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The Flyer's Biggest Flaw

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04-05-2013, 11:57 AM
  #1
Jtown
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The Flyer's Biggest Flaw

Watching last night as Toronto was mounting a comeback against the Flyers, it was evident what our biggest problem is. Our inability to get out of the defensive zone and enter the neutral zone and start a forecheck is putting so much pressure on the D and on Bryz.

Everytime a team pins us in our zone it seems like it takes a miracle just to get the puck up ice far enough for a line change. Or someone has to elevate the puck so it just barely moves and can't be called an icing. This is our weakness and everyone in the NHL knows it, and they game plan around it.

While watching the Blues/ Hawks game last night i watched but focused merely on how the D get's it out of the zone. These are my observations.

1. Forwards for the Hawks and Blues were about 75 percent responsible for getting the puck out of the D zone.

2. No more than 1 pass was used to accomplish this. usually a winger would stop a puck along the boards, advance as far as he could and then pass to the center where a streaking forward was there to receive the pass and skate forward.

3. Chicago and the Blues did not put as much pressure on each other because of 1 reason. Both have players capable of catching the D creeping up and getting a breakaway, this happened with patrick kane numerous times and Tarasenko a couple of times. Just the Threat of a breakaway really puts pressure on the D.

All this time I thought the Flyers needed more mobile D men , and in some degree we do, to advance the puck out of our zone but it seems to me the problem is our slow forwards, especially at center.

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04-05-2013, 12:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jtown View Post
Watching last night as Toronto was mounting a comeback against the Flyers, it was evident what our biggest problem is. Our inability to get out of the defensive zone and enter the neutral zone and start a forecheck is putting so much pressure on the D and on Bryz.

Everytime a team pins us in our zone it seems like it takes a miracle just to get the puck up ice far enough for a line change. Or someone has to elevate the puck so it just barely moves and can't be called an icing. This is our weakness and everyone in the NHL knows it, and they game plan around it.

While watching the Blues/ Hawks game last night i watched but focused merely on how the D get's it out of the zone. These are my observations.

1. Forwards for the Hawks and Blues were about 75 percent responsible for getting the puck out of the D zone.

2. No more than 1 pass was used to accomplish this. usually a winger would stop a puck along the boards, advance as far as he could and then pass to the center where a streaking forward was there to receive the pass and skate forward.

3. Chicago and the Blues did not put as much pressure on each other because of 1 reason. Both have players capable of catching the D creeping up and getting a breakaway, this happened with patrick kane numerous times and Tarasenko a couple of times. Just the Threat of a breakaway really puts pressure on the D.

All this time I thought the Flyers needed more mobile D men , and in some degree we do, to advance the puck out of our zone but it seems to me the problem is our slow forwards, especially at center.
Not sure they are slow just that they were not coming back shallow enough to take the outlet pass. This was commented on by a few of the dmen and bryz and I think it was at least a little addressed recently.

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04-05-2013, 12:02 PM
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It took you this long to notice? Haha it's accurate but hopefully you didn't realize this last night.

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04-05-2013, 12:03 PM
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BernieParent
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I think this is spot-on, and I've commented on this before. Even unchallenged, Flyers players frequently will hesitate and make ill-advised passes in their own zone. Yes, every team is guilty of it, but it seems to be an epidemic on the Flyers. An 'exit strategy' would be an immense lift in their overall team game. And by this I don't mean the current "flip it out to centre" method.

Like you said, it doesn't have to be multiple, complex passes. Just that the players are aware of who is around them and are prepared to skate it out themselves (if they can safely) or make a short pass to someone else with a better chance of carrying the puck out of the zone.

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04-05-2013, 12:11 PM
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Jtown
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BernieParent View Post
I think this is spot-on, and I've commented on this before. Even unchallenged, Flyers players frequently will hesitate and make ill-advised passes in their own zone. Yes, every team is guilty of it, but it seems to be an epidemic on the Flyers. An 'exit strategy' would be an immense lift in their overall team game. And by this I don't mean the current "flip it out to centre" method.

Like you said, it doesn't have to be multiple, complex passes. Just that the players are aware of who is around them and are prepared to skate it out themselves (if they can safely) or make a short pass to someone else with a better chance of carrying the puck out of the zone.

Watching the blues hawks game it was very apparent that its not about passing but about skating. I never saw more than 2 passes in the d zone by either team , It was get the puck on your stick and get it the hell out.

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04-05-2013, 12:50 PM
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I love when L Schenn attempts to skate up the boards to clear the zone, only to get pick-pocketed at the blueline. Happened at least twice in last night's game, if not more.

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04-05-2013, 01:22 PM
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I love when L Schenn attempts to skate up the boards to clear the zone, only to get pick-pocketed at the blueline. Happened at least twice in last night's game, if not more.
When he passes to a forward the same thing is just as likely to happen, assuming they don't turn it over on a failed pass instead. Half dozen of one, etc.

Lavi needs a new breakout plan.

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04-05-2013, 01:44 PM
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Breakouts
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Everything else

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04-05-2013, 01:51 PM
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That's what killed us last year in the playoffs vs the devils. They forchecked us to death and we couldnt do anything about it.

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04-05-2013, 02:03 PM
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I thought this was obvious? The reason they have won the past 4 games is because they have greatly improved in this aspect (aside from the 3rd period last night).

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04-05-2013, 02:18 PM
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Team defense and smart breakouts have been the achilles heel of the team ever since Lavi took over. Part of it is the players, part of it is the way the system emphasizes transition offense.

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04-05-2013, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beef Invictus View Post
When he passes to a forward the same thing is just as likely to happen, assuming they don't turn it over on a failed pass instead. Half dozen of one, etc.

Lavi needs a new breakout plan.
If he feels the pressure, wouldn't he be better off chipping it past the blueline? That way, any opposing forwards that were left floating in the defensive zone would be nullified from the play until they touch up, giving your other dman time to get in position as well as time for your forwards to pull back. Yes, he'll most likely lose possession, but at least he won't give up an odd man play.

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04-05-2013, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by galvo View Post
If he feels the pressure, wouldn't he be better off chipping it past the blueline? That way, any opposing forwards that were left floating in the defensive zone would be nullified from the play until they touch up, giving your other dman time to get in position as well as time for your forwards to pull back. Yes, he'll most likely lose possession, but at least he won't give up an odd man play.
Yeah. That would be better. They seem to be doing it more often now, but sometimes they even fail at the clear.

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04-05-2013, 03:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jgboys1 View Post
That's what killed us last year in the playoffs vs the devils. They forchecked us to death and we couldnt do anything about it.
Yup and the last game in a post game interview with a Jersey player he pretty much laughed at how predictable the Flyers are. Funny thing is that the Flyers thought they could address this problem by getting a few right handed D men....problem with that is that their names are Foster, Gervais and Schenn. The latter two have been ok but Schenn in particular is not exactly fleet of foot hence the pickoffs when he tries to skate the puck up too much. Gervais has picked it up surprisingly but he still shouldn't be playing as much as he is but obviously no choice with the injuries. Foster is just a stationary object (much like a zeppelin) out there with a big shot.

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04-06-2013, 07:21 PM
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I've noticed when the Flyers are in the opponents zone, they struggle to get a quality scoring chance. The passing isnt that crisp. Im not sure if its just the opponents adjusting by putting people along both sides of the net, while the Flyers cycle the puck. Or if its always been that way, and the Flyers aren't getting as many odd man rushes because of a lack of breakouts.

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04-06-2013, 08:27 PM
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They have issues all over the ice but their biggest problem is the system. It just won't work, it really never has. Lavi got lucky one year in Carolina but by and large whatever he touches turns sour. It starts behind the bench.

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04-06-2013, 08:38 PM
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They have issues all over the ice but their biggest problem is the system. It just won't work, it really never has. Lavi got lucky one year in Carolina but by and large whatever he touches turns sour. It starts behind the bench.
I think you've forgotten about the time Lavi and his system managed to make it to the Finals more or less without a goaltender. Right now the system literally can't work because Homer has brought in players not well suited for it.

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04-06-2013, 08:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beef Invictus View Post
I think you've forgotten about the time Lavi and his system managed to make it to the Finals more or less without a goaltender. Right now the system literally can't work because Homer has brought in players not well suited for it.
But we had a Hall of Fame defenseman, Timonen was three years younger and two defenseman who were great complimentary players to the two top defenseman we had. If Lavy doesn't have the players to play his system he needs to adjust. He has never shown that he has that ability in the 4 seasons that he has been here.

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04-06-2013, 09:03 PM
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But we had a Hall of Fame defenseman, Timonen was three years younger and two defenseman who were great complimentary players to the two top defenseman we had. If Lavy doesn't have the players to play his system he needs to adjust. He has never shown that he has that ability in the 4 seasons that he has been here.

No, he has not. They're trying to adjust now but it doesn't really work. But to say his system can't work and has never worked is pure nonsense.

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04-06-2013, 09:11 PM
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No, he has not. They're trying to adjust now but it doesn't really work. But to say his system can't work and has never worked is pure nonsense.
I agree. It can work. But Lavy has not been able to adjust to his players at all and I wouldn't be sad to see him go if the Flyers went another direction

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04-06-2013, 09:24 PM
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04-06-2013, 09:49 PM
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They don't have the team defense to protect their goalie from seeing a lot of quality shots nor do they have the type of goalie that can win games for them, despite facing a lot of quality shots.

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04-07-2013, 01:09 PM
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They don't have the team defense to protect their goalie from seeing a lot of quality shots nor do they have the type of goalie that can win games for them, despite facing a lot of quality shots.

Having said that, this season in particular has had some unique elements that negatively impacted the team. The lockout and related factors, player turnover (Jagr, Carle), dealing with the inconsistency that can come with having young players in the lineup, the injuries, and how that all impacts coaching, chemistry and mental and physical competency, etc.

Bryz doesn't seem to be a guy that can consistently elevate his game to the level needed to sustain that type of situation without cracking. I suppose, not many goalies can. But Bryz is paid a lot, it so the expectations are higher than what he's been able to do so far.

It all points to writing this season off as an abberation.

So, here's my thoughts at this point...fix some obvious holes, remake the D around Schenn, Grossmann and Coburn and at least one top pairing guy who can carry the puck in transition, run a PP and produce... right now, that's only Timonen and he's beat up and likely gone after next season.

Buyout briere, save a buyout so it can be used next year on Bryz if he's not proving to be a guy that can be more counted upon to come up a little bigger, a little more often... sign former flyer draftee, Joacim Eriksson who is more seasoned now and tearing it up in the swedish elite league...get him back into the mix somehow.

Consider making a coaching change a real sea change is needed after season's end; but have someone good and available in mind to replace.

Have a good draft... one of Jones, MacKinnon, Drouin, Nurse please...

Fix that stuff and come back to work next season with a fresh attitude, a chip on the shoulder and something to prove.

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04-07-2013, 06:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beef Invictus View Post
I think you've forgotten about the time Lavi and his system managed to make it to the Finals more or less without a goaltender. Right now the system literally can't work because Homer has brought in players not well suited for it.
Everything he touches turns sour. Check the record. The guy is a bad coach.

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04-07-2013, 06:47 PM
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Everything he touches turns sour. Check the record. The guy is a bad coach.
Every coach eventually loses his grip on the team he coaches.

Laviolette is a Stanley Cup champion as a head coach followed by a trip to the Final only four years later with a completely different club.

He may not be the answer in Philly now but, if he's a bad coach, so are 20 or so others at the NHL level today.

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