Is Mr. Robinson in the neighborhood?
I presume time will only tell in about four months, as the big man had an up and down year playing in Binghamton.
Charles Robinson III, or affectionately known as 'Buddy', will be entering his final year coming up in the 2015-'16 season of a three-year entry-level deal reached in Mar of 2013, as the free agent was signed after participating in two years at Lake Superior State University of the CCHA.
The 23-year-old Bellmawr, NJ native had tallied 12 goals and 21 assists in 75 games this past season for the Senators as he made an impact specializing on the penalty kill while using his long reach with stick in hand at times resembling in what best describes as of a human octopus. However, his +10 was way off the mark of a previous high of +23 in 2013-'14 (15 goals and 16 assists in 69 games) that featured him playing along side of several players that are now up in Ottawa in his defense.
At a lumbering 6' 5" 235 lbs, he is surprisingly quick on his feet, otherwise known to be a defensive type of forward as at times he stumbles a bit on the offense featuring some stone hands and let's face it, he's not the best puck carrier by a mile. No not that type of Mark Stone set of hands, but just the opposite as he opts to hurry the shot too often in panic mode instead of letting the play develop around him for a greater offensive opportunity. Perhaps that's on the coaching staff telling him to release the puck quickly for his lack of finesse with the biscuit.
However, he does possess tremendous speed for a player that has rather gigantic proportions on the ice that you cannot miss, even when you are reaching for another handful of popcorn sitting by your spouse or best buds enjoying the game.
Robinson also toned it down from the fisticuffs from last year, which is admirable because he's not very good at it (I think Ryan Dzingel could take him. Seriously.) as evident with this late season match against Steven Delisle of the Lehigh Valley Phantoms.
Robinson ended the season playing on the third line along with Alex Guptill and Dzingel up the middle. He also was seen on the wing with Derek Grant at center on the second line as Luke Richardson mixed his line-ups quite frequently in finding the right chemistry all season long.
He was slated to be first in line for the next call-up to get a look in Ottawa after Matt Puempel before the Senators incredible run in making the post season, which held him back unfortunately. It would have been interesting to see how Dave Cameron in executing his plans for the big fellow.
Perhaps next season.
Still though, his talents on the penalty kill and big body could raise some eyes up in Ottawa as he excelled being paired up with another PK specialist in Grant on the first unit. Robinson had numerous shorthanded scoring threats creating center ice turnovers galore which tied him for the club lead with Jean-Gabriel Pageau with three tallies.
But the bottom line is this. The weakness with Buddy's overall game is he's too soft.
Robinson needs to start showing some grit and to begin utilizing his body more often while getting dirty in the corners which is sorely lacking, kinda like what David Dziurzynski does as the best grinder that the team currently offers. I've lost count on how many people that also share the same sentiments in my everyday travels.
Next season he's locked in by way of contract, but without some better results on the offense, his defense will remain the key factor in moving forward, and to be honest, it's rather a slim margin if that's his only strong point other then killing penalties with Grant being the best in that department for a future career in the NHL.
It is what it is from this fan's POV. I haven't given up on Buddy just yet, but he has to dig deeper next year.
*Cover Pic & Insert Courtesy of Alicia Strauch
**Include in your comment's what player you think should be next in the B-Sens profile series running all summer long.