: Post-Game Talk:
Capitals @ Rangers 3/24/13
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03-25-2013, 12:23 AM
Take the damn deal
Join Date: Jun 2011
Originally Posted by
People were complaining about Torts teaching Kreider "defense".
Now, he's trying to get Kreider to play MORE in the offensive zone, and people are chastising him?
Look, I'm not a fan of Tortorella's recent decision making, but I actually think this is a very good move by Torts. If Kreider is chasing down pucks, it gets him more involved in the play, gets him on the puck, and it teaches him puck possession. He has the tools to be an offensive force, this is adding another dimension to his game. Hagelin is a fantastic player. He doesn't have a great shot or a big frame. He's not a great finisher. Yet he's still a legitimate top-6 player. Why? His forechecking and puck pursuit skills. He's a hound on the puck. He creates a ton of scoring chances. Tortorella wants to try and get that from Kreider, and if Kreider can learn to do it even half as well as Hagelin, it will completely open up his game. He'll have the puck more, get into the speed of the game more, and he'll learn to use his size along the boards. He has the speed to be an elite puck retriever, so there is absolutely no reason Tortorella shouldn't be telling him NOT to use that skill.
On the topic of Kreider, I think he has looked very good thus far. He was OK against the Panthers, made a few nice plays, but tonight, he looked very sharp. I think he could have scored a goal or two if his linemates could get the puck out of the defensive zone. He seemed confident every time he was on the ice. I think it's only a matter of the right line combinations, and a little bit of time before Kreider starts scoring in bunches.
But as part of the growing pains, there will be the occasional bad game. Which is perfectly normal for a kid his age. Just hope Torts doesn't banish him.
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