Player Profile: Luca Sbisa of the Anaheim Ducks
This week, it was nice to see Anaheim Ducks’ defenseman Luca Sbisa subject to a short feature in Orange Coast Magazine discussing his fashion choices with a concise interview. So let’s look at a brief history of the athletic choices of this 23-year-old, and where he will stand for the upcoming twentieth anniversary season for the Ducks.
Sbisa’s career ultimately began during his rookie season for the CHL in 2007-2008 with the Lethbridge Hurricanes where Sbisa scored six goals and 27 assists in 62 games. It was quite a start for the then 18-year-old Sbisa, where he jumped from the CHL to the big league.
Drafted as No. 19 overall by the Philadelphia Flyers in 2008, Sbisa played 39 games with zero goals and seven assists, all while having 36 minutes on the ice. He returned to the Hurricanes to finish the season with four goals and 11 assists. Fan concerns begin here: with stats that show his capabilities, why is he just below par in the NHL? He was traded in 2009 to the Ducks, where he was sent to AHL’s Syracruse Crunch and recalled in 2010. By March 2011, Sbisa singed a four-year $8.7 million contract extension, which may have been too soon to call, but by then he had two goals and nine assists with the Ducks.
During the 2011-12 season, Sbisa stepped up his tactics, playing 80 games with five goals and 19 assists, demonstrating a noticeably different role with his team.
Sbisa moves effortlessly. Some say it’s too effortless, others say he is young and improving. Notice that Sbisa didn’t shine until Bruce Boudreau came in as coach, and demonstrated his capabilities. His solid offensive ability and mobility around the ice is seen as an asset, but his greatest flaw is the lack of consistency and his being less physical than a defender should be.
However with a newly formed Ducks roster, chances are Boudreau will pair Sbisa up with Francois Beauchemin to create a match made in defensive heaven.