We used to be such a fast team and watching the last few games and other teams around the NHL, we're not that fast anymore. I often break down skating in 3 categories : top speed, acceleration (explosivness) and quickness/agility/foot speed (think of getting to lose pucks in a faceoff circle). If you breakdown players by players; F: Patches: Very fast, Very good, average Eller: Good, good, good Galchenyuk: average, average, average (getting better and better) Gallagher: Above average, above average, very good Plek: Good but lost a step IMO, good, good Gionta: Fast but lost a step or two, pretty good, pretty good Bournival: Very fast, very fast, very fast (he's a heck of a skater) DD: above average, above average, pretty good Bourque: Fast, average, slow Moen: average to under average in all categories for me White: same thing Prust and BriÃ¨re: Average in every categories Forward group is quite alright given you have MaxPac in it. D: Markov: Average at best Diaz: average, average, fast Subban: do I even need to? Gorges: getting slower and slower Bouillion: Above average in all Tinordi: Good, slow, slow Emelin: Good, under average, under average Murray: need to see him play this season but not exactly fast Beaulieu: Pretty good skater but lack a bit of top speed Drewwisky: LOL Other than Subban we barely have any D's that can follow fast forwards. Hence why they constantly cheat back to not get caught on a forward going wide and then giving the blue line so easily for the attacking team. Yeah, they'll stop the forward (beside Diaz) but when you do so in your zone, you still give the chance for possession time every single time instead of forcing a dump-in at the blue line or creating offsides. On the other hand, when is the last time you saw a forward going wide and beating a D cleanly besides Gally and Patches? Plek and Gionta used to create so much havok doing so in previous years. Fact is we have a small team that won't always be out-skating the opposition. This defense will get cut in pieces by the Sharks saturday. Let's hope they go out the night before.