: News Article:
Sather Speaks: Lack of Puck Possession Had "A lot to do" with Torts' firing
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06-26-2013, 12:45 PM
Join Date: Aug 2005
Originally Posted by
The risk is inherent, but necessary when what you're doing isn't working either.
More of a shooting gallery on Hank when the puck is in the defensive zone, but the puck should be in the defensive zone for less time. That's the point of talking about puck possession.
I disagree that McDonagh is the only one. Staal has shown glimpses of it. Del Zotto has been it, but was constantly reined in. Stralman has shown glimpses of it. I think, in general, our D is suited to play a puck possession game, even if they aren't racking up points. All have good stick skills. All are mobile. It's just a matter of reapplying their skills.
The implication of that is that it is a skill that can be developed. They spent zero time with that kind of thing, or other puck control skills, in practice, it seems like. That was actually a problem I identified in 2010-11 with the team. There is no reason at all why NHL players should be making so many poor passes, whether the skill level of the team is high or not compared to other NHL teams.
People need to practice constantly to maintain their abilities at a high level. This kind of thing is true for all activities involving skill. I'm a bass player (nominally at this point). I used to be a very, very good bass player. I haven't played regularly in at least a year. Can I pick up a bass and still play decently? Sure, but it's going to be sloppy, by my standards. In order to get back to where I was, I would need to play for an hour a day for a month and then I would need to play at least 3 hours per week in practice to maintain my chops.
NHL players are no different when it comes to puck control skills. It's really something I felt like they never worked on all that much in practice. All things were system oriented.
Our definition of puck possesson is a bit different.
View it as the ability to maintain control of the puck despite someone trying to get it from you. For example, in the Finals, Kane, Toews, Seabrook, Marchand, Lucic, and Bergeron were great at it.
I think Stepan is great at it and Callahan is pretty good. The rest of the fowards have not demonstrated tat enough. Mcdonagh is the only D that rarely loses battles. When you can win those battles you can find more open men to pass to.
Last edited by chosen: 06-26-2013 at
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