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Dump & chase : System? Or lack of talent?

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Old
10-23-2011, 02:15 AM
  #1
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Dump & chase : System? Or lack of talent?

I think this is something we all need to look into. We all see it. It doesn't take a genius to realize this team skates the puck up to the red line, and often dumps the puck in only to go chasing after it. Yes, it's hockey 101 and it's a safe play -- but it's not something good teams do constantly. It's not something talented teams do constantly. So the question is: Are we a team that lacks the talent (still!!!!) Even after acquiring Richards, or is this a product of the system our coach likes to implement?

I'm going to be completely honest ; if this is indeed the hallmarks of a John Torterella system then you can count me in the group that was a Torts supporter but is ever so slowly shifting to the middle.

Here's my take. I have a hard time believing a coach wouldn't utilize his talented players properly. Meaning, if you have individuals who can go up the ice via pass work instead of chips and dumps then you let them play their game like they know it. Which is why I want to believe that it again comes back to not having a player who can keep the puck, stick handle, and create room by doing so. When I think of players like this I think of Hemsky, Kane, Datsyuk, etc. Signing Richards is going in the right direction, however, I still don't think he's someone who holds onto the puck as much as he is someone who has vision and distributes the puck. Gaborik isn't someone who can keep the puck for long periods, stick handle, and create his own space either. It seems as though we have too many players who work off the rush instead of slowing the pace down and working magic in the O-zone.The last guy who did that for us was Jagr. We try to do it off the rush in a one and done type of attack instead of keeping the puck possession and applying sustained pressure. We may have too many grinders and too little of the finesse-like talent in our top 6.

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10-23-2011, 02:40 AM
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Net Front Presence
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Your last sentence pretty much answers the question. We have too many grinders and not even skill players. When we had guys like Jagr, Gomez, and Nylander, we never seemed to have a problem generating offense (I mention Gomez because he was excellent at carrying the puck up ice and into the offensive zone). Now the only players we have that can carry the puck into the zone are Richards, and to a lesser extent, Dubinsky. We have a lot of guys who succeed through working hard and grinding, and not by skill - essentially 3 lines of grinders. We're missing another skilled player, which would help round out our top 6 a lot better.


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10-23-2011, 04:23 AM
  #3
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I agree that we possess to many grinders. We also have one of the most skilled offensive players, but due to his lack of defensive skills (like too many thinks nowadays) we just shipped him to the minors where he pulled two goals and an assist up from the hat two days ago. Sure, let the whole MZA debate pop up here too... (Yes, I'm also getting tired of it).

Unfortunately I didn't catch the game last night, but the first thing I checked when I woke up was the box score on my phone. And there it was, again... 19(!) shots?! So I move into my living room and turn on my mac for some highlights. PP 5v3!? Jeebus! This is getting sad.

Gaborik seems to be flying nowadays though, but on the other side of it. I looks like he is taking matters into his own hands. Meaning it looks like he TRIES to do something different than the dump and chase. Trying to transport the puck a bit more other than just thinking it's a hot potato he needs to get rid of as soon as he crosses the red line.

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10-23-2011, 05:21 AM
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The dump and chase clearly isn't working. Or, our transition game is non-existant and we suck at re-gaining it with a crappy forecheck that everyone and their mother can read. We are extremely incompetent at gaining the offensive zone with puck control. If you can't do that, you won't win hockey games, that's when you can do damage.

Sure, some of it is due to Staal and Sauer being out. But we still have horrible passers on this team, who simply can't do anything but grind it out. We can't even manage to throw a puck on the net and go for the rebound for crying out loud. And some fans want more pug grinders, give me a break. Our offense sucks, our PP has never worked, our transition game is non-existant and our defense is very shaky, since it's constantly pressured. Just another season, right?

Torts tries to play some pre-lockout hockey. If it's due to lack of talent or simply because he believes in this no-offense, D-man pinching oddman rush the other way system, I don't know. What I do know he has greatly influenced which way this team is going. I can't say I like it. All you have to do is listen to one of Ola's Torts rants to realize this outdated system isn't working in today's NHL. We have been one elite goalie away from total disaster, now we're simply stuck in mediocrity instead, if this crap is working.

It's not just this season. This team has continued struggling since Torts came here. And instead of improving, it seems we're getting worse, since everyone knows how damn easy it is to face us. Keep the puck tempo up and we will look like fools all over the ice and take tons of penalties in the offensive zone, because of our failing forecheck and generosity to constantly give the puck possession away, because we are clueless at how you do anything constructive with it. They don't have to keep us along the boards where we do NO damage, we willingly lick the boards and stay there for 60 minutes!

Random Ranger: "Safe is good, away with the puck, oh my god I have this live hand grenade and Torts is going to scorch me if I don't throw it a... aah, such a relief, away it goes. Where? Down there... out... somewhere there. Go chase it if you want it. Go fetch! Icing? Damn..." Are these guys hockey players or dog owners in a park?

Staying up in the middle of the night to watch this team play terrible hockey is getting real tiresome. And Torts only answer to our systematical incompetence is sending our only true skill player down to the minors, since he can't fail at grinding as well as the rest of them. Torts dog system can be described in two simple words for everyone to understand: Go fetch!

And oh, perhaps Torts worst quality as a coach, aside from his terrible temper: He is completely and utterly inept at adapting during a game. Or, he's completely and utterly inept at getting his players to adapt.


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10-23-2011, 05:33 AM
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F dump and chase all the time, seriously... it doesnt work for this team.

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10-23-2011, 06:57 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chimp View Post
The dump and chase clearly isn't working. Or, our transition game is non-existant and we suck at re-gaining it with a crappy forecheck that everyone and their mother can read. We are extremely incompetent at gaining the offensive zone with puck control. If you can't do that, you won't win hockey games, that's when you can do damage.

Sure, some of it is due to Staal and Sauer being out. But we still have horrible passers on this team, who simply can't do anything but grind it out. We can't even manage to throw a puck on the net and go for the rebound for crying out loud. And some fans want more pug grinders, give me a break. Our offense sucks, our PP has never worked, our transition game is non-existant and our defense is very shaky, since it's constantly pressured. Just another season, right?

Torts tries to play some pre-lockout hockey. If it's due to lack of talent or simply because he believes in this no-offense, D-man pinching oddman rush the other way system, I don't know. What I do know he has greatly influenced which way this team is going. I can't say I like it. All you have to do is listen to one of Ola's Torts rants to realize this outdated system isn't working in today's NHL. We have been one elite goalie away from total disaster, now we're simply stuck in mediocrity instead, if this crap is working.

It's not just this season. This team has continued struggling since Torts came here. And instead of improving, it seems we're getting worse, since everyone knows how damn easy it is to face us. Keep the puck tempo up and we will look like fools all over the ice and take tons of penalties in the offensive zone, because of our failing forecheck and generosity to constantly give the puck possession away, because we are clueless at how you do anything constructive with it. They don't have to keep us along the boards where we do NO damage, we willingly lick the boards and stay there for 60 minutes!

Random Ranger: "Safe is good, away with the puck, oh my god I have this live hand grenade and Torts is going to scorch me if I don't throw it a... aah, such a relief, away it goes. Where? Down there... out... somewhere there. Go chase it if you want it. Go fetch! Icing? Damn..." Are these guys hockey players or dog owners in a park?

Staying up in the middle of the night to watch this team play terrible hockey is getting real tiresome. And Torts only answer to our systematical incompetence is sending our only true skill player down to the minors, since he can't fail at grinding as well as the rest of them. Torts dog system can be described in two simple words for everyone to understand: Go fetch!

And oh, perhaps Torts worst quality as a coach, aside from his terrible temper: He is completely and utterly inept at adapting during a game. Or, he's completely and utterly inept at getting his players to adapt.
I salute you! - Well put!

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10-23-2011, 07:07 AM
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Easy, lack of skill !!!!

Callahan is a third liner (period), Dubinsky is borderline second and Anisimov thus far hasn't shown any growth or progression into becoming a bonafied second liner. Thus, we have 2/3 of a top line and three third lines. I don't care what people were spewing about keeping the "Pack Line" together, THEY'RE HORRIBLE.....Second line down needs destroyed..way to many grinders and zero skill = 0 goals, Our new "C" can't handle the added weight, Dubi looks good when he's NOT on the second line. Doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure it out, and I'm sure Tort's see's it, but his dilemma is putting Cally where he belongs on the 3rd line and how it will effect him mentally. Fed's, looking long in the tooth and taking up a spot I'd rather be developing youth in. Boyle, Prust and Rupp are our 4th line, when you start bumping guy's UP from that line to fill holes you know you're in trouble. Time to start looking at the Whalepack for new look second and third lines ...What's it going to hurt, the scoring?? LOL !!!


Last edited by Jackpot: 10-23-2011 at 07:25 AM.
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10-23-2011, 07:31 AM
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Gee, you have to be into bondage, sadomasochism and that kind of stuff to watch a complete game this season, it's painful...

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10-23-2011, 08:25 AM
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Nexus, I couldn't agree with you more! Watching this team is as exciting as taking your sister to the prom!

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10-23-2011, 08:37 AM
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This team lacks skill, period.

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10-23-2011, 09:01 AM
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Originally Posted by BroadwayBlues View Post
This team lacks skill, period.
when Prust is one of the better players the past few nights over players like Cally Anisimov and Stepan (stepan played well but needs to score a goal or 2 already) etc you got issues...

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10-23-2011, 09:36 AM
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Watching this game was a nightmare. It seemed their offensive strategy was to center the puck or throw it haphazardly toward the net.

19 shots on this EDM defense is despicable, but how many shots missed the net last night? It never ceases to amaze me how often NHL players miss the net. Torts should take a page out my old HS hockey coach and make the whole team do 10 pushups for every missed shot

Also Dubinsky looked terrible. Not shooting when he gets the puck on the 5 on 3, instead he tried to thread it thru the crease? And on that 3 on 2 he tried to be Gretzky and sneak one through the defense on the rush, come on man

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10-23-2011, 09:56 AM
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HP- Good thread.

I want to to be clear with this (IMHO) it has absolutely NOTHING to do with lack of talent. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.

It is a coach decision.

If we believe anything else -- we are basically commiting as big of a misstake as we did when we believed that you could have success in the pre-lockout game without playing defensive first hockey.

For example, without any single doubt, we execute fewer organized transition plays then like the worst Islander team that has stepped onto the ice in this league the last five years. Like for those who state that we don't have talent -- jesus H christ, look around in this league.

Torts wants this team to be a offensive zone/defensive zone team -- without any nonsense inbetween. Like many of the best teams in the redline offside era. He wants us to get below the hashmarks before we take the puck to the net. Its a STRATEGY. If you get the puck deep before you take it to the net you slow the other team down, and you are less vunerable against counter attacks.

But thats also like going 180 degrees in the other direction compared to say a team like the Boston Bruins, who have worked really hard for a long time to become a team that can play physical old time hockey -- in the post lockout game. Julien has worked extremely hard at drilling them into creative ways of getting the puck up ice, without giving it away in positions were they can't put pressure on the other team.

IMHO Torts is easily the weakest link on this team. He needs to get up to a level were he competes with the other coaches in this leauge. Right now he is getting his rear handed to him on a regular basis.

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10-23-2011, 10:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by x GBISH x View Post
Your last sentence pretty much answers the question. We have too many grinders and not even skill players. When we had guys like Jagr, Gomez, and Nylander, we never seemed to have a problem generating offense (I mention Gomez because he was excellent at carrying the puck up ice and into the offensive zone). Now the only players we have that can carry the puck into the zone are Richards, and to a lesser extent, Dubinsky. We have a lot of guys who succeed through working hard and grinding, and not by skill - essentially 3 lines of grinders. We're missing another skilled player, which would help round out our top 6 a lot better.
Gomez was absolutely horrendous at maintaining the puck after gaining the zone. I am glad we got Mcdonagh in exchange for him. Probably the only good thing about Gomez.

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10-23-2011, 10:29 AM
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Seems like every time they dump the pick they always turn it over..

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10-23-2011, 10:43 AM
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The funny thing is, when they actually have a good opportunity to shoot the puck, they wait to long to put it on net. The way they wind up for a shot, it looks like they are loading an old musket from the 1700s lol It takes forever!. Put the damn puck on net and have someone get the rebound...

At the end of the day, this team is basically made up of muckers and grinders

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10-23-2011, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ola View Post
HP- Good thread.

I want to to be clear with this (IMHO) it has absolutely NOTHING to do with lack of talent. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.

It is a coach decision.

If we believe anything else -- we are basically commiting as big of a misstake as we did when we believed that you could have success in the pre-lockout game without playing defensive first hockey.

For example, without any single doubt, we execute fewer organized transition plays then like the worst Islander team that has stepped onto the ice in this league the last five years. Like for those who state that we don't have talent -- jesus H christ, look around in this league.

Torts wants this team to be a offensive zone/defensive zone team -- without any nonsense inbetween. Like many of the best teams in the redline offside era. He wants us to get below the hashmarks before we take the puck to the net. Its a STRATEGY. If you get the puck deep before you take it to the net you slow the other team down, and you are less vunerable against counter attacks.

But thats also like going 180 degrees in the other direction compared to say a team like the Boston Bruins, who have worked really hard for a long time to become a team that can play physical old time hockey -- in the post lockout game. Julien has worked extremely hard at drilling them into creative ways of getting the puck up ice, without giving it away in positions were they can't put pressure on the other team.

IMHO Torts is easily the weakest link on this team. He needs to get up to a level were he competes with the other coaches in this leauge. Right now he is getting his rear handed to him on a regular basis.
Long-time Torts supporter that's beginning to agree with this. There's no way you can convince me that this team is lacking talent. Sure, we're missing our #1 and top 4 defenseman, sure the guys have had a tough schedule, but there's zero excuse for a team with our talent level to consistently put ~20 shots on goal. If it weren't for Luongo playing like a ECHL goalie and Lundqvist playing out of his mind (even by his standards) we could easily have been winless thus far this season.

Pens were able to do a lot more with a less last season. I like Torts, but this is a make-or-break season for him. He's got a well-assembled team in front of him (sure, it's flawed, but so are the other 29 teams), and it's up to him to make it click. It's time to move away from mindless dump-and-chase, hoping for fluke goals and relying on Lundy to outplay the opposition's goalie night after night.

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10-23-2011, 11:29 AM
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Long-time Torts supporter that's beginning to agree with this. There's no way you can convince me that this team is lacking talent. Sure, we're missing our #1 and top 4 defenseman, sure the guys have had a tough schedule, but there's zero excuse for a team with our talent level to consistently put ~20 shots on goal. If it weren't for Luongo playing like a ECHL goalie and Lundqvist playing out of his mind (even by his standards) we could easily have been winless thus far this season.

Pens were able to do a lot more with a less last season. I like Torts, but this is a make-or-break season for him. He's got a well-assembled team in front of him (sure, it's flawed, but so are the other 29 teams), and it's up to him to make it click. It's time to move away from mindless dump-and-chase, hoping for fluke goals and relying on Lundy to outplay the opposition's goalie night after night.
Happy to see that people agreed with what I said on last nights GDT, amidst all the anger and frustration. This team is a talented team... of course some players are slumping (Dubi, AA, Cally), but they have all the right players. These guys aren't dumb, they know how to play hockey, but Torts treats them all like toddlers learning to walk, and that has to stop. The coaching staff needs to leave town.

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10-23-2011, 11:31 AM
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While I agree that this team utilizes dump and chase too much, I think if we have Feds-Boyle-Prust, and to a lesser extent, the Pack Line, attempt to carry the puck in over the blueline on a regular basis, it could get ugly. Cally got stood up at the blueline a few times against Calgary for trying to carry the puck in, although I think Dubi is capable of entering the zone and should be the one leading the rush on that line.

Dump and chase hockey is ugly at times, but when the forecheck is going, it can be effective. For whatever reason, the Pack Line isn't clicking right now and they aren't forechecking like they did last year. Julien utilizes a dump-and-chase offense and won the cup, so I'm not overly concerned about it.

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10-23-2011, 11:50 AM
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A few points...

1. Last year at this time our team was undefeated or very nearly undefeated. And yet at the end of the year we averaged back out. Now, this year, we're not doing so hot and its the end of the world. It's still OCTOBER. This team has not played one home game yet. Chill.

2. We're still team outsiders on a forum. We don't "know" what the strategy is or what is strategy and what is bad habit. You can reason all day long but you still don't know for sure. I highly, highly doubt that Torts is telling them to dump and chase on every entry into the zone, even if they can just skate it in and cycle down low. I'd guess that he tells them to get the puck down low and keep it there and time after time as they get to the blue line they think the easiest way to get the puck deep is to dump and chase. If thats the case, Torts certainly does need to start to craft some new plays to run in those situations but thats not nearly as stupid as him making them dump and chase every time they get the zone.

3. The idea that this or that player "can't" skate the puck into the zone is flawed. They're almost all capable of it and have done it here and there in the past. For example, Bell had a nice end to end rush last night - is he "capable" of skating the puck into the zone? Staal had the odd end to end that ended with a goal last year - is he "capable" of that? It's all BS. A professional hockey player can skate the puck into the attacking zone given the opportunity to do so and a smart play to execute. Torts needs to get strategizing - I don't think its all on the players' ability in terms of zone entry.

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10-23-2011, 12:22 PM
  #21
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haveandre- Look, most of us have been around for a while and has seen Torts coached teams for over a decade. Like it ain't just "October" if you get what I mean, and none of us are saying anything we could no have said in June this year, or June 2010.

We knew what we got, and many of us were afraid since Torts last job before NY was as a coach for a talented roster that finished dead last in the entire NHL. And Tampa was -- after the lockout -- extremely easy to play against. Like who don't remember Blair Betts and co easily shutting down Vinny LeCavalier and co? Wow that reminds me of something, EDMs 4th last night constantly having good shifts against our 1st...

Look, I think we will make the POs this season. I don't need to "chill", but Torts has gotten evey player he has asked for, this is his roster. This is the year we at least should have been close to contending. I mean, we cannot possibly improve his roster alot.

Anything else than a strong top 5 finnish is a big fiasco for this TORTS.

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10-23-2011, 01:02 PM
  #22
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as was said a few times already,we dont have many guys that can carry the puck into the zone.its dump and chase prety much all game long,including on the powerplay.we dont have great team speed so when we dont get to the puck 1st its kind of hard to generate offense that way.a few times last night they had 3 on 2's coming into the zone(twice led by Boyle) and each time they threw the puck around the boards.you arent going to get many shots on goal doing that,we need a player or 2 that can actually skate the puck into the oppositions zone and set something up.

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10-23-2011, 01:04 PM
  #23
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Seems like pretty much everyone agrees on the tactics and lack of skill, which begs the question why people aren't agreeing on giving Zuke more ice time. Makes absolutely no sense whatsoever to send him down. Unless he was low on confidence, but I personally can't see that be an issue.

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10-23-2011, 01:35 PM
  #24
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Seems like pretty much everyone agrees on the tactics and lack of skill, which begs the question why people aren't agreeing on giving Zuke more ice time. Makes absolutely no sense whatsoever to send him down. Unless he was low on confidence, but I personally can't see that be an issue.
Because he isn't an NHL player.

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10-23-2011, 01:43 PM
  #25
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Typically when a team lacks offensive creativity, their system involves a defensive game plan, and forcing the opponent to specific areas of the ice and forcing the opponent to make mistakes/turnovers.

And that's what we are trying to accomplish.

Its clear we need a real second line. And at least one more winger with high-end skill.

Targeting Parise in the summer would be smart. If the numbers work.

Kreider needs to be on this team, we need the outside speed.

X. Richards. Gaborik
Parise. Stepan. X
Dubinsky. Anisimov. Callahan
X. Boyle. Prust

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