Okay, say what you want about him off the ice, or as a human. Dislike him for whatever reason, but you cannot deny that when he is on the ice, Tony DeAngelo is an asset you want your team to have. A premier puck-moving defenseman, he proved tonight why the Carolina Hurricanes took the risk to bring him in.
Quarterbacking the first powerplay unit and recording two assists, DeAngelo played a part in both powerplay goals to put the game beyond the reach of the New York Islanders. Now, we can sit here and talk about his issues, but he was a major part of the Canes victory last night. We know that he’s got character issues.
His puck-moving was everything the Canes wanted it to be when they brought him in. He’s got all the hallmarks of a premier blueliner, and as difficult as that will be for some people to admit, you cannot deny it. You can appreciate the player while hating the man, and he is certainly a very gifted player with his passing.
I mean, when we talk about pure passing range, that pass to Svechnikov for the empty-net goal from corner blueline across the neutral zone to the door of the Islander bench, that’s exactly why he was brought into the team. He caught the Islanders too far up the ice and allowed the team to rage behind them on the counter charge.
With 5 shots, a block, and a HUGE hit on the powerplay chasing back on a breakaway, it was a fairly spectacular debut for the disgraced former Ranger. When he took to the ice tonight, you could feel that he had a point to prove. He’s showing that he wants to prove to the people that removed him from New York that they were wrong to do so, and with his talent, he’s got the tools to make some people look very foolish.