End of the "Collapse" D?

  1. You have chosen to ignore posts from OatesCam. Show OatesCam's posts

    End of the "Collapse" D?

    I hated last year's playoffs.  Not just because the Bruins lost, but because they were boring.  Almost every team was playing collapse, shot-blocking defense and there was nothing exciting.  The Bruins series was a grind-fest decided by a lucky bounce.  Every game the Rangers played was like that.  The Capitals.  The Devils.  The West was hardly any better, as the lowest-scoring team in the league cruised to a championship.  The one and only exciting series was Pens/Flyers. I complained that hockey was awful and said drastic steps were needed to improve the game.

    Fast-forward to this year.  Bruins are winning, yes, but the hockey is also so much better!  I enjoy watching every series.  There are back and forth battles, comebacks and... yes... some scoring!  It's doubtful that any GAA or SV% records will be set this year.  We are seeing great goaltending from some great goaltenders, but they are earning every save.  There is puck movement, passing, breakaways.

    My question is, why?  I think part of it is the lockout.  After the last lockout, teams were under-coached and the players were extra-excited.  That made for great hockey to watch and I think it's the same this year, to a lesser extent.

    But have teams adapted?  The TV panel last night was commenting how the Rangers are collapsing on everything, and that it is failing.  One fellow said "but it worked last year..."  The thing is, it's not this year.  Why?  Is it because the Bruins are simply a better team?  Does adding scoring talent like Jagr and Horton make the Bruins too deep/good?  Is it the Bruins more mobile/active defence?  One comment was that the Rangers are collapsing on everything and the Bruins are moving the puck around the ouside, forcing Rangers to chase outward and back, tiring them out, making the opponent tired as the game wears on.  Boston is definitely using the defence more on the attack, perhaps as an answer to teams not challenging the points in recent years.

    I'm focusing on the Bruins because I watch every minute of their games and analyse them to death, but it seems like it's a trend throughout the league.  The level of playmaking and excitment has been WAY up.  I thoroughly enjoyed watching the Islanders take a stab at the Pens.  Ottawa's been great fun.  Chi,Det, LA and S.L. have provided me with great entertainment.  I was glad to hear the Competition Committee is looking at goalie shinpad length again in the off season, but the situation seems far less dire watching these games.

    Does anyone else find the games much better this year, and do you think teams have adapted their styles of play in the attacking zone to make "collapse on everything" zone defence obsolite?

     
  2. You have chosen to ignore posts from Stuke50. Show Stuke50's posts

    Re: End of the

    I don't know about collapse D thingy...What I see when the Bruins play well and then win, is that they work as a team getting the puck out of their end. That is the one thing that I see different from the Bruins regular season to now. It' like they found the "switch" getting that puck out of their end.

    In the other end, just look at what Jagr has done. No. He hasn't scored, but he sure keeps the puck and the other lines have being having the same succcess. Lucic is a train again. He literally can change the flow of a game.

    He did that last night when he put that Ranger defenceman out with a hard hit. After that the Ranger defencemen were looking at who was coming. Lucic and Horton. Big book ends to deal with. When their skating.

    The 4th line. Who in all the NHL has a 4th line as good as the Bruins ? No one. Period. When you can run four lines you get to have more rested skilled players in the thrird period when you need them the most, instead of gassed out players.

    The short season. All teams seemed to have more zip starting the playoffs and were able to sustain that zip for most of the games.

    I'm loving it.

     
  3. You have chosen to ignore posts from OatesCam. Show OatesCam's posts

    Re: End of the

    In response to Stuke50's comment:

    I don't know about collapse D thingy...What I see when the Bruins play well and then win, is that they work as a team getting the puck out of their end. That is the one thing that I see different from the Bruins regular season to now. It' like they found the "switch" getting that puck out of their end.

    In the other end, just look at what Jagr has done. No. He hasn't scored, but he sure keeps the puck and the other lines have being having the same succcess. Lucic is a train again. He literally can change the flow of a game.

    He did that last night when he put that Ranger defenceman out with a hard hit. After that the Ranger defencemen were looking at who was coming. Lucic and Horton. Big book ends to deal with. When their skating.

    The 4th line. Who in all the NHL has a 4th line as good as the Bruins ? No one. Period. When you can run four lines you get to have more rested skilled players in the thrird period when you need them the most, instead of gassed out players.

    The short season. All teams seemed to have more zip starting the playoffs and were able to sustain that zip for most of the games.

    I'm loving it.



    I agree with what you're saying.  Collapse defence is essentially playing in the defensive zone with the idea that you do not challenge the perimeter.  You put all 5 skaters in front of your net and allow low percentage shots (from the point, the boards) to be taken at will.  You play the odds that a puck will hit one of your players, or that if it gets through your goalie will be able to see it.  The cluster in front of the net prevents attacking players from getting in close or making skilled plays.  The Bruins have done it very well under Julien, and last year many teams were playing it to the extreme.

    What I'm seeing this year is a shift.  The Bruins are using the outside space very effectively and the collapse isn't stopping them from having success.  I find the Bruins are also using it much less themselves, and attacking the points quickly.  I don't know if it's a change in strategy or just that the Bruins are playing much better - like you're saying - and are a deeper team.  But it's way more fun to watch.  Sitting back is not winning games.

     
  4. You have chosen to ignore posts from stevegm. Show stevegm's posts

    Re: End of the

    Where ya been Oatescam?

     

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