Jump to content
The Official Site of the Carolina Hurricanes
Sign in to follow this  
Guest

Post-game analysis, Sept. 16 2007 vs. WSH

Recommended Posts

game analysis:

First, ATTENTION Mr. Grahame... your position is up for grabs, and Leighton is gunning for it! (new suggested nickname for Leighton - "Lightning" - something like 5 saves in 2 seconds... not bad!)

overall: seemed as though the established NHLer's were playing a bit more conservative in the first 2 periods and letting the prospects have their chance to shine (or not) which is nervewracking, but to be expected in a preseason game (after all they are the ones to be evaluated right?)

and did they have to bring back the 2 goal defecit, 3rd period come-back? maybe this is a good omen...

Bright spots(prospects first):

Bayda - someone else has already said it, but it bears repeating - that play freezing the Caps goalie was NHL hightlight reel worthy! played like a true veteran

Babin - can't say enough about this kid, he's the total package - fast, strong on defense, but with an appropriate eye for an offensive chance - had 2 chances early that for lack of a hole in the Caps' goalie could have been goals. Does anybody miss Tanabe now? this kid's play just made their decision to not re-sign Tanabe all make perfect sense...

Sutter - played a good game for his first, but overall looked positionally sound, smart both with and without the puck, fast, and I believe picked up an assist, not bad, but yeah, needs to add some bulk to his frame...

Blanchard - not a bad game, and kudo's for taking on NHL vet Clymer and not being intimidated (fired up the team didn't it?)

Brookbank - looks better being the stay at home back ender, but still got left behind a couple of times

Commodore - did he work on speed skating over the summer, or was it just the long lay-off, or the quality of opposition? but he looks alot faster than he used too be.

Gleason - may he stay healthy this year, 'cause we need that meanness

Seidenberg - played too conservatively in the first 2, but when they stepped it up a notch in the 3rd he really looked better

Stillman - THE ASSASSIN IS BACK! 'nuff said...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's Cole's analysis on the game. I tend to agree with what he said.

"Maybe we quit worrying about making mistakes and quit worrying about what plays we're going to make and just competed," Cole said. "I think there was just too much thinking and not enough competing going on the first two periods. Once we kept it simple and worked hard and tried to muck it up a little bit and get pucks to the net, offense created itself."

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first two periods, the guys looked a lot like they did in 2006-07. Lots of sound and fury, no scoring. Most frustratingly, LOTS of passing the puck around, very little shooting, and nobody in front of the net. I didn't think Johnson was playing spectacular, we simply weren't generating any chances. And Grahame was bad. That first goal was awful - it was a simple flip on goal from the freakin blue line. Someone was racing to try and hold it in the zone, just barely got to it, turned and fired it at the net....and in. VERY soft goal.

Third period looked an awful lot like 2005-06. Suck for two periods, come out like your pants are on fire in the third. They were racing, swarming, crashing...playing really fun to watch hockey and really putting pressure on the goal. We finally got people willing to go to the net, and we were rewarded for crashing aggressively. The third period looked like what it SHOULD look like when Staal, Cole, Williams, and Stiller are playing against scrubs. In short, Cole's comments were spot on - quit trying to be pretty and just start working for pucks and working for position, and pretty happens.

The biggest surprise of the day to me was the atmosphere. It felt like a December game, not a playoff game. Guys were flying around, hitting, the crowd was into it. I was expecting a "skate through" kind of mentality, but it was game on, and it was fun. Was hoping to see more out of Sutter, especially on the kill, which is where I've heard he really shined in international play.

Considering the weaknesses on the blue line discussed ad naseum this off season, I wouldn't be terribly surprised to see a pre-season trade of Grahame plus some other parts to a team that needs a backup G in exchange for either draft picks or a puck moving D man. The fate of the franchise in goal is in Cam Ward's hands, and whether he's got Grahame or Leighton backing him up doesn't matter at this point, IMHO. Grahame's salary ($1.4M) and status as an UFA following this season should make him attractive trade bait.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The first two periods, the guys looked a lot like they did in 2006-07. Lots of sound and fury, no scoring. Most frustratingly, LOTS of passing the puck around, very little shooting, and nobody in front of the net. I didn't think Johnson was playing spectacular, we simply weren't generating any chances. And Grahame was bad. That first goal was awful - it was a simple flip on goal from the freakin blue line. Someone was racing to try and hold it in the zone, just barely got to it, turned and fired it at the net....and in. VERY soft goal.

Third period looked an awful lot like 2005-06. Suck for two periods, come out like your pants are on fire in the third. They were racing, swarming, crashing...playing really fun to watch hockey and really putting pressure on the goal. We finally got people willing to go to the net, and we were rewarded for crashing aggressively. The third period looked like what it SHOULD look like when Staal, Cole, Williams, and Stiller are playing against scrubs. In short, Cole's comments were spot on - quit trying to be pretty and just start working for pucks and working for position, and pretty happens.

The biggest surprise of the day to me was the atmosphere. It felt like a December game, not a playoff game. Guys were flying around, hitting, the crowd was into it. I was expecting a "skate through" kind of mentality, but it was game on, and it was fun. Was hoping to see more out of Sutter, especially on the kill, which is where I've heard he really shined in international play.

Considering the weaknesses on the blue line discussed ad naseum this off season, I wouldn't be terribly surprised to see a pre-season trade of Grahame plus some other parts to a team that needs a backup G in exchange for either draft picks or a puck moving D man. The fate of the franchise in goal is in Cam Ward's hands, and whether he's got Grahame or Leighton backing him up doesn't matter at this point, IMHO. Grahame's salary ($1.4M) and status as an UFA following this season should make him attractive trade bait.

I agree, i don't dislike Grahame but if I were the GM and had to make the call after this game I would do the same thing. I would feel better with Leighton behind Cam and a puck moving D-man and some pics/prospects for Albany.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I agree, i don't dislike Grahame but if I were the GM and had to make the call after this game I would do the same thing. I would feel better with Leighton behind Cam and a puck moving D-man and some pics/prospects for Albany.

after watching Babin and Seidenberg (aka. Der Bergermeister) yesterday I'd say we don't need a puck-moving defenseman... we already got 'em! but I would go for some good prospects or picks

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest

Anybody know Leighton's history? I know the Habs are pretty set in goal with Huet and Halak but where was he before that. I must admit that he was a pleasant suprise and his signing went almost quietly unnoticed. Unlike the Cullen and Hamilton signings. Im curious to his consistency.

I guess we'll see what Crackers is really made of and if he has it in him to battle for the postion. Im sure this is exactly what JR hoped would happen and its really a win-win for us. Either Crackers rises to the occasion and steps up his game, or Leighton out plays him and we have a more solid back up for the season.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest

Anybody know Leighton's history? I know the Habs are pretty set in goal with Huet and Halak but where was he before that. I must admit that he was a pleasant suprise and his signing went almost quietly unnoticed. Unlike the Cullen and Hamilton signings. Im curious to his consistency.

I guess we'll see what Crackers is really made of and if he has it in him to battle for the postion. Im sure this is exactly what JR hoped would happen and its really a win-win for us. Either Crackers rises to the occasion and steps up his game, or Leighton out plays him and we have a more solid back up for the season.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Anybody know Leighton's history? I know the Habs are pretty set in goal with Huet and Halak but where was he before that. I must admit that he was a pleasant suprise and his signing went almost quietly unnoticed. Unlike the Cullen and Hamilton signings. Im curious to his consistency.

I guess we'll see what Crackers is really made of and if he has it in him to battle for the postion. Im sure this is exactly what JR hoped would happen and its really a win-win for us. Either Crackers rises to the occasion and steps up his game, or Leighton out plays him and we have a more solid back up for the season.

we traded for him on draft day and i think it took a little bit to sign him. it will be interesting to see how crackers does next game, will he kick it up a notch or just be trade bait.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
we traded for him on draft day and i think it took a little bit to sign him. it will be interesting to see how crackers does next game, will he kick it up a notch or just be trade bait.

I knew that, I was looking more for some of his play history and experience at the NHL level.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
we traded for him on draft day and i think it took a little bit to sign him. it will be interesting to see how crackers does next game, will he kick it up a notch or just be trade bait.

I knew that, I was looking more for some of his play history and experience at the NHL level.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I knew that, I was looking more for some of his play history and experience at the NHL level.

heard that he had "some flashes of brilliance" backstopping a truly dismal Flyers D last year still managed a .882 GAA and 2-2 record, before that he had played 34 games in 02-03 for the Blachawks (also bad team to have to play goal for) and logged a .900 GAA and a 6-18 record. mostly been a Norfolk with the Admirals, except for a few call-up games in Chicago, and threw down on Cam in 04-05 bench clearing brawl - oh, and played 1 game for the Preds

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Anybody know Leighton's history? I know the Habs are pretty set in goal with Huet and Halak but where was he before that. I must admit that he was a pleasant suprise and his signing went almost quietly unnoticed. Unlike the Cullen and Hamilton signings. Im curious to his consistency.

I guess we'll see what Crackers is really made of and if he has it in him to battle for the postion. Im sure this is exactly what JR hoped would happen and its really a win-win for us. Either Crackers rises to the occasion and steps up his game, or Leighton out plays him and we have a more solid back up for the season.

All I know is what I read on www.tsn.ca, which is where I go for all hockey related news. They've an awesome player profile repository, and according to them, Leighton is 6'3", has an exemplary work ethic and is very fundamentally sound. Under "flaws", it suggests that he must gain some element of consistency in his play, and that his career potential is that of a backup goalie (which is the same a Grahame's). He's been waived by a number of teams, though his career NHL save % is identical to that of John Grahame's (.900), though in an admittedly smaller sample. Seems like the kind of guy who could, quite literally, work his way into Lavi's good graces and be a functional back-up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good game for a first time against another team with younger guys that want to show their stuff. I thought everyone was out there thinking to much on the pass. A few misques in that department, Stillman included. Cracker needs some time in net but better watch out for the #3 guy... Cole & Staal looked good on the line with Stiller. Commie skated well. Game 1 C+

Can not wait until Friday... Went past the RBC today at lunch and felt a strange pull in my stearing, Must have been the wind... :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Good game for a first time against another team with younger guys that want to show their stuff. I thought everyone was out there thinking to much on the pass. A few misques in that department, Stillman included. Cracker needs some time in net but better watch out for the #3 guy... Cole & Staal looked good on the line with Stiller. Commie skated well. Game 1 C+

Can not wait until Friday... Went past the RBC today at lunch and felt a strange pull in my stearing, Must have been the wind... :D

Stillman/Staal/Cole were never on the ice as a line at even strength, but skated w/ Williams and Commodore, Babin or Seidenberg on a PP unit (mostly with Babin). They (plus Williams) skated one on each line w/ 2 prospects, we'd have killed them if we played our #2 line together

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Stillman/Staal/Cole were never on the ice as a line at even strength, but skated w/ Williams and Commodore, Babin or Seidenberg on a PP unit (mostly with Babin). They (plus Williams) skated one on each line w/ 2 prospects, we'd have killed them if we played our #2 line together

Actually Lavi re-united Stillman with Staal/Cole. And put Bayda and Aucoin back together. So toward the last 10 minutes or so of the 3rd till the end of the game we did have our top line along with 2/3rds of Albany's top line (Aucoin/Bayda) together. Lavi wanted a WIN nothing less, so he switched it up. He even put Commodore and Gleason together. Lavi shortened the bench and played his top guys.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

One thing I was a little bit puzzled over was Letowski getting as much PP time as he did. I don't really remember him being used that way last season, but maybe it was an experiement. Or maybe it was just because Lavi was short on veteran forwards in this game.

I liked what I saw out of Leighton most of the time. But oddly, what I didn't like was what got everybody else's attention. That is, that mad game of "Ice Twister" that kept the game at 2-2. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the artistry of it and he kept the puck out -- which is the only thing that really counts -- but I have to wonder how he got in that situation to begin with. It wouldn't have been a reach for him to have wound up in the same situation as Cracker when he gave up his second: Down and out with no chance.

Bayda looked like he really meant business in this one. He put a hit on somebody (I'll have to find my picture of it to find out who) that probably has the guy still trying to suck in oxygen. But remember, this guy got a last-second ticket to Albany last year. He actually made the big club, but a late acquisition left him without a locker. I would not be at all surprised to see much more of him this year -- especially early in the season when Rosie is still on the IRL.

Sutter will be a force in a year or two. But he needs a good bit more beef on that frame first. He can dish out a hit -- we all know that -- but absorbing the energy of multiple hits by NHL sized players with NHL speed is going to cause him problems over the long haul if he doesn't have some more mass to dissipate it. He looked pretty solid positionally and batted .500 in the faceoff circle, which is exactly what you'd hope for in a young forward. He didn't so much stand out from the crowd as blend in with the system -- and that's a lot more important and harder to do.

Babin is another one that I would expect to see make the big club if he (a) stays healthy and (B) gets half a chance. He's the blue line version of Chad LaRose and based on his play yesterday I expect him to be filling the same kind of role within two years.

I'll give Blanchard an A for effort (and guts) in taking on a guy like Clymer, and his timing was good too since -- as someone else already mentioned -- it seemed to give the players and the crowd a jumpstart. But if he's going to make a habit of dancing with the Clymers of the league, he needs to work on his technique. Maybe get some personal instruction form Walker and Gleason (I would add Commodore, but Commie's quite a bit bigger, so his technique would be different). I didn't see how the scuffle got started, but it looked like Blanchard was hanging on for dear life for the first several seconds. He managed to land a few, but he was wa-a-a-y overmatched. All the same, it did have a positive effect. Seeing a skinny kid like that go with a seasoned NHL-er probably inspired a few guys to ratchet things up a notch.

I wish I could have seen Cole's face when he took that boarding call. I can only imagine it because we were on the other side of the rink. But I could see he was concerned that he might've done some damage to whoever that was. But fortunately the guy wasn't hurt and Cole seemed to shake it off. I think everybody knows he wouldn't run a guy like that intentionally, but intentional or not I'm not sure he could deal if he put somebody in the same situation he was in two years ago. Didn't seem to affect his game though -- especially in the OT.

Finally, the cast of characters was different but the script was pretty much the same as the final game of the season last year. I can live with that since we won both times, but it's irksome when a team with this much talent takes that second period siesta. Despite the shortage of shots in the first, I liked what I saw. It seemed like the first 18 minutes and change was all spent in the Caps zone. Of course that's what made giving up that first goal so hard to swallow -- especially when it was really a softie that Cracker would have normally stopped. I'm not concerned with the lack of shots in the first period. It might be expected in the first period of the pre season, and especially with line combinations that haven't worked together for very long.

I'm not giving a grade on the total game -- there's just no point in grading a unit we'll never see during the season. But the individual efforts didn't seem to be lacking anywhere. Special teams -- on paper -- look like they need a lot of work. But special team units need even more time to gel than forward lines or defense pairs. And they're not going to get that chance in the preseason.

This game was just about what I expected it to be, and while there were things I thought could have been better, they certainly weren't bad.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Felt so good to be listening to hockey again. Those 5 months were 5 months too long.

I will be surprised if Grahame gets to keep his back-up position. Leighton was on fire! I'll feel much better knowing that when Cam doesn't play, we'll have a better, solid back-up (sorry to all the Cracker-lovers :rolleyes: ).

Ok, I know Cole is a great player and he's fast and generates goals but he gets penalties at the worst times. And not just in this game where we would have had a man or two man advantage and "There's a penalty coming up on Cole". <_<

Great job to whoever started the fight, it gets the guys and the crowd pumped up.

Great win from behind and can't wait for Friday. As Rick Flair would say, "Whoooooo!" :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Bayda looked like he really meant business in this one. He put a hit on somebody (I'll have to find my picture of it to find out who) that probably has the guy still trying to suck in oxygen. But remember, this guy got a last-second ticket to Albany last year. He actually made the big club, but a late acquisition left him without a locker. I would not be at all surprised to see much more of him this year -- especially early in the season when Rosie is still on the IRL.

Agreed. If Letowski thinks he's a shoe in to fill in while LaRose heals, I think he needs to be introduced to Bayda. I would have thought that with Letowski knowing he's on the outside looking in that he would bring his A game, but I just didn't get that from him. Now Bayda, I got that A game from him.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll try and keep this short. Here we go.

I was hoping to see Grahame come out and show his stuff, but Leighton took all the glory yesterday. I was impressed with Leighton and him "magnet glove". He was very aware of the puck and how far he was out from the goal. I'm looking forward to seeing more of him in the coming season.

I was impressed with Commodore as well. It seems that the summer has given him some time to get things together and he came out solid yesterday! He worked well as a leader on the ice with the new guys. He finished his hits and laid himself down to block the puck. A definite improvement which I hope he carries on into the season!

Noah Babin also caught my attention. He looked quite comfortable out there with the guys and was also very aware of everything that went on down on the ice. I'm hoping he gets a chance with the Canes organization this year.

Brandon Sutter seemed a little intimidated to me. He didn't get in there and fight for the puck as much as I would have liked. Nerves, perhaps? Or a sign that he needs a little more seasoning?

Overall I was impressed with the clean game play. Sure there were kinks that need to be worked out, but the boys seemed confident and ready to play. They made clean passes and had less turnovers than I expected. I'm really optimistic about this season and am keeping my fingers crossed for our guys!

Final Grade: B+ :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Agreed. If Letowski thinks he's a shoe in to fill in while LaRose heals, I think he needs to be introduced to Bayda. I would have thought that with Letowski knowing he's on the outside looking in that he would bring his A game, but I just didn't get that from him. Now Bayda, I got that A game from him.

I've gotta say after watching Trevor for a year now, the only thing he brings us from last year is some excellent work at the end of the season on the PK. We did a disservice bringing him here to in part play center which he has little time at in the NHL. No way he will be on the big team when the puck drops in October. We are one of the deepest teams in the NHL at forward. Just call it a gut feeling but I don't see Trevor making it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good comback although I think it is important to point out one thing about the game.

Washington did not play Ovechkin, Semin, Koslov, and Nylander 4 big names. The biggest problem for us is the fact they did not play there #1 Golie. In some of the message boards people are saying they put in there backup golie in the third. Actually Ollie Kolzig there #1 golie did not make the trip. Johnson is there backup golie the kid in the 3rd period was some 19 year old prospect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Super Stats from Sunday ** http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20072008/ES010005.HTM

**Note #14 was Sutter and not "Rosey Rocks"

Man was it good being back home in the RBC center!

All this was my take from Sunday- Any thoughts?

My Take on the Game & Players:

Game Notes: It was nice seeing the firepower of Stahl, Cole, Stillman, Williams in action. One could make the argument that the victory should have been more assured than a goal in OT with that much firepower.

#11 Williams- Looked as if he was consuming the same rocket fuel that #59 always seems to be on. He played with an intensity one would liken to a playoff contest instead of a pre-season game.

#12 Stahl- Got the first star of the night however he made some really "Rookie" type decisions with the puck and gave it away a few times. One giveaway lead to a Cap score. He only went %50 in the face off circle.

#14 Sutter- Skated hard however his size allowed him to get pushed off the puck. He had limited ice time at 9min and went -2 for the night.

#26 Cole looked good- Took 2 penalties and drew 4. The first of which was a familiar Cole useless penality (thankfully he waited until the 2nd period versus taking one in the first minutes of a game) the second of which was an accidental boarding (If there could be such an accidental thing) where he actually took the time to make sure the kid he hit was alright and spoke with him. He also took a chance on a rush that could have cost him an injury. But thats who Cole is..

#42 Gleason- Solid performance with timely hard hits along the boards. Went -1 for the night and still turned in a respectable performance for the night.

#61 Stillman- Looked fantastic - Consummate professional.

Surprises for the night:

#43 Babin- 20min of ice time made some good choices with the puck and showed promise with his outlet passes. Possibly a positive link on defense. Missed a few chances to lay some timely hits that could have been benificial.

#49 Leighton- Goal tender that plays with an Edge. Made quality saves. He put himself in to a position to possibly dislodge #47 out of the backup spot. Needs to work on his rebound control. A few shots were deflected into bad angles that could have lead to trouble.

Power Play- Unfortunately the boys started out right where they left off last year. The bright point is over the course of the game the power play started showing signs of life.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last night I was putting the stats together from the game

But here's what I liked:

Gleason led the team with 6 hits

Cole right behind with 5

Seidenberg took 4 shots. I like a defenseman who isn't afraid to shoot the puck.

Team was a +5.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Last night I was putting the stats together from the game

But here's what I liked:

Gleason led the team with 6 hits

Cole right behind with 5

Seidenberg took 4 shots. I like a defenseman who isn't afraid to shoot the puck.

Team was a +5.

Hmmm. Cole: what a great game. 2 goals, winning OT goal, 5 hits... wow. However, none of our players are afraid to shoot the puck... they just have to wait for the right time. Staal and Sutter were behind with 1 goal each, Gleason had 6 hits... Over all, a great game. :rolleyes:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...