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04-05-2010, 08:57 PM
  #1
agrudez*
 
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Playoff Lineup

Now, I am assuming we are going to make the playoffs because since we have the tie breaker with NY I honestly think all we have to do is split one of our games with them to win the 8th seed. That being said, I was curious what everyone's thoughts were on how we should handle the Caps.

I personally think we should stack Pronger and Timonen together and play them 25-30 mins a game, put Carle and Parent as the 2nd pairing and Coburn Krajicek as the rarely used 3rd pairing.

In this scenario we have Pronger and Timonen on the ice every damn time Ovi steps on it, and sometimes when Laich's line is on. I would also like to see Lappy-Betts-Powe as a 4th line with the only goal of putting the puck deep in the o-zone and board playing to waste Ovi's minutes in his own zone. Then I would like to see a line of Gagne-Carter-Briere that will be saved for times when Ovi is not on the ice so they can have better cycling in the o-zone and be our main scoring line. Hartnell-Richards-Carcillo would be the 3rd line that would double as a shutdown line when the 4th isn't ready to go and a "momentum" changing line that will create good offense and bust heads with big hits. The 2nd line would be JVR-Giroux-Leino and would NEVER be used against either of the Capital's top 2 lines due to their obvious lacking defense.

I honestly have stifled excitement for the playoffs for 3 reasons:

-Laviolette is a damn good coach and in a 7-game playoff scenario we are going to be in awe of what a good coach can do compared to an inept one like the baker
-Pronger and Briere are playoff players and I fully expect them to turn it on for them
-I think we match up well against almost every team in the playoffs because defense is what wins playoff rounds, and ours is the best

The only reason this excitement is stifled is because of Brian Boucher, but I am also holding my breath for Backlund to be back in time for round 1 and Leighton back in time for round 2.

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04-05-2010, 08:59 PM
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Depends who we are playing.

We can't stack on Ovy and leave Semin free to dance around everyone

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04-05-2010, 09:17 PM
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There is no way that I would put Carle with anyone other than Pronger. Pronger covers a lot of mistakes for Carle, but it lets Carle do what he does best which is move the puck.

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04-05-2010, 09:19 PM
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Originally Posted by whatthef View Post
There is no way that I would put Carle with anyone other than Pronger. Pronger covers a lot of mistakes for Carle, but it lets Carle do what he does best which is move the puck.
Trust me, I am probably Matt's biggest supporter (well, maybe next to the big DU fan that posts alot), but having Pronger and Timonen on the ice for half of the game every game is really tempting, imo. Not to mention Parent is the perfect partner for Carle, he has great positioning and makes smart defensive plays so Carle can still move the puck and try and pinch. Also, I think Carle would be more explosive offensively if he didn't feel obligated to feed Pronger one-timers all game long. In the beggining of the season he was deking people and making sick passes, he looked better than our forwards with the puck on his stick.

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04-05-2010, 09:20 PM
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We play a tight defense against the Caps they are screwed.

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04-05-2010, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Hovercraft View Post
Depends who we are playing.

We can't stack on Ovy and leave Semin free to dance around everyone
Well, with the Richards line I was trying to create a 2nd checking line, Hartnell and Carcillo may not be defensive gurus, but Richards is a Selke candidate and both of those two guys are big, nasty and tough to play against so the combination could be a good defensive pairing.

With what I was suggesting, one of those 2 lines would always be out there against those 2 lines, Pronger and Kimmo would be out there for 75 percent of their shifts and Carle-Parent the other 25. That is not letting anyone dance around, imo.

edit. maybe we even put Coburn and Parent together to be a defensive pairing and then Krajicek and Carle can be put out there with the 1st and 2nd pairing lines to help with the offense as both are very offensively talented. This would also allow a bigger dman (Coburn) to be out there against a player like Laich on the Cap's 2nd line. Then we just have to pray that Coburn/Parent don't do their usual 3 defensive zone turnovers a game thing.

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04-05-2010, 09:22 PM
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If we play the Caps with Brian Boucher as our starting goalie, we are screwed...

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04-05-2010, 09:25 PM
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Originally Posted by Ghost of Downie View Post
If we play the Caps with Brian Boucher as our starting goalie, we are screwed...
pretty much.

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04-05-2010, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Ghost of Downie View Post
If we play the Caps with Brian Boucher as our starting goalie, we are screwed...
If we really tailor our lineup around shutting them down and then rotate lines to get good matchups I think we will be alright. Let us not forget that the Cap's defense is swiss cheese and their goalies are not very good either. There is a reason that the saying is "Defense wins championships", because in the playoffs when there are 7-game series and every game matters a ton teams can focus on playing defense and shutting down stars, it is much less wide open and thus will be hard for a team like the Caps to do anything in the post season. Just look at us last year, we had 6 30 goal scorers and got routed in the first round because our defense was terrible.

Now that I bring it up and think about it, the Caps this year are alot like the Flyers last year. LOTS of scoring, WEAK defense and a mediocre goalie. The only difference is Ovechkin is one of those guys that can just put a team on his back, which is Washington's only chance to do anything this year, but if the Olympics are any indication he will choke.

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04-05-2010, 09:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghost of Downie View Post
If we play the Caps with Brian Boucher as our starting goalie, we are screwed...
Yes I know. This is a true story. Sometimes I like to pretend we'll be okay. But at the end of my dream I remember Boucher is our starter.

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04-05-2010, 09:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agrudez View Post
Trust me, I am probably Matt's biggest supporter (well, maybe next to the big DU fan that posts alot), but having Pronger and Timonen on the ice for half of the game every game is really tempting, imo. Not to mention Parent is the perfect partner for Carle, he has great positioning and makes smart defensive plays so Carle can still move the puck and try and pinch. Also, I think Carle would be more explosive offensively if he didn't feel obligated to feed Pronger one-timers all game long. In the beggining of the season he was deking people and making sick passes, he looked better than our forwards with the puck on his stick.
I see what you're saying, but I'd rather spread out Pronger and Timonen and play them together as little as possible. I'd rather have two great pairings (each of which plays 22ish minuets for 44 minuets of Pronger or Timonen out there) rather than one super pairing where they're out there together all time time.

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04-05-2010, 09:57 PM
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Come on Hovercraft, optimism is not allowed on HFBoards?


I like the idea of offensive lines. However, Caps would be the home-team for majority of the games where they can match their lines against ours at every break, excluding icings of course.

That so-called 3rd line could really shatter some bones, damn!

I'd like to see Timonen and Pronger on different pairings, they can both play +25mins a game. So there'd almost always be one of them on the ice taking care of Ovie. And when Ovie-line is out on the ice for them and no Kimmo or Chris for us, our D-men wouldn't be allowed to pinch at all, also the center should stay under the puck at all times.


Though, I'd rather see Flyers vs. Devils in the 1st round.

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04-05-2010, 10:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agrudez View Post
If we really tailor our lineup around shutting them down and then rotate lines to get good matchups I think we will be alright. Let us not forget that the Cap's defense is swiss cheese and their goalies are not very good either. There is a reason that the saying is "Defense wins championships", because in the playoffs when there are 7-game series and every game matters a ton teams can focus on playing defense and shutting down stars, it is much less wide open and thus will be hard for a team like the Caps to do anything in the post season. Just look at us last year, we had 6 30 goal scorers and got routed in the first round because our defense was terrible.

Now that I bring it up and think about it, the Caps this year are alot like the Flyers last year. LOTS of scoring, WEAK defense and a mediocre goalie. The only difference is Ovechkin is one of those guys that can just put a team on his back, which is Washington's only chance to do anything this year, but if the Olympics are any indication he will choke.
Oh, by no means am I saying that the Caps are invulnerable; I can't see them getting out of the East, even if they do get to the ECF. But I just can't see the Flyers winning a 7 game series against them with Boosh as their starting goalie. I mean, if I didn't mess up my numbers, he's had a 3.39 GAA in his last 10 games. That's not against the best offense in the NHL, either; that's against Detroit (13th in G/G), Montreal (24th), the Islanders (21st), New Jersey (23rd), Pittsburgh (5th), Minnesota (18th), Ottawa (16th), Atlanta (7th [Note: WTF I guess I haven't been paying attention this season, the Thrashers have the 7th best G/G in the NHL...?]), and Dallas (9th). Now, there are statistically some good to very good offenses in there (Detroit, Dallas, Atlanta, Pittsburgh), but Boosh has given up 3 goals to Detroit, 2 to Dallas, an average of 4 to Atlanta, and 2 in 20 minutes to Pittsburgh. That's not exactly inspiring, especially if you consider that in a 7 game series, the Caps will get a better idea of Boosh's tendency.

Maybe Boosh can prove me wrong, maybe the defense can shut the Caps down, but, man, does a series against the Caps terrify me.

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04-05-2010, 10:11 PM
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if we play the caps, we do what scotty bowman did against the legion of doom. you pair up the best puck moving defensemen against ovys line so tehy can handle the puck before they get a chance to set up in the zone.

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04-05-2010, 10:39 PM
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I was coming into this thread to see the obligatory "PLAYOFFS?!" pic...I'm slightly disappointed.

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04-05-2010, 10:48 PM
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If Flyers *ahem* make the playoffs and line up against Washington, they need to immediately trade for RJ Umberger, since he seems to know how to beat them.

Seriously, the Flyers would have to be at their best defensively, blocking >50% of shots. Richards shadows Ovechkin all series. Their best chances of scoring are 1) picking off the touchdown passes, and 2) outworking them in their own zone. PK - and you know they would be dealing with a parade to the box - would have to be impeccable.

And hit Semin and Backstrom every chance they get!

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04-05-2010, 10:51 PM
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Their best chance against the Caps is playing at their best. If the scorers are on their game and the d-men are playing their best defensively and the usual great shot-blocking is coming from our d-men and bottom six guys then we should be fine.

Honestly, if we had any one of Leighton, Emery, or Backlund in goal I think we would have a decent shot at beating the Caps. It's not even because I think Boucher is as bad as everyone thinks, it's just because I think the team doesn't play well in front of him.

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04-05-2010, 10:57 PM
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Their best chance against the Caps is playing at their best. If the scorers are on their game and the d-men are playing their best defensively and the usual great shot-blocking is coming from our d-men and bottom six guys then we should be fine.

Honestly, if we had any one of Leighton, Emery, or Backlund in goal I think we would have a decent shot at beating the Caps. It's not even because I think Boucher is as bad as everyone thinks, it's just because I think the team doesn't play well in front of him.
The best way to beat the Caps is to pressure their defense. You keep their defense bottled up against the boards and the end-wall, then you keep the play in their zone. Their defense is terrible and soft. You can run them over.

The problem with the Caps is you need to pressure constantly. You can't wake up in the 2nd and hope to have a chance. You can't play half a game, build a lead, and then sit back. You need to play "relentless" to beat them.

It can be done, but you have to be willing to do it. The Caps are built to be playoff fodder, and I'm being 100% honest. They are my 2nd favorite team, but they are a paper tiger.

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04-05-2010, 10:59 PM
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Flyers should study how the Bruins played them tonight, even though they lost in OT. Boston had some glorious chances and could have won in regulation because they played them hard.

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04-05-2010, 11:02 PM
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Garbage Goal
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The best way to beat the Caps is to pressure their defense. You keep their defense bottled up against the boards and the end-wall, then you keep the play in their zone. Their defense is terrible and soft. You can run them over.

The problem with the Caps is you need to pressure constantly. You can't wake up in the 2nd and hope to have a chance. You can't play half a game, build a lead, and then sit back. You need to play "relentless" to beat them.

It can be done, but you have to be willing to do it. The Caps are built to be playoff fodder, and I'm being 100% honest. They are my 2nd favorite team, but they are a paper tiger.
I know and I completely agree with the bold, except I don't like the Caps.

Calling them a paper tiger is a good way of phrasing it. The only reason I'm not so ready to dismiss them is because they brought the Pens to 7 last year and looked quite impressive while doing so.

One big blow for them, I think, is that Varlamov has been pretty bad since coming back from injury. If Theodore doesn't hold up then their goaltending probably won't be nearly as strong as last year I believe.

Like I said before, I think we have a good shot at the Caps if we're playing to the best of our capabilities, like during some of their good stretches this year. That's the problem I think though, they just don't play to the best of their capabilities when playing in front of Boosh.

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04-05-2010, 11:03 PM
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Flyers should study how the Bruins played them tonight, even though they lost in OT. Boston had some glorious chances and could have won in regulation because they played them hard.
Boston played tonight exactly how I described.

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Originally Posted by Garbage Goal View Post
I know and I completely agree with the bold, except I don't like the Caps.
Five years of living in DC. Some of the best times of my life down at school. Not to mention I watched the Verizon Center during Flyers/Caps games grow from a dotting of red clusters between empty seats and chunks of Flyers fans into a massive warzone taking place every time the Flyers would visit.

There's a little bit of DC that's still "home" to me.

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Originally Posted by Garbage Goal View Post
Calling them a paper tiger is a good way of phrasing it. The only reason I'm not so ready to dismiss them is because they brought the Pens to 7 last year and looked quite impressive while doing so.

One big blow for them, I think, is that Varlamov has been pretty bad since coming back from injury. If Theodore doesn't hold up then their goaltending probably won't be nearly as strong as last year I believe.

Like I said before, I think we have a good shot at the Caps if we're playing to the best of our capabilities, like during some of their good stretches this year. That's the problem I think though, they just don't play to the best of their capabilities when playing in front of Boosh.
I think we have a good shot at anyone other than the Pens. It's not because the Pens are that good or scary either. Having Boucher in net sucks, but anything can happen. I was confident with Leighton. I am uneasy with Boucher, but I'm not giving up.

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04-05-2010, 11:04 PM
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Boston played tonight exactly how I described.
Didn't see tonight's game, but if the Flyers play them for 60 minutes like they came out against Detroit they certainly stand a chance.

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04-05-2010, 11:08 PM
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Be careful about that, they didn't have Mike Green, and didn't really keep their foot on the pedal. Ovechkin was under 20 minutes, about 3 1/2 minutes off his season average.

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04-05-2010, 11:10 PM
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Yeah, I wouldn't read too much into it either considering everything GKJ said the fact that, since they pretty much have 1st seed clinched, they literally have nothing to play for right now. They haven't been playing impressively ever since they clinched.

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04-05-2010, 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by go kim johnsson 514
Be careful about that, they didn't have Mike Green, and didn't really keep their foot on the pedal. Ovechkin was under 20 minutes, about 3 1/2 minutes off his season average.
And what makes you think the Caps wouldn't be so confident that they would do the same in Round 1 against us?

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