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02-29-2012, 07:33 PM
Qui Gon Dave
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I'm impressed by Trotz. Watching Montreal this year, apparently he has been able to observe some form of system in our play. Could have fooled me. Guess that's why he's an NHL head coach.

Or maybe he was just being polite

Originally Posted by Paranoid Android View Post
Legwand + AK would be ok together, but Hornqvist shouldn't be on there. I'd like to see Wilson there and limit Horny's even strength time.

As for styles, I would say that we play an aggressive forecheck, north-south, grind it out in the corners type of game and rely on neutral zone transition, whereas Montreal is more of a puck control, east-west system. I'm really not that familiar with them though.
A few years ago, Gainey cited a puck possession approach as the style the team was trying to employ or work towards, but that isn't the case now. There was a system with Jacques Martin, built around being passive without the puck and blocking the blueline as much as possible. Once we had the puck back, quick, short passes and speed were supposed to get us up ice and 5 guys were supposed to be in the picture at any one time, all close to each other providing support. Sadly, on many occassions those 5 men weren't all Habs.

Under Cunneyworth, well, who knows. Either the players didn't execute it very well or they didn't understand it or it was so simple they fell asleep in the middle of 'making plays'. From what I can tell, the current system is built around a 1 man forecheck, except for the rare occasions we use a two man forecheck or everyone leaves the zone and we play a passive style.

Then they all rush back into the defensive zone at which point if nobody knocks the puck carrier on their arse quickly and takes the puck off them, we wait for a mistake to pounce on a loose puck, so we can send the puck to an opponent just inside the blueline. Then we either wait for another mistake and repeat the process, see if they manage to score a goal, get lucky and have time run out or pray for Jean Claude Van Damme to send a helicopter flying backwards in a remarkably straight line through the roof of the arena, into the ice below.

If the 'system' works, at some point, one of two options will present itself. If the two and a half men line is out there (Patches, DD, Cole), they take the puck and rush up ice with it to create a scoring chance. If anyone else is on the ice, we chip the puck up into the neutral zone kinda like an onside kick and see if we get a favourable bounce. If we get a loose puck in the neutral zone, we chip it into the offensive zone and hope we get a lucky bounce. If we chip the puck out of the defensive zone and win it back and then chip it into the offensive zone and win it back, we send a trainer into town to buy lottery tickets while the forwards protect the puck down low. If they can, they get it back to the point so a defender can shoot it wide and start a rush the other way. If the point isn't open, the forwards protect the puck until they can work an opening where the puck carrier is facing into the zone rather than at the boards and has some room to make a pass. That forward will then make a fairly simple pass to someone nearby in space. This pass will not reach a teammate. This starts a rush the other way and everyone has to rush back to the defensive zone and hope someone knocks the puck carrier on their arse quickly.

Basically, unless the 2.5 men line is on the ice, the system is skate hard, chip the puck, chase the puck, north-south, very little else. The only other 'moves' that are permitted are:
1. When Tomas Plekanec is on the ice, if he carries the puck over the offensive blue line, by law, he must attempt to pull the one move he knows: put the puck near his feet, push it slightly wide on his forehand side, pull it back on his backhand almost behind his body before pushing it out even further wide on his forehand to open up a shooting lane. He must then fire a 40 foot wrist/snap shot towards the net to help the other teams goalie pad their stats.

2. If we carry a lead into the 3rd period, we must give up the lead during the 3rd period, overtime or shootout. It is important we do this because otherwise it is very difficult to tank.

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