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Orr and Bossy: Hockey needs makeover

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11-14-2003, 03:35 PM
  #1
Joe T Choker
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Orr and Bossy: Hockey needs makeover

http://tsn.ca/nhl/news_story.asp?ID=60526&hubName=nhl

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11-14-2003, 05:40 PM
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It's weird how you can say "hockey purists" don't like to break tradition, even though Scotty Bowman, Bobby Hull, Mike Bossy and Bobby Orr have all thought of changes.

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11-14-2003, 07:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SopelFan
It's weird how you can say "hockey purists" don't like to break tradition, even though Scotty Bowman, Bobby Hull, Mike Bossy and Bobby Orr have all thought of changes.
I'd like to think of myself as a 'purist', whatever that means, and I would like some changes...back to how things were.

1. Move the goal line back to where they were. I know that it was moved closer to centre line in hopes of letting more players to set up office behind the net like the Wayner used to do and thereby creating more offense. Well, it hasn't worked out that way. It simply reduces the amount of ice in the offensive zone and takes away shooting the lanes. And since now there is more room back there, more plays take place there but you know, you really can't score from behind the net...except for the odd fluke goals...and you certainly can't go on a breakaway rush from there!

This is essentially what Bobby Smith's idea is also. Increase the zone for attack. Why mess with making all these lines thicker and the game more complicated when all you have to do to accomplish the same thing is to move the goal line back?

Actually, thinking back, Gretzky himself was against this rule change when it was implemented because he said that it now allows big defenders to come follow him back there because now there's so much more room whereas he was able to use the narrow space behind the net so effectively because that was one place his small body could go to hide amongst the big bodies.


2. Go back to the one referree system. The players are much bigger and faster now days. There is no reason for another extra body to clog up the limited space. When no talent, cheap, dirty *******s like Bryan Marchment hail the 2 ref system as a great thing on shows like Off the Record while old die hard Fire Wagon hockey advocates like Slats say that this is bad for the game, then it's pretty obvious that this is not helping the players score more goals.


3. Get rid of overtime points for tying. This, I believe is one of the major problems causing this goal drought. Now the teams are playing safe and timid to get the tie to get the point and then try to go for the extra point after getting the first point.

I say, get rid of this rule. Second, go further and award zero points for a tie. Only reward teams that win with 2 points so that more teams will have to take more chances and score more goals! So 0 points for loss. 0 points for a tie and 2 points for a win.


4. Make the rink bigger...and bring back the talent!!! I know...I know...Despite this being the most logical, simple and the most sure fire way to accomplish more goal scoring, this will never happen because of the greedy NHL executives who will not stand to lose those all impressive, all expensive boxes and seats for the one time VIP guests who have no @#$%ing idea what hockey is! If the owners really cared about the game and the real fans who cannot possibly pay to sit in one of these seats and if they can take a step back for a second to see that their short sightedness is killing their source of revenue gradually but surely, they would get rid of these seats and increase the ice surface. I mean, it's already been about 7 years since I've preferred the international product over the NHL. Even without the stars, international competetion is much more engaging and the talents are able to be showcased.

Imagine what the true talents of the game would be able to do with the bigger surface. Do you think that it was a coincidence that a talent like Jay Bouwmeester is able to unleash his immense talent at the Worlds with the bigger ice and win the most valuable D-man award yet is limited to being a second rate plumber in the confines of the NHL's small ice? When is the last time you saw a Savardian Spin-o-rama? When is the last time you saw end-to-end Number Foura Bobby Orra rush? There's just no room out there anymore with all these no-talent goon like giant neanderthals masquarading as hockey players.

Conversely, no talent guys will be easily exposed with a bigger ice. Look at the likes of Al Macinnes and even Mike Peca. It was very obvious at the Salt Lake City that they were out of their leagues on the open ice. Their lack of quickness and talent (or diminishing talent) was painfully obvious. Instead, all these slow no-talent guys are being used as pilons to neutralize talented players on the smaller NHL ice. Why? Job security! If they win, they can stay in the NHL for another day...this goes for both players, coaches and the management. So it boils down to money...well it may be good for their immediate paycheck but if this keeps up, there may not be a league that can support the current number of teams and coaches, etc. Just to illustrate this point, think of all the 40 something grandpas that are still in the league. This is a testament to the current situation in NHL of rewarding no talent over talent. No wonder we are crying about the lack of scoring. The system in place currently rewards no talent!


Where's the Pocket Rocket? Where's the Road-runner? Stop drafting these big no talent oaffs and give small but talent guys their due! Even in drafting, it's clear that the teams are going for the safe picks by going for size instead of trying to win by selecting small but talented players!

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11-14-2003, 07:50 PM
  #4
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NHL's biggest problems is themselves....

The best way to open up the game of Hockey is for the GM's to can all of the Defensive Minded Trapping Coaches. Then the game opens up considerably, that and the rules get enforced.

So tired of seeing guys like Pat Burns always playing defense first. He's been the coach of 4 teams, Montreal, Toronto, Boston, and New Jersey. You can't tell me that he didn't have any scorers during his tenure as a coach. Please.... The Oilers, outside their #1 line for the past several years, don't have many finishers, but they still continue to play an up tempo game. They could probably be more successful if they trapped, but the Oilers refuse to play the game that way.

Time for the Teams to Step up and either tell the Coach to give the players some freedom or look for a new coach who will.

Of course, GM's won't because the onus would then be shifted to them to get players to can play.

The Problem with the NHL is the Coaching, not the Rules. Coaches today define Winning a Game as "Allowing fewer goals then your opponent" rather than "Scoring more goals than the opposition"

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11-14-2003, 08:00 PM
  #5
Don Draper
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lets not get out of control. In every sport Defense is a priority for some coaches, where as some prefer the offensive side. Its the difference between Popovich and Adelman, Martz and Reid. I dont have a problem with there being defensive concepts that are articulated by some coaches, when others concentrate on the open style. I do have a problem with the fact that so much of the talent is bottled up due to the conditions on the ice. There does need to be changes, the least of which i believe is behind the bench

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11-14-2003, 08:40 PM
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Good article, and I agree with the comment that it is interesting that the best players are teh ones encouraging changes.

IMHO, you have to recognize a bunch of factors go into the problem - bigger players with more skill, on average; better goalie equipment that is lighter and way too big; systems that emphasize the trap and defensive play generally; more and more use of the stick and a basic lack of respect among players; etc. Solving this won't be easy.

Key is to give more room for play - meaning (over time) legislate Olympic size ice and as rinks are replaced go with it. No owner is going to take seats out, but if the rinks are designed for it, there is very little actual cost.

Second key is to reduce goalie padding back to some rational amount - such as what was used before it became so light. That would open up the nets a bit. The alternative is to change net sizes - 3" out on each side and higher for the cross bar. I don't really care one way or the other.

I don't think you can ban the trap, but elimination of the centre line works well in some junior and in NCAA hockey. It would help, at least.

I like the blue line change that was suggested on this board a while ago.

This would be a lot of change but most of it would disappear in the play. the one complaint is that "records would not be equivalent" but most of those records were made under different circumstances anyway so who cares?

just my thoughts.

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11-14-2003, 08:48 PM
  #7
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Open up the game of hockey with all the suggestions here and you'll have just as many hockey fans screaming for the days of better team defense and goaltending as you have people warmongering for more goals per night.

 
Old
11-14-2003, 10:32 PM
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My solution for opening up the offense in the NHL?

Bring back Orr and Bossy.

***

Question: Is the photo of Mr. Orr in that article current? If it is, holy shazoo! He's 55 y/o and still looks like he's 25!

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11-15-2003, 04:20 AM
  #9
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I used to be a guy that thought radical changes are needed, but now I'm starting to think there isn't much wrong with today's game. Do you want non-Lemiuex/Gretzky type players reaching their point totals? No. I'd be fine with only 4 or 5 players reaching the 100 point plateau every season. I agree with the first 3 points David made, this will get the game back to what I would like to see:

Quote:
Originally Posted by David
1. Move the goal line back to where they were.
This has taken away some of the attacking zone, and cut down on some of the angles. Shooters like Hull don't have the angles they use to have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David
2. Go back to the one referree system.
I thought the two-referee system was working for a long time, then I started noticing these guys seem to be in the way alot. That, and the fact that they still miss or afraid to call infractions anyway. Get rid of it!


Quote:
Originally Posted by David
3. Get rid of overtime points for tying.
Point blank, there is nothing entertaining about ties. Teams go into a defensive shell in the third period in divisional/conference games knowing that 1 point will be awarded. This is bit of a drastic change, but this would make the game alot more entertaining. Non-hockey people will never be attracted to the game because they detest sports that award ties. Get rid of it!

Quote:
Originally Posted by David
4. Make the rink bigger
The one thing I don't agree with. This is not necessary, and not possible in most buildings. I didn't see larger surfaces in the Olympics creating better scoring. Besides, this is a drastic change hockey will never go with.

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11-15-2003, 04:53 AM
  #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gb701
No owner is going to take seats out, but if the rinks are designed for it, there is very little actual cost.

...elimination of the centre line works well in some junior and in NCAA hockey.
Actually almost every single one of the rinks around the NHL have been recently rebuilt! And surprise, the owners deliberately left the size of the rink the same 50x100 although they were fully aware of the trap and the diiminishing goal scoring. (I was really sad to see the old Buffalo Aud and the Boston Garden go. Their unconventional dimensions and smaller than regualtion sizes really added character and the unexpected element to the game that you don't have in these new cookie cutter rinks! And oh, the old Chicago stadium...) There would be a heavy cost to operate a bigger iced rink. For the same amount of land, having those first few rows of luxury boxes mean much greater profit for each game. Multiply by your revenue for each game, say I donno...$20,000 by 82 then by the duration that the building is used for NHL games, say 40 years and you see that it works out to millions and millions of dollars.

Actually, the elmination of the centre line was a dismal failure. Come to think of it, the centre line was originally instituted back in the 30's (?) to promote offense and they kept it in because it was actually doing the job that it was meant to do. My opinion is that the removal of the centre line would be a step in the wrong direction.

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11-15-2003, 05:05 AM
  #11
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Originally Posted by WHurricane16
I didn't see larger surfaces in the Olympics creating better scoring. Besides, this is a drastic change hockey will never go with.
Actually, larger surface allows for more room, thus creativity and more and prettier scoring chances. Not surprisingly, now adays, rightly or wrongly, talent is often equated with Europeans who grew up playing on the larger surface. (I know, I know there are also other factors like amount of practice time and so on...) And just as importantly, larger ice makes it much more difficult to employ the trap since there is so much more room for these trapping pilons to cover.

But sadly, as I argued before, because of the greedy owners, I'm afraid that we will never see a larger Olympic sized arenas in NHL in my life time.

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11-15-2003, 05:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Actually, larger surface allows for more room, thus creativity and more and prettier scoring chances. Not surprisingly, now adays, rightly or wrongly, talent is often equated with Europeans who grew up playing on the larger surface. (I know, I know there are also other factors like amount of practice time and so on...) And just as importantly, larger ice makes it much more difficult to employ the trap since there is so much more room for these trapping pilons to cover.

But sadly, as I argued before, because of the greedy owners, I'm afraid that we will never see a larger Olympic sized arenas in NHL in my life time.
here we go again

larger ice surfaces reduce hitting, physical play, and the skill level needed to play. it takes away the need for powerforwards, and allows more emphasis on small, speedy forwards. defensemen can't be as involved on the attack as effectively because they get caught more often.

and it's funny you mentioned Europeans. if you think larger ice surfaces increases the excitement of the game... watch a SEL game, or any European game for that matter. it's the very deffinition of boring hockey. BTW the trap is still a problem in Euro hockey.

deffinately not the answer

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11-15-2003, 09:08 AM
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I completely agree with moving the nets back. Half the games go on back there, and all those plays usually don't end up producing a chance.

One thing I've always advocated is changing the points system. I think a soccer-style points system would be good (3 points for a win, 1 for a tie, remove OT), or what David said, only giving points for a win, although that would be weird not to have points for a tie. Maybe doing it like the other major NA sports, and continue the game until somebody wins?

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11-15-2003, 09:29 AM
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David wrote: " Get rid of overtime points for tying. This, I believe is one of the major problems causing this goal drought. Now the teams are playing safe and timid to get the tie to get the point and then try to go for the extra point after getting the first point. I say, get rid of this rule. Second, go further and award zero points for a tie. Only reward teams that win with 2 points so that more teams will have to take more chances and score more goals! So 0 points for loss. 0 points for a tie and 2 points for a win. "

He is right. That is by far the number one move to do. There are many things to try, firstly any rule that will contribute to let the more talented players express their art.

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11-15-2003, 09:43 AM
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I think getting rid of the instigator rule would help as well. I think it would stop a lot of the clutch and grabbing which would open up room for the stars to do their thing.

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11-15-2003, 10:03 AM
  #16
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I think a few minor changes would help, and if not than they could try something more drastic.
Eliminate the instigator penalty: the NHL should know it's fan base, we all want to see fighting in the game still, it does have a place and they should realize that.
Allow two line passes: to me, and maybe I'm wrong, this would help eliminate the some of the trapping problems.

If they don't add or subtract any more teams, the league will balance itself out talent wise too, and parity will become much more evident.

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11-15-2003, 12:33 PM
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Wow. This like the 10th thread about improving the game inside a week. Time to open a separate board for these threads?

Anyway, I saw a picture in a Finnish newspaper about how the rink would look like if Bobby Smith's idea was used. The "cosmetic" change wouldn't be too big, so I'm all for it. As for the rink size, you guys don't need Olympic size rinks, just widen them in proportion to the bigger players (3 to 7 feet maybe).

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11-15-2003, 01:27 PM
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[QUOTE=David]

1. Move the goal line back to where they were.

2. Go back to the one referree system.

3. Get rid of overtime points for tying. .


4. Make the rink bigger...and bring back the talent!!! QUOTE]

Interesting ideas, I have a few comments thou.

1) moving the nets forward actually increased the size of the offensive zone. the space was taken away from the neutral zone which aids in a trappeing system. I suggest increasing the width of the rink (not quit to olympic size) would gain back that extra area without decreasing the size of the offensive zone. It would also allow more room in general to offset the increased size of players of today without drastically changeing the nature of the NHL game.

2)In a 2 Ref system only one ref is in the attacking zone and eliminatine the second ref wouldn't increase the space available. The second is essentially a back judge for the behind the play infractions. One Ref would increase the distance a Ref has to skate durring a game and would elimate that extra set of eyes. An interesting idea that I've been thinking about recently would be to allow the lines men to call penalties aswell and esentially have 3 (or four refs) with two calling the lines aswell as the behind the play infractions with 1 (or 2) following the play and setting up on the goal line. Kinda like in basket ball when any ref can call the same set of penalties.

3)Getting rid of the overtime point would essentially eliminate the need for overtime all together. OT is a major selling point and is the most exciting part of a game. What ppl seem to fail to realize is that at the end of regulation the game is essentially over with both teams earning a point, OT is actually a seperate contest for a bonus point. OT as you describe it is working exatly as it was inteneded to work. I wouldn't change OT. An interesting idea that another poster mentioned with the soccer style point system. But how about this 3 points for regulation win, 2 for a OT win, 1 point at the end of regulation tie, 0 points for a regulation loss. This would increase pressing for goals as regulation ends and it would carry on into 4 on4 sudden death. This would also allow teams with more wins in the season finish higher than that ends ups going into over time every other game.

4) I agree, but not to the extent of Olympic size. It changes the very nature of the NHL game. Also some ppl fail to realize that the trap was perfected in Europe to combat all the extra room. Also the more one increases the size of a rink the less contact and scoring oppertunites happen durring a game. Imagine a rink double the size of an Olympic arena, hockey essentially becomes soccer on ice. Changes teh nature of the game.

Edit: Oh, I also agree that eliminating the red line would help to break the trap. It'd allow attacking players to not only stretch pass, but it'd allow for more passing options for a rush on a set trap. It'd also allow attacking players to hit the attacking zone at full speed instead of slowing down at the red line and then turning up ice into the trap.

Also Tag up off side would inprove the over all flow of the game again diminishing the temptation for teams to give up on a play and simply fall back into the trap. Taggin up would keep team pressing farward.

Shy.

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11-15-2003, 05:50 PM
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Overtime is not exciting. I've seen too many teams play for a tie when they go into the third period tied. Teams aren't playing to win, they are playing not to lose. If you want to keep overtime, award no points for it, or just give 3 points for the win and 1 for a tie. That's drastic, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David
Actually, the elmination of the centre line was a dismal failure. Come to think of it, the centre line was originally instituted back in the 30's (?) to promote offense and they kept it in because it was actually doing the job that it was meant to do. My opinion is that the removal of the centre line would be a step in the wrong direction.
I agree. Get rid of the two-line pass, but not the red line. Still need icing I think total elimination of the red line would cause a new unseen defensive strategy to sprout.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Pavelich
I think getting rid of the instigator rule would help as well. I think it would stop a lot of the clutch and grabbing which would open up room for the stars to do their thing.
"Don't be hooking me all the way down the ice." **Wham!!!*** End of discussion.

I can agree with it I miss the days when power forwards actually got 200+ PIMs

I rather the overtime & red line not be mucked with at this point. Just move the nets back and get rid of the instigator.

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11-17-2003, 03:57 AM
  #20
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[QUOTE=WHurricane16]Overtime is not exciting. I've seen too many teams play for a tie when they go into the third period tied. Teams aren't playing to win, they are playing not to lose. If you want to keep overtime, award no points for it, or just give 3 points for the win and 1 for a tie. That's drastic, though. |/QUOTE]

For the sake of simplicity, just count wins and forget about points.

After watching games with no redline for few years, I think that icing rule needs some tweaking with. The problem is that less talented teams just lug the puck up ice, logical thing would be to call icing at blueline (no touch-up, waste of time IMO.) That would help forechecking, while still allowing long passes.


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11-17-2003, 04:54 AM
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WHurricane16
I agree. Get rid of the two-line pass, but not the red line. Still need icing I think total elimination of the red line would cause a new unseen defensive strategy to sprout.
From what I've heard and read, the teams would simply go from a 3 forechecking game *as the game should be played* to a no forechecking game...fun eh?

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