Fixing the Flower Play
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07-26-2011, 11:10 AM
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Spring Hill, TN
Originally Posted by
I'm waiting for Glenn to say something before I make a comment since this is "his" topic (and has been since I can remember in 05 or 06 or whenever it was). LoL
Well, here you go Fish. LOL
It's not the players but the scheme, always has been, always will be. It's basic geometry when it comes down to it. We play a perimeter game on the PP. I have noticed way too many time that we end up with two guys on the point, one behind the net and one guy on each of the half boards. That basically makes a pentagon. If the defense is smart, and it usually is, they form a square. Now if some of you want to draw this out on a piece of paper go ahead but all I will say is this, there are no passing options because of this. The two guys low on defense can guard the guy behind the net and the half boards, the two high guys can guard the points and the guys on the half boards. It also makes it very hard to make cross ice passes unless they are crisp passes and right to where they need to be or else they get picked off.
Simple solution. Plant one guy in front of the net at all times. Hornqvist can do this. Find another player to do the same thing. Holmstrom and Franzen do it for Detroit. Holmstrom has made a career of it. No reason Hornqvist can't either. The other team is forced to either cover Hornqvist in front of the net or allow him to pester the goalie into submission. If they leave him alone, then all we need to do is get the puck close to the net for garbage rebounds and he should pound them in. If they put a man on him, we know have a 4 on 3 advantage in the offensive zone which is much harder to defend against. Think of geometry again and a triangle inside a square. Much harder to defend the passing lanes. I have failed to understand for years why we don't plant a guy in front of the net at all times during the PP. It works. Also, if you have Hornqvist and a defender in front of the goalie, what does that do, it provides a screen which makes the puck harder to see for the goalie.
For all the people that say, we need better talent I scoff at that because Washington has some of the best skilled players in the NHL and their PP isn't all that great. Even when Sid and Geno area healthy, the Penguins PP isn't that great either. Montreal has been relatively effective over the last bunch of years, even when they've lost a booming shot in Souray and a great playmaker in Streit and then the loss of Markov to injury has not messed with their production all that much.
The other things that kills us are the ability to win the initial faceoff and the ability to enter the zone and retain control of the puck. We rely on dump and chase so much at even strength that we don't know how to carry the puck into the zone without dumping it or carrying it in and making a few quick passes and getting setup. We are too stringent on a system that causes too many guys to think. You have to react and it has to be second nature, if it's not, the defense and the goalie has time to react and by that time, the scoring opportunity is lost.
The reason Kariya was successful as was Sully was their ability to puck handle in tight spaces but also their ability to read a play well. They were also quick players. Guys that take too long to react are no good on the PP. We need guys who are quick/fast and make good decisions. It amazes me that one of our best skaters is usually on the bench during the PP. With speed, a guy can force the D back and we can take the blue line much easier. We have a tendency to stack the blue line and wait for one guy to carry the puck into the zone and if we are stacked, we have no speed going into the offensive zone which makes it impossible to get set up or able to chase for the puck if need be.
Watch good units, they let the puck do the work for them. If you've ever watched Niedermayer and Pronger play together you'll see they're out there the entire 2 minutes sometimes, the reason being they let the puck work for them. They don't tire themselves out moving around a ton or skating for the puck. Watch Detroit and the use the entire ice. Cross ice passes are what they use to effectively, it's usually two passes from their defensive zone into the offensive zone and they're set up. If you watch soccer, the great team use the entire field. Watch bad teams and they only use the middle part of the field.
If we stretch the ice and the d, we have more room to operate. So all that said, keys to a better PP.
1. Plant a guy in front of the net at all times
2. Win faceoffs
3. Be able to enter the zone and keep possession
4. Make crisp passes
5. Don't hesitate
6. Find the right combos of players that work well together and don't stop until you find them
7. Shoot the puck
8. Use geometry as your friend to figure out better schemes
9. Hire me
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