(Ed Note: I'm putting this on the front page because this can be the place to discuss Franzen. Love him or hate him, he's pretty polarizing right now, and everyone's got an opinion. Feel free to share yours in the comment. - Graham)
Since I'm usually the eternal optimist around these parts, this may be a bit jarring for some. Let me lay it out for you what's been bugging me. It's like a broken record. No complaining is going to change any situation or player. Let's face it, you know who I'm talking about. He's our Mule. He can be a goal scorer and contributes on the top lines more often than not. There are times when he disappears, only to reappear and take over a period. That's just how it goes.
Now, I was asked to post this so that I wouldn't have to keep posting replies to people in the game thread.
NOTE: Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and I will not try to keep you from having it. That's NOT the point of this post. It's just, I get tired of hearing the same old, rehashed and tired arguments over and over again. Franzen may be a loafer, but he's OUR loafer who can score goals. He's a part of Kenny's game plan. Get used to seeing him around. He's been here for how long and I still hear this argument? You don't get 9 GWG by riding pine, sitting in the Leino lounge, or by skating around waiting for Datsyuk to just pass to you. One has to have SOME sort of talent. I will not deny that Franzen doesn't give 100% all the time, but read on to hear me out... or not if I've already offended you. Warning: No pretty pictures beyond this point.. just me whining about others whining.
THE MULE DOESN'T CARE WHAT WE THINK...
FRANZEN IS NOT GOING TO SIT, GET TRADED, OR GET DEMOTED PAST THE 2ND LINE!
Whew! Glad we got that one out of the way... Let's face it...It’s not gonna happen. Franzen is a typical goal scorer.. he loafs, but I’ve not seen players that go all out that also have a tendency to score goals and last very long. Hell, if we could cut his hands off and sew them on Helm, I’d be all for it. The reality is that we’re lucky that Franzen isn’t on IR or hurt like years past. He scored a goal tonight (against Phoenix) by being in the right place… that’s what he does. He scores and goes quiet. Franzen will never score 40 goals and is streaky… that’s what he is. We need to accept him for what he is instead of just bitching about what we want him to be. Now, having read that, are you still with me?
YOU GOT TWO OPTIONS!
Okay. We all have two options for dealing with the Franz or Mule... whatever you want to call him... and one of them is accepting… he is what he is. We see loafing, but we don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes. Who knows? I’m personally just glad he’s not on IR and IS still out there drawing guys to himself. That's an important thing. When he’s went cold, guess who has heated up?… Bertuzzi. It’s just what happens. I said it on NOHS as well. When Flip went silent on the line with Z, guess who heated up... Hudler. This sort of thing goes on back and forth with this team, why should this year be any different? It's the same as any other year. Scoring is cyclical in nature and it's all about trying to ride the cycle for as long as possible to maintain consistency.
BUT JOSH, HE'S NOT GIVING 100%!
About loafing... this is one thing I don't understand when people constantly complain. You are justified in your argument if it was an EVERY night thing and he was just there taking up space. Unfortunately, it isn't. Instead it seems like it creeps up and gets talked about. It's an argument that just keeps surfacing when we lose about various players on the team... Mainly our man in question: Franzen.
Quick Question: Do you give 100% at your job all the time? I’m sure there are times someone would look at you and claim you’re loafing as well.
To summarize, Franzen is not 3rd line bad and he’s not going to the Leino Lounge. PERIOD. Let’s get out of imaginary land and just accept the Mule for what he is… frustrating but someone who can get the job done when we least expect it. He’s being paid for what he is. We aren’t paying him 7-8 million per year to score 50 goals and him only score 20. We’re paying him $3,954,545 per year if you average it out before bonuses and that crap... and he’s contributing on a balanced team the way the system is designed to work. I guess I'm taking crazy pills to just accept that Holland looks at the big picture better than I.
IT'S A MARATHON... AM I WINNING?
That's really all I have to say. I didn't feel terrible about the loss tonight. I'm not going to push a panic button on Joey Mac or Franzen or even that crazy loafer Pavel Datysuk (what a dumpster fire of a night THAT guy had) for a terrible game (not that I think it was their most terrible). Nope, I'm just gonna sit back and wait to the next game. It's a marathon to the end, not a sprint race. Players and coaches know this. Fans forget it and live in the moment. Think what you will, but some of these old, tired arguments just need to be put 6 feet under. I think the Franzen complaint is one of them... laugh, cuss, and/or discuss.
The other J guy,
PS (Doesn't this argument remind you of the recurring argument over whether Ozzy played 100% all regular season long when he was around? Now that he's gone, I don't hear that one as much.)
PPS (How badass is it that we can complain about a 1st line guy that's got 43 points and might be having a career year? Also, in other news, the Wings are still leading the Central.)