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2014-2015 Special Teams (PP and PK)


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Will our PP and PK be weaker or stronger this season with the off season tweaks by MB?

No more Gionta, White, Murray, Cube, Briere or Vanek on our special teams. Looks like the kids and young vets will get some shots in the early going, barring any additional major moves by the GM.

Which ones will step up in your opinion??

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We're also missing Gorges from the PK, which will be quite a change. I wonder if this means that Subban will be given more of an opportunity short-handed? The obvious choice would be to have Weaver out on our first unit, but after that I would say that PK's probably the next most logical choice on the right.

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As far as the PP & PK it is really hard for anyone & I mean anyone too actually say one way or the other.

Special chemistry & player communication is a large part of the special teams as they say in football LOL.

As far as talent & skill the Habs possess good talented players that can initiate sharp fast passes & constant movement of the PP in-turn creates a high percentage as far results meaning goals.

I personally feel that the PK should be enphasized as the important mode too eradicate the opponents man advantage.

A team can thrive from a better PK than from a good PP & poor PK the success of both special teams is a very nice balance if you can achieve this goal.

Give me a good PK any day over a good PP but the Habs should be ok in reguards to both teams time will only tell.

As far as what player will step up well I think Bourque can & will bring his good play from last seasons playoffs to the new & up & coming season.Bourque needs too gain his self poise & confidence too a level where he feels he is needed & wanted as member of the Montreal Canadiens.Habs staff have been working on this with Bourque & I feel a sports psychologist would not hurt either in my opinion.

Go Habs Go !!!

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We're also missing Gorges from the PK, which will be quite a change. I wonder if this means that Subban will be given more of an opportunity short-handed? The obvious choice would be to have Weaver out on our first unit, but after that I would say that PK's probably the next most logical choice on the right.

Missed Josh in that group. His absence should be a big hole to fill. On the plus side though,,,,we won't see Murray on the PK and Soupy on the PP. There's a couple openings for Tinordi and Beaulieu to step into. Neither looked any more out of place under similar roles.

Weaver should help fill the gap left behind by Josh as you mentioned. From what i've read, Gilbert should be a good 2nd wave option on our PP along with Beaulieu, so i see improvement there.

Did he also kill penalties in Florida?

As far as up front goes,,,,i don't see any problems other then the loss of Vanek on the PP. We haven't replaced that weapon, so our only hope is that the kids (Eller Chuckie and Gally) have big years in what i suspect will be an increased opportunity for them in that role.

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We're also missing Gorges from the PK, which will be quite a change. I wonder if this means that Subban will be given more of an opportunity short-handed? The obvious choice would be to have Weaver out on our first unit, but after that I would say that PK's probably the next most logical choice on the right.

Hopefully it means more Subban on the PK, Weaver will also no doubt get a healthy dose. Gilbert wasn't much of a fixture on the PK this past, but he has experience there as well if needed.

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  • 2 months later...
Guest habs1952

i would really hope that MT will work to improve our PP this year, and try to change things up from last year. Last year we were up around 23% for half the year for the PP, and then it fell off the rails to down around 17%.

That's what happens when you become predictable which is why we need someone who can plant himself in front of the net.

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Im less worried about the PK right now. Sure we havent had great numbers but there's an adjustment period & we've been giving more time to guys like Malholtra & less to guys like Pleks. Up front we have Malholtra, Moen, Weiss, Prust, Eller, Plekanec, Patches and Bournival - all of whom are very capable PKers. The only question mark is the PK blueline, where Gorges was a staple but I think that forces us to use PK more and as our best all-round dman this is not a bad thing. One of Tinordi or Beaulieu needs to step up but between PK, Markov, Emelin, Weaver and even Gilbert we should be ok on the PK Blueline.

The powerplay, on the other hand, concerns me. Based on the team we have, It shouldn't. We have more talent up front than we've had in years and we have arguably 3-4 potential quarterbacks in Subban, Markov, Gilbert and Bealieu. There are several teams who have barely one. Our biggest problem seems to be a complete lack of focus/plan - and possibly - the inability to drive to the net.

While i think a proper plan (and follow through) will go a long way to getting us back on track, I cant help but wonder if putting someone in front of the net - immediately - wouldnt at least help to kick start the offence and getting some pucks in the net (ie, confidence). The problem is: will anyone in our top 2 PP units go to the net besides Gallagher? And, even if someone like like Patches or Pleks or Galchenyuk did, would it make any sense to send them there? (Patches needs to be in the slot, ready for a fast release, Pleks doesn't play that style of game & may be mostly ineffective, getting thrown around and risking injury while Galchenyuk is much more effective with space to make a pass).

Would it make sense to throw a guy like Bourque, or Eller or even Weise (who has surprisingly decent hands when in tight for a 4th liner) up front for the 2nd unit PP with the sole purpose of 'driving hard to the net' ? Its a double whammy: 1 you screen the goalie but 2 you take at least 1 defensman out of the play. Now you're 4 on 3 with guys like PK and Patches ready to unleash a one-timer.

One thing is for sure, something's got to give. What are we at now, 12 straight regular season games (dating back to last year) without a PP goal?

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I wonder if Therrien has the right assistants to do the job or just too many.... From what I understand the PP is the responsibility of Daniel Lacroix and Clément Jodoin... Daigneault is in charge of the "D" (I'm not sure what input he has with the other two?). Everything is out of sync by the look of it.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I had just commented in the Eller thread that perhaps getting him some PP time might turn around his current offensive funk. Thoughts?

I imagine he could park himself in front of the net pretty decently if given the chance!

I like the idea, but I still don't think that we've ever seen Therrien use anything but a set line on the power play - meaning that the discussion ends up coming back around to line combinations all over again.

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Do we still use the same 5v5 lines on the pp?

cause ya know, it makes sense to do that as opposed to trying something along the lines of

Pac-Galchenyuk-Gallagher

Bourque-Plekanec-Parentau (yes bourque on the PP)

Even eller or DD in bourques spot for all i care. Just enough with the same 5 v5 lines its driving me bonkers. I don't think theres a team in the league that uses that set up.

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Guest habs1952

Do we still use the same 5v5 lines on the pp?

cause ya know, it makes sense to do that as opposed to trying something along the lines of

Pac-Galchenyuk-Gallagher

Bourque-Plekanec-Parentau (yes bourque on the PP)

Even eller or DD in bourques spot for all i care. Just enough with the same 5 v5 lines its driving me bonkers. I don't think theres a team in the league that uses that set up.

I'd love to see Galchenyuk with Patches and Gally on the first unit.

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Something needs to happen soon with our PP. Did Gallant really make that much of a difference? Beginning to think he was some kind of PP guru.

Well our PP was 19th in the league last year so while it was better than this, still wasn't very good. I mean any unit with Markov and Subban running it and competent coaching feels like it should be at lest top half of the league, even top 10 at a minimum,

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Well our PP was 19th in the league last year so while it was better than this, still wasn't very good. I mean any unit with Markov and Subban running it and competent coaching feels like it should be at lest top half of the league, even top 10 at a minimum,

Yeah,i realize he was no God, but if this slump continues, we'll make Gallant look like a candidate for coach of the year.

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Regardless who has been running it, it's not very good. It wasn't great last year, it's not great this year. The D men are very talented, and our PP depth is better this year than it has been lately, when we had the likes of Gorges and Bouillon running around out there. The issue is that other teams have adapted to cover them, and our forwards haven't picked up the slack. So what are some major problems... to me, the biggest thing is that we keep going back to the Desharnais-Pacioretty line as our de facto number one. Whether it's with Vanek, Gallagher, PAP, or so on, this trio hasn't been effective the past two seasons with the man advantage. Desharnais' zone entries are terrible, which is a pre-requisite for setting up the O-zone offence. Pacioretty, as great as he is at finding space and getting his shot off, is not that great at cycling the puck. He's the guy who needs to let other players work the puck while he breaks in behind the D, but it requires two other guys who can make that happen, and sadly, DD is not that guy either. And Gallagher, for all his heart, is not the world's most effective screen. On the 2nd unit, the major issue IMO is the lack of a trigger man... Plekanec, PAP, and Galchenyuk all spend more time looking to pass than shoot. None of them goes through traffic much to get rebounds, and none of them spends a ton of time in front of the net. And lastly, when it comes to both trios, the system is completely flawed. In addition to our failing to have zone break-ins planned out well, our PP spends a lot of time passing the puck around the perimeter and looking for Subban to do things. What you need to do on a PP is have the puck travel across the ice side-to-side to make the goalie and defence move. You need to have someone creating traffic in front of the net to make the goalie and D's sightlines an issue, and you need to have guys who are willing to take the puck AT the defence, cause their box to cave and then dish it off when players are caught out of position. Our coaches haven't really emphasized any of those things. As lines, the trios I think give us the best chance of balancing shooters, puck movers, and possession are

Galchenyuk-Eller-Pacioretty

Plekanec-Desharnais-Bourque

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Regardless who has been running it, it's not very good. It wasn't great last year, it's not great this year. The D men are very talented, and our PP depth is better this year than it has been lately, when we had the likes of Gorges and Bouillon running around out there. The issue is that other teams have adapted to cover them, and our forwards haven't picked up the slack. So what are some major problems... to me, the biggest thing is that we keep going back to the Desharnais-Pacioretty line as our de facto number one. Whether it's with Vanek, Gallagher, PAP, or so on, this trio hasn't been effective the past two seasons with the man advantage. Desharnais' zone entries are terrible, which is a pre-requisite for setting up the O-zone offence. Pacioretty, as great as he is at finding space and getting his shot off, is not that great at cycling the puck. He's the guy who needs to let other players work the puck while he breaks in behind the D, but it requires two other guys who can make that happen, and sadly, DD is not that guy either. And Gallagher, for all his heart, is not the world's most effective screen. On the 2nd unit, the major issue IMO is the lack of a trigger man... Plekanec, PAP, and Galchenyuk all spend more time looking to pass than shoot. None of them goes through traffic much to get rebounds, and none of them spends a ton of time in front of the net. And lastly, when it comes to both trios, the system is completely flawed. In addition to our failing to have zone break-ins planned out well, our PP spends a lot of time passing the puck around the perimeter and looking for Subban to do things. What you need to do on a PP is have the puck travel across the ice side-to-side to make the goalie and defence move. You need to have someone creating traffic in front of the net to make the goalie and D's sightlines an issue, and you need to have guys who are willing to take the puck AT the defence, cause their box to cave and then dish it off when players are caught out of position. Our coaches haven't really emphasized any of those things. As lines, the trios I think give us the best chance of balancing shooters, puck movers, and possession are

Galchenyuk-Eller-Pacioretty

Plekanec-Desharnais-Bourque

hmm you make a lot of good points. At this point I just want them to try SOMETHING cause what they are doing isn't working. And as you said, the personnel is there, we should be at least average on the PP

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They've become very predictable on the PP... Just get it to Subban or Marky and then back to Subban.

Not hard to defend, keep 2 guys down low to clog up the slot, have the 3rd guy somewhere in the middle slot, so he can either go to the point or slot depending on the present need and a 4th guy checking the point.

Pk does a great job trying to pull PKer's out of position when he goes on his ventures through the ozone and it has worked, but we need other guys to do that as well. As good as PK is at pull defenders out of postion, he also takes himself out of postion.

The nucks stayed in a very loose, wide box and never left their positions, we moved the puck well along the blueline, around the boards and behind the net, but couldn't penetrate and get the puck to the net because nuck defenders kept their positions.

On the PP, our most dangerous players are at the point, Subban and Marky.

I did notice that when Subban, Marky and chuck were on the ice, we got our best chance. Chucks hands are so smooth and quick, one little deke or pause is enough for chuck to get things going.

I believe we have our best chances when all 3 are on the ice.

Patches is big, strong with a good shot. But he doesn't have chucks hands.

I'd like to break up the DD/Patches duo on the PP and try PK, Marky, Chuck, Patches and Gallagher.

Gallagher would do what he does best, go to the net and distract, then we have our powerful shot from the point with PK, our QB with Marky, a quality shooter down low in Patches and an exciting and dangerous player maker (with sick hands) in Chuck. There are only 4 PKer's on the ice, having that combination of skill in one unit would send defending PKers into tailspins.

Who do they cover?

They're all dangerous.

Only issue with that set up, is that it leaves our 2nd unit on the weak side. But really, Subban can stay out for the full 2 mins, so we could have PAP, Pleks, either Eller/RB and depending on who's dressed, Sekac or Bourny as the 3rd forward and in Marky's place (he's 35, he shouldn't be out for the full 2 mins) I'd go with Gilbert or Bo. After his last game though, not sure we'll see Bo for a while.

I can see Bourny's speed being an asset with more ice. Sekac, well, he's big and unknown. I wouldn't be opposed to having DD on that 2nd unit, he doesn't have a shot, but he's got good hands and with his improved board work, could make things interesting.

1st unit (powerhouse unit)

Marky-Subban (point/QB's and point shots)

Gally (net presence)

Chuck (free wheeling down low/half boards/behind net)

Patches (using his size in corner when needed and find open ice to release his shot)

2nd Unit (weak but may surprise)

Subban-Bo/Gilbert/Emelin (if need be)

Eller/RB (doing what Gally does)

DD (freewheeling like chuck) or PAP (size, decent shot)

Pleks (either free wheeling or waiting for a shot, doesn't get enough credit for his shot)

And to shake things up, if they're dressed, try Bourny or Sekac to add a different perspective. Hell, we could even use Weise to play the decoy and distraction( a la Gally). Not really considered a high quality player, but he has decent passing skills, isn't afraid of the dirty areas and can use his speed/grit.

Defending teams will obviously have their best Pkers out against the Patch, PK, Marky, Chuck, gally unit, so the 2nd unit might actually surprise.

Was really impressed with the Nucks PKers the other night and disappointed with our PPers. Nuvks gave us nothing, wouldn't even allow passes and keep us to the outside.

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I agree with BigTed that the forwards are not picking up the slack. Teams are covering the points. This SHOULD leave the forwards open to capitalizing on some open space if the puck is moved quickly enough. I would propose removing Desharnais from the PP equation all together, for the time being.

Unit #1.

Max Pacioretty - Tomas Plekanec - Alex Galchenyuk

P.K. Subban - Andrei Markov

Unit #2.

P.A. Parenteau - Lars Eller - Brendan Gallagher

P.K. Subban - Tom Gilbert

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Last night while watching the Wings game and the TO game (flicking), whenever there was a PP, they didn't dump it in. They went in with speed. We're a speedy team (when we want to be), so I can't see why they would continue to dump and chase. We outnumber them, so what's the problem? If the opponent keys on Markie and PK,,, then make the plays down low. It's so frustrating to see them doing the same things over and over and over, and getting the same results over and over and over.

It drives me nuts. SMILEYSCREAM_zps800acd86.gif

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