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02-03-2014, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Phil View Post
It is still worth noting that the cockiness and lack of preparation would still ensure Canada has their lunch handed to them in Game 1.
Ya, they really lost it after the Soviets tied it up at 2-2 in the 1st after giving up a 2-0 lead on early goals by Esposito & Henderson. Running around all over the ice throwing their bodies around, sometimes all 5 of them chasing the guy with puck, dropping to block shots that never came, the Soviets just skating around them, playing patience, going in a lot deeper than the North American game was played. Even into behind the net & setting up shop much as Gretzky emulated a decade later.

This then caused major problems for Ken Dryden, accustomed as he was to playing it up of the top of the crease & beyond in cutting down the angles. But when they didnt shoot, more passes past him, he was made to look really bad. Wasnt until later on in the series that he adjusted, played a lot deeper in the crease. For a big guy, he could scramble, very good at it in fact. But not the ideal to be facing Team CCCP. You really wanted a more acrobatic & yes, smaller goaltender. Semi Stand-Up. Cheevers, Giacomin, the style displayed by Roger Crozier in his brilliant playoff series with Detroit in the mid 60's. As I said, Id have gone with Giacomin but alas, injured.

Jean Beliveau was a guy who had it been even 3-4yrs earlier wouldve been a great addition as well. One of his signature moves was to go deep himself, stickhandling & deke rather than a shot. He said he liked to "make the goalie go swimming". Flailing around on a deke. With the Soviet style, you almost had to play it like that all the time because they were still passing top of crease, from behind the net in a dizzying display of actually set patterns that they'd worked on for years. To mitigate dangers, you have to be really good with your stick as a goalie in being able to execute perfect Johnny Bower Poke Checks, be aggressive with it, then be prepared to skate with the puck & pass it ahead. Like a 3rd Defenceman. While decent enough, Dryden wasnt as good as Giacomin at that nor was he as acrobatic; nor was he as fiery & aggressive as Cheevers, who did play deeper in his crease just naturally anyway.

Last edited by Killion: 02-03-2014 at 06:45 PM.
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