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SYLVESTER'S BLOG: HECHT THE RIGHT CHOICE

Monday, 02.04.2008 / 3:34 PM / Blogs - Kevin Sylvester
By Kevin Sylvester  - Sabres "Hockey Hotline" Host
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SYLVESTER\'S BLOG: HECHT THE RIGHT CHOICE
Shootout host Kevin Sylvester is a veteran journalist in radio, television and print media.  From time to time, Sylvester will be taking time out of  his busy schedule to post entries in his blog or answer fan questions.Click here to send Sylvester a question

 
Jochen Hecht (photo: Getty Images)
Lindy Ruff named Jochen Hecht the captain for the month of February, making Hecht the first repeat captain this season.  

This move did not surprise me at all.  I actually told some colleagues last week that I thought Jochen would get the nod again.  

Why?  

When you think about it, the answers are obvious...

Jochen Hecht is exactly what the Sabres need going into the biggest month of the season.  He’s consistent.  Hecht is the definition of a true professional.  He works hard night in and night out, doesn’t get emotional, is an excellent defensive forward and will do whatever is asked of him.  Just look at what he did in January (team-record aside).  

Hecht moved to center in the wake of injuries to Roy and Connolly, and you could make a case for him to stay there.  He has created real chemistry with Clarke MacArthur and Jason Pominville.  Tell me you haven’t liked the play of that line over the past four games or so.  They draw the top defensive assignment and still have managed to produce highlight-reel goals (see the first 2 in Tampa) with odd man rushes.  Hecht also has more ice to cover in that position, but he said after today’s practice that it’s not as tiring on the legs as playing winger where you start and stop on the wall all night long.  The freshness shows in ice time as he’s been over 22:00 in each of the last four games.  His performance hasn't been all roses, as he needs to improve his face off percentage, which has been below 40% in three of the last four games.  

 WANT MORE CONTENT?

Listen to Jochen Hecht talk about being selected captain for the second time this season.

Hecht Interview 
There are other players who would have been a good choice or will be a good choice in the future.  I can easily picture Derek Roy or Paul Gaustaud wearing the ultimate letter on their sweater someday.   

Not yet... Not this month anyway.  

The Sabres have 14 games in 25 days, with 10 of them at home.  A total of 13 games are against Eastern Conference opponents.  Throw the trade deadline in at the end of the month, and you have one big pressure cooker for a team that is sitting on the outside looking in right now.  

That’s a lot to handle.  

Hecht gives off the impression that he can handle anything as he goes about his business.  And that’s probably the biggest reason why he has the “C” again this month.  

Who knows, he may not give it back.  

Kevin Sylvester 
 



To see more posts on Sylvester's blog, visit its index page.

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EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
C. Hodgson 72 20 24 -26 44
T. Ennis 80 21 22 -25 43
D. Stafford 70 16 18 -19 34
C. Ehrhoff 79 6 27 -27 33
C. Stewart 63 15 11 0 26
C. Conacher 79 7 19 1 26
T. Myers 62 9 13 -26 22
Z. Girgensons 70 8 14 -6 22
M. Foligno 74 7 12 -17 19
J. McBain 69 6 11 -13 17
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
M. Neuvirth 4 8 2 .921 2.78
J. Enroth 4 17 5 .911 2.82