Leafs vs. Sens - Commentary from both sides of the aisle.
Nice!I can't wait until he signs with the Leafs to come back home ;)But seriously, is there anything better than a loud horn after a goal is scored. Gotta love it!
without a doubt, the niftiest goal I've seen in a long time. If Martin was still at the helm of this team I doubt very much Spezza would have even been on the ice during the OT.
The Martin-bashing re:Spezza is misplaced.When Martin was here, Spezza was most definitely NOT the same player he is now. He's older, stronger, more mature, more experienced and more confident. All things he got thanks to the passage of time and his full extra year with the farm club.If Martin was here, I'd guess Spezza would indeed be on the top line because he deserves to be there now. Back when Martin was head coach, Spezza most certainly did not.Did you watch Spezza play back then? Generally, these sorts of comments come from casual fans who watch a highlight reel on the evening sports cast and think "hey, why isn't that guy playing more?".I suspect Brandon Bochenski might get sent down soon, and I think a fairly strong case can be made that he is not ready to play on the Sens top line. But, in a couple years, if he returns to the Sens and is a dominant forward, I'm sure there will be all sorts of cracks about how the current management must have been all idiots to not have used this guy sooner.
Bochenski shouldn't be mentioned in the same breath as Spezza. He's not even half the player Spezza is...Can anyone say Bob Kudelski?I watched all the games Spezza played in a few years back and while he shouldn't have been a top line centre he definitely should have been on the team.Dressing Vermette instead of Spezza in the playoffs against the Leafs? How much more experience did Vermette have over him?They were having a hard time scoring on Belfour and Martin dresses a fourth liner over a pure goal scorer...That's the kind of crap that Martin did that baffled everyone!No argument that the year on the farm was good for Spezza's confidence and overall game!
I have to disagree with your assessment of how Martin handled Spezza. I think if he was here he probably would have Spezza in a larger role than what he did the previous two season, but that would only be because he had to.He only put Jason Spezza into the line-up in the '03 playoffs when the team lost three in a row and faced elimination. Spezza came in and was the first star.Even though Spezza had a 50 point season, he yanked him out of the line-up for the 2004 playoff series against the Leafs, rationalizing that Spezza wouldn't be a good choice to be the fourth line center and Vermette made more sense. That was true, but why did he have to be a fourth line center in the first place?Martin would rationalize it with his comments that Spezza was still a defensive liability. So put him on a line with someone like Alfredsson, who's two-way game was and still is superb. It always seemed like Spezza was on a short leech and could do no right by Martin. He'd make one mistake (and it was always trying to make a play, not just a lack of effort), and sit on the bench the rest of the period. Meanwhile, Radek Bonk coasted through game after game, collected cheap points by playing on a line with Marian Hossa (who was a one-man machine on the ice) and got even cheaper PP goals by standing at the side of the net (not in front of it, Radek couldn't handle that), and Martin never took him off a regular shift.I'll never forget Martin making a comment, when Spezza failed to crack the line-up after the 2001 pre-season, about Jason being a boy still, and the NHL being a man's game. While there was maybe some truth in that statement, it was absolutely a stupid thing to say about a guy who most people assumed would be the future face of the franchise.Martin, like all coaches I'm sure, had his favorites, and for whatever reason, Jason Spezza was not one of them. That was never going to change.
Spezza was treated pretty poorly from the Sens management and coaches. It shows what clas he has to just take it in stride and come out with the play he has. Spezza was ready for the Big league all along.PS Penguins won their first game WOOHOO!! mario 5points, his 37th carrer 5 point night!