Monday, October 6, 2008

Season Preview: Martin Havlat

I don't think there are many of us out there who aren't excited about this year's team and if you aren't, please feel free to speak up sometime... I'm sure I'm not alone in thinking that most of what this team will do this year will have to be done without the help of Martin Havlat.

It's not that we don't think he's good - we know he's good - it's that we also know he's got a shoulder made out of glass and is just dying to get out there and strain a groin, hamstring or gernally just hurt himself. He's like Kerry Wood but without any equivalent of a 20 strike-out game.

This next line is going to sound very familiar to everyone - If Havlat can stay healthy, he is going to bring a big scoring presence to our second line and could be key to the Hawks' playoff chances. What's different now, is that the team is expecting to make the playoffs even without his help. He's house-money at this point - even if his salary is still on our books - if he can somehow avoid injuring himself he'll be a big piece in the playoff race - if (when) he does get hurt though, the team should be able to get by without him though it'll be a lot harder.

In the few games he's played this preseason, Havlat is doing well, especially last night, scoring with less than half a second in regulation to tie the game up. If he can be a scoring threat and maybe get close to a point per game getting to the playoffs will be a much easier road.

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