Thursday, July 23, 2009

Mixed Bag of Defensive Signings

Matt Hunwick was called up due to injuries and never made it back down to the AHL. Hunwick has an offensive flare that allows him to play both wing and defence. In 53 games last season, Hunwick scored 27 points and was a +15. This Bruin made an impact on the team last year and should be considered in later rounds in all formats as a depth option.

Denis Grebeshkov made an impact on a young Oilers blueline last season. In his second full season in the NHL, Grebeshkov played in 72 games, adding 39 points. He is another excellent choice to draft in later rounds as he should put up similar totals to last year.

Jack Johnson’s season was cut short last year with a season ending shoulder injury. Appearing in 41 games, Johnson scored 11 points and had 46 PIMs. Johnson is a young defenceman that oozes with potential. He may not be an offensive powerhouse but his hitting ability will make him a late round draft choice.

Keith Yandle played in his first complete season last year and impressed the Coyotes coaching staff. Yandle is a young rear-guard that is offensively minded. In 69 games, Yandle scored 30 points, 12 of them were on the powerplay and took 118 shots. Yandle is another excellent sleeper pick in later rounds of your draft as he may break out with 40 points next season.

Shane O’Brien hits first and asks questions later. Not much of an offensive contributor, O’Brien is no stranger to the sin bin. In 76 games last year, O’Brien had 10 points and a whopping 196 PIMs making him a great selection in later rounds if your pool reward penalty minutes.


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