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Annual expectations thread 2022/23: #72 Tage Thompson


dudacek
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What do you expect from Tage Thompson?  

40 members have voted

  1. 1. Which of these best describes what you think the Sabres will get from Thompson this year?

    • Legit point-per-game 1st-line centre, what we saw the 2nd half of last season was for real
    • Another 65-point season in a first-line role
    • He had a career year and will slip back a bit, 50-something points is likely
    • Last year was a blip, he's going to struggle and finish with 30-40 points
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You know the story. You watched it unfold and discussed it thoroughly last month when Tage signed his $50 million contract.

https://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=177831

Thompson enters the season with a well-defined role and the confidence of the organization. They gave him a contract that says we believe in you and we expect you to be a long-term leader.

What do you expect from Tage Thompson?

(Last year’s takes here):

 

Edited by dudacek
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Fewer goals than last year, but more points. In his second year as a center, he'll be slightly better defensively and slightly better at faceoffs. Those minor increases, plus an entire season of either a healthy Tuch or VO at his side, will have everyone excited by year's end. 30-40-70.

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I picked 65ish because my brain tells me that just seems to be the most logical choice.

But from what my eyes saw since the calendar turned, the first option would not surprise me in the slightest, assuming good health and good linemates.

Tage is a character guy with talent and a unique, hard-to-defend skill set, now that he’s finally figured out how to use it.

All the criticisms amount to “he wasn’t that good before” and completely discount how good - not lucky, good - he was last year.

I believe in development. I think he’s for real.

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I said legit #1C.  I think he's young and improving, he's got a great attitude and is hungry, he's going to get #1C ice time and deployment, including PP, he's going to have very good offensive support from his linemates, D and coach, and he has a significant bag of skillz.

I think 40-40-80 is very much on the table.

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I thought we did Tage already? 

 

I vote 1.5.  Maybe not quite a ppg average yet, but more points than last year, plus better overall game and better faceoffs. 

 

He can score goals and he creates matchup problems.   Playing center has opened up more possibilities for him. 

 

 

 

Edited by Pimlach
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He ain’t putting up point a game. 

I almost said 65 points, I do believe he is/that represents a first line C. Really, I feel like it’s a negligible toss-up between that and option 3, the slight “step back”. If he did step back, he probably gets back to 65+ again soon. He could even get to 80 at some point. But no I don’t see him BEING a point-a-game guy, so predicting him to go 1-for-1 in achieving that mark, specifically next year, I don’t see it. At some point in the next 3 seasons? I can see it. 

As mentioned, I think 50/50 between another ~ 65 pointer and a 50s step back. His shooting % probably goes down a bit. I don’t buy the argument for a solitary second that Tage (or the Sabres for that matter) was already getting the best effort from opposing teams last year (No, I don’t care if he was seeing the best players from the other teams on the majority of occasions. The other teams have to match up their top dudes against *someone*. Whale of difference between that and a team, and coach, actively *game planning* against a guy.)

I voted the small step back option but I won’t view that as a disappointment at all. His contract (which doesn’t kick in until the following year anyway) will still be fair (as a baseline) going forward, and could still be a bargain. With good depth high 50s is still a first line C I believe.

Edited by Thorny
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As much as it's hard to say this after all these years, I trust the current Sabres brass.  They are not just throwing money around for no reason.  Thompson did not need to be extended as early as he was.  They did it for a reason.  They have seen enough in practice, in games, and off the ice to feel that such a huge extension was warranted.  Unlike the recent past (see Skinner, Jeff), this was not a contract made out of desperation, it was one made out of a well-thought out process.  The guys in charge who evaluate hockey talent believe that making this investiment in Thompson was a wise one, so I'm going to agree that he's going to be a good player for a long time and not a 1 year wonder.  (And, for the record, I voted 1st line/65 points, because I'm very pragmatic).

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27 minutes ago, msw2112 said:

As much as it's hard to say this after all these years, I trust the current Sabres brass.  They are not just throwing money around for no reason.  Thompson did not need to be extended as early as he was.  They did it for a reason.  They have seen enough in practice, in games, and off the ice to feel that such a huge extension was warranted.  Unlike the recent past (see Skinner, Jeff), this was not a contract made out of desperation, it was one made out of a well-thought out process.  The guys in charge who evaluate hockey talent believe that making this investiment in Thompson was a wise one, so I'm going to agree that he's going to be a good player for a long time and not a 1 year wonder.  (And, for the record, I voted 1st line/65 points, because I'm very pragmatic).

I agree with all of this except the usage of "pragmatic" here.

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1 hour ago, sweetlou said:

With a more rounded team, I see him getting 30+45=75pts

I wonder if a deeper team doesn’t negatively impact his scoring stats.  He won’t be leaned on quite as heavily if the others around him take a step up.

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1 hour ago, Weave said:

I wonder if a deeper team doesn’t negatively impact his scoring stats.  He won’t be leaned on quite as heavily if the others around him take a step up.

This is possible, but Thompson was not getting excessive ice time or anything like that.  Less than 18mins per game, which has to be low for a “1st liner”.  Sabres ran a pretty flat ice time distribution.

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On 9/16/2022 at 1:16 PM, dudacek said:

Gotta say the poll is tilting way more to the optimistic side than I expected - maybe because it’s been one of the lowest in terms of voters.

This is the trend with the majority of the polls, no? 

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43 minutes ago, Thorny said:

This is the trend with the majority of the polls, no? 

I think so, at least that the polls are trending optimistic. I kinda expected that overall, but not so much with Tage.

Gonna do a wrap/review when they're done in a week or two.

Just Peterka Bryson Tuch and Bjork to go, unless people really want Riley Sheahan thread.

Edited by dudacek
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6 minutes ago, dudacek said:

I think so, at least that the poll are trending optimistic. I kinda expected that overall, but not so much with Tage.

Gonna do a wrap/review when they're done in a week or two.

Just Peterka Bryson Tuch and Bjork to go, unless people really want Riley Sheahan thread.

If you’re doing Bjork, may as well do Sheahan.

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I expect more of the same from TNT. His shot is explosive, his work ethic is off the charts and his give a ***** level is on par with the new attitude around the team. 

I think TNT will lead the team in goals while slightly improving his faceoff rate. 

The prideful husband and father has alot of reasons to play well these days and i'm looking forward to it. 

 

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26 minutes ago, dudacek said:

I think so, at least that the polls are trending optimistic. I kinda expected that overall, but not so much with Tage.

Gonna do a wrap/review when they're done in a week or two.

Just Peterka Bryson Tuch and Bjork to go, unless people really want Riley Sheahan thread.

Oh nice, looking forward to it 

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1 hour ago, Taro T said:

Expecting we see ~65 points again.  Low 70's is possible, as is sliding back, but with the expectation they'll be pretty much rolling 3 or 4 lines 65 seems about right.

Also, expect he'll be the top line C by 5v5 ice time.

Gotta be. Honestly we have to thank our lucky stars for that emergence, as fans. Without his performance last season, there are probably numerous discussions around here about where we are going to find a 1C, and if we even have a player who projects to that within the system. 

Instead, as of now we get to have the more fun conversation centring around our seeming abundance of potential 2Cs to fill the other C spots. 

Edited by Thorny
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