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Everything posted by top-shelf-1

  1. I'll just add that the Jersey goal I referenced may technically satisfy the definition of a royal road play because the puck crossed our zone, but I think of that play more in terms of one where you establish possession and move the puck around to open up that play. This goal came in transition and resulted entirely from our D overplaying their zone entry on the right wing (our D's left side). We just totally ignored the other side of the zone. As Jersey's trailer crossed the blue line I said, "watch the far side," and a second later he had the puck. A second after that, it was in the net.
  2. I posited a few days ago that our D is trying to replace the O it got from Dougie, which it simply isn't going to do. And I thought it could help if Peas and Carrots were put back together, to model what good defense looks like to the other pairs, because with TT, Aho and Svech finally together, the D doesn't need to replace Dougie's points. So the answer to your question is, I'm not sure. The D lapses could be due to still trying too hard to contribute, or to becoming lax about upholding basic best D practices--like not getting back so deep in your own zone that you give away the blue line, and having your head on a swivel make sure the far side is covered. But whatever the cause, after the drubbing we got in Dallas from an offensively challenged team, and the really crappy puckhandling of Friday, I hope that we will see some of the tightest D and best possession today that we have all year, because time's a-wastin' to get into stretch drive form. It could also be that other teams are defending it well, because both TT and Aho scored a ton of goals on that play last season. Plus guys are def getting out on Svech regularly when he gets the puck at the top of the circle, mainly because he's wristing it. I'd like to see him start one-timing it a la Ovi, because dusting it off and taking those two strides to flex his shaft (now THAT sounds dirty!) is what's giving the D time to get there. I get the advantage of a wrister's silence that Tripp is constantly going on about, but it's obvious you're getting the puck to Svech in that location so he'll shoot it. So one-time it, and let them try to catch up to it.
  3. Was in the house last night. Takeaways: - Petr was much quieter in the crease and it showed. - The D has fallen into some bad laziness. Jersey's first goal resulted purely from guys not looking at the weak side to see if anyone's lurking. And we give up our own blue line far too easily. And because of that, the middle opens up. Big, really big gaps. That shiz won't fly tomorrow. - Sloppiest stickhandling and possession game we've played in a while, and that's saying something, because our control of the neutral zone has been on and off all year, but has been off consistently now for about four straight. Not a crisp pass between the blue lines all night. - And the power play... eeesh. On the scoreboard we beat them easily, but this was a game where the wave should have been rolling around the arena by the mid-second, and Mrazek saw about 15 shots all night. If the guys come out like that tomorrow, it won't be pretty.
  4. Totally chicken and egg, but if I had to pick the trigger it was Dougie's injury--or maybe it was the ASG/bye week? Since its very good performance in the three games immediately after Dougie went down (OT loss and two wins against very good teams, the Isles and Jets, to get them to the long break), to my eye at least, the D's gotten increasingly sloppy, game by game. Since the break, even in wins, there are long periods of defensive malaise, and I mean from the forwards on back. And I think once a keeper makes several bacon-saving stops per game and the team doesn't make his job easier, he feels like he has to look as big as possible to shooters from every angle. That means coming out of the crease, and when you do it on the more acutely angled shots, you have to get all the way to the other post, not just across the crease but across the ice between you and the crease (thanks to leaving it), if the opposition changes the field of attack, of the pucks in the net. And no keeper can be that on, when he's facing 35 shots a night. Tripp always talks about keepers being quiet in their movements. Petr is the opposite of that, and Reimer isn't far behind, although his size lets him get away with it more often. Petr is smaller and has to be perfect to make some saves that look almost routine when James makes them in the same situation. But regardless who's in net, the D needs to step it up. They're pretty much MIA.
  5. Maybe because Petr's the one playing the games? I'm sure they've covered it, but the whole D side of things is discombobulated since Doug went down, running around in its own end. That shiz is catching, and Petr's been infected.
  6. I'm good with them too. It's no coincidence that the keeper concerns here surfaced in earnest after Dougie went down. The D has scrambled as much as Petr, and it's shown on the scoreboard. If they'll just get back to their game--and I absolutely believe that reuniting Peas and Carrots would help that happen--nobody'd be the least bit concerned about our keepers. Slavin/Pesce Gardiner/Fleury Ed/TVR McKeown
  7. Goaltending can absolutely make the difference in teams winning the Cup, but you still have to make the saves when it counts most. Irbes' one-year GAA in the '02 playoffs was 1.67, good for 53rd all-time for one playoff season. Hasek's GAA of 1.87 that year is only good for 87th all-time. But we all know which team won the Cup.
  8. He also knew the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning. Speaking of Twain, if you haven't seen it, this is the funniest thing you'll see this week, guaranteed (wait for it):
  9. Yeah, I don't think Ned is in the cards this season barring... well, you know, that thing that begins with the letter i that I'm not about to think, let alone type. And Bean and Geekie (the latter espcially) have some minuses to turn into plusses. But Roland just keeps rollin' along, and we sure could use a stay-at-home guy to remind people what smart pinches look like. Edit to add, I think guys on the back end are feeling like they have to pick up Dougie's loss in the O-zone, and that's admirable, but is leading to some bad decisions.
  10. Talk about seeing-eye goals and prayers from downtown answered. We've got winning ugly down. It'd be nice to see a little domination again, but I'm not sure we can muster it without Doug. I'd really like to see McKeown about now.
  11. I really don't care what he said, I care what actually happens on the ice, and what has actually happened when these guys are together is that pucks tickle the twine. That whole secondary scoring thing is straight outta the Peters playbook, and Roddy needs to get over it. When one line shows that it can catch fire, you leave it together--and you leave it together even after it cools off, because if you don't, they never learn how to work through the tough times that all lines go through, based on their particular strengths. Plus, keeping them together when they cool off forces other lines to pick up the slack. Some have complained that Rod's job is to motivate the players and he hasn't done it, but I've always maintained that the door to motivation is locked from the inside. All a coach can do is create the conditions that help individuals unlock that door. We have enough of a sample now to know that these three belong together. Hopefully Roddy is smart enough to let them settle in and work through the inevitable slack times, and to push the other nine forwards to contribute. That's how you get secondary scoring--not by keeping a line made in heaven busted up. How many years have we all been saying that we need a big winger who can impose his will to play with our smaller skill guys? Well, we've finally got him... and we're going to keep the three apart in the pursuit of "secondary scoring"-- even when we're not getting primary scoring? I sure hope not.
  12. It just sounds so... Bill Peters. Will the real Roddy B please stand up?
  13. It's official. He's schizophrenic.
  14. It's 3-2 with a nine-day break in the mix since Dougie's injury, and all those games were against very good teams. These guys can play with any team in the league when they choose to, but too often, enough of them look just disinterested enough to ensure a loss instead.
  15. To be clear given the parallel conversation, I'm not calling for Roddy's head. I just want him to use the one he's got once in a while and overrule his assistants. I love his loyalty to his people, but sometimes they're just wrong.
  16. I don't agree with much else above, but by all means, Rod should have pulled Mraz after the third goal last night. Even though he was battling and made a great initial save on that--and the D absolutely was responsible for that goal, when your keeper makes a desperation save you have to bail him out by clearing both traffic and the rebound (and three guys were there but couldn't manage to do that)--you take him out to wake up the skaters and preserve his confidence. Really poor coaching decision. When it got to 4-1, I went back to binging "Fargo." If you allow the goal difference get to 3 in the barn of the defending champs, you're going to lose the hockey game.
  17. MISSING: The Canes that actually gave a *edit* every time out. It's really that simple. There's not a damned thing wrong with this team that hard work can't cure, they proved that against the 'Nucks, but I get this sense that they feel like it's okay to take a night off after a hard-won game like that one, and in November or even early December, doing it won't hurt you. But wake up and smell the coffee boys. It's February.
  18. "It didn't stick too well in our opinion"??? I guess Roddy doesn't consider SCORING as "sticking together." Whatever, coach.
  20. Aho's gotta roof that shot all night long. C'mon.
  21. I've admitted that Necas is more ready than I thought. But I don't think Rod would tolerate this many weak clears from an AHL call-up.
  22. We look less interested after nine days off than we did before vacation. That's never good.
  23. Unfortunately he shot more from the slot that night--9-some seconds--than in all his other NHL games to date. Combined.
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