Jump to content

"Defense Wins Championships"


Guest radoran
 Share

Recommended Posts

Defense wins championships. This is an accepted axiom in sports. It's fun to watch go-go hockey - and one could argue that it was the only real style the Flyers could have implemented this season, especially since Pronger went down, given all of the new and young faces on the squad.

But what became clear in the Second Round is that the defense - and goaltending is a PART, but not all or even most of the equation - is the crucial part of the equation.

The stats don't lie. Post All Star-Game this season for the remaining playoff teams:

Teams with lowest goals against: 2. Phoenix, 3. LA, 4. New Jersey. 16, Flyers, 18. New York, 20. Washington

Highest Save%: 1. Phoenix, 5. New Jersey, T10. LA, 15. Washington, 18 Flyers, 23. New York

PK%: 2. New Jersey, 4. LA, 5. Phoenix, 11. New York, 14. Washington, 19. Flyers,

Goals For: 2. Flyers, 5. New Jersey, 10. New York, 18. Washington, 21, Phoenix, 22. LA

Yes, the Flyers and the irredeemable Mr. Universe have a better SV% and GA than King Henrik and the Rangers.

But, more importantly, the Flyers trailed New Jersey by a large margin in every important category except GF, in which their edge is not nearly as great.

Three of the conference finalists are Top 10 in GA, SV% and PK down the stretch.

My point is that the Flyers need to have more emphasis on defense, and I think as the roster gets more maturity that will be able to be implemented. Laviolette generally does have a go-go style in his coaching resume, but as the Devils showed a strong forecheck is often the best defense. Being able to emphasize puck posession and avoiding some of the ruts which the Devils were able to exploit, regardless of shots on goal or chances, can do a lot to take the burden off the defensive zone.

Unfortuntaely, as I look at those stats, I've gotta put the Devils in as the favorites. Yuck.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So Lavy has to go?

Whish is what you took away from this

Laviolette generally does have a go-go style in his coaching resume, but as the Devils showed a strong forecheck is often the best defense. Being able to emphasize puck posession and avoiding some of the ruts which the Devils were able to exploit, regardless of shots on goal or chances, can do a lot to take the burden off the defensive zone.

Adjustments, helping players - especially young ones - avoid falling into identifiable patterns, emphasizing puck posession is "Lavy must go?"

And in the previous statement:

My point is that the Flyers need to have more emphasis on defense, and I think as the roster gets more maturity that will be able to be implemented.

You get "Lavy must go?"

Lavy must do more to help the players he has grow and develop and I believe he can do that.

As I stated again - I'm not sure he had an option other than go-go given the turnover on the roster and the new faces to be integrated. Adapting that go-go style as the younger players develop should be an emphasis.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You want defense? Lavy isn't your coach. That's all I'm saying.

His "We're a giddy-up & go team" = no defense

I like Lavy, but if you ant us to suddenly turn into the Kings or Rangers, he's not your guy. He's an attack-style coach.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You want defense? Lavy isn't your coach. That's all I'm saying.

His "We're a giddy-up & go team" = no defense

I like Lavy, but if you ant us to suddenly turn into the Kings or Rangers, he's not your guy. He's an attack-style coach.

Again:

as the Devils showed a strong forecheck is often the best defense

And, another important point, is the development of the younger players. If Lavy is unable to help younger players grow and adapt - and avoid falling into identifiable patterns which I believe the Devils saw and exploited - then, yes, he has to go.

if he's able to help younger players grow - and I believe he is - then I think he can have a go-go forechecking style that keeps the other team in their end - as the Devils did - while also being more defensively responsible (as one might argue they were in April/March).

It's not implementing a "defensive style" - I don't think you can call LA a "defensive style" team - nor does a "defensive style" guarantee results if you can't score.

I want the Flyers playing in the other end, holding the puck and keeping pressure on the opponent and off their defensive zone. Essentially what the Devils did to us. Do you think the Devils have a "defensve style"? The Devils were #5 in goals for as well as top five in goals against.

And this was post-All Star, so much of Bryz's late season renaissance is included (thus the improved save percentage).

Getting better defense from Read, Schenn and, yes, Couturier. Seeing if Simmonds and Voracek can handle added responsibility. Can Giroux's line dominate puck possession?

And incorporating a fourth line that could well be Sestito-Wellwood-Rinaldo....

Link to comment
Share on other sites

While I do not disagree that "Defense Wins Championships" this year...

Recall how well "Defense Win Championships" worked for us in the years just after the lockout. We had Hitch as our coach and had big and slow Hatcher and Rathje out there only to get run out of the building and embarassed on multiple nights by Danny B and the Sabres. The Peter Laviolette led Hurricanes won the Stanley Cup that year.

The next year we had the worst record in the league. It was basically mandated by the league that we had to adapt to a more offensive style by the way the games were called. The Flyers slowly adapted and got smaller and faster and less physical then we have ever seen in our history. Slowly the tide seems to be turning and the shift is going back to defense. With another lockout looming who knows what will come after that.

My point is not that you are wrong...clearly defense is king this year...however I think that people killing the Flyers and Lavy for this are being a bit too hard as a lot depends on what the NHL decides and mandates. It seems that the Flyers have been a bit unlucky when it comes to the design they chose for their team over the years. Look at the Lindros years...imagine if they called hooking and holding and interference back then...we would have run over the Debbies and the Wings instead they trapped and left wing locked us to death...We finally gave up and went with Hitch and his defensive systems. That was OK then the lockout came and whamo we get blown out of the water...now we have a get up and go team and they are letting a lot go (the Debbies would have been called for interference a bunch of times if this was the post lockout year IMHO).

The Flyers cant seem to win with whatever model they chose. And the danger of building a defense 1st team is that they may change the rules on us again to increase scoring or some other hairbrained idea...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

@radoran

so what you're saying is we should fire lavy ?

:D

Sorry @AndyS this thread reads almost like an abbot and costello routine.

I give it 2 thumbs up !

insightful and entertaining.

throw in the distinguished gentleman from the district of columbia @jackstraw and i was laughing out loud.

Edited by mojo1917
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'll point out, again, that the Devils are Top Five in GA and Top Five in GF.

Being more defensively responsible and keeping play and possession in the other end does not mean "defense-first" Hitchville

And it's not just "this year"

Last year, post All-Star break conference finalists (GA, SV%, PK%, GF):

Bruins: 10, 13, 26, 11

Canucks: 2, 1, 3, 8

Lightning: 9, 15, 13, 10

Sharks: 6, 4, 29, 2

While this shows you that stats don't play the game (and don't show the impact of Conn Smythe Tim Thomas), Boston is in the top half of the league in every category (PK being the outlier); both better-scoring Conference Finalists lost and despite a solid D, the Sharks didn't overcome Vancouver's scoring which, while not the Sharks' #2 was, like the Devils, dat least in the Top 10..

Again, this is not "DEFENSE FIRST SYSTEM NOW" - this is "we need to imnprove the defense" and, given that SV% is one of the stats listed, we need much better play from the goalie, consistently, as well.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Unfortuntaely, as I look at those stats, I've gotta put the Devils in as the favorites. Yuck.

@radoran

Here is the reason I find the Devils to be the new favorites in theory --- while your stats may back it up.

The last 3 teams to knock out the Flyers have been the last 3 Cup winners.... Pitt, Chicago and Boston...... the Devils could make it FOUR! Crap.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...