Today a final review of defenseman of Chris Campoli.
Going into 2007-08 was far different for Chris Campoli then his previous season where he had to win over a new coach and earn back his spot. He had won over both the coach and general manager to where he was signed to a three year contract extension despite a lot of injuries the previous season but proved he could play steady when he was healthy.
Chris Campoli started 2007-08 with some big goals early, but what most impressive to me was his ability to step up and throw a hit at the right time that would not be a penalty and not lead to a mistake/turnover which was something he seemed more polished at doing. He was paired with Bruno Gervais and did a very soild job in all three zones as he displayed a nice level of maturity in his game.
Campoli has always had excellent offensive intincts as to when to pinch and gamble to force a play. This year I not only saw that but more of those inctincts translated to his defensive game. He seemed to not get rattled by Mike Sillinger getting animated with him in Tampa during a powerplay in overtime against the Lightning where Sillinger scored a game winning goal.
Overall his strong offensive start in terms of statistics did not continue nor did it seem like he could help the club on the powerplay in terms of being a quarterback he did not step up and take the spot from Bergeron, Berard or anyone else.
Finally in Jaunary it was clear he was making a few mistakes or he was off his game, but he had a shoulder problem, needed surgery but played as long as he could.
Islander have Campoli signed for another two years and seems a big part of the future here but this is a player other teams will be asking about in trades because clearly the offensive/defensive upside and potential are only getting better.
With Kohn, Hillen, Meyer, Gervais, Johnson restricted and even a Berard/Davison to consider resigning a tough choice may have to come here and if the right trade comes to improve the offense does the gm decide to move him?
Fair or not it also has to be asked can Chris Campoli play eight two games or be as durable as he was in his rookie season. He has a lot of the same tendencies as Freddy Meyer who also has a two year contract.
Chris Campoli did a very solid job in 2007-08 and showed a lot of good signs where he is progressing well. It also seemed the opportunity was there for him to step into a powerplay quarterback role and he did not win the spot but overall he showed he's on the right track. He gets a very solid B for his work last season.