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The Swiss national was first acquired from the Montreal Canadians via trade, with his compatriot Rafael Diaz. Setting up a small debate between Canuck fans later on, when Diaz was traded away. Did we trade the right Swiss defenseman ?
For what it is worth, I like the one we kept.
Born: Sept. 23rd. 1988, in Morges Switzerland. There are several Bronze Age settlements preserved along the lakefront of Yannick's hometown. Tell your history obsessed kids !
Yannick Weber was drafted in the 3rd round, 73rd overall, in the 2007 draft. He is an RFA right now, and only cost the Canucks $650,000 against the Cap in 2013/14. That is less than Tom Sestito !
But then, TommyBoy led the NHL in fights, and Yannick didn't even fight anyone once. Damned neutral pacifist Swiss...
What'd he do?
What did he do ? Played the yo yo defenseman role, moving in and out of the lineup, as others were injured, ( or he himself was dinged up ) or pulled at the whim of Torts. As a result, he played 49 games in Green and Blue, and scored 6 goals, and had 4 assists.
He also was a -7, which is as much indicative of the team's suckage as anything else. That is no where near the Green Jacket levels of Edler ( -39 ! ), but still. He was on for 10 goals for, and at least 17 even strength goals against.
Even if a few of them were the going to the bench, not involved in the play types that make everyone ( rightly ) pooh pooh plus/minus, it is never a good thing to be on for more against than for, when you are a supposed "offensive defenseman". Half those 6 goals were scored on the power play anyhow !
At least he had twice as many shots ( 70 ) as hits, ( 39 ), and blocks ( 37 ), as a good offensive defenseman should.
So was he any good?
To answer that question, you can go here, and see the advanced stats, or you can trust your eyes, when you watched him play. I like to do both. I liked his game in his own end, AT TIMES. There were times that he was running around in his own end as badly as everyone else, and that is not good.
But when you look through those tables at ExtraSkater.com, you notice a few things. Like, his PDO was decent in 11/12, ( 100.8 ) and dipped the next year ( 96.5 ), which was probably a reason the Habs soured on him. He is an offensive defenseman, and when your shooting suffers, well...
For what it is worth, he almost reached the heights of his time with the Habs, in a down year here, having a PDO of 99.3 out here on the Left Coast. He also did that with zone starts that dropped a LOT compared to 11/12 with the Habs, with a coach who refused to really use zone starts to his advantage.
What'd we like?
Well, I loved his first goal. Dude moves into the shooting area like a boss...
Some of the video has to be from the Habs, considering. Like this hit. Keep your head up Jeff...
Another goal on the power play. Maybe with a more progressive coach, they keep this guy as a PP specialist? Screw you Bob Hartley !
Cool. So, now what ?
Hard to say. It all depends on the new management, and whether they want him around, or whether there is no spot for him, considering that Frank Corrado is ready for the NHL. They are both right handed defensemen. We will have to wait and see how it all shakes out.
I liked his game overall. I think there is more to come from Mr. Weber, and that a guy with a shot like that should not just be tossed aside. He came into games, and the lineup, after injuries, and with different partners, and struggled a times, as well as being a welcome surprise at times too. I thought his run at the end of the season, when most was lost, and he was airlifted into the lineup, might have been his best. Not by the stats, perhaps. The whole team had the suckage thing going. But I do remember watching the horror that was the last season play out, and being impressed by his simple, effective plays in his own end.
Perhaps it is here, perhaps elsewhere. But as a 7-8 defenseman ( and righties are usually in demand on the blue line ), and power play specialist ( that was the plan at the outset for him, right ? ), his price is good, and his skills are NHL worthy. The Swiss Mister won't be playing in Davos next year.
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