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04-21-2011, 06:12 PM
Austin Wings Fan
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This might deserve its own thread, but since the title of this one includes "team defense" , lets post it here.

What are your thoughts on our team defense in Round 1? Are we getting too much credit for shutting down Phoenix's pop-gun offense, or not enough?

With a battle against San Jose's hulking forwards looming, I figure this is the time to begin this discussion.

Personally, I think it's a little of both. People on the main board who, in one way or another are basically proclaiming that the Wings defense is back to a 2008 level are mistaken. I think that Phoenix had way, way too much speed coming through the neutral zone in Games 3 and 4, and too many opportunities where they had a trailer or a guy on the weak side have too much time and space off the rush. PHX's forward core didn't have the talent to make the Wings pay, but you just know that San Jose's deep and spread out forward core will. In this sense, I think the Wings transition D wasn't great.

In the same sense, I thought that we did an excellent job neutralizing their forecheck with excellent decision-making by the D and good puck support down low. It seemed that our short passing game coming out of the zone was as good as its been in a while. This, i think can get lost when people dump on PHX's talent level. They are a good forechecking team, and we didn't get caught down low in our zone all that much. The continuation of that against San Jose will be pivotal.

Going forward (assuming its SJ), we are going to face a team with a TON of offensive talent spread across three lines. At the same time, their D and goaltending are nothing special.

The less we get hemmed in along the boards in our own zone, the fewer penalties we will take, and the more success we will have.

Puck possession (and faceoffs), in addition to the continuation smart decision making by the D on the breakout will be necessary to advance.

What do ya'll think?

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