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ATD2011 Jim Coleman Semi: Ottawa Senators vs. Halifax Mooseheads

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05-16-2011, 10:40 AM
  #1
Dreakmur
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ATD2011 Jim Coleman Semi: Ottawa Senators vs. Halifax Mooseheads

Ottawa Senators



Coach: Dick Irvin Sr
Captain: Eddie Gerard
Alternates: Jaromir Jagr and Bill Hay at home, Johnny Gottselig and Dan Bain on the road.

Doug Bentley
- Henrik Zetterberg - Jaromir Jagr
Johnny Gottselig - Mike Modano - Claude Provost
Rick Nash - Dan Bain - Paul Henderson
Camille Henry - Bill "Red" Hay - Jim Peplinski
Martin Straka, Art Gagne

Eddie Gerard - Chris Pronger
Gary Bergman - Joe Simpson
Alexei Gusarov - Kjell Samuelsson
Pekka Rautakillio, Adrian Aucoin

Curtis Joseph
Vladimir Dzurilla

Even strength roles:

2nd line gets tough matchups
Other 3 lines are balanced.
3rd line w/Nash goes against power RWs.
Jagr gets double shifted/long shifts where possible in offensive zone.

Pronger-Gerard get big minutes, all situations, tough matchups
Bergman-Simpson get a more offensive role
Gusarov-Samuelsson get a more defensive role

Power play options

Core forwards: Henry around the net, Jagr on the right half boards.
Other forwards: Modano, Bain, Zetterberg, Nash, Bentley

Point: Simpson, Pronger, Bentley, Gerard (mostly first 3, and Bentley may also play up front with Gerard replacing him)

Modano - Henry - Jagr
Bentley - Simpson

Nash - Bain - Zetterberg
Pronger - Gerard

or

Bentley - Henry - Jagr
Pronger - Simpson

Nash - Modano - Bain
Gerard - Simpson/Zetterberg

In any case the power play runs through Jagr, with Henry finding space around the net to score goals.

Penalty kill units

Provost - Zetterberg
Pronger - Gerard

Gottselig - Hay
Gusarov - Samuelsson

Nash - Modano
Bergman

...with Jagr's line up next.


VS.


Halifax Mooseheads


GM: Stoneberg
Coach: Ken Hitchcock
Captian: Toe Blake
Alternate Captains: Eddie Oatman, Kevin Lowe


Roster
Toe Blake (C)-Syd Howe-Ace Bailey
Gaye Stewart-Doug Weight-Eddie Oatman (A)
Jack Walker-Mike Ricci-Bobby Rousseau
Ed Sandford-Vincent Lecavalier-Pit Martin

Brad Park-Bill White
Kevin Lowe (A)-James Patrick
Gord Fraser-Bob Dailey

Martin Brodeur
Don Edwards

Spares:
Syl Apps Jr., C
Marian Gaborik, W
Lee Fogolin Jr., D
Jimmy Roberts, RW/D

-Lecavalier will spend time on a two way line with Walker and Rousseau against weaker/favourable offensive matchups.
-Walker will slide to center to shaddow big time centers, Ricci will play the wing when walker draws such assignments.
-Fogolin Jr. will be in a regular rotation in and out of the lineup when more of a shut-down/defensive third pairing is required.

1st PP Unit
Blake-Howe-Bailey
Rousseau-Park

2nd PP Unit
Stewart-Lecavalier-Oatman
Weight-Patrick

-Doug on the draws
-Dailey will get some time to unload his cannon from the point alongside Weight or Patrick.

PK Forwards
Martin-Walker
Ricci-Rousseau
Howe-Bailey

-Sandford to sub in as needed

PK Defensemen
Lowe-White
Park-Dailey/Fraser

Forward Minutes
nameESPPSHtotal
Blake154019+
Howe154221
Bailey1341.518.5
Stewart113014
Weight113014
Oatman123015
Walker130417
Ricci1001.511.5
Rousseau1242.518.5
Sandford8019
Lecavalier103013
Martin801.59.5
total1382814180

Defensemen minutes
nameESPPSHtotal
Park2042.526.5
White1904+23
Lowe1704+21
Patrick162018
Fraser1001.511.5
Dailey101214
total92714113


Last edited by Dreakmur: 05-16-2011 at 10:50 AM.
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05-16-2011, 11:14 AM
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Congrats to overpass, who I presume has home ice advantage based on the order of things. Looking forward to actually being able to participate this round (knock on wood).

Initial thought is that I'd love to get Walker on Jagr and Rousseau on Bentley as much as possible. My first or third line will be put on for all defensive zone draw situations at even stregnth. The same goes for either my first* or second d pairing. Limiting Jagr's damage, I'm sure, will be Hitchcock's primary concern. I hope to provide some info on Hitch and his style (which he refused to call a trap) this series.

*Park will be getting more minutes than in my projection for the regular season above, I'm sure.

Obviously without home ice and a coaching disadvantage, I'll have to rely heavily on changes on the fly and limiting which lines are on for d-zone draws. On first glance, the keys to this series for Halifax will be the large advantage between the pipes and continuing to play the hard working, grinding style the team was built for, in hopes of wearing down the Senators and coming out on top in some close contests.

Hopefully Marty continues his dominance from the last series.

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05-16-2011, 11:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoneberg View Post
Initial thought is that I'd love to get Walker on Jagr and Rousseau on Bentley as much as possible.
I am looking forward to seeing how this Walker vs. Jagr thing plays out. In a real series, that 1 on 1 battle would determine who moves on.

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*Park will be getting more minutes than in my projection for the regular season above, I'm sure.
I'm not sure Park can handle much more. He played 26.5 in the season, right. I think that looks like his max to me.

As long as you've got him head to head with Jagr, you're in good shape though.

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05-16-2011, 11:54 AM
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I am looking forward to seeing how this Walker vs. Jagr thing plays out. In a real series, that 1 on 1 battle would determine who moves on.
Agreed.
Quote:
I'm not sure Park can handle much more. He played 26.5 in the season, right. I think that looks like his max to me.

As long as you've got him head to head with Jagr, you're in good shape though.
On second thought you are probably right, he may need an extra 30 seconds to a minute a game if he's trying to jump on whenever Jagr does but hopefully it isn't required.

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05-16-2011, 11:58 AM
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I think that shadowing Jagr is a bad idea. It's what he wants and enjoys. He'd have no problem doing whatever he wanted with Walker on his back IMHO.


Personally, I think Bentley - Zetterberg - Jagr is one of the best assembled lines in the entire draft. It's like this year's Czech first line Cervenka - Plekanec - Jagr, only much better at all positions obviously (and 39-yo Jagr was named the best forward of 2011 WHC to boot).


Last edited by Reds4Life: 05-16-2011 at 12:04 PM.
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05-16-2011, 12:12 PM
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I think Park should be able to handle just a little more time in the playoffs than regular season. If not, then you played him too much in the regular season... Heh

I don't see why Jagr would be particularly immune from being shadowed, Reds.

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05-16-2011, 12:14 PM
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I think Park should be able to handle just a little more time in the playoffs than regular season. If not, then you played him too much in the regular season... Heh

I don't see why Jagr would be particularly immune from being shadowed, Reds.
He is most dangerous when he has the puck - because of his incredible ability to shield it - so if you can shadow him and prevent passes to him in the first place, then it makes sense to me that you limit him somewhat.

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05-16-2011, 12:58 PM
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I don't think there is any player ever who would rather be shadowed than not shadowed...especially by one of the greatest in the history of the game.

Pursuing the player when he has the puck isn't as important as taking space away and preventing him from getting the puck in the first place, in a shadowing case like this. Walker certainly has the elite stick skills to break up plays and stop pucks from making it to Jagr as often as Ottawa would like. He also has an elite hook check that will certainly catch Jagr off guard from time to time when he does get the puck. The fact that the Senators have one of the weakest offsensive first line centers in the draft is also a positive for Halifax's shut down group as it gives the opportunity in some defensive situations to cheat towards Jagr (both skaters and Marty), reducing his time and space.

That said, by no means am I naive enough to think Jagr can be completely shut down... it's all about minimizing his chances to do damage.

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05-16-2011, 02:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheDevilMadeMe View Post
I don't see why Jagr would be particularly immune from being shadowed, Reds.
He's not immune, obviously, but it is much more effective to take away his options/linemates, than putting Walker or whoever on his back with the sole purpose of shadowing him.
Just look at his style, he usually has someone on his back, sticks out his big ass, makes some moves and turns, drives to the net/shoots/makes a pass - which is why shadowing him is not really effective IMHO, unless the "shadow" is really big (e.g. Hal Gill, Jagr has said multiple times that players like that are the toughest challenges for him), smaller players can't really limit Jagr at all - so take away his teammates if you want to win.

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05-16-2011, 02:47 PM
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He's not immune, obviously, but it is much more effective to take away his options/linemates, than putting Walker or whoever on his back with the sole purpose of shadowing him.
Just look at his style, he usually has someone on his back, sticks out his big ass, makes some moves and turns, drives to the net/shoots/makes a pass - which is why shadowing him is not really effective IMHO, unless the "shadow" is really big (e.g. Hal Gill, Jagr has said multiple times that players like that are the toughest challenges for him), smaller players can't really limit Jagr at all - so take away his teammates if you want to win.
That is why the best strategy is to keep the puck from getting to him in the first place, no?

He was almost impossible to remove from the puck once he had it.

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05-16-2011, 02:55 PM
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That is why the best strategy is to keep the puck from getting to him in the first place, no?

He was almost impossible to remove from the puck once he had it.
I'd think so. Jagr without puck is not nearly as effective/good as Jagr with the puck on his stick, because as you said - it was (still is) nearly impossible to take the puck away from him. I think that Zetterberg(-like player) is the perfect center for Jagr, he thrives when paired with defensively responsible and smart center. Bentley on the wing just makes the blend even better. I do think this line would actually work really well in an actual game.

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05-16-2011, 03:12 PM
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I see BC already got the main point I'm about to make accross, but I'm so far in to this post and only have one properly functioning hand, so I'm not gonna change it.
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Originally Posted by Reds4Life View Post
He's not immune, obviously, but it is much more effective to take away his options/linemates, than putting Walker or whoever on his back with the sole purpose of shadowing him.
Just look at his style, he usually has someone on his back, sticks out his big ass, makes some moves and turns, drives to the net/shoots/makes a pass - which is why shadowing him is not really effective IMHO, unless the "shadow" is really big (e.g. Hal Gill, Jagr has said multiple times that players like that are the toughest challenges for him), smaller players can't really limit Jagr at all - so take away his teammates if you want to win.
Again, you're only considering the less important aspect of this shadowing assignment (when the assigned player has the puck). Walker has the skating ability to stay beside Jagr up and down the ice, and stick skills to prevent the puck from getting to Jagr in the first place via deflection or interception (Obviously I don't expect Jagr to never get the puck, just for him to get it less than he wants...and for it to be a challenge to get it in the first place). I agree with you that to attack Jagr while he has the puck is always a risky endeavour, but based on anecdotes, I think Walker was smart enough to not repeatedly fall for similar body positional moves over and over for a full series. With the support of the Park-White pairing I'm sure Hitch will come up with adjustments as the series goes on.

Anyway, as far as I'm concerned Zetterberg being the center of the line makes it very well constructed, but also much easier to defend against because he is nothing special offensively on an ATD top line despite his impressive recent playoff record.

Rousseau has the speed and defensive ability to cover Bentley better than most checking line RWs in this. Thankfully my two great checking wingers can worry about his two best offensive players and the weak link on my line, Ricci, shouldn't have much trouble defensively with the weak link (offensively) on his, Zetterberg.

As I said before, it will be impossible to keep the Sens top line completely off the board...but I really think my checking line is a great fit to line up against Ottawa's top line.

With all that said, Brodeur is probably going to be the most important factor in limiting the damage. The rest of the guys are just trying to make it easier on him.

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05-16-2011, 11:17 PM
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Originally Posted by Reds4Life View Post
I think that shadowing Jagr is a bad idea. It's what he wants and enjoys. He'd have no problem doing whatever he wanted with Walker on his back IMHO.


Personally, I think Bentley - Zetterberg - Jagr is one of the best assembled lines in the entire draft. It's like this year's Czech first line Cervenka - Plekanec - Jagr, only much better at all positions obviously (and 39-yo Jagr was named the best forward of 2011 WHC to boot).
I agree with you that Jagr is less vulnerable to being shadowed by another forwards than most stars. Forwards primarily interact in the neutral zone in transition. Jagr is more of a threat in the offensive zone than he is from off the rush. If you try to stifle Jagr in transition, Bentley can pick up the slack. With Bentley's speed, he's well suited to being a puck carrier in transition.

I didn't make this point re: Tikkanen in the last round, because Tikkanen can be a pest anywhere on the ice. But if you are making a strict shutdown argument with Walker against Jagr, I don't think it's going to stop Jagr. Stopping Jagr is up to the defencemen primarily.

Congrats, Stoneberg, on advancing. I see you've made a good start to the arguments, I'll do my best to catch up.

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05-16-2011, 11:22 PM
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I remember that Lemaire always used to say Jagr was too good all over the ice to shadow. But then Pandolfo actually had success shadowing him after the last lockout, so who knows?

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05-17-2011, 12:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoneberg View Post
My first or third line will be put on for all defensive zone draw situations at even strength. The same goes for either my first* or second d pairing.

Obviously without home ice and a coaching disadvantage, I'll have to rely heavily on changes on the fly and limiting which lines are on for d-zone draws.
I've seen a few GMs saying they will use two given lines for all defensive zone draw situations.

Easier said than done.

In practice the most you can do is keep one line away from them, and limit one pairing. At least for as long as I've been watching hockey. If NHL coaches started using only two lines and two pairings for defensive zone situations, it would really dictate the changes - guys would be going out tired, you couldn't get matchups, etc.

Of course you can use some lines there more than others, and teams do that. But Stewart-Weight-Oatman is going to be out there for at least some draws in their own end.

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Anyway, as far as I'm concerned Zetterberg being the center of the line makes it very well constructed, but also much easier to defend against because he is nothing special offensively on an ATD top line despite his impressive recent playoff record.
Unlike most top line centres, Zetterberg is playing with Jagr and gets to be in a supporting offensive role. He matches up with a lot of top line wingers offensively.

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With all that said, Brodeur is probably going to be the most important factor in limiting the damage. The rest of the guys are just trying to make it easier on him.
I actually don't think this is the best matchup for Brodeur. Much of his value comes from his ability to play the puck, and especially to frustrate the dump and chase game. Ottawa has the skill to carry the puck into the zone, especially on the top line.

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05-17-2011, 12:14 AM
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Do those offensive / defensive zone draw stats exist for the playoffs?

I assume Hitchcock will use the Weight line like he used the Nieuwendyk line in real life.

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05-17-2011, 12:48 AM
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Do those offensive / defensive zone draw stats exist for the playoffs?

I assume Hitchcock will use the Weight line like he used the Nieuwendyk line in real life.
Yes they do, for the last 3 or 4 years. 2010 Hawks and 2010 Flyers.

In a more digestible form, the 2010 Hawks defensive zone draw usage.

Defence

Seabrook: 53%
Keith: 52%
Hjalmarsson: 40%
Sopel: 26%
Campbell: 20%
(Hendry+Boynton): 6%

Basically used 5 guys, 3 of whom took 75% of the usage.

Centres
Bolland 48%
Madden 47%
Toews 28%
Sharp 23%

Was Sharp playing C? I can't remember now. In any case, the Hawks obviously liked to put out 2 centres in the defensive zone. Meaning that some wingers - especially Kane and Byfuglien - saw less than their share of defensive zone draws.

Same numbers for the Flyers in 2010:

Defence
Pronger 46%
Coburn 44%
Carle 43%
Timonen 42%
Krajicek 14%
(Parent + Bartulis) 12%

You can definitely hide one pairing.

Centre
Richards 45%
Betts 27%
Briere 25%
Giroux 24%

The Flyers obviously put two centres out there sometimes, but not as often. Leino was the winger they were sheltering.

Hardly an exhaustive look at playoff strategies, but you get an idea for the range that coaches work within for defensive zone draws. I doubt it's been significantly wider in the past.

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05-17-2011, 09:27 AM
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I've seen a few GMs saying they will use two given lines for all defensive zone draw situations.

Easier said than done.
I don't agree. One of the two lines should always be fresh at a break in play, since obviously both aren't playing at the break.

You just skip a shift in favour of a more offensive line later if they are piling up the minutes.

Even in the worst case, late in a game for example, you send out just the center to take the draw and hopefully win it.

Quote:
I actually don't think this is the best matchup for Brodeur. Much of his value comes from his ability to play the puck, and especially to frustrate the dump and chase game. Ottawa has the skill to carry the puck into the zone, especially on the top line.
By knowing that you will favour carrying the puck to avoid dumping it to Brodeur, they can cheat with their gameplan accordingly to take away more of that neutral zone space you are attempting to carry through.

And if you decide to start dumping because they are "cheating", then you play to Brodeur's strength.

Basically the "system" that Brodeur gets torn down for playing within is in large part only available to his team because of him. (although I still don't put him in the absolute top shelf as a goaltender)

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05-17-2011, 11:25 AM
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I agree with you that Jagr is less vulnerable to being shadowed by another forwards than most stars. Forwards primarily interact in the neutral zone in transition. Jagr is more of a threat in the offensive zone than he is from off the rush. If you try to stifle Jagr in transition, Bentley can pick up the slack. With Bentley's speed, he's well suited to being a puck carrier in transition.
I fully expect Walker to TRY and be beside Jagr at all times when the Sens get possession (a tall order obviously). I'm glad to have a quick and high quality defensive winger in Rousseau trying to give Bentley hell in the transition game too.

Quote:
I didn't make this point re: Tikkanen in the last round, because Tikkanen can be a pest anywhere on the ice. But if you are making a strict shutdown argument with Walker against Jagr, I don't think it's going to stop Jagr. Stopping Jagr is up to the defencemen primarily.
It's up to all 6 players on the ice to be aware of Jagr when he's on. Walker shaddowing is 1 aspect, but Hitch will be trying to get Park-White out there is probably equally as important, followed by Rousseau playing very conservatively opposite Bentley as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by overpass View Post
I've seen a few GMs saying they will use two given lines for all defensive zone draw situations.

Easier said than done.

In practice the most you can do is keep one line away from them, and limit one pairing. At least for as long as I've been watching hockey. If NHL coaches started using only two lines and two pairings for defensive zone situations, it would really dictate the changes - guys would be going out tired, you couldn't get matchups, etc.

Of course you can use some lines there more than others, and teams do that. But Stewart-Weight-Oatman is going to be out there for at least some draws in their own end.
This is fair. I'm sure Hitch will identify D-zone draws on shifts immediately following a shift where Jagr has been on, and let the Weight line handle them.

Quote:
Unlike most top line centres, Zetterberg is playing with Jagr and gets to be in a supporting offensive role. He matches up with a lot of top line wingers offensively.
Yeah, I suppose your right...but I still think it gives Ricci, Brodeur, and Park the opportunity to cheat towards Jagr in selective situations as Zetterberg isn't really an overly threatening trigger man at this level. Obviously he won't be left open on two on ones, in the slot, or easy conversions like that but I could see instances arising in D-zone coverage where it would be beneficial to give him a little more space to be able to take a little more away from Jagr.

Quote:
I actually don't think this is the best matchup for Brodeur. Much of his value comes from his ability to play the puck, and especially to frustrate the dump and chase game. Ottawa has the skill to carry the puck into the zone, especially on the top line.
I would certainly say some of his value comes from the ability to play the puck. His puck skills are great for transition against dump and chase teams but I can't really see not being able to play the puck hurting his ability to make saves.

Hitch would probably be happy with your plans to carry the puck in to the zone though, especially on lower lines. Should create some decent transition chances the other way when the Mooseheads defensive system clogs things up.

.....
Anyway, here are a couple comments from articles I found on Hitch fairly quickly:
Quote:
The new Flyers coach just likes his team to control the middle of the ice, force turnovers, play defensive hockey and show determination when it doesn't have possession.
http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-120409540.html

Quote:
"At first, you don't realize why he's such an in-your-face kind of coach," Modano said yesterday from Dallas, moments before Hitchcock, 50, was introduced as the Flyers' 15th head coach. "In this day and age, it's easy to step on some guys' toes, and sometimes it was hard to understand his style - until the success comes around. Then you're thankful for him."
...
(Discussing the 1999 cup and Hull's winner)
Symbolically, it also completed the transformation of Hull from a one-dimensional goal-scoring machine into a well-rounded player, one willing to forecheck, clog the middle of the ice, and work diligently to do the kind of grunt work Hitchcock demanded.

"He's responsible for a lot of us becoming better all-around players," Modano said of Hitchcock. "He really thrives on teaching guys to be mentally tough, to deal with adversity. He's fair, but very demanding, and as far as preparation and tactics, I've never been around anyone better."

Hull would publicly moan and groan that Hitchcock's defense-first system was stifling his goal-scoring. In return, Hitchock would drive home his point by putting Hull on a checking line.

"Yeah, that was a very unique challenge," Hitchcock said yesterday. "We had some problems early with Brett. He was very set in his ways. But we were able to put him in a situation where he had no choice."
...
"We don't trap. We never have trapped and we don't believe in it," he said.
http://articles.philly.com/2002-05-1...ap-stanley-cup

Will discuss implications and preset more later but should get back to work now.

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05-17-2011, 01:00 PM
  #20
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Game Plan for Ottawa

Forward matchups:

Gottselig-Modano-Provost vs Blake-Howe-Bailey

I like that I have Provost to match up against Halifax's best offensive forward. The Modano-Provost combination is a very good matchup for Blake-Howe, IMO.

No strong preference for the other matchups, except that my fourth line will go against the other fourth line. Henry probably won't play a lot at even strength - Jagr will pick up an occasional shift esp. starting in the offensive zone, and if they are out for a defensive zone draw another forward will replace him.

Walker can chase Jagr around. I'm not too worried, like I said I think D-men are more important than forwards to stopping Jagr. And Jagr will get some extra shifts on the 4th line, so Hitchcock and Walker will have a hard time always getting that matchup.

Zetterberg's single best attribute may be his ability to win the matchup with an opposing centre in the playoffs. He's outplayed much better centres than Mike Ricci.

Defence Matchups

Gerard-Pronger will be used against scoring lines primarily - either the first line or the second line.

Bergman-Simpson and Gusarov-Samuelsson take what's left. Their usage will be distinguished not by matchups but by starting locations. Bergman-Simpson gets more offensive zone draws, Gusarov-Samuelsson more defensive zone draws.

Power play
As in previous playoff series, it will be

Bentley - Henry - Jagr
Pronger - Simpson

Nash - Bain - Modano
Gerard - Simpson/Bergman

Penalty Kill

Zetterberg - Provost
Gerard - Pronger

Gottselig - Hay
Gusarov - Samuelsson

Nash - Modano (shorthanded threat to attack the end of the PP, if it fits)

Bentley-Zetterberg-Jagr take the shift after.

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05-17-2011, 01:50 PM
  #21
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Originally Posted by overpass View Post
I like that I have Provost to match up against Halifax's best offensive forward. The Modano-Provost combination is a very good matchup for Blake-Howe, IMO.
I don't necessarily disagree with you, but could you elaborate a bit as to why? (I respect that line a lot as a shut down unit just want to know what makes it a very good matchup for my two best forwards)

Quote:
Walker can chase Jagr around. I'm not too worried, like I said I think D-men are more important than forwards to stopping Jagr. And Jagr will get some extra shifts on the 4th line, so Hitchcock and Walker will have a hard time always getting that matchup.
Park is hopping the boards whenever Jagr is on, and against the first line is paired with a great defensive defenseman in White. Worst case scenario would be Lowe on Jagr's side of the ice, which I'm fine with as long as a change is made when possible.

It's undeniable that Walker can reduce Jagr's touches when he's shadowing him, by how much is very important for Halifax. Whether it be lifting his stick, deflecting a pass elsewhere, or just preventing the pass from even being made by being right beside him and influencing a teammate to pass elsewhere in a quick decision. Even reducing Jagr's touches by 10% would be great, but I expect a bit more from Walker.

Quote:
Zetterberg's single best attribute may be his ability to win the matchup with an opposing centre in the playoffs. He's outplayed much better centres than Mike Ricci.
Fair, but were those centers trying to shut him down or wasn't it usually the other way around (Z on against the other teams top producing center)? I haven't read your bio for a while and forget what details are in there. Either way, we can't give the playoffs 100% weight in gauging the players effectiveness in these series'. A strong playoff record is a nice plus for Zetterberg in the playoffs but the regular season should still mean more in evaluating the players in this series. So if he steps his game up big time from being a bottom 5 center offensively in the ATD regular season, where does that leave him?

FWIW, Ricci was a guy who stepped his game up in the playoffs as well, not to the same extent of course.

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05-17-2011, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Stoneberg View Post
It's up to all 6 players on the ice to be aware of Jagr when he's on. Walker shaddowing is 1 aspect, but Hitch will be trying to get Park-White out there is probably equally as important, followed by Rousseau playing very conservatively opposite Bentley as well.
Just a note about Park-White vs Jagr. Correct me if I am wrong, but Park is playing the left side and White the right side. Park will be going against Jagr most of the time. So you don't really get the benefit of White's size to contain Jagr down low.

Edit: OK, I see you've identified Park as the main counter to Jagr in your post above mine.

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05-17-2011, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by overpass View Post
Just a note about Park-White vs Jagr. Correct me if I am wrong, but Park is playing the left side and White the right side. Park will be going against Jagr most of the time. So you don't really get the benefit of White's size to contain Jagr down low.

Edit: OK, I see you've identified Park as the main counter to Jagr in your post above mine.
Jagr did carry the puck all over the offensive zone, so he'll be engaged by both defensemen at times, I think.

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05-17-2011, 02:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoneberg View Post
I don't necessarily disagree with you, but could you elaborate a bit as to why? (I respect that line a lot as a shut down unit just want to know what makes it a very good matchup for my two best forwards)
I don't know anything in particular about Blake or Howe that makes them vulnerable to being shut down. It's just that their positions match up with Modano and Provost, which is my teams strongest duo of defensive/two-way forwards.

I'll take a minute to plug my unit here for other GMs. Both Modano and Provost were part of very strong two-way forward units that went against the other teams best lines and were keys to Cup-winning teams. Modano teamed with Jere Lehtinen on Dallas, and Provost with Henri Richard in Montreal.

It all starts with their skating. Modano was among the best skaters in the league. Combined with his size and skill he was a one-man transition to the attack, very difficult to stop in the neutral zone. Under Ken Hitchcock* he added defensive commitment, and started to control the game both ways, with the help of the super-smart and reliable Lehtinen. Provost had a unique skating style, wide legged and awkward. But he had a very tight turning radius and was able to stay with opposing forwards very effectively. He gained a reputation as a great defensive winger who shut down Bobby Hull in the playoffs, in part because he played with Henri Richard who was a tremendous two-way centre.

I think Modano-Provost puts them each in a position where they succeeded before and can succeed again.

Again, nothing against Blake and Howe, I just like my guys. I'll leave it to you to plug your guys.

*Interesting that Hitchcock is coaching against Modano and Nash, two guys he transformed from scorers to two-way players.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoneberg View Post
Fair, but were those centers trying to shut him down or wasn't it usually the other way around (Z on against the other teams top producing center)? I haven't read your bio for a while and forget what details are in there. Either way, we can't give the playoffs 100% weight in gauging the players effectiveness in these series'. A strong playoff record is a nice plus for Zetterberg in the playoffs but the regular season should still mean more in evaluating the players in this series. So if he steps his game up big time from being a bottom 5 center offensively in the ATD regular season, where does that leave him?

FWIW, Ricci was a guy who stepped his game up in the playoffs as well, not to the same extent of course.
Yes, the regular season record is important.

My contention is that Zetterberg is the same player in the regular season. He gets noticed in the playoffs because it's a big stage and everyone focuses on the matchups. That's why I've focused on his excellent playoff performance - most GMs here have seen a lot of those games. But he's still a very good player in the regular season, and wins the vast majority of his matchups against the other teams best.

Behindthenet.ca has a stat called qualcomp that measures the quality of competition that each player faces by looking at the average plus-minus of the players that they face.

Henrik Zetterberg's rank in Qualcomp among forwards on his team:

2010-11: 1
2009-10: 1
2008-09: 1
2007-08: 1

And his rank in ratio of D-zone draws to O-zone draws on his team:

2010-11: 1
2009-10: 5 (Draper, Miller, Helm, Datsyuk)
2008-09: 5 (Draper, Franzen, Hossa, Filppula)
2007-08: 1

And even with all that heavy, lifting, he's 5th among all forwards since the lockout (6 years now) in regular season plus-minus. Keep in mind he's been playing in the strongest division in the strongest conference in hockey as well.

A matchup against Mike Ricci is certainly a different matchup than going against, say, Joe Thornton or Sidney Crosby. I'm fine with that.

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05-18-2011, 05:18 PM
  #25
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Quick comparison of the defence

Park-White and Gerard-Pronger are both among the stronger pairings in the draft. All four were great defensively. Offensively, Park is the man for Halifax, and Ottawa's pairing is more balanced. Not much advantage either way, although I like having Pronger's edge on my team.

Bottom two pairings on each team have a mix of offensive and defensive contributions.

Joe Simpson is a possible X-factor for the series. He was a tremendous puck-rusher in his prime - his "corkscrew" rushes down the ice were the best show on ice. From 1920 to 1924 he has a case as the best offensive defenceman in the world. He was considered to be the best defencema in the West, and back East the Ottawa Senators wanted him badly enough to trade Hart winner Frank Nighbor for him straight up in 1924.

Brad Park may be the better offensive defenceman in the series, but he's drawing Jagr duty this round and has a lot on his plate. Simpson will play primarily against the lower lines of Halifax. His ability to join the rush will be a key to moving the puck against Hitchcock's trap.

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