Well, Jim Rutherford got his depth defensemen that everyone said he was gunning for at the trade deadline in two separate moves.
So, what do we know about these players? We know that Mark Streit broke his penis or something one time!
Injury Update: Mark Streit will have surgery on Tuesday morning to repair a pubic plate detachment. He is expected to be out for six weeks.— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) November 14, 2015
And we know that Mike Babcock wouldn’t play Frank Corrado over a 94-year old man on the Maple Leafs blue line!
Okay, enough jokes, let’s check in with some friends for real insight on these two players.
Streit has clearly slowed at age-39. While he used to be an above-average puck moving defenseman, his ability to generate zone exits has slipped into mediocre territory over the past two seasons. That's mostly because he's simply not the skater that he once was. Streit can still make passes and move the puck up ice, but he has to rely on his instincts and guile rather than his physical ability. The latter really has never come back since a bizarre pubic plate detatchment injury that he suffered early last season.
Flyers fans have turned Streit into something of a whipping boy this year. He's never been especially fantastic in the defensive zone, and without the puck-moving ability that fans came to expect, it was easy to dwell on his frequent mistakes in the Flyers' end of the ice. However, Streit isn't quite finished yet as a capable NHL blueliner. His 5v5 play-driving metrics are actually decent, and when paired with Ivan Provorov or Radko Gudas, his Corsi For on the year is over 53%. He also remains a weapon once the team is set up in the offensive zone. In addition, his neutral zone defense actually ranked near the top of the Flyers' D, despite Streit clearly looking slower via the eye test. That's a testament to his instincts and his long years of experience in dealing with NHL forwards on the rush.
Basically, he's a defenseman who is still good in two of the three zones, but his weaknesses in his own end make him best suited for a third pair role at this stage of his career. As for special teams, you certainly don't want him on your penalty kill, but Streit can still help out at the point on a PP2. And for what it's worth, he was part of the leadership on the Flyers and is viewed as a high-character player. All in all, Streit isn't the player he was even two years ago (when he was tasked with carrying Nicklas Grossmann and Nick Schultz all year long), but he's still got a bit left in the tank.
Checking in with us, my good friend, and everyone’s favorite Maple Leafs video-rage-yeller, Steve Dangle, from Sportsnet. After the trade I reached out to Steve and asked him, “what should we expect out of Frank Corrado?”
“That's a great question that most Leafs fans would love to have answered themselves.
Corrado was a mystery last season after getting claimed off of waivers from Vancouver, and then he never played. Later in the season, after a game against Vancouver ironically, it was revealed that he was banged up and all that time off was to improve his conditioning. Frankie ends the season playing a bit after the Roman Polak deal and it looked like he might stick the following year.
The Leafs re-signed Frankie and then... proceeded not to use him.
Corrado's AHL numbers this season and previously suggest he can produce a bit but that wasn't really the issue. The Leafs acquired Connor Carrick from the Capitals and he appeared to have higher upside. Roman Polak was then re-signed in the summer. Babcock likes Polak on the PK and while that sounds silly, the Leafs are 9th in the NHL and have been Top 10 most of the season if I remember correctly. Babcock never really trusted Corrado to take on that role and Carrick seems to be a decent fit with Jake Gardiner, so Corrado was the right-handed odd man out. It should be mentioned that at times Babcock would play a lefty like Martin Marincin ahead of Corrado.
I subscribe to the idea that Connor Carrick took a spot away from Corrado more than Roman Polak. Nikita Zaitsev came over from the KHL as an right-handed free agent defender and has performed as well as hoped. One-two-three. Frankie's the odd man out. Claiming Alexei Marchenko was the final nail.
So what should you actually expect out of Corrado? I have no idea. Genuinely, I have no idea. He never played. I cover the Leafs for a living and this clip is all I remember.
Despite eventually speaking out and saying something along the lines of "the coach doesn't like me", Corrado was a good soldier.
He always practiced with a smile.
Frankie Corrado is the last Leaf on the ice. No coaches. No teammates. Just work. pic.twitter.com/Bx1sXQuFBq— Steve Dangle Glynn (@Steve_Dangle) November 17, 2015
It’s hard to say what to expect for these two guys down the stretch and into the playoffs, but it sounds like they both could be good for the team. If you can put them into roles like we saw with Justin Schultz and thriving in the right position, they could work out really well. I’m excited to see what we get from them. Let’s roll.