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I want a defensive powerhouse

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Old
04-26-2012, 04:47 PM
  #51
mpp9
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Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
So if Philadelphia wins the Cup, then what? There'll be a new thread about wingerz and upgrading the offense?

NONE of the other East teams could have exposed our defense like Philly did.

But to want a defensive team with our roster is just stupid. That's trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. The Caps are making a long-term mistake for short-term success with their newfound collapsing defensive style. And Ovi looks like a fish out of water. It's working because they're desperate to finally have some success. But it's not a great long-range plan. They've just run out of ideas.

We won the Cup 3 short seasons ago, and with this core. What we are missing now that we had then was the Rob Scuderi, Hal Gill, Mark Eaton types. And we need somebody to light a fire under Fleury. And I agree, the fourth line needs to start grinding more than it has. But those are things that we need, which are fixable.

Actually acquiring defensive defensemen would help us to become much much better defensively, even if not a defensive powerhouse.

We don't have the roster to play Ken Hitchcock hockey.
I'm glad Philly exposed our D the way they did. We're too soft in our own end.

Orpik/Michalek was a cluster**** pairing and would get hemmed in far too often. And Martin wouldn't take a ****ing check to make a play. Any proper forechecking team would expose that to some extent. It might not end up in the back of our net as much as in the Philly series, but we'd be hemmed in nonetheless.

It is what it is. We need Martin off this roster. Bring in another stay-at-home type. And if Staal is moved, we need more talent brought in on the wing.

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04-26-2012, 07:13 PM
  #52
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Exactly, so why bother trading Staal if we will need to change the wingers significantly?

It's about the defense and goaltending. And keeping Staal helps the defense and goaltending.

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04-26-2012, 07:45 PM
  #53
Til the End of Time
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one thing i noticed that i havent really heard mentioned very much was that this team hardly blocked ANY shots at all.

during the two runs to the finals, the penguins seemingly blocked everything. whenever there looked to be a good scoring chance, a well-timed block defused the situation and prevented fleury from having to make a save.

i saw like two blocked shots all series this year. michalek was supposed to be replace scuderi in this area, but he hasnt been doing a good job recently.

every year, it seems like the teams that are successful in the playoffs are fantastic at blocking shots.

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04-26-2012, 08:53 PM
  #54
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Originally Posted by Til the End of Time View Post
one thing i noticed that i havent really heard mentioned very much was that this team hardly blocked ANY shots at all.

during the two runs to the finals, the penguins seemingly blocked everything. whenever there looked to be a good scoring chance, a well-timed block defused the situation and prevented fleury from having to make a save.

i saw like two blocked shots all series this year. michalek was supposed to be replace scuderi in this area, but he hasnt been doing a good job recently.

every year, it seems like the teams that are successful in the playoffs are fantastic at blocking shots.
You are absolutely right that Michalek was sold as a shot blocking machine when he was signed from Phoenix, so why has he stopped since he became a Pittsburgh Penguin?

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04-26-2012, 09:12 PM
  #55
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Originally Posted by gordie View Post
You are absolutely right that Michalek was sold as a shot blocking machine when he was signed from Phoenix, so why has he stopped since he became a Pittsburgh Penguin?
Because the Yotes run a great zone D. Bylsma's system makes a guy like Niskanen look great but it hurts guys like Michalek. The problem is less personal related them people make it out to be.

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04-26-2012, 09:21 PM
  #56
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Originally Posted by eXile59 View Post
Because the Yotes run a great zone D. Bylsma's system makes a guy like Niskanen look great but it hurts guys like Michalek. The problem is less personal related them people make it out to be.
That's why I asked the question at the end of the statement, just something more to think about over the summer.

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04-26-2012, 09:43 PM
  #57
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Originally Posted by eXile59 View Post
Because the Yotes run a great zone D. Bylsma's system makes a guy like Niskanen look great but it hurts guys like Michalek. The problem is less personal related them people make it out to be.
Too simplistic to look at it that way. Yes, any player that makes his living blocking shots is more insulated in a system like the Coyotes or the Rangers, but when the Penguins are playing well as a team, and Michalek is reading and anticipating the way he can when he's playing well, he looks great in our system. He'll be reading the play and picking the appropriate time to try for a block, instead of just flopping on the ice every time a player gets near him. The big problem at the end of this year is he would be on the ice on every occasion, which let the player he was guarding either fake and move right around him, or pass it off to a teammate who was open because the other 4 Penguins on the ice were playing lax with their defensive assignments.

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04-26-2012, 09:52 PM
  #58
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All that high powered scoring got the Pens really far this year aye? Look at what the Caps just did to Boston. Hardly any penalties either, besides a few Boston dives. Scoring titles are a nice personal achievement but it wont win a cup. Solidify the defense, ditch the one dimensional grinders (im looking at you Adams, Asham, etc.) This team needs to go in a different direction and it starts with coaching.
That would be great, but you are forgetting one thing, the Caps had great goaltending against the Bruins.

If the Penguins had even average, not great, not phenomenal, but AVERAGE goaltending, the Pens would be moving on and this thread would not exist.


Instead we once again get handed one of the worst goaltending performances an NHL caliber goalie can have in a playoff series. To say Fleury isn't the problem is beyond delusional.


First issue is getting a new goaltender. That should be the only concern.

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04-26-2012, 10:07 PM
  #59
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Michalek paid the price, got his big contract and has basically sold out. It's not the system. Rob Scuderi and Hal Gill would still be blocking shots for us.

All our defensemen want to be puck movers. There's a specific role that's needed on this team in which our D men are either unwilling (Michalek, Martin) or no longer capable (Orpik) of playing: a stay-stay-home, defensive, meat-and-potatoes shutdown role.

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04-26-2012, 10:15 PM
  #60
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It's not what they want; it's what the coaches are asking them to do (constantly turn up ice as fast as possible and make the long pass). Michalek could be blocking more shots IMO, although his numbers weren't that far below past seasons. But the way our D plays vs. PHX... his totals should be up 20 or 30 a season, not down 15 or 20. No reason at all that guy can't be top 15 in blocks, instead of being 25-30.

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04-26-2012, 10:29 PM
  #61
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So get rid of Martin and Michalek and get some defensemen who are more limited...FORCING change.

Brian Strait seemed to play the type of hockey we need back there. Saying it's only a system issue gets these defensemen off the hook.

And that's wrong. Martin, Michalek and Orpik are a HUGE reason why we're playing golf.

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04-26-2012, 10:44 PM
  #62
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Not sure if you mean me, but I meant don't give up on Michalek yet, AND I'd be pretty happy with this:

(not thinking about which side or final pairings, just generally)

Letang - Jackman
Despres - Michalek
Engo - Morrow / Strait

OR

Letang - Sarich
Despres - Michalek
Engo - Morrow/Strait


...I think getting rid of Martin and either reducing Orpik's minutes or trading Orpik (I have a feeling he will be less of a pylon next fall / that he wasn't 100% this year - he's too young to be slowing down that much because of age. 31 is not old.) solves our problem and more than 50% of MAF's problem. That's assuming Bylsma is not allowed to continue down the same run-and-gun D path he's been using. That can work in some situations but he has to have a more conservative D game plan overall and just do those things when the score or clock dictates it.

I truly believe when our D falters badly, Fleury's brain goes out the window. And that's not good but if you build the D right and with enough depth and no undersized soft guys... he can be as good or better than his Cup year when under pressure.

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04-27-2012, 12:20 AM
  #63
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Yeah, it would be great to play defense like St. Louis or Los Angeles and give up < 2 GA/G but you also have to remember that those teams have been struggling big time to find offense all year (and with the forwards they have they shouldn't be). You have to ask yourself which end of the spectrum you'd rather be on.

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04-27-2012, 01:21 AM
  #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
So if Philadelphia wins the Cup, then what? There'll be a new thread about wingerz and upgrading the offense?

NONE of the other East teams could have exposed our defense like Philly did.

But to want a defensive team with our roster is just stupid. That's trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. The Caps are making a long-term mistake for short-term success with their newfound collapsing defensive style. And Ovi looks like a fish out of water. It's working because they're desperate to finally have some success. But it's not a great long-range plan. They've just run out of ideas.

We won the Cup 3 short seasons ago, and with this core. What we are missing now that we had then was the Rob Scuderi, Hal Gill, Mark Eaton types. And we need somebody to light a fire under Fleury. And I agree, the fourth line needs to start grinding more than it has. But those are things that we need, which are fixable.

Actually acquiring defensive defensemen would help us to become much much better defensively, even if not a defensive powerhouse.

We don't have the roster to play Ken Hitchcock hockey.
this....actually makes a lot of sense...

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04-27-2012, 01:23 AM
  #65
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Originally Posted by eXile59 View Post
Because the Yotes run a great zone D. Bylsma's system makes a guy like Niskanen look great but it hurts guys like Michalek. The problem is less personal related them people make it out to be.
Guys making 4 and 5 million dollars respectively shouldn't have to be insulated by any system.

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04-27-2012, 02:29 AM
  #66
Til the End of Time
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slightly OT, but can we all agree, finally, at long last, that Hal Gill was a valuable member of the penguins, and was not just a "pylon"?

people underrated him when he was here and underrated him when he left.

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04-27-2012, 06:42 AM
  #67
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Originally Posted by Til the End of Time View Post
slightly OT, but can we all agree, finally, at long last, that Hal Gill was a valuable member of the penguins, and was not just a "pylon"?

people underrated him when he was here and underrated him when he left.
Getting people to agree someone was valuable years after he left has never been much of a problem here. Getting people to agree someone is valuable while he's still here? That's a little bit more of a task, at least when that player doesn't do anything inherently flashy or noticeable.

For instance, Michalek had 144 credited blocks in 62 games this year, and people are complaining that he hasn't lived up to being a "shot blocker". And on it goes ...

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04-27-2012, 07:41 AM
  #68
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That would be great, but you are forgetting one thing, the Caps had great goaltending against the Bruins.

If the Penguins had even average, not great, not phenomenal, but AVERAGE goaltending, the Pens would be moving on and this thread would not exist.


Instead we once again get handed one of the worst goaltending performances an NHL caliber goalie can have in a playoff series. To say Fleury isn't the problem is beyond delusional.


First issue is getting a new goaltender. That should be the only concern.
Fleury isn't the problem. It would be nice if he was, then fixing all our problems would be as simple as making one roster move but no, our problem is our defense and PK is. Fleury didn't play well but no goalie in the world was going to look good in front of that lackluster defense. Conversely, whenever we've seen "Hot Goaltending", typically it's actually hot defense.

MAF's been to the SCF twice and has proven himself over and over. Let's not become a goalie graveyard like Philly or Vancouver.

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04-27-2012, 07:49 AM
  #69
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Originally Posted by Til the End of Time View Post
slightly OT, but can we all agree, finally, at long last, that Hal Gill was a valuable member of the penguins, and was not just a "pylon"?

people underrated him when he was here and underrated him when he left.
Tell me about it. I was saying on here that he should be our #1 priority at the trade deadline and when Nashville snapped him up, they became my favorite in the West. The guy is a bit of a pylon in the regular season but he's Zdeno Pronger in the playoffs. And he's a UFA this summer.

I'd be up for throwing $2.5M at the USS Hal Gill.

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04-27-2012, 09:56 AM
  #70
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there is some truth to when Shero says that it takes 6 people on the ice to play defense.

It is so much harder to play defense when the puck is turned over in the neutral zone. The play changes direction unexpectedly, and most the time we end up giving a 3-2 chance to the opposition.

How many E-W passes did we see to open areas of ice to no one in particular?

The System needs changed. Martin is garbage, sure, he needs to go. Still the entire team has to buy into and the coach has to be capable of putting in a keep the puck out of your own net first system.

It doesn't mean that we won't score goals. Doesn't mean we have to play a trap the entire game. It means we need to be more disciplined, you can't suddenly turn a switch on and do this. It has to be instilled all season long, which is why we couldn't protect leads. It's why we won a cup, those players had Iron Mike hammering defense into their heads for a few seasons prior.

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04-27-2012, 11:48 AM
  #71
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Guys making 4 and 5 million dollars respectively shouldn't have to be insulated by any system.
For their abilities to be best used, then yeah, you have to take the system into consideration.

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04-27-2012, 12:28 PM
  #72
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there is some truth to when Shero says that it takes 6 people on the ice to play defense.

It is so much harder to play defense when the puck is turned over in the neutral zone. The play changes direction unexpectedly, and most the time we end up giving a 3-2 chance to the opposition.

How many E-W passes did we see to open areas of ice to no one in particular?

The System needs changed. Martin is garbage, sure, he needs to go. Still the entire team has to buy into and the coach has to be capable of putting in a keep the puck out of your own net first system.

It doesn't mean that we won't score goals. Doesn't mean we have to play a trap the entire game. It means we need to be more disciplined, you can't suddenly turn a switch on and do this. It has to be instilled all season long, which is why we couldn't protect leads. It's why we won a cup, those players had Iron Mike hammering defense into their heads for a few seasons prior.
The system may in fact be part of the problem, but no matter what system you play there are still going to be some odd man rushes, and Martin and Orpik this year were just astoundingly bad on those. Martin just tried to stick check on them most of the time, and Orpik backed away leaving huge gaps and failed to take away the pass on 2on1s more than I can count. You know that Martin isn't going to play the body, but Orpik gave out enough of his along the boards hits that I can't figure out what was up with him, I don't buy the he was hurt line.

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04-27-2012, 12:38 PM
  #73
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jag68Sid87 View Post
Michalek paid the price, got his big contract and has basically sold out. It's not the system. Rob Scuderi and Hal Gill would still be blocking shots for us.

All our defensemen want to be puck movers. There's a specific role that's needed on this team in which our D men are either unwilling (Michalek, Martin) or no longer capable (Orpik) of playing: a stay-stay-home, defensive, meat-and-potatoes shutdown role.
That's ridiculous, Jags. Gill may be at 16th in the league in shots blocked with 161, but Michalek was 30th in the league this year with 144. Orpik was 38th with 139. Scuderi was 68th in the league at 116. Statistically speaking, there's not much of a difference in that category between Gill and Michalek or Orpik.

What is a problem is that our shot blocking was not spread out among the roster.

Edit: Also forgot to add that Michalek played 14 less games than Gill this season.


Last edited by HandshakeLine: 04-27-2012 at 01:01 PM.
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Old
04-27-2012, 12:57 PM
  #74
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Originally Posted by eXile59 View Post
Completely ignoring the large systemic problem. Plus Kennedy actual showed up in the playoffs so why get rid of him?
Wow...pretty uneducated rants here! The system isn't the problem, the coach isn't the problem. The problem is we had a group that let the feeling of entitlement creep in once Sid came back. The players abandoned the system, the system didn't fail.

For those of you who don't know, we still run a form of Therrien's system, albeit a more open version. The big difference from 09' to this year is a lack of a TRUE shutdown D-pair. Scuds and Gill killed penalties, and eliminated top lines. We have not had a d-pair capable of performing near that level since they left.

You don't ditch a coach that recently won a Jack Adams trophy, and was recently a runaway winner in an NHL players poll as coach players would like to play for. We only won 2 cups in the early 90s with a team loaded with hall of famers, its not easy to win!

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04-27-2012, 01:40 PM
  #75
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Wow...pretty uneducated rants here! The system isn't the problem, the coach isn't the problem. The problem is we had a group that let the feeling of entitlement creep in once Sid came back. The players abandoned the system, the system didn't fail.

For those of you who don't know, we still run a form of Therrien's system, albeit a more open version. The big difference from 09' to this year is a lack of a TRUE shutdown D-pair. Scuds and Gill killed penalties, and eliminated top lines. We have not had a d-pair capable of performing near that level since they left.

You don't ditch a coach that recently won a Jack Adams trophy, and was recently a runaway winner in an NHL players poll as coach players would like to play for. We only won 2 cups in the early 90s with a team loaded with hall of famers, its not easy to win!
Uneducated?

Well can you educate me on how Michalek & Martin were number 1 defensemen on top ranked defensive teams before coming to the Pens & sucking? Now that you mention it can you educate me on why every other team in the second round managed not to give up cross crease passes consistently leading to goals? How about the picks the Flyers used? Couldn't have been the man on man defense because Bylsma is infallible huh?

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