Bright spots: Kimmo Timonen, Andres Meszaros, Marc Andre-Bourdon, Brayden Coburn
With the absence of Chris Pronger for the rest of this season and beyond someone on the defense had to step up and become the leader of this unit. Timonen immediately did just that with sacrificing his own body to block every shot that comes his way. In every game Timonen appears to be hurt, only to come out the next shift and make a difference. Running the power play has never been his strength, so I’ll give him a pass on that only because of how well defensively he has played this season.
Pronger possesses a style that is hard for anyone to replicate. He has a bruiser style mentality on defense and has one of the best point shots in the game. While Timonen has that physical mentality, Meszaros has the offensive game that makes you forget just how good Pronger is. To boot Meszaros is one of the best two way defenseman in the league right now, I can’t even list how many times he has been able to skate back and make a play on the opponent’s odd man rush.
Marc-Andre Bourdon has been a great call up this season and while at times he can turn the puck over, he has laid enough jarring hits to make you forget about those boneheaded plays.
Not so bright spots: Andres Lilia, inconsistent play
The only specific player on defense that has been disappointing this year has been Lilia. He was sidelined with an injury for 13 games, but when he was in there he just didn’t make much of a difference.
Inconsistent play is listed because almost everyone is at fault for this. Obviously there are going to be times when the defense makes mistakes, that is just part of the game. There are just too many times that the defense totally wipes out any kind of momentum that the team has built up. Whether it be a turnover or being in the wrong position, there has been enough bad play to be concerned.