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Old
03-07-2014, 09:22 PM
  #1
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Team Toughness

One of the primary issues that we have had this year is that we haven't played very hard. Our roster doesn't have much intensity and seems to lack compete level. We don't play hard enough for long enough and very few players, if any, play with an edge. Game in, game out, we don't have much of a physical presence. Most of our players pass up on opportunities to finish their checks and only a few roster players can actually hit. Overall we don't play much of a "territorial" game, we give up way too much time and space to the opposition and we are ineffective at taking away their time and space. Our forecheck is pretty pathetic and we don't really have much net presence. I think it is fair to say that we aren't a very tough team.

Related to this, MacLean had a pretty interesting quote today:

Quote:
“So are we too skilled and not hard enough? Those are all things that we discuss and talk about every day, and we just need to make sure that we continue to push the factor that we want to be a work ethic-based team and not just a skill-based team.”
- See more at: http://www.senatorsextra.com/main/fr....K9vrMUeY.dpuf
I think MacLean's concern is an accurate one. We are too much of a finesse team at this point and it hurts our chances at winning key games or going anywhere in the playoffs, whenever we make it back there. Now the solution to this isn't to add a bunch of "goons", we need more tough and talented players in the mould of Brown, Backes, Callahan, Toews, Bergeron, and Simmonds. We need more players that can actually play the game and are hard to play against.

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03-07-2014, 09:24 PM
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Our skilled player are soft and our physical players have no skill.

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03-07-2014, 09:31 PM
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Need more Borowiecki.

Thanks Phillips.

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03-07-2014, 09:36 PM
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ffayyca
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Having spezza and karlsson, two very risky players as the go to guys is an issue in my book. When they get going like two years ago, this is a decent team. Most games this year they only play well on one side of the rink, thus the bad results.

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03-07-2014, 09:44 PM
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God Says No
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Nah, you misread the quote. He means we have skilled players who rely on their skill to get by instead of work ethic. You create this thread each year. We got enough toughness. Toughness wouldn't help when we got blown out against BOS or DET. Toughness wouldn't have helped when we lost to EDM or CAL. What would have helped if they actually played like they played in the 3rd period of the EDM game all the time.

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03-07-2014, 09:48 PM
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ChocolateLeclaire
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Says No View Post
Nah, you misread the quote. He means we have skilled players who rely on their skill to get by instead of work ethic. You create this thread each year. We got enough toughness. Toughness wouldn't help when we got blown out against BOS or DET. Toughness wouldn't have helped when we lost to EDM or CAL. What would have helped if they actually played like they played in the 3rd period of the EDM game all the time.
So much this.

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03-07-2014, 09:51 PM
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StefanW
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Quote:
Originally Posted by God Says No View Post
Nah, you misread the quote. He means we have skilled players who rely on their skill to get by instead of work ethic. You create this thread each year. We got enough toughness. Toughness wouldn't help when we got blown out against BOS or DET. Toughness wouldn't have helped when we lost to EDM or CAL. What would have helped if they actually played like they played in the 3rd period of the EDM game all the time.
Perfect.

/thread.

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03-07-2014, 09:54 PM
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MtRundle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Berserker View Post
One of the primary issues that we have had this year is that we haven't played very hard.


we need more tough and talented players in the mould of Brown, Backes, Callahan, Toews, Bergeron, and Simmonds. We need more players that can actually play the game and are hard to play against.
Its hard to hit and dump and chase and grind when you never have possession of the puck.

Watch our 4th line, they chase the puck and can never catch up.

I agree however we need some players with skill that can grind it out.

Neil Greening kassian are useless. Cowen, Gryba and Phillips as well to some extent

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03-07-2014, 11:10 PM
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HavlatMach9
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going hard means tough? what?

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03-07-2014, 11:15 PM
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In 2011-12 we had Carkner, Neil, Konopka and Smith who all dropped the gloves regularly. Greening, Cowen, Foligno once in a while. I think we were the team with the most fighting majors.

Today, Neil does it once in a while, Kassian barely plays and Smith has gone soft.

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03-07-2014, 11:22 PM
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Ohhh Franco
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Originally Posted by Senateurs View Post
In 2011-12 we had Carkner, Neil, Konopka and Smith who all dropped the gloves regularly. Greening, Cowen, Foligno once in a while. I think we were the team with the most fighting majors.

Today, Neil does it once in a while, Kassian barely plays and Smith has gone soft.
Yep, I agree. The current make up of the team is way too soft - physically and mentally. Being physically tough often gives your skilled guys more room to play, confidence and helps break down the will of your opponent. When's the last time the Sens set the tone for a game? Rarely happens. They don't have enough all world talent or speed to turn the game in to a track meet and they're too soft to turn it in to a battle of wills. So they're just kinda caught in the middle...meandering through the season...no identity.

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03-08-2014, 12:15 AM
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Smith
Greening
Cowen
Gryba
Methot
Macarthur
Neil

We have enough guys that can play physically they just choose not to for whatever reason. A lot of it has to do with us losing games.

For example if you throw a big hit, fight, and get an extra 2 minutes it's not a big deal if you win the game. If you lose though, I guarantee you that the coach is giving it to the player after the game.

All of our players basically stopped fighting.. it's clear they've been told to stop.

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03-08-2014, 12:57 AM
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I think our D has plenty toughness, our top 6 is getting pushed around more so than in recent years.

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03-08-2014, 06:26 AM
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I liked how tough Gryba was at the end of the Edmonton game.

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03-08-2014, 06:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohhh Franco View Post
They don't have enough all world talent or speed to turn the game in to a track meet and they're too soft to turn it in to a battle of wills. So they're just kinda caught in the middle...meandering through the season...no identity.
What blows my mind is this... BM has been here almost 7Years and we still are looking for an identity

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03-08-2014, 06:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiscBrah View Post
Smith
Greening
Cowen
Gryba
Methot
Macarthur
Neil

We have enough guys that can play physically they just choose not to for whatever reason. A lot of it has to do with us losing games.

For example if you throw a big hit, fight, and get an extra 2 minutes it's not a big deal if you win the game. If you lose though, I guarantee you that the coach is giving it to the player after the game.

All of our players basically stopped fighting.. it's clear they've been told to stop.
This.

Penalties were killing us early in the season, now it's lack of toughness. We can't seem to find a balance.

We have the personnel to play a tough game, especially on D (Cowen, Gryba, Methot, and to a lesser extent Phillips), but we seem to be reeling it back a notch or two in an attempt to not take penalties.

The forwards have a mix; Spezza, Michalek, Turris, Hemsky and Condra won't really provide much grit. Smith, Neil, Greening (intermittently) can play the rough game, and then there are the in between guys like Ryan, Zibanejad, and MacArthur that can play with an edge by aren't regularly throwing hits.

The notable thing is that the high skill guys generally are not physical, so when we want to play the rough game, the Smith line gets the minutes.

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03-08-2014, 07:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Fuhr View Post
What blows my mind is this... BM has been here almost 7Years and we still are looking for an identity
We were pesky last year.

This year things have gone of the rails. Chicago didn't really have much of an identity in the early years (about 10 years); then their core got to the point where they were ready to compete and all is good. Talon had the advantage of multiple top 5 picks to speed things up too.

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Old
03-08-2014, 09:28 AM
  #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiscBrah View Post
Smith
Greening
Cowen
Gryba
Methot
Macarthur
Neil

We have enough guys that can play physically they just choose not to for whatever reason. A lot of it has to do with us losing games.

For example if you throw a big hit, fight, and get an extra 2 minutes it's not a big deal if you win the game. If you lose though, I guarantee you that the coach is giving it to the player after the game.

All of our players basically stopped fighting.. it's clear they've been told to stop.
I want 2/3 of those players to just leave...

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Old
03-08-2014, 09:37 AM
  #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacLean View Post
“So are we too skilled and not hard enough? Those are all things that we discuss and talk about every day, and we just need to make sure that we continue to push the factor that we want to be a work ethic-based team and not just a skill-based team.”
That quote explains his stupid ice time distribution

The guy is such a tool




The trick is to get your best players working hard. You can't just play your worst line the most because they work the hardest and then expect to win

Do your job and get the top players motivated

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03-08-2014, 09:44 AM
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Once again this year, Chicago is last in hits. Ottawa is 4th. You don't need ****ing toughness. You just need to be responsible defensively.

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03-08-2014, 09:48 AM
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Originally Posted by MandyAlwaysKnows View Post
Once again this year, Chicago is last in hits. Ottawa is 4th. You don't need ****ing toughness. You just need to be responsible defensively.
I don't think they mean toughness in that way.

Toughness as in, always working, always going hard for the puck, never taking a shift off, being hard to play against, having intensity.

That sort of thing.

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03-08-2014, 09:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MandyAlwaysKnows View Post
That quote explains his stupid ice time distribution

The guy is such a tool




The trick is to get your best players working hard. You can't just play your worst line the most because they work the hardest and then expect to win

Do your job and get the top players motivated
Exactly! GSN is forced to work hard because they can't keep up with the play. It gives the impression that they're out there working their ***** off when really they're just playing catch-up all night.

If we want our best players to be as effective as they can be we need to give them quality line-mates and the TOI necessary to do so. The coach should be helping our top players succeed, but instead his decisions have just been hindering their success while destroying any chemistry the players seem to develop on their own...


Last edited by TheSenator: 03-08-2014 at 10:32 AM.
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03-08-2014, 10:05 AM
  #23
Ohhh Franco
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nac Mac Feegle View Post
I don't think they mean toughness in that way.

Toughness as in, always working, always going hard for the puck, never taking a shift off, being hard to play against, having intensity.

That sort of thing.
Ding, ding, ding - we have a winner!

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03-08-2014, 10:24 AM
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Originally Posted by God Says No View Post
Nah, you misread the quote. He means we have skilled players who rely on their skill to get by instead of work ethic. You create this thread each year. We got enough toughness. Toughness wouldn't help when we got blown out against BOS or DET. Toughness wouldn't have helped when we lost to EDM or CAL. What would have helped if they actually played like they played in the 3rd period of the EDM game all the time.
I disagree. This quote was directly after our practice yesterday where MacLean had the team doing a lot of "battle" drills. Near the end of practice, one of the battle drills between Cowen and Neil got heated and they ended up dropping the gloves and fighting. Some of the other Sens had to break them up. Here are a few more of MacLean's quote's in response to that altercation:

In regards to the fight between Neil and Cowen:

Quote:
“He’s just playing hard,” MacLean shouted at one of the combatants. “Nothin’ wrong with playing hard.”
Asked after the skate how he felt about the fight, MacLean said: “We need more of them.
“Preferably when the games are on,” he added with a smile.

“We need more, I don’t know, harder, that’s playing harder. If you’ve got to play harder in practice, that stuff’s going to happen,” he said. “Boys are going to be boys, men are going to be men, and we need more of it. - See more at: http://www.senatorsextra.com/main/fr....FN1zgvN1.dpuf
MacLean is clearly stating that we wants the Sens to play a tougher, more physical game. He wants them to play with an edge, battle for loose pucks and space around the net, clear the front of our net and wear out the opposition on the forecheck

It seems like you and a few other posters in this thread are the ones that misinterpreted MacLean's quote.

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Old
03-08-2014, 10:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Berserker View Post
One of the primary issues that we have had this year is that we haven't played very hard. Our roster doesn't have much intensity and seems to lack compete level. We don't play hard enough for long enough and very few players, if any, play with an edge. Game in, game out, we don't have much of a physical presence. Most of our players pass up on opportunities to finish their checks and only a few roster players can actually hit. Overall we don't play much of a "territorial" game, we give up way too much time and space to the opposition and we are ineffective at taking away their time and space. Our forecheck is pretty pathetic and we don't really have much net presence. I think it is fair to say that we aren't a very tough team.

Related to this, MacLean had a pretty interesting quote today:



I think MacLean's concern is an accurate one. We are too much of a finesse team at this point and it hurts our chances at winning key games or going anywhere in the playoffs, whenever we make it back there. Now the solution to this isn't to add a bunch of "goons", we need more tough and talented players in the mould of Brown, Backes, Callahan, Toews, Bergeron, and Simmonds. We need more players that can actually play the game and are hard to play against.
I believe you have interpreted MacLean's comments exactly, though I don't believe the players have to be changed to achieve what he wants.

The problem isn't team toughness, its commitment to hard work and to team structure.

MacLean has been saying these things since he got here.

This team played better and worked harder last season without the skill this edition of the Senators possesses, question is why?

IMO it is because some of the skilled players aren't committed to a system that demands team structure and work ethic to be successful.

I suspect there will be changes this summer, this team just doesn't seem to have the character to be successful.

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