. It's up to me as a coach to get that out of him."
What does it hurt to give the guy a real shot with the Leafs? In his one game he had a point and in the pre-season he played great. So what's the harm? This team badly needs a guy like him to play with Kessel so what the hell is the harm in trying it.
if Bozak should be playing on the Leafs then he should have no problem putting up numbers in the AHL. what makes u think he is so good? he hasn't proven anything.
@TT: I usually like riddles about as much as Ron McLean's puns when he started on HNIC, but are you up for a simple riddle?
TT: Sorry T, busy. Did you catch the, playing on his head reference to Kulemin (41) yesterday. When you refered to Stajan (14) as the next leader.
yeah, I know. I'm only like this most of the time though. I try not to be overly sarcastic in business atmosphere's and whatnot.
@lescott: I just have fun with it. I'm a good drinker so it not a problem. But sometimes people just miss the real poiny being made.
I had to quit for a year as my insurance for my company required piss testing for safety. But I'm retired from the climbing so I don't need to test anymore.
not serious trouble... some people decide that they aren't going to like me, but I don't usually have to fight them. I suppose I get in trouble when I drink a lot and then my friends usually have to do a lot of explaining.