2013 WJC Thread - USA! USA! USA!
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01-05-2013, 12:57 PM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Originally Posted by
I thought Sweden was great and well-coached until they entered the offensive zone. Once they entered the o-zone, it was like watching a new team. They tried to dangle and get clean shots, but that's not how the game is played. They could have cycled and thrown the puck to the net for some weak goals. I thought it was there for the taking. The rest of their game is incredible. Great neutral zone play. They held USA, who I believe was the best transition team in the tourney, for a long time. They also worked the d-zone well. Any time USA's defense tried to activate, they were covered.
What are your thoughts on that? I don't watch too much of them so I was just wondering if that was a consistent issue?
Yeah there were definitely some breakdowns in the cycling game, some people tried to get far to cute and dangle around people. I was litteraly yelling at the TV a couple of times because of the silly moves some tried to do.
Overall there is a well established cycling game but the main offensive weapon has been speed and getting rushes to incapacitate the defense.
This is of course a high energy tactic and it comes and goes throughout a game, that's where the cycling comes in but they couldn't get that part started. Instead there was alot of fancy **** going on instead. The defense is utilized heavily for getting shots on goals and when some of the most skilled individuals (who happen to be d-men) are out due to injury this leads to a huge part of the offensive game being decimated. There were a couple of times where the shots from d-men were beautifully set up, only to have the trigger man fan on the shot or get a weak shot off. Only Wikstrand really has a fair shot.
Like you say it's too much of a chase for the perfect shot or the great spot. Throwing pucks on net and grinding it out it's just not a part of the plan. There really weren't any players on the swedish team that have that factor. Last year there were more players who could crash and bang, which lead to a few goals, but alot of offensive prowess was lost with the injured d-men
The most dangerous offensive factor, Forsberg, tried to dangle everythingl. He had at least 3 opportunities where he could throw the puck on net and create a dangerous rebound situation, because he had the left winger coming crashing down, but instead he chose to dangle and lost possession.
There is perhaps a slight psychological factor, seeing as the swedish youth team haven't won against USA since 98. Lots of nerves.
I was really impressed with how the d-core found their defensive game though. Lots of good stuff to be gathered from there.
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