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Thursday, April 15, 2010

OT: NHL Playoff Thread

I estimate that only 10-12 Primates care about the NHL Playoffs, but with our own thread, we won’t detract from what this site is really about: the NBA playoffs and Pavement’s discography.

Cabbage Posted: April 15, 2010 at 03:44 PM | 1758 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
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   1601. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: April 24, 2012 at 02:35 PM (#4114843)
Why do you think that on Sharp? Because of the bad series? Wasn't his extension signed just last year? Agree on Hjalmarsson (and wouldn't mind them moving Bolland either).


Of the 'big name' forwards (Kane, Hossa, Toews, Sharp), I think he'd be most likely to be moved, especially if the Hawks are in the market for a no. 2 center, top-pairing d-man, or no. 1 goalie. Plus, most of the Hawks' top young forwards seem to be wingers (Stalberg, Shaw, Saad, Morin) which makes Sharp a bit more expendable.

I don't necessarily *want* him to be traded, but I have a feeling the Hawks will make a shake up move this off-season, and Sharp's a prime candidate to go.
   1602. Random Transaction Generator Posted: April 24, 2012 at 02:37 PM (#4114845)
When it is so easy that a terrible (not just bad) goaltender is successful 90% of the time, there's no room for that skill to shine.

If the Penguins has "terrible" goaltending in these playoffs, they would have won their series.
   1603. zack Posted: April 24, 2012 at 02:41 PM (#4114848)
- Hawks could really use a second line center next year. I don't have that much confidence in either Kruger or Bolland taking on that role.
- A 3-4 d-man would be nice too. Oduya had a horrible playoff series, but in general I thought he was decent. I wouldn't mind seeing him return, but he's definitely not worth overpaying for.
- I think there's a good chance both Sharp & Hjalmarsson won't be with the Hawks next year.
- I'm not excited for the goalie tandem of Crawford & Emery Part 2 next season but I guess that's what the Hawks are stuck with.
- Mike Kitchen ran the powerplay right? Mike Kitchen should not return.


I think 2C is really overblown. One of Kruger, Sharp, Kane, Pirri can fill-in, and Pirri, Saad and McNeil are all going to need spots soon that preclude a long-term deal. IMO, they need a PK specialist D-man and Center, and better goaltending. The goaltending is a conundrum, because they already have $4 million invested in it, it was god-awful this year, and it is very difficult to predict. I would fish for Josh Harding, and seriously consider offering sheets (heh) to Rask, Schneider, Lindback and maybe Bachman. I wanted them to try and get Ben Bishop this year, though that would be hard from a division rival. Maybe Salak can act like a human being next year.

I don't see why Sharp is on the block, they just re-signed him this season (which was iffy). I'm definitely on the Hjalmarsson Sucks bandwagon, and I don't think there's any question he's vastly over-paid.

Why do you think that on Sharp? Because of the bad series? Wasn't his extension signed just last year? Agree on Hjalmarsson (and wouldn't mind them moving Bolland either).


I think Bolland is one of the core engines on the team. His salary might not match his goal scoring, but a lot of that is his extreme defensive usage. And his line was by far the best 'hawks line in this series. Speaking of which, all the Blackhawks fans who cursed Frolik and Bickell all season can now apologize.

I think the real question is, how long can you fiddle around the edges with a very good team if it's not working out? Do you play it like the Sharks/Caps, or go ####### crazy like Paul Holmgren? I very much favour the first approach because it requires you to roll fewer natural 20's, but it can make you look like a chump.

   1604. zack Posted: April 24, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4114849)
When it is so easy that a terrible (not just bad) goaltender is successful 90% of the time, there's no room for that skill to shine.

If the Penguins has "terrible" goaltending in these playoffs, they would have won their series.


What's the point? That series is an anomaly (and was six whole games). Are you saying a .900 SV% isn't terrible? It's basically bottom-five this season.
   1605. Shredder Posted: April 24, 2012 at 02:46 PM (#4114850)
It is pretty well established, across sports, that lower scoring benefits the weaker team. That's why soccer teams park the bus, why football teams waste clock, and why hockey teams trap.
It's incredibly difficult to "park the bus" in hockey. Ask anyone who has watched their team go into a shell in the third period with a one goal lead. What's generally true in many sports isn't always true in all sports.
The more events, the more skill will shine through.
As Rosta mentions, shots and and scoring chances are events. Goaltending is a skill.
lower scoring benefits the weaker team.
Perhaps in one particular contest, but if I design a team around a great defense, or great pitching, how is that considered a weakness? If a great team plays a weak team, the weak team is likely better off in a low scoring contest. I won't argue that. But if a great offensive team plays a great defensive team, a low scoring game isn't necessarily a benefit, it's by design. When a great team plays a weak team over the course of a seven game series, on-field/court/ice strategy can only take you so far. You actually need the skill to implement it. And you have the skill to implement your strategy, by definition you aren't a weak team.
   1606. Gaelan Posted: April 24, 2012 at 03:00 PM (#4114860)
As Rosta mentions, shots and and scoring chances are events. Goaltending is a skill.


The point is that as sv% approaches 100% shots and scoring chances cease to be events. That's the problem. It's actually a much worse problem in hockey than the "perceived" soccer problem. The better team wins in soccer a high percentage of the time precisely because generating scoring chances has very real value in soccer. By contrast, in hockey the better team in terms of generating scoring chances (in any individual game) loses quite often.

Or to say the same thing a different way, as save percentage approaches 100%, the correlation between generating scoring chances and winning diminishes, especially over the sample of a single game (or series). Since generating/limiting scoring chances is a real skill and is, presumably, the point of hockey then as save percentage approaches 100% the role of skill in an individual game is diminished. This is a bad thing. It transforms hockey into Quidditch.
   1607. zack Posted: April 24, 2012 at 03:17 PM (#4114882)
Perhaps in one particular contest, but if I design a team around a great defense, or great pitching, how is that considered a weakness? If a great team plays a weak team, the weak team is likely better off in a low scoring contest. I won't argue that. But if a great offensive team plays a great defensive team, a low scoring game isn't necessarily a benefit, it's by design. When a great team plays a weak team over the course of a seven game series, on-field/court/ice strategy can only take you so far.


I think any difference of opinion we have can be explained by the fact that I'm talking about the environment, not any particular team. Building a defense-first/win on the counter team is not a bad strategy. In fact, it's probably the best strategy for teams with fewer resources to take, and they often chose to. But if the goal is to have the best team win your tournament a reasonable percentage of the time*, then there is no reason for the league to promote an extreme low-scoring environment. And as an aside, doing nothing is promoting a low-scoring environment, because of the very reason that there is always an incentive for one of the teams to pursue it, and they will do so given the chance. That, and sports naturally tend towards the defense side over time.

I also edited my post that was the last one on the previous page a bunch of times, if you missed the edits there is some more detail now.

*how often this is is certainly debateable. I'd say you want the best team to win at least 33% of the time.

You actually need the skill to implement it. And you have the skill to implement your strategy, by definition you aren't a weak team.


I don't think this is true, but I get your point.
   1608. Cabbage Posted: April 24, 2012 at 03:23 PM (#4114889)
Losing in the first round sucks, but I don't think the Hawks are in need of much of a shakeup. This is a deeply talented team, and its worthwhile to remember how everything turned on only a few bounces.

Offseason Priorities:
1) Fix the special teams - There are a boatload of skilled skaters. A limp and ineffective powerplay is inexcusable, and I think it falls squarely on the shoulders of the coaching staff. Last years team scored at a perfectly good clip, and there was not a lot of appreciable turnover. There was no plan for getting the puck into the zone, and a complete lack of off-puck movement. The issues on the kill are different, because the D-corp is not as deep as it was during the Cup run (when they had a top tier Pk). But they still have Keith, Seabrook, and more defensively outstanding forwards than they know what to do with. No reason the Hawks shouldn't be top-10 in both PP and PK

2) Add one positionally sound, stay-at-home D-man - Keith, Leddy, Oduya, and (eventually) Olsen can all get the puck up-ice. Hjalmmerson's been exposed without Campbell -- he can't move the puck and he needs a partner who can anticipate when he's going to get jumpy. I dont think you can pencil him in above the 3rd pairing, and I think he's someone who should get shopped.

3) Goaltending - Pass.
   1609. CWS Keith plans to boo your show at the Apollo Posted: April 24, 2012 at 03:55 PM (#4114935)
Being a great defensive team in hockey strikes me as a bit of a conundrum. Is it a repeatable skill to be consistently out-chanced and out-shot by the opposition but, for whatever reason (blocked shots, quality of shots, etc), be able to continue winning games? I'm not saying good defense doesn't exist, but anecdotally at least, it seems like good defensive teams are the ones that are able to control the puck and mainly play in the opponent's zone. But I haven't looked at much data, so maybe I'm talking out of my ass.

RE: The Hawks, I wasn't too upset about the loss last night. Just kind of threw up my hands and thought, 'what can you do?'. I'm a Liverpool fan, too, so I'm more than used to watching a team pepper the net with shots but not come up with the breakthrough.

Jumping to the off-season -- I was fine when the Hawks matched San Jose's offer for Hjalmarsson a few years back, but it's like he hasn't improved in the intervening time, so I'd be okay with the Hawks jettisoning him. He's like a slightly better version of Sopel -- eats pucks, but not much else. Useful bottom pairing defender, but at his current price, no thanks.

Goaltending is also a bit of a sticky situation. Not a fan of Crawford, but skeptical the Hawks would 'get it right' if they tried to devote more resources there. I'd prefer they get better forwards and D before worrying about the goalies. It just seems like too much ice time has gone to guys who are more or less replacement level (Brunette, O'Donnell, Scott).

What's the Hawks cap situation looking like? Any chance they get in on Nash?
   1610. Shredder Posted: April 24, 2012 at 04:31 PM (#4114999)
Is it a repeatable skill to be consistently out-chanced and out-shot by the opposition but, for whatever reason (blocked shots, quality of shots, etc), be able to continue winning games?
Well, presumably a great defensive team isn't consistently out-shot and out-chanced. Great defensive teams would be ones who limit chances (shots are misleading).

But is it possible to be a team who is repeatedly out-shot and out-chanced, yet continues to win games? Probably not in the NHL, where the talent level between the best and worst teams (and players) isn't really all that great. Even the worst player in the NHL is pretty damned skilled. But it does remind me a competitive street hockey team I used to play in when I was in L.A. We had great goaltending and great finishers, but a slow, not particularly mobile or talented defense, though they played really well positionally. It wasn't rare for us to spend most of the period in our zone, give up a bunch of shots, get a breakout, beat one defenseman, and score on a two on one. We had a regular season game where we were out-shot 36-11 and won 5-4. We played a semi-final game that same year in which we were out-shot 40-7 and won 3-2 in overtime. I doubt you could get away with that in a real league.
   1611. baudib Posted: April 24, 2012 at 04:38 PM (#4115019)
If you can go batshit crazy like Holmgren and crush every trade, it works. Of course the downside to Holmgren's moves is that they're stuck with Bryz for 9 years (he's 31). I'm not complaining, because this is the first time I've been really on board with the Flyers since the Lindros era. The Carter/Richards trades were unbelievably brilliant, netting Schenn and Couturier and two guys who outscored Carter/Richards. Holmgren's other moves (Talbot, Jagr) were great, too.
   1612. Random Transaction Generator Posted: April 24, 2012 at 04:52 PM (#4115045)
But is it possible to be a team who is repeatedly out-shot and out-chanced, yet continues to win games? Probably not in the NHL,

Just looking at the top 10 teams in the NHL this season, #5 Nashville (2261 shots for, 2517 shots against) was the only team with fewer shots for than against over the regular season.
   1613. steagles Posted: April 24, 2012 at 05:03 PM (#4115066)
If you can go batshit crazy like Holmgren and crush every trade, it works. Of course the downside to Holmgren's moves is that they're stuck with Bryz for 9 years (he's 31). I'm not complaining, because this is the first time I've been really on board with the Flyers since the Lindros era. The Carter/Richards trades were unbelievably brilliant, netting Schenn and Couturier and two guys who outscored Carter/Richards. Holmgren's other moves (Talbot, Jagr) were great, too.
crush is definitely the right word there.
mike richards: 18 goals, 44 points
wayne simmonds: 28 goals, 49 points
brayden schenn: 12 golas, 18 points

jeff carter: 21 goals, 34 points
jake voracek: 18 goals: 49 points
sean couturier: 13 goals, 27 points

both simmonds and voracek outscored richards and carter while each being 4 years younger than the guy they were traded for. and on top of them, the flyers also pulled schenn (20) and couturier (19) in the deals. and on top of that, they used one of the draft picks they got in the richards trade to trade for nik grossman. and on top of that, removing carter and richards allowed claude giroux to become one of the best players in the sport.


i cannot imagine any way that those two trades could possibly have turned out better.
   1614. Shredder Posted: April 24, 2012 at 05:20 PM (#4115084)
I think the Richards trade turned out fine for both teams. As a Kings fan, I'm certainly not disappointed with it. He missed 8 games due to injury, and probably still wasn't completely healthy for his first 10-12 games back. And he got dropped into a far more defensive system than he was part of in Philly, so just a straight comparison of numbers isn't completely fair, but if I were a Flyers fan, I'd probably be just as happy.

FWIW, there have been absolutely NO reports of the clubhouse issues in L.A. that he and Carter were blamed for in Philadelphia.
   1615. Joe Bivens, Minor Genius Posted: April 24, 2012 at 06:58 PM (#4115146)
.Of course the downside to Holmgren's moves is that they're stuck with Bryz for 9 years (he's 31).

And that he's not good.
   1616. DA Baracus Posted: April 24, 2012 at 07:50 PM (#4115179)
FWIW, there have been absolutely NO reports of the clubhouse issues in L.A. that he and Carter were blamed for in Philadelphia.


Because those issues were horseshit stories by hack writers in Philly.

Yes, I'm still pissed that Snider blew his lid and had Richards and Carter (though not as much) dealt and gave Bryz that stupid contract. The returns on the trades have been fantastic, but that doesn't mean the reasons for the trade are any less dumb.
   1617. baudib Posted: April 25, 2012 at 12:39 AM (#4115492)
I wouldn't trade Schenn or Couturier for both of them back. Voracek and Simmonds were nice throw-ins.


   1618. zack Posted: April 25, 2012 at 09:34 AM (#4115560)
   1619. steagles Posted: April 26, 2012 at 12:29 AM (#4116579)
Because those issues were horseshit stories by hack writers in Philly.

Yes, I'm still pissed that Snider blew his lid and had Richards and Carter (though not as much) dealt and gave Bryz that stupid contract. The returns on the trades have been fantastic, but that doesn't mean the reasons for the trade are any less dumb.
i think there was obvious tension between richards and ownership and management and the coaching staff and guys like timonen and pronger. i think he shrank from his responsibilities on and off the ice, and i think the situation here was no longer tenable for him. whatever you think of the hacks on the flyers beat, they were not the ones who forced his exit.


i don't think he's a terrible person. i don't bear any ill-will towards him. i just think the organization was right to go in a different direction.


also, when the team assigns the "C" to someone this offseason, i hope they give strong consideration to danny briere. i know there's gonna be a rush to anoint claude giroux the next captain, but there's something about briere that i think makes the players around him better. he mentored claude giroux when giroux was a rookie. he mentored sean couturier this year. he was on a line with matt read and wayne simmonds most of this year, and both players had outstanding seasons. they put brayden schenn on his wing towards the end of the season, and schenn wound up breaking out with a 6 point series against pittsburgh in the first round of the playoffs.

i love claude giroux, but i think briere has done so much for this team in the last couple of seasons, and i'd be ecstatic to see him rewarded for it.
   1620. DA Baracus Posted: April 26, 2012 at 12:43 AM (#4116588)
i think there was obvious tension between richards and ownership and management and the coaching staff and guys like timonen and pronger. i think he shrank from his responsibilities on and off the ice, and i think the situation here was no longer tenable for him.


Ownership yes, management no. Holmgren had just given Richards and Carter massive contracts. Holmgren looked like someone shot his puppy when he was talking to the media about the trades. And BS he shrank from his responsibilities, he just never was a vocal guy and Pronger didn't like him.

No, that's all blown out of proportion. It's one of those things where sometimes the media picks up some stuff and they make a big deal out of it. You know what happened - sometimes we're not all best friends in the locker room. Every team is like that. When you get an older generation, like me, Chris Pronger, even Odie (Sean O'Donnell) coming in this year, you don't agree with everything the young guys are doing today. It's the same thing in the Kings locker room and it's the same thing in Washington's locker room. It just happened that it got blown out of proportion. It was nothing that big. Everybody got along pretty well as a team (in Philly). It's just that Richie doesn't say much, but what can you say? He's just the kind of guy that when the puck drops, he'll play for his team. But, he won't come up and say anything to the media. You just can't expect him to be in front of the TV all the time. He's pretty quite and reserved. Sometimes that rubbed the media a little bit of the wrong way. When they see the opportunity to put him down a little bit, they do so. - Ian Laperriere.

whatever you think of the hacks on the flyers beat, they were not the ones who forced his exit.


No, but that's where the reports came from. And I really hope you're not defending the Flyers beat writers.

i hope they give strong consideration to danny briere.


Briere stunk this year. Captaincy shouldn't go hand in hand with performance, but when you have the season he did you shouldn't be rewarded with it. Give it to Timmonen, who's been an absolute beast for this organization.
   1621. JustDan Posted: April 26, 2012 at 09:43 AM (#4116686)
So, in case you all missed it the Caps eliminated the Bruins last night. Pretty fantastic series.. all games decided by one goal, and only once did a team have a 2 goal lead and that lasted less than 3 minutes. Plus, 6 of the 7 games were decided in the last 2 minutes or overtime.

But, what I want to know.. was the overtime goal by Ward actually goalie interference by Knuble?

youtube link
   1622. Cabbage Posted: April 26, 2012 at 10:47 AM (#4116736)
i know there's gonna be a rush to anoint claude giroux the next captain, but there's something about briere that i think makes the players around him better.

Yeah, he looks like Paul McCartney, who also made everyone around him better.
   1623. steagles Posted: April 26, 2012 at 10:57 AM (#4116744)
Briere stunk this year. Captaincy shouldn't go hand in hand with performance, but when you have the season he did you shouldn't be rewarded with it. Give it to Timmonen, who's been an absolute beast for this organization.
he didn't have that bad of a year. he didn't put up 70 points again, but he did get a solid 49.

i'd have little problem with timonen as the next captain, but i'm not sure he has enough left in the tank to really sink his teeth into the role.
   1624. Shredder Posted: April 26, 2012 at 10:59 AM (#4116747)
It's the same thing in the Kings locker room and it's the same thing in Washington's locker room.
Interesting quote from Lappy, who is still a huge favorite among a lot of Kings fans. And interesting to read it in the wake of a really good piece about Dustin Brown (whose captaincy has been criticized by a lot of fans). I assume Laperriere was referring to the locker room in general, but his career in LA overlapped for a season or two with Dustin Brown and Sean Avery, who by all accounts was openly hated by a lot of teammates in LA. This is a guy who teased Brown, a pretty shy kid, about his lisp and his girlfriend (now wife). Laperriere was there to witness first hand what a grade A dick Sean Avery was (and presumably still is).

This excerpt quotes Laperriere:
Brown lisps. He has lisped for as long as he can remember, although the speech therapy he went through as a fifth-grader helped him learn to control it. (The lisp tends to return when he is engaged in casual conversation or after, say, a puck has given him a fat lip.) But in dressing rooms where razzing is the lingua franca, the lisp made him an easy target early in his career. Sean Avery, an occasional linemate of Brown's from 2003 to '07, would insert the needle. "This was bullying, like you might see in high school," says Ian Laperrière, the former Kings forward who now mentors young players in the Flyers organization.

The analogy is apt; Brown was still a teenager at the time. According to L.A. players and coaches from that era, Brown's lisp was not Avery's primary target. Avery also zeroed in on Brown's girlfriend—now his wife—a slender, fresh-faced girl-next-door-type from their hometown of Ithaca, N.Y. Apparently Avery didn't think she was glamorous enough to be the girlfriend of a hockey player in Hollywood. "I am not a trophy wife," says Nicole Brown, who has been with her husband for almost a dozen years (and married to him for five). "By any means."

Shy by disposition, Dustin coped by withdrawing. Nicole says he was the last one to arrive at the rink every day and the first one to leave. He disputes that the teasing bothered him—"I have a thick skin, and that was just Aves being Aves," Brown says—but later adds, "Maybe it affected me in ways that I didn't realize." He scored all of 31 goals his first two full seasons while facing the equivalent of being shaken down daily for his lunch money.

Lombardi traded Avery to the Rangers in February 2007. The next season Brown scored 33, a breakout that might have occurred under any circumstances but coincided nicely with dressing-room changes in Los Angeles. Says Blake, "He really did start to blossom once the stuff in the room dissipated."
   1625. Gaelan Posted: April 26, 2012 at 12:05 PM (#4116808)
he didn't have that bad of a year. he didn't put up 70 points again, but he did get a solid 49.


At even strength Briere was one of the worst players on the Flyers during the regular season. He put up those points with favourable zone starts, with above average teammates, against below average opposition. He was, however, a real asset on the powerplay.

I created a +/- system that takes into account pts, shots for and against, zone start, quality of competition, quality of teammates, powerplay and shorthanded performance. It's only as good as the underlying data but I think it is roughly accurate. In any case the only regular Flyers who were worse than Briere on a per game basis were Schenn and Rinaldo.

Oh, and Sean Couturier is a great player. Considering he was touted as a potential #1 pick before his draft season that was an incredible steal of a draft pick. Ottawa, Winnipeg, the Islanders are all going to be kicking themselves for years.
   1626. DA Baracus Posted: April 26, 2012 at 12:29 PM (#4116833)
he didn't have that bad of a year. he didn't put up 70 points again, but he did get a solid 49.


When you are an offensive player and you are 20 points off what is expected of you, when you have your worst points per game rate in ten years... yes, you had a bad year. There is no sugar coating his season.

Oh, and Sean Couturier is a great player.


I'm really excited about his future. He already matches up against Malkin as well as anyone can and he's only 19. And his offense was really held down by the lack of talent on his wings the first half or so of the season. With more ice time and better linemates all year, he should have a solid offensive season too.

   1627. steagles Posted: April 26, 2012 at 01:11 PM (#4116861)
When you are an offensive player and you are 20 points off what is expected of you, when you have your worst points per game rate in ten years... yes, you had a bad year. There is no sugar coating his season.
49 points in 70 games is not a bad year. it may be an off year, but it's more than respectable.


I'm really excited about his future. He already matches up against Malkin as well as anyone can and he's only 19. And his offense was really held down by the lack of talent on his wings the first half or so of the season. With more ice time and better linemates all year, he should have a solid offensive season too.
if the team makes a deep run through the playoffs, i'd like to see what he could do with voracek or van riemsdyk on his wing, just to get a glimpse of what he could do on a scoring line.
   1628. baudib Posted: April 26, 2012 at 03:09 PM (#4116958)
Couturier is too valuable to be put on a scoring line really, but in Lavi's system, everyone is involved in the offense and the Flyers have a boatload of forwards who can do something with the puck (it's kind of shocking really) so he'll get his chances. I still think Schenn has the greater offensive upside, whereas Couturier is obviously going to be a great two-way player. I think his upside is more along the lines of Rod Brind'Amour than Doug Gilmour though.

   1629. DA Baracus Posted: April 26, 2012 at 03:59 PM (#4117008)
49 points in 70 games is not a bad year. it may be an off year, but it's more than respectable.


You have really low standards.

i'd like to see what he could do with voracek or van riemsdyk on his wing


After Talbot and Rinaldo, Voracek is his most common 5 on 5 linemate.
   1630. DA Baracus Posted: April 26, 2012 at 04:02 PM (#4117012)
I still think Schenn has the greater offensive upside, whereas Couturier is obviously going to be a great two-way player. I think his upside is more along the lines of Rod Brind'Amour than Doug Gilmour though.


Agreed. I don't think he'll be a 70 point guy, but 50? Yeah, that's absolutely possible in a couple of years.
   1631. steagles Posted: April 27, 2012 at 02:43 PM (#4117768)
You have really low standards.
and you have no respect for alternative viewpoints. it's really not necessary for you to turn every minor disagreement in this thread into a blood feud.

anyway, the flyers drew the devils in round 2, with home ice advantage. i'd really like to see a sweep here. i know that i should probably have more respect for them, but i really want to see them light up brodeur like they lit up fleury.

this also seems to set the flyers up to run through 3 divisional opponents to get to the stanley cup finals. i'm really pretty okay with that, but i also would have been okay if they had drawn the bruins or rangers in round 2. after the way they beat the penguins in round 1, i just don't think there's a team they couldn't beat.
   1632. DA Baracus Posted: April 28, 2012 at 12:38 PM (#4118472)
and you have no respect for alternative viewpoints. it's really not necessary for you to turn every minor disagreement in this thread into a blood feud.


Blood feud? Yup, you have really low standards, and apparently thin skin. You said a guy who had his worst season in ten years had a "solid" season. Don't be mad at me if you can't accept criticism of that.

this also seems to set the flyers up to run through 3 divisional opponents to get to the stanley cup finals. i'm really pretty okay with that, but i also would have been okay if they had drawn the bruins or rangers in round 2. after the way they beat the penguins in round 1, i just don't think there's a team they couldn't beat.


The Rangers, who have owned them all season long. So glad they don't have to face them this round. They beat the Penguins the same way they did during the regular season (where they also went 4-2 with an OT win), I don't see what's dramatically changed for the better now that the playoffs have arrived.
   1633. steagles Posted: April 29, 2012 at 06:21 PM (#4119313)
daniel ####### briere.
   1634. baudib Posted: April 29, 2012 at 06:34 PM (#4119325)
Just awesome to have a guy like Briere who you know will put the puck in the net in the playoffs.

Overall, pretty decent game for the Flyers. They started out terribly, looked totally out of it. Devils were beating them to pucks and were well-positioned in the first period. Then the Flyers just steamrolled them. When they get going, the Flyers just roll their lines and come in waves and can really dominate the puck for long periods of time. Not fantastic goaltending by either side but Brodeur kept the Devils in it and Bryz gave up a really brutal goal against Sykora.

With all the kids on the team, no one talks about Eric Wellwood but he makes things happen. Also, Jakub Voracek had an amazing outlet pass for the Flyers' first goal.

What's left to say about Giroux really? He looked like Brett Freakin' Hull on that slapshot he ripped into the upper-corner.

   1635. IronChef Chris Wok Posted: April 29, 2012 at 07:08 PM (#4119353)
FWIWthere have been absolutely NO reports of the clubhouse issues in L.Athat he and Carter were blamed for in Philadelphia


because Coke is acceptable social norm in morally-bankrupt California
   1636. steagles Posted: April 29, 2012 at 07:26 PM (#4119365)
james van riemsdyk was outstanding as well. he needs to work on finishing his rushes, but there was nothing the devils could do when he got going towards the net. just complete beast mode.

that line with him, briere and voracek could really be something special.
   1637. baudib Posted: April 30, 2012 at 12:29 AM (#4119523)
That line is essentially built with the same blueprint as the Giroux line: Power forward, finesse center, skilled Czech.
   1638. baudib Posted: April 30, 2012 at 12:37 AM (#4119524)
oops i posted in wrong thread.
   1639. steagles Posted: April 30, 2012 at 02:27 PM (#4119928)
@NHLAdamK: Amazing stat: Since leaving Buffalo, Danny Briere has 36 playoff goals; Sabres as a team have 33. #MrPlayoffs

   1640. Shredder Posted: May 01, 2012 at 12:34 AM (#4120440)
Anze Kopitar just scored the best goal of the playoffs so far. Kings are +2 against St.Louis despite not having a PP goal. Four shorthanders in the playoffs in 7 games.
   1641. baudib Posted: May 01, 2012 at 02:06 AM (#4120461)
Kings look great. If you're a Flyers fan looking for storylines, either Flyers-Kings or Flyers-Blues will be great.

I work with a Devils fan who missed most of the game. I told him the Devils totally dominated the first, but the Flyers got rolling and it doesn't appear that the Devils' D can handle the Flyers' speed. The depth on this team in its forwards is really stupendous, especially with JVR back and guys like Wellwood flying around the ice.

There are whispers on Devils chats that Kovalchuk may be hurting, which would explain his no-show in Game 1.
   1642. Shredder Posted: May 01, 2012 at 09:45 AM (#4120538)
Kings are +2 against St.Louis despite not having a PP goal.
That should read "+2 against St. Louis on special teams"...
   1643. zack Posted: May 01, 2012 at 09:55 AM (#4120544)
The NBC B-team that had Kings/Blues are apparently a bunch of meatheads. They spent most of the third period lauding the Blues "toughness" and "fight back", when in reality it was just a bunch of petualant message-sending, because they didn't show up for the first two periods. I hate that ####.

I'd also be enjoying the Blues getting owned a lot more if King hadn't tried to kill Pietrangelo. It takes a lot of the joy out of winning when your game plan is to maim the other team's best player.
   1644. zack Posted: May 01, 2012 at 10:23 AM (#4120562)
[Ovechkin] added, "Sometimes you just have to put eye in your butt and, you know, play for everybody."


This is the second greatest locker room quote of all time, right behind Ichiro's "zeal of a challenger" line.
   1645. Esmailyn Gonzalez Sr. Posted: May 01, 2012 at 10:40 AM (#4120578)
This is the second greatest locker room quote of all time, right behind Ichiro's "zeal of a challenger" line.

"When you get that nice celebration coming into the dugout and you’re getting your ass hammered by guys — there’s no better feeling than to have that done." Matt Stairs
   1646. Shredder Posted: May 01, 2012 at 10:46 AM (#4120581)
I'd also be enjoying the Blues getting owned a lot more if King hadn't tried to kill Pietrangelo.
He didn't. He got exactly what that hit deserved, which is a two minute penalty. One of the only benefits of the HFBoards is that it's typically a place where, if you cut out the homerism on both sides, you can get a sense of what fans who don't have a dog in the fight are thinking. A large majority of the posts about that hit agreed with the NHL's findings, that the call on the ice was appropriate. I'm shocked he didn't get suspended because he's a rookie 3rd/4th liner (though he played on the 2nd much of the season), and Pietrangelo is a top tier defenseman. But if the Blues want to keep making themselves the victims, it's fine by me.

Anyway, Kings fans remember 1998. Karma has a long memory.
   1647. steagles Posted: May 01, 2012 at 11:27 AM (#4120637)
Kings look great. If you're a Flyers fan looking for storylines, either Flyers-Kings or Flyers-Blues will be great.
i'm kind of hoping that they meet in the finals, but can you imagine what would happen in this town if the flyers lost to carter and richards in the stanley cup finals? i know they're only the 5th and 6th best players on the kings, but the visuals of them lifting the cup in front of our team in a potential game 7 in philadelphia would just be awful.


i really hope this winds up being the matchup, though. win or lose, that series would be tremendous.

   1648. DA Baracus Posted: May 01, 2012 at 11:47 AM (#4120667)
Kings look great. If you're a Flyers fan looking for storylines, either Flyers-Kings or Flyers-Blues will be great.


I would really not enjoy Richards, Carter and Williams against the Flyers in the Finals. I would really not enjoy the Kings in the Finals period though.

The NBC B-team that had Kings/Blues are apparently a bunch of meatheads.


The Caps/Rags game wasn't any better. The color guy added no value whatsoever. He just repeated what was being replayed with no actual insight or analysis.
   1649. Shredder Posted: May 01, 2012 at 12:13 PM (#4120707)
I would really not enjoy Richards, Carter and Williams against the Flyers in the Finals.
Gagne may be back by then as well. :) And maybe they'd bring Hextall down to the ice for the post-game ceremony.
The NBC B-team that had Kings/Blues are apparently a bunch of meatheads.
I normally don't mind Strader and Engblom, but neither of them were good last night. Everything that went right for the Kings was either the result of a poor play by the Blues or a lucky bounce. The team was given almost no credit for execution. These guys are getting lucky on the PK. They were one of the best PK teams in the league.

But Hayward is on a whole 'nother level of suck. He's just a bad commentator to begin with. He's probably worse in the booth than he was on the ice, if that's possible. And he HATES the Kings, and especially Dustin Brown. If you think he was a homer for the Blues last night, you should hear him do a Kings/Ducks game. He and Ahlers almost make Hawk Harrelson sound impartial. The only good thing about having him between the glass is the potential that he'll get brained on a puck out of play.
   1650. DA Baracus Posted: May 01, 2012 at 12:39 PM (#4120727)
Gagne may be back by then as well. :) And maybe they'd bring Hextall down to the ice for the post-game ceremony.


FFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUU
   1651. baudib Posted: May 01, 2012 at 03:46 PM (#4120966)
If Emrick isn't doing the game it's probably better to turn the sound off.

I would really not enjoy Richards, Carter and Williams against the Flyers in the Finals.


I think it'd be worse to see Hitchcock win it.
   1652. DA Baracus Posted: May 01, 2012 at 03:53 PM (#4120976)
I think it'd be worse to see Hitchcock win it.


I think it would be worse to see John Stevens win it.
   1653. baudib Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:25 PM (#4121009)
Hmmm probably right. But I don't really hold anything against Carter or Richards.

Kovalchuk out with a back injury, it was pretty obvious he wasn't himself in Game 1. Huge break.
   1654. zack Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:26 PM (#4121010)
Is Kopitar the best NHL player ever to come out of a hockey minnow country?

By that I mean, is he the best player to be be born in, only eligible for, and to reside in (at least up to high school-ish) a country other than Canada/US/Russia/Sweden/Finland/CZR/Slovakia? So excluding guys who moved to Canada when they were two, played for the Canadian national team, etc.

I think Vanek is the closest competition and I'd much rather have Kopitar. Was Ken Hodge actually English?
   1655. DA Baracus Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:28 PM (#4121014)
But I don't really hold anything against Carter or Richards.


I don't hold anything against them either. I hated those trades, still do. That's why I would not enjoy facing them in the Finals--every time they scored, killed a penalty, whatever, it would be a reminder of what was and could have been. Or to put it another way, if they went to the Finals and lost to the Kings, that would sting more than losing to any other team.
   1656. Random Transaction Generator Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:35 PM (#4121021)
Is Kopitar the best NHL player ever to come out of a hockey minnow country?

Does Taiwan count? :)





   1657. Random Transaction Generator Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:36 PM (#4121022)
   1658. DA Baracus Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:38 PM (#4121023)
Is Kopitar the best NHL player ever to come out of a hockey minnow country?

By that I mean, is he the best player to be be born in, only eligible for, and to reside in (at least up to high school-ish) a country other than Canada/US/Russia/Sweden/Finland/CZR/Slovakia?


Well he moved to Sweden when he was 17, but yeah, he might be. Everyone else better than him not from those countries moved to one of those countries as a small child.

Does Taiwan count? :)


He didn't grow up there though, which was zack's question. If you go only by birthplace Kopitar's not even the best Slovenian.
   1659. zack Posted: May 01, 2012 at 04:57 PM (#4121043)
Radulov and A.Kostitsyn have been suspended by the Predators for Game 3 for violating team rules.

I'm going to speculate and say that alcohol may be involved.


Wow. The NHL is really trying to save the Coyotes, huh.

Now that I think about it, I kind of want the Coyotes to win and then immediately move to Quebec, just for the cosmic symmetry with the Avalanche.
   1660. DA Baracus Posted: May 01, 2012 at 05:04 PM (#4121053)
   1661. Shredder Posted: May 01, 2012 at 05:32 PM (#4121077)
Well he moved to Sweden when he was 17, but yeah, he might be. Everyone else better than him not from those countries moved to one of those countries as a small child.
Well, it was 16 and he only moved to Sweden to play in the Elite League.
If you go only by birthplace Kopitar's not even the best Slovenian.
Who is? Hockey reference only lists five players born in the former Yugoslavia (doesn't separate Slovenia), and the others are Serbian (2), Croatian, and Jan Mursk, who is a long way from Kopitar at this point.
   1662. steagles Posted: May 01, 2012 at 10:13 PM (#4121300)
that was an embarrassing performance. there was not a single player on the ice that had a good game, and i am just stunned at how badly they were outplayed for the bulk of that game.
   1663. baudib Posted: May 01, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4121308)
Bryzgalov played great for 2 1/2 periods. That's about it.

Couldn't clear the zone, kept turning it over, couldn't sustain any offense. Terrible.

Game was very reminiscent of 1990s Devils-Flyers, which didn't end well for the Flyers.
   1664. baudib Posted: May 03, 2012 at 02:32 AM (#4122329)
BroadStreetHockey has a great post detailing how Briere was standing around for 5 seconds in the slot, standing still, as the tying goal was scored on Tuesday.
Don't just stand there, Danny
   1665. steagles Posted: May 03, 2012 at 08:27 PM (#4123019)
i love the way that the devils are playing, but it's frustrating as all hell to watch it while being a fan of the opposing team.
   1666. DA Baracus Posted: May 03, 2012 at 08:51 PM (#4123041)
Who is? Hockey reference only lists five players born in the former Yugoslavia (doesn't separate Slovenia), and the others are Serbian (2), Croatian, and Jan Mursk, who is a long way from Kopitar at this point.


Whoops, sorry, dyslexic moment there. I misread Slovakia. Nothing to see here, move along...
   1667. Shredder Posted: May 04, 2012 at 01:36 AM (#4123205)
Whoops, sorry, dyslexic moment there. I misread Slovakia. Nothing to see here, move along...
no argument here, then. Everyone knows that Peter Stastny is the greatest Slovakian, and in my opinion the greatest Eastern European in the history of the NHL.

And sorry, St. Louis. You're just not good enough.
   1668. baudib Posted: May 04, 2012 at 02:14 AM (#4123213)
I didn't get to watch much of the game. Couturier hurt? Huge blow.
   1669. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: May 05, 2012 at 10:02 PM (#4124448)

USA beat Canada 5-4 at the World Hockey Championships today. Hell yeah!


And they looked good too! They controlled possession for most of the game and had the better scoring chances. Jack Johnson is probably not a very good NHL d-man, but I love watching him play for the US.
   1670. baudib Posted: May 06, 2012 at 09:45 PM (#4125062)
Flyers look absolutely horrible against the Devils 5-on-5. Giroux did a Scott Stevens on Zubrus at the end of the second.
   1671. DA Baracus Posted: May 06, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4125086)
The only thing more pathetic than the Flyers performance this series is the song selections at the Prudential Center.
   1672. baudib Posted: May 06, 2012 at 10:15 PM (#4125088)
Down 3-1, Giroux might get a suspension for Game 5. Not looking good.Of course if Shanahan stays consistent with his inconsistency, Giroux won't get anything.
   1673. DA Baracus Posted: May 06, 2012 at 10:28 PM (#4125094)
Zubrus returned, so no injury + star player = no suspension under Shanahan.
   1674. Ravecc Posted: May 07, 2012 at 12:03 PM (#4125346)
So, who are those guys in red and what have they done to the Devils?

It’s amazing to me how badly Lavy is being outcoached by DeBoer. 2 days off and he still has no idea how to deal with the swarm?
   1675. Yardape Posted: May 07, 2012 at 01:03 PM (#4125402)
Everyone knows that Peter Stastny is the greatest Slovakian, and in my opinion the greatest Eastern European in the history of the NHL.


Greatest European skater? Or do you consider the Czech Republic central Europe?
   1676. steagles Posted: May 07, 2012 at 01:12 PM (#4125411)
Giroux did a Scott Stevens on Zubrus at the end of the second.


two things,

1, zubrus knew giroux was there. one of the hallmarks of those stevens checks (and the torres hit on hossa,a nd the vitale hit on briere, and the neal runs at couturier and giroux) was one player taking a run at another whose head was down and who had no idea that contact was coming. i don't think that applies to the giroux hit

and 2, giroux was skating parallel to zubrus at the time of the hit. the other hallmark of the above hits was that the offender went after a player whose momentum was going in the opposite way. those collisions carry much, much more force than what giroux did to zubrus.


and 3, i could be mistaken, but i believe that zubrus was grinning ear to ear when he got up off the ice after the hit and skated back to the bench. the hit occurred with 4 seconds left in the 2nd period, so it's not like he came right back onto the ice, but he did take his next shift just 2 minutes into the 3rd period. he didn't miss a single second of gametime.


anyway, giroux did target the head, but the potential to injure was, i think, virtually non-existent.
   1677. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: May 07, 2012 at 01:19 PM (#4125421)
By that I mean, is he the best player to be be born in, only eligible for, and to reside in (at least up to high school-ish) a country other than Canada/US/Russia/Sweden/Finland/CZR/Slovakia? So excluding guys who moved to Canada when they were two, played for the Canadian national team, etc.


Poland's Mariusz Czerkawski spent 12 years in the NHL, scoring 215 goals in 745 games, including two 30+ goal seasons.

Latvia's Arturs Irbe had a pretty long NHL career, though it wasn't necessarily a great career (save percentage hovering around .900)
   1678. zack Posted: May 07, 2012 at 02:33 PM (#4125508)
The US just scored on a 5-3 to catch up with Slovakia, 3-2 at the end of the 2nd.

How the hell is Satan only 37? And the Blackhawks should bring Lil' Hossa over.
   1679. The Kentucky Gentleman, Mark Edward Posted: May 07, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4125563)
How the hell is Satan only 37? And the Blackhawks should bring Lil' Hossa over.


I was blown away when I saw Peter Nedved's name of the Czech Republic's roster.

There's a whole bunch of former Hawks/Hawk prospects at the WHCs this year. It's a nice trip down memory lane:
- Cristobal Huet
- Milan Bartovic
- Yorick Treille
- Lasse Kukkonen
- Petri Kontiola
- Michal Handzus
- Tomas Kopecky
   1680. DA Baracus Posted: May 07, 2012 at 03:54 PM (#4125580)
Giroux suspended, which is totally inconsistent with the punishments Shanahan has handed down.

But after the Torres hit they had to really crack down/overreact on headshots.
   1681. I am going to be Frank Posted: May 07, 2012 at 04:29 PM (#4125609)
Shanahan was a Devil - and when he left the Devils got Stevens as compensation!
   1682. baudib Posted: May 07, 2012 at 04:32 PM (#4125613)
I'm surprised Giroux is suspended. If you go by Shanahan's justifications in other incidents, he always noted past history as well as extent of injury. Since Zubrus came back immediately and Giroux's record is pristine, it makes no sense. But whatever, Flyers don't deserve to win this series barring a complete turnaround and that doesn't seem too likely.

STEAGLES, I don't disagree with anything you said too much but in general, I think we should refer to nuclear elbows/shoulders to the head as Scott Stevensing.
   1683. baudib Posted: May 07, 2012 at 04:41 PM (#4125624)
Also another annoying part of the Giroux injury is that the knucklehead contingent among Flyer fans will use this as proof that the NHL has it in for them.

   1684. baudib Posted: May 08, 2012 at 01:02 AM (#4126124)
Anyone care to explain the Devils' play this series? This is a team that struggled mightily against an inferior Panthers team while the Flyers dispatched a talented Penguins team.

I'm not Barry Melrose but the Flyers are having problems in all three zones and it speaks to the lack of composure, patience and unwillingness to fight through and win the battles along the boards:

1. The Flyers are having an awful time on any kind of breakout, which appears to be mostly the result of defensemen panicking. Maybe it's because they're being manhandled by the Devils' forecheck, but the crisp outlet passes aren't there. It's hard to see on TV sometimes but I suspect that the forwards not being in position to take an outlet pass has something to do with this, as we're seeing a lot of D-to-D passes that end up with a defenseman curling back or panicking and sending an ill-advised pass into the neutral zone.

2. This Devils team is way more aggressive than its successful predecessors, being a team that lives on its forecheck. But they still play positionally sound hockey and don't give an inch of space in the neutral zone. As a result the Flyers are not gaining the offensive zone with any speed.

3. Frustrated by their inability to win battles in deep, the Flyers are getting way too fancy. There was a play in Game 4 where Danny Briere (who's had an awful series defensively) got about 3 feet past the blue line and made an ill-advised drop pass to...no one. That predictably led to a rush the other way.

4. Devils' D are swallowing up Flyers forwards and eliminating any threats immediately, and clearing the puck much more efficiently than the Flyers.

5. This is about as fast a Flyers team as I have ever seen, but the Devils are getting to every loose puck. Is it effort? Smarts? Superior skill? I can't explain it.
   1685. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: May 08, 2012 at 01:21 AM (#4126128)
With the Suns failing to make the playoffs and the D'backs limping along, the Coyotes finally have the floor to themselves while making a run that could establish local relevancy.

Also, beat LA. We've got that chant down cold.
   1686. Langer Monk Posted: May 08, 2012 at 08:50 AM (#4126180)
Anyone care to explain the Devils' play this series? This is a team that struggled mightily against an inferior Panthers team while the Flyers dispatched a talented Penguins team.


I've got to go to work, but here's my short answer: Discipline and consistent effort.

Devils did struggle against the Panthers, but only on the PK. 5-on-5 they were superior (although not as striking as in this series). The Devils aren't engaging in after the whistle type stuff. The Devils are faster and bigger than most people realize. They are also one of the best teams in the league on the cycle.

There was a week in March where the Devils beat the Rangers 4-1, Isles 5-1, Isles 2-1, and Flyers 4-1 (Tuesday thru Sunday). They played like this. They haven't been able to match that until this series. It took some time for them to understand this is what DeBoer wants the team to play like. They're healthy and executing.
   1687. Langer Monk Posted: May 08, 2012 at 09:32 AM (#4126190)
One other thing - the Devils have completely taken on the persona of Parise - relentess, strong, hardnosed (add-in whatever other go-to phrases). There have been a few stories of their cohesiveness in the locker room, and I think it's spilling over on to the ice.

One other other thing - After last season, and after finally getting out of round 1, they seem to be playing almost without the burden of pressure. It's unmeasurable, to be sure, but they talk about it, and it looks like it.

One other other other thing - This is largely the team that nearly won 30 games in the 2nd half of last season after the disastrous 1st half. Add-in a couple talented rookies, and a healthy Parise. Oh, and that Zidlicky guy, he's playing pretty well.
   1688. Hexx Posted: May 08, 2012 at 10:17 AM (#4126233)
One other thing - the Devils have completely taken on the persona of Parise - relentess, strong, hardnosed (add-in whatever other go-to phrases). There have been a few stories of their cohesiveness in the locker room, and I think it's spilling over on to the ice.


Here's hoping Zach's lurking and this makes him decide to stay.
   1689. Langer Monk Posted: May 08, 2012 at 10:30 AM (#4126245)
Here's hoping Zach's lurking and this makes him decide to stay.


I think he's got better examples in a long-term commitment that Brodeur or Elias can give him; but sure.

If he's a Devil for the next 8-10 years, the franchise will be his. Kovy may be the 'star' but Parise's this club's engine.
   1690. zack Posted: May 08, 2012 at 10:36 AM (#4126254)
By my accounting, and if the Rangers and Devils hold on, the heavier team (weighted average skater weight, we don't care how fat Broudeur has gotten) is 7-3-2 in these playoffs. Ties are where the teams were essentially equal weight, the upsets are the Rangers twice and Blues over Sharks.

Not a good sign.
   1691. baudib Posted: May 08, 2012 at 10:55 AM (#4126264)
Is there some exotic thing like the Devils having right-handed shots that mess up the Flyers' dump-ins?
   1692. Random Transaction Generator Posted: May 08, 2012 at 11:53 AM (#4126337)
Giroux let his emotions get the best of him, and it cost him.

As Shanahan pointed out, he was obvious upset by the non-call in the offensive end, and just seemed to looking to dish out punishment as a release for his pent-up anger.

I used to see this happen all the time when I played/reffed soccer. A player would be wronged, jump up mad at the ref for not calling anything, and then commit a grievous foul on the next poor opponent that got near him (with or without the ball).

It was a late hit (how many strides after releasing the puck did Zubrus take, 2? 3?), it was targeted for the head (he could have just crushed him against the glass with his shoulder, but deliberately aimed his shoulder at Zubrus' chin), and it was obvious from the video that it was a "retaliation" (for the non-call) and not part of the play.

   1693. Shredder Posted: May 08, 2012 at 11:55 AM (#4126338)
We've got that chant down cold.
We? So you were one of the three people that actually went to a Coyotes game this year?
   1694. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: May 08, 2012 at 06:14 PM (#4126777)
We? So you were one of the three people that actually went to a Coyotes game this year?
Plenty of practice from Suns-Lakers and D'backs-Dodgers.
   1695. Langer Monk Posted: May 08, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4126954)
That was incredibly satisfying.
   1696. steagles Posted: May 09, 2012 at 12:35 AM (#4127115)
that was just such a clinical dissection of the flyers this series that i can't even bear any ill-will towards the devils. it wasn't one player that won the series for them. it wasn't one scoring line that won the series for them. everyone in their lineup outplayed every single skater in the flyers lineup. from the 1st line to the 4th, the devils completely outclassed the flyers, and their play in general was almost flawless.


   1697. baudib Posted: May 09, 2012 at 12:55 AM (#4127122)
Series was very reminiscent of 1995, when the Flyers came off a stunning sweep of the defending champs and ran into a buzzsaw in ?New Jersey. The Devils just seemed to perfect their style and peak in the playoffs and dominate in both years. Kudos to them.

Can't look at this as a down year as the Flyers were essentially rebuilding. The Flyers are really young and deep and talented and should get better in the years to come.

Disappointing as this seems like a lost opportunity. Not that the Rangers would have been an easy series, but the Western Conference looks softer than its been in a while. Disappointing that Jagr won't win a Cup in Orange and Black. Jagr was my favorite non-Flyer of that great group of young stars that came up around 1990 that included Eric Lindros as well as the greatest group of American skaters .
   1698. baudib Posted: May 09, 2012 at 03:30 AM (#4127144)
Apparently Rick Tocchet mentioned that the Devils kept the Flyers on their backhand. I looked at the Flyers roster and this stood out instantly:

D Coburn L
D Grossmann L
D Carle L
D Timonen L
D Gustafsson L
D Lilja L
D Meszaros L

In addition, Voracek and Jagr are RWs who shoot L. Two of the Flyers' best defensive forwards, Couturier and Talbot, are L. So if the Devils employ a classic Left-Wing Lock (I'm not actually sharp enough to figure this out unless I'm looking for it), they will generally be forechecking against 2 Flyers on their backhand along the left-hand boards. Two of the Devils' best players are Elias and Parise, who are left-handed shooters playing left wing.

Pronger, incidentally, is a L. It might help if the Flyers add a couple of R shots to their D.
   1699. DA Baracus Posted: May 09, 2012 at 09:46 AM (#4127195)
Most players shoot left, but the Flyers in particular are left handed heavy. It's one reason they traded for Kubina.
   1700. baudib Posted: May 09, 2012 at 11:39 AM (#4127325)
So what should the Flyers do in the offseason? Ryan Suter?
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