Some of my buddies I was with in Ottawa this weekend said that when comparing PK Subban and Erik Karlsson, it’s ridiculous to even talk about. It’s a no-brainer. Karlsson is way better.
Do you feel that?
These are two different defensemen. Karlsson methodically takes control, makes the plays, and is always dangerous. When he came back from his injury last year, he wasn’t overly impressive, but before that he was a major force on all parts of the ice, especially in enemy zone, and he gets back smartly the way Bobby Orr used to.
P.K. is a whirling dervish and dangerous in his own right. Full steam ahead, flamboyantly possessed, with the enthusiasm of a kid playing on the pond. He skates like the wind, has the big shot, and plays like he’s about to physically explode. He rushes and gets back quickly too, but he seems to end up on the ice more, makes more mistakes, and isn’t the cool cucumber Karlsson is.
Is it better to have a special player like Karlsson – smart, in control, often dangerous, and a guy who seems to do everything well? Or like P.K., who raises fans out of their seats with his dynamic rushes and bone crunching open-ice bodychecks, who’s the big man on the power play, the one who on most nights creates a buzz in the rink like no other player?
One of my friends complained about P.K.’s habit of submarining people. And my brother also said recently that what he didn’t like about Subban was his turtling and lack of enthusiasm when it came time to drop the gloves.
Are these valid points?
What if P.K. corrects a few things here and there and becomes even more dynamic? What if he wins the Norris again? What would my friends say?
My wish is this. Along with being such a media darling and doing a great job on sports panels, I wish P.K. would take boxing lessons and show the hockey world he’s added fighting finesse to his arsenal. Maybe George Chuvalo can put him in touch with someone.
I don’t know what Karlsson can do in the fisticuffs department. Can he scrap?
I’m anxious to see how both young stars develop. C’mon P.K., I gotta deal with these Sens fans. Help me out here.
Tale of the Tape
24 years old. 6′ 206 lbs, has played 3 full seasons, 202 games, with 32 goals, 82 assists, 302 PIM.
23 years old. 6′, 175 lbs, 3-plus seasons, 233 games, with 43 goals, 120 assists, 124 PIM.