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05-19-2012, 06:49 PM
  #972
Chapin Landvogt
Hockey's Future Staff
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Germany
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mara View Post
Puck possession was 54-46 for Finland. Also, US had to start their attack from their own zone more often than Finland, though the difference was small, which means that overall Finland had a better forecheck. I agree that Jalonen outcoached his US colleague, he completely read the aggressive forecheck of the US forwards and adjusted the team. The game was completely different from the 5-0 game.
I'm not sure where you got that bolded stat from. I can't find it at IIHF.com. Maybe it's there, but I couldn't locate any such puck possession statistic.

However, I spoke to five other journalists today who, like me, saw the game live.

Three seemed to see it like Reimi29 describes it. Two saw it like I saw it. Only two of these journalist were Fins, one was American.

What we all agreed on is that Jalonen started with a sit-back tactic and then adjusted in the latter course of the game. We agreed that he outcoached Gordon. We agree that the US did not shoot enough and did not bring enough pucks and traffic to the slot.

We agreed that one way or the other, Finland was the better team in the last 8 minutes of the game, when they ultimately decided it for themselves.

Those who felt Finland were the better team thought so because
A) The Finns showed the better tactical changes in the game
B) Were readier to just shoot and not wait for the optimal opportunity
C) Because the US just didn't show the hunger to score that they had shown in the previous games.

Where we disagreed most was
A) Which team was better along the boards
B) Which team did a better job in the transition game
C) Which team was more productive with the puck when that team had it

I thought it was clear that for the first 50 minutes, 'Team USA' was the unequivocal answer to all three of these issues. Guess it depends on how you want to define 'better' in this case. Several of the jounalists felt it was Finland, but admitted that's because they went into the game thinking Finland would get killed again by the USA, so that maybe this 'stigma' influenced their impression of the situation.

Regardless, Team USA is back in the States. Finland is playing tomorrow for bronze.

Chapin Landvogt is offline