Thread: The Power Play.
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03-23-2011, 08:06 AM
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I wanted Gerbe on the powerplay last night as an adaptation to what I was seeing from the two units. He was one of the only forwards looking to move hard to scoring position and attack the net. Most of the rest seemed content to glide around the perimeter and if they're going to wait for perfect passing options that just aren't there in a static setup.

Originally Posted by littletonhockeycoach View Post
I dunno. The PP objective used to be to isolate 3 of 4 defenders with an overload so you end up with a 2 on 1 in front. Sabres have problems with teams that collapse their defence on the net and set up a wall (Pens come to mind). That leaves our PP players in an umbrella that's too high in the zone with a limited # of options. (Shoot or pass around the perimeter.)

Sabre's PP seems to be set up on Vanek in front tipping or getting the rebound. I like Detroit and Vancouver's use of mobility and tic tac toe passes (along with one guy in front taking the abuse) to find the open man because everyone on the PP seems to be moving. Sabres aren't anywhere near as mobile. However, Gerbe's goal tonight shows what happens when you have a guy or two darting around.

Also, the protective gear is so good today that players and goalies are no longer afraid to block shots. If they had to play with gear made in the 80's or 70's, there would be a lot more goals scored.
Good points.

They can still run Vanek in the low slot with the adaptation that if he's not getting a look, he can take a step or two out to the mid-slot for the slap-pass type of redirect from whoever is on the half-wall (yes, I watch a lot of Canucks games... ) or setting up for a high slot one-timer rather than being the low man. Granted, that means one of the other forwards has to go far-post and go there with authority.

The other play they worked for a while was Vanek as the low hub, operating from behind the goal line and looking for someone in the crease area (Stafford and he had that bang-bang sort of low 2-on-1 working a bit during one of Staff's hot streaks). It hasn't been there and at this point, they can't get the off-wing backdoor pass to work either (a long-standing staple of the Sabres PP units).

Maybe if they simply got back to basics: move the puck quickly to the open man, move to open ice, look for shooting lanes and get the puck and bodies to the net. They don't do the first two regularly enough for the other two to happen IMO.

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