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03-21-2013, 03:23 PM
Gump Hasek
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Originally Posted by ps241 View Post
Over the last week I have heard interviews with Ladd, Wheeler, Bogosian to name just three and something has changed that goes beyond the vibe and feel of a team riding a hot streak IMO.

Last year and even earlier this season there did not seem to be an inner team confidence and this is hard to explain so stick with me. In the past in interviews I would often detect frustration about collective buy in and a lack of team confidence. Now I can hear a big difference and it seems to reflect that the team has finally all bought in and believe in the system. I keep hearing the guys speak with confidence about playing their game and nothing else matter and mentioning that everyone is buying in now and it feels authentic when they say it not just cheesy hockey sound bite cliches? I also heard Bogosian mention this is his 5th year in the league and he is fed up with missing the playoffs and he didn't say it in a defeatist way at all, he said it in a way that indicated things were going to be different this year. Then Hainsey mentioning last weeks Toronto and Ranger games were the best he has seen this team play since he has been with the organization....etc.....etc

Has anyone else noticed this pattern?
I think this is a great post ps241, well done. It is a subject I've also given some consideration of late. In my own view the most important move this organization made in the off-season is something that never gets mentioned here and that was when they hired sports psychologist John Phelan. I believe his title with the team is something along the lines of Mental Skills Coach. Here is his bio...

You can clearly see they've done a ton of psych work with these guys on the team now. The message they convey is near always uniform in nature and is always related to staying on the path, staying on task, sticking to the plan, and being personally accountable for team success. They've bought in because they've been led there by an expert. Here is another example from today...
"I can have a lot of success using my speed and chipping the puck in and getting it deep and then going in on the forecheck. Even if we lose the puck, they still have to go 200 feet," said Wheeler. "Would I like to have the puck on my stick and go end to end? Maybe. But that's not going to result in success and we're trying to win games. Staying on the task is the right way of doing things. There's a right way and a wrong way. There's no grey area. It's a mindset we've adopted here and that's what Claude is trying to ge across. Now when you come to the bench, it's a mix of both the players and the coach holding you accountable. The room has determined we're going to play a certain way and you have to buy in."

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