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09/10 Deffense


Mitchie_mtl

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So far this season this has been our weakest point. The deffense are letting way to much go.

If you watch goals scored on the habs, 90% of the time its a lack of effort from the deffense.

They will be close to the player but watch them skate by

It's so easy to put our D on trial when the team is lacking so many other elements to overlook or overshadow defensive postures. When a team scores less than 2 goals (11) in the majority of games played this year - you're either looking at a 1 goal scored against result or shutout. This is very hard to digest. Meaning - make 1 or 2 D mistakes resulting in a goal and the D is put under a magnifying glass, whereas if the team in front scored a couple more goals and the win is secured - these mistakes are rarely brought out. Do we have a D that is the talk of the league - NO! But is this the major contributing factor to the state of our team - NO!!

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I pretty much agree with the post above. In addition to that I really don't see a "lack of effort". I see guys on the ice trying to do what they can to help the cause. But with half of the D corps missing what is it do you expect? Have they made mistakes - sure they have but the "lack of effort" statement I have a problem with. I can't say I see one "slacker" on the D corps at the moment. Maybe there's guys trying to "pace" themselves because it's a beleaguered and overworked group. Not one is filling the role that they normally would be if everyone is healthy.

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In the games I have seen.....Our forwards are A) leaving the zone too early,forcing the D to stretch out and telegraph their passes or B) either way too low in the zone or not on the boards to recieve the clearing pass. I may be crazy but when I watch other teams, they never seem to have the same difficulties getting the puck out and creating offence on the rush.

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In the games I have seen.....Our forwards are A) leaving the zone too early,forcing the D to stretch out and telegraph their passes or B) either way too low in the zone or not on the boards to recieve the clearing pass. I may be crazy but when I watch other teams, they never seem to have the same difficulties getting the puck out and creating offence on the rush.

Good points that I have also observed too often. And I would add that in the offensive and neutral zones the separation between forwards and "D" is too great which makes it hard to keep pressure on the opposition.

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Here is a positive spin on the D situation. I call it the Markov trickle down effect. ;)

Hammer and Spacek have made an adequate first pairing, but at their age playing crazy minutes is a little too much. Still, either one of them with reduced ice time on special teams, paired with Markov should theoretically make a very good top pairing (when you consider that Komisarek and Markov used to make a prety good one).

If either one can form a solid top pairing with Markov, the other will certainly make an good 2nd pairing D-man.

Josh Georges has shown himself to be one of our most consistent defenseman during Markov's absence, often covering for a Hal Gill who was even slower than natural (we hope) due to a leg injury. Once again there is a concern that a massive amount of minutes can wear down Georges due to his size.

Ryan O'Byrne had a fantastic start to the season, before getting hurt, finally using his size effectively and showing himself to be a better skater than Komi was (IMHO).

I think it's reasonable to expect that at least one of the two, for argument's sake let's say Georges, can be an effective #4 Dman.

That gives us the following top 4:

Markov - Spacek (Hammer)

Georges - Hammer (Spacek)

We then have a choice the best two of the following defensemen for our 3rd pairing. Gill, Mara, Carle, OByrne, (I assume we will ditch Leech and Bergeron, possibly keep Bergeron to use for PP only.)

Carle and OB have both impressed and looked NHL ready, we have hopefully seen the worst Hall Gill has to offer since he was hurt, and Mara in an expanded role due to injuries has delivered enough to make a solid 3rd pairing guy.

Either way I think the top 2 of the group should make an above average 3rd pairing. I'd like to imagine that O'Byrne steals Gill's spot, but I'll try to be realistic.

A potential line-up and sample minutes of playing time on any given night assuming about 15min of special teams:

Markov (27min) - Spacek (23min) 20 min even strength

Georges (20min) - Hammer (23min) 15 min even strenght

Mara (15min) - Gill (12min) 10 min even strenght - other team's 3rd/4th lines only

OB (extra).

Nothing new here, this is the line-up most of us expected to carry us for the majority of the year, but we haven't gotten the chance to see it yet. It looks prety damn good to me right about now. Besides the overall quality improvement, everone is playing minutes they can handle and are in a roll in which they can excel.

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