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Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Special Teams: Not so special for the B's

We talked about it before the season. This part of the game was so important last year and i though the team would catch the message. Well, looking at the numbers, they didn't catch anything but Influenza...

Today, the team is dead last on the PK and 24th in the PP unit. Important? Well, important enough to bailed out a team like Montreal who show an awful -13 at 5 on 5 but who find themselfs in the 5th spot in the conference. Coincidence? I don't think so. The Habs are in the top 5 on those two categories and it shows. When i look at the B's PP, i see a lots of bad things: Bad decisions, fancy plays, blind passes. All the ingredients to not produce and make the other team looks good. Looking at the past, the B's had some great powerplay units. Lewis should take the tapes from the Bourque and Iafrate era and show to his team how the point could be effective on the PP. This team have not enough finish, right now, around the net to play the fancy pants. Powerplay is not a complicated thing: Do the basic stuff: win the faceoffs, try to broke down the defensive box and shoot. There's too many players, on this team, who tried to do the perfect play. Instead of sending the puck to the point, they get stubborn and want to pass the puck in the crowded slot. The result is predictable: an offensive giveaway and the puck in your own end.

Do we really have to spend time on the PK? Each time this team is down 5 on 4, you can feel the wind of panic going through them. In that situation, the goaltending is an important piece of the puzzle and your goaltender have to bail you out at least, one time. If not, you're in deep trouble and will find yourself in the... 30th position? Of course, the goaltender is not the only factor. When you look at the numbers of giveways by the defense, you understand why they are dead last. Instead of doing the basic thing: Clear the zone by the board or the glass, they prefer to make dangerous passes and induce an offensive rush. Why? you're on the PK !!!. Even if you reach to other end, you will probably be cought deep in the offensive zone and put your team in trouble. Even the speedy Buffalo Sabres cannot apply this strategy without giving goals. The only difference here is that Buffalo have the skills and the speed to overcome those goals allowed on the PP. The B's.... well, they are not even there.

There's no place like the PK and the PP to see if a team execute the little things right. Right now, there's a lack of execution. Until the team understand the importance of doing the little things right, nothing will change. Now, that 2 of their top 4 defenseman are on the self, things won't be easier. In fact, it could turn into a nightmare. We only have to wish that those guys will work harder then ever and see the holy light....


Anonymous Anonymous said...

bruins called up lashoff from providence.

3:04 AM  

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