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11-13-2013, 11:34 AM
  #626
seventieslord
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
Teams always tried to play their best checkers against the best opposition and their best forwards against the weakest checkers.

Vigneault's innovation was changing the emphasis away from matchups and towards zone starts. And it makes sense - prior to 2005, teams could purposely ice the puck or throw the puck into the stands to get the matchups they wanted. With those tactics abolished, getting matchups became much more difficult.
You've absolutely right that it's way more about zone stats than matchups. But matchups are still a part of it. Somehow he manages to keep Malhotra or kesler or Pahlsson against the best guys, to the Sedins' benefit, as they played relatively weak competition, aside from last year.

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