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07-12-2012, 05:55 PM
**** Cycle 4 Eichel
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Originally Posted by joshjull View Post
He gets roughly the same amount of ES + PP ice time as the other top 6 forwards.

And again this year, like last year, his ice time dropped later in the year due to being banged up with injuries. Never understood the obssession some have with Vanek's ice time. He's an average skater and not a great defensive player. Why should he be getting much more ice time than he does?

Vanek's our most offensively gifted player and he gets the 12th most ice time on the team. That's really not within what I would consider the margin of discretion a smart coach might use. Vanek has done a good job killing penalties in the past, but Ruff refuses to use him there. He's not a great defensive player, but I think he's certainly better than average, better than Roy, for example. In addition, Vanek is historically easily frustrated and very hard on himself. Giving him more responsibility and ice time, especially because I think he deserves it, can only help exponentially with the confidence issues.

Look around the league. Most teams battling to make the playoffs do the same thing. Most teams with goalies like Miller will ride them, even if they're not battling to get in. The Kings did it this year with Quick because most coaches/teams feel once you get in, anything can happen. So you do what you can to get in.

This is a criticism thats been long devoid of league context. What Ruff does with Miller is not the exception.

If you insist, I'll accept that this is commonly done. But that doesn't necessarily make it smart hockey, especially because I think Miller has shown us that he's a goaltender who can wear down under that kind of schedule. He's very thin, and that might account for part of it. If Quick had a history, e.g., of breaking down under too many consecutive games, I would also expect Sutter to use him differently. But apparently this spring's schedule suited him to a T. I don't think Miller has the same reaction.

Like who?

Connolly, for one. The guy kept getting endless chances to play in physical games when he would regularly get wiped out along the wall every shift and turn the puck over. Hecht is another example. While responsible defensively, he's not a guy who can control the puck and create offensive zone time very well. He's just a guy who you're sure will get back when he invariably loses it. But he's often been a top line guy for Ruff, even after Briere left.

That appears to be changing.

Well, what's changing might be the roster Darcy puts together, but I don't see anything changing about Ruff.

This is a myth that needs to die. When the team struggles he rightfully switches them up. He doesn't arbitrarily break up successful lines.

Of course he doesn't. But you'll see my response in your other thread. I think he doesn't have the patience to pick guys with good history or complementary skill sets and let them ride out a bad stretch for the sake of developing chemistry. Ruff has famously said that every guy on his roster needs to be ready to play with every other guy on the ice. I think that attitude permeates his line shuffling practice. I think he gives up far too quickly, after a bad game or even a period, and the result is his players don't ever gel.

Thats on the player to bounce back. Didn't you just ***** earlier about gifting ice time to players? Now you arguing slumping players shouldn't be demoted? Well which is it?

I'm not saying slumping players shouldn't be demoted, but I think the way he does it is to use his fourth line as a grab bag of whoever is performing the most poorly regardless of how those players complement each other. So Brad Boyes spent most of the season with a grinder and a midget. Brad deserved less ice time, but the way to do it is to move guys onto a second or third line, maybe make them miss some shifts in favor of somebody hot, but to try and keep giving them some ice time with complementary players nevertheless - not to put them for most of the season with whatever misfit toys you have and let them rot. I think that's a recipe for making struggling players worse.

When we've had success in the playoffs he got the PP going. I'm not too concerned with our PP prowess in the regular season. Post lockout Cup champs PP rankings; 17th, 3rd, 3rd, 20th, 16th, 20th and 17th. Its hardly an indicator of playoff success.

Well, okay. I mean, you've basically said it was good when we were winning, but we mostly haven't won. And then you said but that's okay because it doesn't matter either way. That doesn't really comfort me or address the point.

Even if true, those players are gone. But I do love that the very players you and others accuse of being the types of players you can't win with. Then turn around and go after Lindy for not winning with those very players.

True, but I'm doubtful that those are the only players who feel that way. It's so rare for players to come out in the NHL and attack the coach, I think it's likely that other voices are just more prudent in the media.

Why are you trying to lump the various ways he has approached things as one overarching system. He has not played it one way in his entire tenure as coach.

He has generally tried to find what works best with what he has. Thats been evrything from a trap with a checking line to an aggressive attacking offensive system. Either you don't know this or don't care. EIther way its foolsih to say there is one system he uses or even one way to sue the various approaches he has tried.

I'm talking about the system he's been employing for a couple years now, and I didn't even criticize it, so I don't know why you're defending it.

They reached a point where they decided to change the core of this team. Ruff has proven he can win if given enough talent. I can't think of too many coaches that win without it.

The problem is, I think he has a very talented roster. The Sabres were picked as cup contenders this year.
See bolded.

Last edited by haseoke39: 07-12-2012 at 06:03 PM.
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