Thread: Claude Julien
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04-17-2013, 11:14 PM
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Great post above, and great perspective for the keep Julien crowd.

My biggest problem with this offence is its inconsistency in creating sustained zone play. The breakout used to centre around giving guys outlets in the zone, no one flying the zone early unless the opportunity presented itself, and a good, safe breakout in terms of turnovers. I think opponents have started to catch on to that more, putting pressure on the D behind the net who are very slow. Also, they are pinching further down the wall on the wingers, who haven't been battling particularly hard for time and space for the most part. This is a deadly combination right now, and makes the players basically start from scratch in the neutral zone if they chip it out.

This slow neutral zone play leaves them disorganized, and gives the opposing D time to stack the line and make them either a) get creative up the middle which can lead to turnovers, or b) dump and chase, where the forecheck has been poor on the first line and third line for the most part.

The strength of this team in recent years has been the cycle, with the centreman high in the slot and the weak side winger cutting to the far post and crashing the net. Paille's goal was similar to this tonight. Kelly won a battle, saw the open man in front and bingo bango who's your mother. Now whether this is coaching, effort level or the whole team is drunk, it hasn't happened and I think it's key to their success going forward.

I hope people don't see this as an overreaction. Just as far as X's and O's problems, that's what I see right now.

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