By any measure Marc Pouliot’s NHL career has been disappointing. His injuries were myriad and his successes few. He was passed over, he was sent down, he was benched, he was forgotten. This season (a year in which opportunity once again came knocking courtesy injury) Pouliot was injured very early and gave his coach a chance to say “pubis thing” in public.
After a long layoff Pouliot has been able to play in pro games, scoring well in the AHL and then coming along nicely after his recall. His peformance last night (the Carolina announcers were especially smitten) reminded some of us about Pouliot’s original scouting report and those early flashes of brilliance (especially passing skills).
David Staples commented this morning about my long held belief that Pouliot was a player and my recent suggestion the Oilers move along. I’m still a believe in Pouliot’s game (said so in the post just linked to) but he’s had a lot of opportunities to establish himself without success. His three issues are consistency, intensity and injury.
If the Edmonton Oilers decide Pouliot is their 3rd line center for 10-11 and he gets hurt again then where are they? Nowhere man. Type “Marc Pouliot Injury” and Mr. Google gives you 321,000 results. The known history of Marc Pouliot’s injuries:
- February 2003: Injured in Top Prospects game by a vicious and clean hit from Dion Phaneuf. Like concussion.
- August 2003: Injured at the Canadian World Junior Camp in Calgary (it was a hip).
- November 2003: Injured in a QMJHL game (abdominal) and had to have surgery in summer 2004.
- 2003-04: Played several weeks with a broken wrist before shutting it down.
- April 2006: Mono.
- December 2008: Concussion.
- October 2009: Pubitis.
I’m a Marc Pouliot fan and I’m cheering like hell that he’ll establish himself even at this late date. Having said that, the Oilers are off the hook starting now, and if they send him down the road this summer no one can say he didn’t get his 550 at-bats to show his ability. From fall 2005 through this day, it hasn’t been enough and that’s a long look.