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Is the Season a Success?


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Poll: How would you measure the season so far? (101 member(s) have cast votes)

This season is now a

  1. Complete Success (26 votes [26.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 26.00%

  2. A Partial Success (32 votes [32.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 32.00%

  3. Only how far we go will tell (20 votes [20.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 20.00%

  4. A failure unless we win the Cup (22 votes [22.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 22.00%

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#61 Tretyak 20

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Posted 08 May 2006 - 11:04 PM

Oh you have to be joking, right? Just say you're joking - the Devils had this game all wrapped up and it had nothing to do with speed why they lost. This wasn't the defeat of systematic trap hockey - this was the Devils' forwards cheating up ice, and the Devils' coaching staff mixing up all the lines so no one knew where their linemates would be. This was hardly an exhibition of speed beating strength - or did I miss all those odd-man breaks the 'Canes had in this game blowing by our defensemen?



The Dev's had all the motivation in the world tonight, and they still lost in a game where they never dominated, never really got sustained pressure, gave up lots of shots, etc, etc, etc... The problem is that you can't sit on 1 and 2 goal leads anymore - and that's exactly what trap hockey is!!!

Lemaire style hockey said sit on a 1 goal lead, sit on a tie, sit on a 1 goal deficit. Play smart D and counter-punch, and you'll end up winning the game given enough time. Back then you could do that because you could practically mug an opponent who stood in front of your net, you could put a little hook or grab on a guy, you could use the blue-line as a barrier.

Now you simply can't do that anymore, and it's not just Devils games that show this. Did you happen to see the first Sabres-Sens game? How many 3rd period goals were scored? Which is those teams has a weak Defense?

You seem to be looking at this lose as a result of two bad plays that led to the tying and winning goals, but I'm telling you the Dev's lost this game in the 1st period when they failed to play aggressive hockey and instead kept to the old Lemaire system. They also lost it simply because they don't have the right roster to win this kind of game. We've got only one real scoring line and two full-time checking lines. How is that supposed to outscore a team that is built on having four lines capable of playing solid two-way hockey?

Lemaire style hockey was about playing conservative hockey with the whole idea of winning by one or two goals. That simply doesn't work anymore. It's become too easy to score a quick goal when it's an all-or-nothing situation. We are now playing against other elite-level teams, and they're going to give us serious trouble. 1 goal leads simply aren't safe to sit on - the key is to attack the other team from the openning face-off and keep the pressure on. Teams that do this - like Carolina, Ottawa, Buffalo, Edmonton, San Jose, etc - will prove successful. Teams that don't will face a huge dissadvantage.
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#62 Triumph

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 08:58 AM

You must have missed last night's game. The game I saw, the Devils continued to sustain pressure through the first period, then for some reason Lou and John MacLean decided to screw with the lines. Also, Carolina decided to dive all over the ice and put shots on net from terrible angles, while all the Devils' shots were blocked or went wide. The 'Canes clearly outplayed New Jersey for much of the second and most of the third, but again, I don't see where you are getting these broad claims from - they're just not true. The Devils were not trying to protect a 1-0 lead for the whole game. They simply couldn't generate more offense. But the contention that you can't sit on one or two goal leads is not true either - most games are decided by one or two goals. What about Edmonton-San Jose? Both games decided by one goal, both games without a goal in the third, both games 2-1. Sounds like Lemaire hockey to me.

You don't have a large enough sample size with which to make your claims. The Sabres won 2-1 while getting absolutely dominated in shots last night.

I agree that you cannot 'sit' on a lead, but that is not what New Jersey has tried to do lately. They simply got outplayed last night - it just looked like they weren't trying to generate offense.
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#63 Tretyak 20

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 11:18 PM

You must have missed last night's game. The game I saw, the Devils continued to sustain pressure through the first period, then for some reason Lou and John MacLean decided to screw with the lines. Also, Carolina decided to dive all over the ice and put shots on net from terrible angles, while all the Devils' shots were blocked or went wide. The 'Canes clearly outplayed New Jersey for much of the second and most of the third, but again, I don't see where you are getting these broad claims from - they're just not true. The Devils were not trying to protect a 1-0 lead for the whole game. They simply couldn't generate more offense.


Actually, I saw every minute of the game. I saw a Devils team that got beat to the majority of loose pucks and got out-skated: because they're too slow. I saw a team that had trouble getting into the Canes end with puck possesssion - again, too slow and a lack of offensive skill. I saw a team that was still primarily playing defense-first hockey. The Canes got some calls to go their way, but so did we. It evened out. The Canes outplayed us during much of the second and third, but we weren't able to generate more than a couple of good scoring chances in the first, either. So you're right that they couldn't generate more offense - because they're not designed to!

But the contention that you can't sit on one or two goal leads is not true either - most games are decided by one or two goals. What about Edmonton-San Jose? Both games decided by one goal, both games without a goal in the third, both games 2-1. Sounds like Lemaire hockey to me.


Then you don't understand Lemaire hockey. Just because a game finishes 2-1 and there were no goals scored in the third doesn't mean teams are trapping. Neither of those teams are trapping at all. Both play aggressive hockey and try to attack the other team. When they get possession, they skate hard for the other team's zone. They don't make lots of lateral passes while waiting for everybody to get positioned. In this case the teams are just evenly matched. The end result doesn't determine what strategy a team used.

You don't have a large enough sample size with which to make your claims. The Sabres won 2-1 while getting absolutely dominated in shots last night.


And I wouldn't have wanted to be in Buffalo's locker room after that game, either. I'd bet money Ruff chewed their @$$es over that game. Miller won it for them.

I'm not saying that games will no longer be decided by one goal. That's silly. I'm saying you can't sit back on defense and focus on merely protecting a one goal lead and counter-punching a little. That gives the opponent too much of a chance to control the flow of the game. Trap hockey says let the other team control the flow; just build a wall on defense and let them crash into it all night. The opponent gets tired, makes mistakes and you can capitalize on them and win by a goal or two. Lemaire's system did that perfectly by taking advantage of the rules as they were applied before the lock-out. But that advantage has been legislated out of the new NHL. Zero tolerance on hooking, zero tolerance on interferance, no red line at center, the "trapezoid of doom" - all combined to make the trap virtually impossible to play successfully.

If you want a larger sample size, just wait, it'll come.

I agree that you cannot 'sit' on a lead, but that is not what New Jersey has tried to do lately. They simply got outplayed last night - it just looked like they weren't trying to generate offense.


IMO it was more like they weren't capable. They certainly looked like they were trying to me. :saddevil:
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#64 Triumph

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Posted 10 May 2006 - 08:16 AM

Just watch tonight's game, since we're so infatuated with small sample size. You'll see the Devils pull this style off very well, albeit not the one you're describing.

The Devils are not beginning to outright trap with a one goal lead before the third period. What hurt them offensively last game was the fact that they screwed around with all the lines, creating numerous offsides and confusion within the offensive zone.
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#65 devils744

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Posted 10 May 2006 - 08:28 AM

no matter what happens in this series when you think back and look how the first half of the season went i would definately call it a success. you can't win the cup every year and many of us thought this would sort of be a retooling year and weren't expecting much anyways. think of what they have done and where they came from.
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#66 Outburn08

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Posted 11 May 2006 - 01:52 PM

I kinda feel like Don does... this thing's been so up and down I kept saying in Game 1 how AMAZED I was that this is the same team we saw in Oct/Nov for the most.... but it's like we're HOT now.. not to compare but they could make a run like the Steelers did in football.. and who knows ??

Lord knows there were enough years they were supposed to stir the sh!t and feel flat in a round or two... I like it better this way... the sky could be the limit but I think the effort in the next round will gauge our season

yeah it's nice we opened a can o'whoop ass on the Rangers... but all that means is a trip to the second round...
we ain't home yet folks!


Im pretty happy of what the devils did. :lol:

Edited by Outburn08, 11 May 2006 - 01:53 PM.

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#67 msweet

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 09:24 PM

I still call this season a great success!
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#68 thefiestygoat

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 09:25 PM

Not a success because they did not win the Cup, which was their goal for the year. However, I am proud of them and I think they will only get better next year! Go Devils!
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#69 expect_the_unexpected

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 09:32 PM

Before the playoffs started, I felt we could win it for real so right now I feel kind of sour because it was a good opportunity lost. But I still won't forget this season. Lou as coach. Elias's comeback. Stevens and Dano night. 15 game win streak. Good stuff.
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#70 SlapShot1545

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Posted 14 May 2006 - 09:39 PM

Before the playoffs started, I felt we could win it for real so right now I feel kind of sour because it was a good opportunity lost. But I still won't forget this season. Lou as coach. Elias's comeback. Stevens and Dano night. 15 game win streak. Good stuff.


I agree...I could never have forseen a series defeat like this after we beat the Rangers and were winning for 15 games. Winning the cup could have been such a stellar end to a great comeback, but now it's time to think to next year. Stevens as coach? Elias as captain?
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