I thought it was fair to ask Lombardi about the free-agent signings he made last summer, and his analysis of the players. He forgot to mention Nagy, and I forgot to follow up on it because we got off on a different subject. Anyway, here’s what he had to say:
“Michal Handzus, we expected him to be better. He started skating better in the second half. He’s not the fleetest afoot anyway. He got himself in a rut and started pressing. He’d be the first to tell you he wasn’t
where he expects to be. Until the last couple months his skating wasn’t where he expected to be. Next year, I expect him to be more like we expected him to be when we got him.
“Stewy (Brad Stuart) did what we expected. Wasn’t any more, wasn’t any less. Plays hard.
“Calder, he was probably a little below where i expected. He started out really well and then tapered off. In terms of what Kyle is, hes that gritty third-line player. He’s a good fit in the right mix. Again, these aren’t the guys you were expecting to turn this around.
“Preissing, maybe you expected more in terms of numbers. He got more confident with the puck. I think he was probably sub-prime early but you’re starting to see it. Is it way out of line with what you expected? Not really. When you have to bring in players to fill this many holes, it’s not good.”