The Importance of a good Stay-At-Home Defenseman

It’s vital for a National Hockey League team to have a couple of good stay-at-home defenseman in their lineup.

A stay-at-home defenseman is a d-man who has a defense first attitude, will rarely join an offensive rush, and does not pinch in the offensive zone. These are the guys you don’t see scoring too many points, but can hold together a defensive unit and get a team to the playoffs.
Just to give some examples of their importance:

1) Dallas Stars – once a team that you couldn’t find outside of the top 3 in the conference year after year, this year they are struggling to hold onto the 8th playoff spot. Main reason…loss of Derian Hatcher, one of the best stay-at-home defenseman in the league.

2) New Jersey Devils – Their success over the past decade has revolved around a good defensive core and great goaltending. Great stay-at-home defenseman such as Scott Stevens and Ken Daneyko are the reason this team has been able to win championships.

3) New York Rangers – Their recent playoff skid can be directly attributed to a lack of cohesion on defense. Guys like Jeff Beukeboom and Doug Lidster helped them win the cup in 94. Their recent skid can be directly attributed to the losses of Greg DeVries and Darius Kasparaitis. The recent addition of Jamie Pushor was a good move by Sather.

Any others you would like to share??