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03-28-2013, 11:59 AM
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Originally Posted by hckyplayer8 View Post
Within reason, this is correct.

You shouldn't need to have a D permanently attached to the goal crease to be good. It helps, but it shouldn't be a 60 min necessity.
Yes and no. I believe that the excellent goaltender / excellent defense balance is necessary for long-term success. Of course, you get the standing-on-his-head goaltender emerging from time to time, but this is more the exception, and very few goaltenders can do this consistently over their careers.

Brodeur was mentioned further on as an example; he's definitely an HoF goalie, but look at the system around him. He largely has the luxury of reducing his concentration to the shooter and stopping that first shot. Please note the word "largely"; I know you can show me a dozen YouTube videos contrary to this, but I'm trying to give a broader scope. Few things are worse for a goaltender (in my limited experience) than trying to be ready for a shot and a pass at the same time, and to feel the need to not just stop shots but to corral them all the time. The Devils have historically done an excellent job of reducing the shot quality (keeping shooters outside), clogging up passing lanes, closely checking (interfering with ) teammates near the net, and clearing rebounds.

A defense doesn't have to block every shot, but they can minimize passing that improves the shot quality and can grab the puck after the first save. At least one D should be within a stick length of the goal crease when defending in their zone, and the forwards should be aware of their positioning and where the opposition players are. I don't see the latter with the current Flyers "system". I'd wager that any goaltender playing for the Flyers has his efficiency reduced this is, of course, relative to his efficiency in and of itself by regularly trying to defend against the shooter and his teammate standing unguarded beside the opposite post, as well as the other teammate floating into the high slot for a one-timer.

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