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12-23-2013, 08:34 AM
Change is good.
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Originally Posted by Idlerlee View Post
So what is going on here ? AV's benched Kreider 2 games in a row after what he feels is bad effort.

Is AV right here, or is he simply projecting the shortcomings of Nash and Stepan over to Kreider ?

The play he made after he came back on last night, and the sheer determination and speed which lead to his goal was impressive. What wasnt so impressive was that he actually missed the puck alltogether, granted the end result was a goal.
Interestingly, I would argue that these benchings were intended primarily to address his offensive game. And they worked, IMO.

He continued to display the defensive awareness that he had lacked earlier in his career, but the drive and will he had shown on offense earlier had begun to taper off. Mind you, I didn't think he was playing badly, but he wasn't the force he had been. He had stopped driving past players and had started trying more "delicate" maneuvers; he wasn't taking it straight to the net as much and was becoming more of a perimeter player; when getting the puck in front of the net, he had started passing without even looking to shoot; and he had started pulling up on his hits somewhat like he had in seasons past.

When he came back out in the third, he immediately started playing "Kreider-esque" hockey. He absolutely CRUSHED a player on the forecheck, on offense he was driving straight ahead with the afterburners on, and he was looking to shoot rather than pass.

As for the puck that went in, the defenseman actually made a good play and jostled his stick just as he was going to shoot, so he didn't really fan on the shot; he was checked but the puck went in anyway - it's the sort of thing that usually happens TO the Rangers.

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