Don Cherry Division Playoff: #4 Sabres vs. #5 Tiger Cubs

VanIslander
11-22-2006, 09:54 AM
As part of the All-Time Draft #6 post-draft analysis we are having fantasy playoff head to head matches, beginning with the 4th and 5th ranked teams in each division, as judged based on initial general perceptions and analyses of the 20 draft g.m.s. Now is the time to look closely at how these all-time greats would do against a real, well hypothetically real, opponent.

Feel free to submit observations and analyses. Especially by the team g.m.s and anyone familiar and/or willing to examine the teams in the context of a playoff series. Please refrain from making sweeping final judgements. Analyses and commentary are encouraged. Voting will be via PM to Nalyd Psycho on Sunday and Monday before midnight eastern time. Until then, take time to reflect...

Don Cherry Division
#4 vs. #5

Buffalo Sabres

Head Coach: Jacques Lemaire

Ted Lindsay - Syl Apps - Bernie Geoffrion
Aurel Joliat - Denis Savard - Rick Middleton
Mats Naslund - Jacques Lemaire - Jim Pappin
Don Marcotte - Neal Broten - Jamie Langenbrunner
Tod Sloan

Chris Pronger - Serge Savard
Cyclone Taylor - Brad McCrimmon
Phil Housely - Jimmy Thomson
Keith Magnuson

Georges Vezina
Rogie Vachon
Chico Resch


Hamilton Tiger Cubs

Head Coach: Tom Gorman

Murray Balfour– Bill Hay – Bobby Hull
Rod Gilbert– Gilbert Perrault– Rick Martin
Kenny Wharram– Max Bentley – Doug Bentley
Ed Litzenberger –Frank Boucher– Roy Conacher
Don Marshall

Lionel Conacher– Mark Howe
Elmar Vasko–Pat Stapleton
Gus Mortson - Carl Brewer
Neil Colville

Chuck Gardiner
Roger Crozier
Jim Henry

VanIslander
11-22-2006, 10:59 AM
Dang! I gotta do my homework to analyze this series. Old coots!

pappyline
11-22-2006, 11:25 AM
Dang! I gotta do my homework to analyze this series. Old coots!
which probably explains why these 2 teams are ranked 4th & 5th.

VanIslander
11-22-2006, 11:31 AM
It's one thing to know the trophies and statistics of the various players, which I researched for my own rankings of the divisions as regular season estimations.

But the aspects of style of play, in front of the net or in the slot or in the corner types, and the other intangibles take some extra effort to try and find out.

That said, yeah, the playoffs may introduce a few powerful underdogs and of course upsets.

God Bless Canada
11-22-2006, 11:41 AM
I think this is definitely the best and most intriguing match-up of the first round. It should also be the highest-scoring: both of these teams are loaded with players who know how to score. They're also backstopped by two of the weakest goaltending trios in the draft. Even though Jacques Lemaire is the coach in Buffalo, expect a lot of 5-4, 6-5 type games. Whoever comes out of this will provide a very stiff test for New Jersey in the second round.

kruezer
11-22-2006, 01:26 PM
I think this is definitely the best and most intriguing match-up of the first round. It should also be the highest-scoring: both of these teams are loaded with players who know how to score. They're also backstopped by two of the weakest goaltending trios in the draft. Even though Jacques Lemaire is the coach in Buffalo, expect a lot of 5-4, 6-5 type games. Whoever comes out of this will provide a very stiff test for New Jersey in the second round.
Absolutely, the Tiger-Cubs forward lines are ridiculous and extremely deep, if there is any team I would not want the Metropolitants to face it would be them, they might be able to beat the Metro's at their own game.

reckoning
11-22-2006, 02:23 PM
Dang! I gotta do my homework to analyze this series. Old coots!

I`m not exactly an old coot. I`m younger than Chris Chelios.


As far as coaching strategy and line matchups go, I really wish I took Claude Provost at RW so I could put him against Hull. As it stands now, I`ll probably put my Lindsay-Apps-Geoffrion against the Hull line: power against power. I was worried about my #2 line getting knocked around, so I`ll put them against the Perreault line which is fairly non-physical. I figure with Savard and Perreault as opposing centres, that`s where you`ll see a lot end-to-end rushes both ways. Murray`s #3 and #4 centres are two of the top playmakers ever; this is where I`m going to hope Lemaire`s coaching will clog the neutral zone and limit their effectiveness. Easier said than done.

Both are defences are fairly similar, with a mix of tough stay-at-home guys and smooth offensive-minded blueliners. There should be some good battles for position in front of the net. Imagine Hull and Pronger each trying to move the other. The starting goalies likely never saw a slapshot in their career, so it`ll be interesting to see how they adapt to Hull and Geoffrion respectively.

which probably explains why these 2 teams are ranked 4th & 5th.

Keep in mind though, we are in the toughest division. I think we both may have placed higher in a different one.

Murphy
11-22-2006, 03:07 PM
This would be great series, hockey played the way it's meant to be, scoring, physical play and Hull vs Lindsay.

At first glance, Hamilton has an advantage in depth up front but Buffalo has an edge on defense. I'm not real sure why but I'd be inclined to start Vachon in net if I was Buffalo, call it a hunch I guess.

Buffalo has the advantage on the first line, Geoffrion and Lindsay as wingers together is sick but Hamilton has the depth. The second lines will both be flying out there, not sure if a hit will ever be thrown but there will be plenty of goals scored. Hamilton's bottom two lines will definitely be having some success although Jacques Lemaire will have something to say about that.

I just noticed now that Lemaire is a playing coach!! I haven't seen that since Sather in the WHA.

Pronger's going to be blocking shots and the one he'll be blocking most is Hull's. I'd be just a bit on edge about that if I was Pronger.

I see this as a long series with Hamilton's depth up front being the difference. Terrible Ted and Boom Boom might be enough to overcome the difference though.

Tough call.

VanIslander
11-22-2006, 03:40 PM
Pronger's going to be blocking shots and the one he'll be blocking most is Hull's. I'd be just a bit on edge about that if I was Pronger.
Especially since he'll have no time to go down against the opportunistic one-timers Hull manages to get time and again by finding a clear spot and converting a pass into a hard accurate shot on net.

No, to stop Hull it'll take Terrible Ted Lindsay to rough him up and take some penalties against Brett by dishing out borderline abuse. Hull won't have the heart (a criticism leveled often aaginst him regarding his defensive effort) to stay with Ted at the other end of the rink either. A good match-up of top lw with opponent's top rw for the Sabres home games.

pappyline
11-22-2006, 03:42 PM
I`m not exactly an old coot. I`m younger than Chris Chelios.


As far as coaching strategy and line matchups go, I really wish I took Claude Provost at RW so I could put him against Hull. As it stands now, I`ll probably put my Lindsay-Apps-Geoffrion against the Hull line: power against power. I was worried about my #2 line getting knocked around, so I`ll put them against the Perreault line which is fairly non-physical. I figure with Savard and Perreault as opposing centres, that`s where you`ll see a lot end-to-end rushes both ways. Murray`s #3 and #4 centres are two of the top playmakers ever; this is where I`m going to hope Lemaire`s coaching will clog the neutral zone and limit their effectiveness. Easier said than done.

Both are defences are fairly similar, with a mix of tough stay-at-home guys and smooth offensive-minded blueliners. There should be some good battles for position in front of the net. Imagine Hull and Pronger each trying to move the other. The starting goalies likely never saw a slapshot in their career, so it`ll be interesting to see how they adapt to Hull and Geoffrion respectively.



Keep in mind though, we are in the toughest division. I think we both may have placed higher in a different one.
First of all, let me say I love the Sabres’ first line. When I saw you take Apps, Geoffrion & Pronger with a 3 in a row late in the late 3rd round, I thought what a coup. Lindsay-Apps-Geoffrion may be the best 2 way line in the entire draft.

I know you have the last line change so I will go along with your match ups. As far as my lines go, I don’t really consider them 1-2-3-4. All 13 of my forwards are great 2 way players and I Intend to use them equally. If you want to match the Apps line against the Hull line that is fine with me as I think both lines will be neutralized. I might even insert Marshall at center to check Apps. I also wouldn’t be adverse to moving players such as Hull to other lines.

Perrault against Savard will be interesting but I think Perrault will dominate. It would also be interesting to put Max against Savard & see who would own the puck (my bet is on Max).

I agree that our defences are somewhat similar & there is no clear edge there. I think I have a edge in goal with Gardiner who was dominate in his 1934 cup win & with Conn Smythe winner Crozier as back up. I really think my forwards are the key and it will be impossible for you to shut down them all. If I can shut down the Apps line I really think it is no contest.

pappyline
11-22-2006, 03:54 PM
Especially since he'll have no time to go down against the opportunistic one-timers Hull manages to get time and again by finding a clear spot and converting a pass into a hard accurate shot on net.

No, to stop Hull it'll take Terrible Ted Lindsay to rough him up and take some penalties against Brett by dishing out borderline abuse. Hull won't have the heart (a criticism leveled often aaginst him regarding his defensive effort) to stay with Ted at the other end of the rink either. A good match-up of top lw with opponent's top rw for the Sabres home games.
Van Islander,

I think you have your Hull's mixed up. Hamilton has Bobby not Brett (and payed dearly to get him). Lindsay will actually be going against Murray Balfour who was one tough dude although not as skilled as Ted. Hull (Bobby) will be against Boom Boom. Hull should have the edge here in both stength & skill. Bobby shoots from everywhere & doesn't depend on one timing a perfect pass.

pitseleh
11-22-2006, 05:16 PM
Keep in mind though, we are in the toughest division. I think we both may have placed higher in a different one.

Yeah, I feel bad that one of you two have to go out so early, considering how strong your teams are.

VanIslander
11-22-2006, 05:19 PM
Van Islander,

I think you have your Hull's mixed up. Hamilton has Bobby not Brett (and payed dearly to get him).
Then why is he put as a right winger? Oh yeah, I remember thinking that less than ideal before. He played some good seasons at right wing did he?

(The mix-up is tired induced: I posted that at 3 am in the morning here)

Nalyd Psycho
11-22-2006, 05:21 PM
Then why is he put as a right winger? Oh yeah, I remember thinking that less than ideal before. He played some good seasons at right wing did he?

(The mix-up is tired induced: I posted that at 3 am in the morning here)

For some reason, Murray's wings are backwards.

pappyline
11-22-2006, 05:45 PM
For some reason, Murray's wings are backwards.
Sorry for the confusion but I have always listed my forward lines as RW-C-LW (not sure why but I think it was done this way back in the old days) but I see everyone else does it different so I will change in the future. Still that is no excuse, for mixing the Hulls up. After all their first names are indicated.

Hope that Vanislander wasn't working under this mistake when he did his rankings. Bobby Hull maybe an "old coot" but he is a pretty good one.

VanIslander
11-22-2006, 05:49 PM
Hope that Vanislander wasn't working under this mistake when he did his rankings. Bobby Hull maybe an "old coot" but he is a pretty good one.
No. Just last night. It was 3 AM here and I never go to bed after midnight. Why was i up late? In part because I did the match-up threads. (That got me going, other things distracted me, kept me up). I wanted to make quick comments right away (to get the threads going) and leave analyses for another day.

Zetterberg4Captain*
11-22-2006, 06:38 PM
which probably explains why these 2 teams are ranked 4th & 5th.

Excuses....... :shakehead

pappyline
11-22-2006, 07:51 PM
Excuses....... :shakehead
Not making excuses. just making a point.

BM67
11-22-2006, 10:17 PM
murray - Hamilton Tiger Cubs
Bobby Hull – 5’10”, 195
Gilbert Perreault - 6’1”, 180
Max Bentley – 5’10”, 155
Doug Bentley – 5’8”, 145
Mark Howe - 5’11, 185
Frank Boucher - 5’9”, 185
Lionel Conacher – 6’2”, 195
Carl Brewer – 5’9”, 180
Pat Stapleton – 5’8”, 185
Rod Gilbert – 5’9”, 180 r
Rick Martin – 5’11”, 179
Ed Litzenberger – 6’3”, 174 r
Roy Conacher – 6’2”, 175
Chuck Gardiner - 6'0", 176 r
Moose Vasko – 6’3”, 220
Gus Mortson – 5’11”, 190
Ken Wharram – 5’9”, 160 r
Bill Hay – 6’3”, 190
Roger Crozier – 5’8”, 140 r
Neil Colville – 5’11”, 175 r
Tommy Gorman, coach
Jim Henry – 5’9”, 165
Don Marshall – 5’10”, 160
Murray Balfour – 5’9”, 178

Team averages (with spares) shots
G: 5’10”, 158 (5’9.7”, 160.3) r-l 2-1
D: 5’11.3”, 192.5 (5’11.3”, 190) r-l 1-6
F: 5’11.1”, 173.2 (5’10.9”, 173.5) r-l 3-10

reckoning - Buffalo Sabres
Ted Lindsay – 5’8”, 163
Bernie Geoffrion - 5’9”, 166 r
Syl Apps Sr. - 6'0", 185 r
Chris Pronger - 6’6”, 220
Serge Savard - 6’3”, 210
Cyclone Taylor - 5'8", 165
Aurel Joliat – 5’7”, 136
Denis Savard – 5’10”, 175 r
Jacques Lemaire - 5’10”, 180
Rick Middleton – 5’11”, 170 r
Phil Housley - 5’10”, 185
Brad McCrimmon - 5’11”, 197
George Vezina – 5’6”, 185
Mats Naslund - 5’7”, 170
Jim Pappin - 6'0", 190 r
Don Marcotte – 5’11”, 183
Jim Thomson – 5’11, 175 r
Jacques Lemaire, coach
Rogie Vachon – 5’7”, 170
Neal Broten – 5’9”, 175
Jamie Langenbrunner – 6’1”, 200 r
Tod Sloan – 5’10”, 175 r
Keith Magnuson – 6’0”, 185 r
Glenn Resch – 5’9”, 165

Team averages (with spares) shots
G: 5’6.5”, 177.5 (5’7.3”, 173.3) r-l 0-3
D: 6’0.3”, 192 (6’0.1”, 191) r-l 2-5
F: 5’9.9”, 174.4 (5’9.9”, 174.5) r-l 7-6

Not much separating the teams there. The Sabres are a little smaller at forward, but have a slight edge in grit despite that.

Player - RSGP - POGP - RSW - POW - RSW% - POW% - Dif - RSGAA - POGAA - Dif – Cups
Gardiner – 316 _ 21 _ 112 _ 12 _ .437 _ .643 _ +.206 _ 2.02 _ 1.43 _ -0.59 _ 1
Crozier – 518 _ 32 _ 206 _ 14 _ .510 _ .467 _ -.043 _ 3.04 _ 2.75 _ -0.29 _ 0
Henry – 406 _ 29 _ 161 _ 11 _ .485 _ .379 _ -.106 _ 2.87 _ 2.79 _ -0.08 _ 0
Vezina* - 190 _ 26 _ 103 _ 16 _ .558 _ .654 _ +.096 _ 3.28 _ 2.78 _ -0.50 _ 1(2**)
Vachon – 795 _ 48 _ 355 _ 23 _ .541 _ .500 _ -.041 _ 2.99 _ 2.77 _ -0.22 _ 3
Resch – 571 _ 41 _ 231 _ 17 _ .507 _ .500 _ -.007 _ 3.27 _ 2.50 _ -0.77 _ 1
*Includes Stanley Cup Playoff Round in Playoff totals
** Won Cup while playing in NHA

The thing that stands out here is the lack of playoff experience for all of the goalies. Vezina is the only one to have 1 playoff game for 10 regular season games.

God Bless Canada
11-25-2006, 11:01 PM
Frankly, I can't believe there isn't more discussion on this series. I think this is unquestionably the series of the first round, and it could prove to be the series of the playoffs. It's not going to be a great defensive battle, even though Jacques Lemaire is Buffalo's coach. This series is going to feature plenty of offence, as Buffalo has three dangerous scoring lines and Hamilton has four. No team has better chemistry among its players than Hamilton. And, let's face it: these teams have some of the worst goaltending in the draft.

I think this series will come down to overtime in Game 7, and it won't be the only overtime game of the series.

Nalyd Psycho
11-26-2006, 01:11 AM
And, let's face it: these teams have some of the worst goaltending in the draft.


Uhm, Gardiner is bloody brilliant. If he didn't die after his seventh season he'd be remembered as on par with Sawchuk, Plante, Roy, Hall and Hasek, if not better. He had his two lowest GAAs AFTER forward passes were allowed.

anguscertified
11-26-2006, 03:10 AM
pretty even series. I like Hamilton as a team more.. but I am not as widely knowledgable as most of you guys regarding all of these players.. I just like how Hamilton built his team.

Murphy
11-29-2006, 06:37 PM
Not that you haven't done enough and have been real busy today Nalyd but.....

I'm pretty curious who won this series.

Nalyd Psycho
11-29-2006, 06:42 PM
Not that you haven't done enough and have been real busy today Nalyd but.....

I'm pretty curious who won this series.

I intentionally left this one until last to torture everyone. I'll get it done tonight because the bad weather cancelled my commitment for tonight.

I'll say this, yes, it did go to seven games.