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#41 nfreeman

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Posted 07 November 2016 - 10:51 AM

Great thread, and great to see dudacek back!

 

My 2 cents:

 

- I think we are seeing a bit more carrying it in vs d-and-c or c-and-c than we saw earlier in the year -- probably because the forwards are getting used to each other after late injury-driven line reshuffling. 

 

- I also think some guys (like Moulson) are not cut out for the carry-in.  I've seen ROR carry it in quite a bit lately, and do it quite well.

 

- There are still a few times each game where the forward seems to have room to carry it in but instead opts for the d-and-c -- and I immediately picture Sabrespacers yelling at the TV and DDB.

 

- The D overall has been very sound, although Lehner saved their bacon a number of times vs Ottawa.

 

- Regarding the D system -- I've noticed quite a bit of strong 2-man play by the D pairings -- e.g. the puck will enter the zone, the nearest defenceman will take the man, and the other defenseman will scoop up the puck with good timing.  It looks like good coaching to me.

 

- I thought we would get a solid year from Franson and so far that is what's happening. 

 

- Kulikov has been a huge upgrade over Pysyk. 

 

- Nelson isn't as good as Pysyk yet but there is a reasonably chance he'll get there by the end of this year.  His instincts in the offensive zone are better than Pysyk's. 

 

- Lehner got off to a slow start but has played very, very well since returning from the flu (maybe he had it prior to sitting out those games, and it hurt his play?).  It's a bit early to anoint him as the franchise guy for the foreseeable future, and he still deposits way too many rebounds in the slot, but there is certainly reason for optimism.



#42 inkman

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Posted 07 November 2016 - 11:24 AM

Mike Schopp would fight you for your slandering of Mark Pysyk in you diatribe Nfreeman. Ok, so he might challenge you to a heated game of tennis. Lookout!

#43 TrueBlueGED

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Posted 07 November 2016 - 01:15 PM

Not sure what the right thread is for this, but I suppose this is as good as any.

The consensus of this board is that our defence corps sucks.
Haven't seen a lot of people who are all in on Robin Lehner.
And there aren't many fans of Bylsma's system.

Putting aside the 4-0 stinker against Minny, we've allowed four even strength goals in our past seven games.
How?

 

PDO. Save percentages the last 5 games: 100, 97, 96, 93, 97. That's not going to continue, unless you think Lehner and Nilsson are far and away the greatest goaltending tandem to ever step foot on this planet. 

 

Ultimately I think Bylsma's whole approach is to limit opportunities against, and he's willing to sacrifice opportunities for in order to achieve it (the numbers play this out as we're a middling shot-suppression team, and a terrible shot-generation team). Single forechecker, little activation of the defensemen. The important question is why he's taking this approach. I floated a theory last year that lack of faith in the blue line was a factor in him playing so conservative with the forecheck. Maybe that's it, or maybe he legitimately believes this is how you win. Or something else. Though I think it's the wrong approach as a whole, I do think a consequence is that goals against tend to be quite low.



#44 That Aud Smell

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Posted 07 November 2016 - 03:43 PM

PDO. Save percentages the last 5 games: 100, 97, 96, 93, 97. That's not going to continue

 

Ahhh, goddammit.



#45 jsb

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Posted 07 November 2016 - 03:44 PM

(1) Ultimately I think Bylsma's whole approach is to limit opportunities against, and he's willing to sacrifice opportunities for in order to achieve it (the numbers play this out as we're a middling shot-suppression team, and a terrible shot-generation team).

 

(2) Single forechecker, little activation of the defensemen. The important question is why he's taking this approach. I floated a theory last year that lack of faith in the blue line was a factor in him playing so conservative with the forecheck. Maybe that's it, or maybe he legitimately believes this is how you win.

 

(3) Or something else. Though I think it's the wrong approach as a whole, I do think a consequence is that goals against tend to be quite low.

(1) Maybe because we have 2 of our top 4 goal scorers from last year out of the lineup??? Not sure where we are there in bolded but we are 4th in the league in GA/GP

 

(2) Maybe with a dearth of goalscoring forwards on the club presently he does think that's the way to win. 2013-2015 seasons we had a total of 106 points. He took over that squad and since the last 1/2 of last season and so far this year he's turned this squad around to a record of 25-18-9. 59 points in 52 games for a season progression of 93 points. A terrific turn around.

 

(3) Maybe just maybe, it's because he knows what he's doing??



#46 Randall Flagg

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 10:32 PM

The trap team just blew my mind with its ability to create plays and chances. 

 

Dan thinks we have to hang on and grind down to eek out points while a 56 point player is injured. Well, we're DeLuca .333 right now. I don't think it's going to kill anyone to try taking some more chances.

Activate defensemen. Send the weak side defensemen creeping down the wall/into the slot for a chance. The strong D-man can help with the cycle. Get guys into the middle. Make passes that don't spend 50% of their duration riding the boards. Don't play a 1-1-3 forechecking system. I like that we stopped the stretch passing, and I like that neutral-zone passes came out of nowhere after the first seven games, but there aren't enough of them. Whatever the ###### NJ was doing to get into our zone, figure out how to do it. Injuries are not a valid excuse for not doing so. These guys are professional hockey players. Have some trust in their abilities. I just watched guys that none of us have ever heard of pick us apart for more grade-A chances than we've seen our team generate in November doing exactly this. Figure out how to do it. But oh no, there might be some odd man rushes against! We might give up goals and lose! As if it's any different than what we're doing now, which entails tank-level offense and equal entertainment value.

 

Systems and schemes are so much more important than I ever thought they were coming into Bylsma's coaching tenure. 



#47 TrueBlueGED

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 11:18 PM

The trap team just blew my mind with its ability to create plays and chances. 

 

Dan thinks we have to hang on and grind down to eek out points while a 56 point player is injured. Well, we're DeLuca .333 right now. I don't think it's going to kill anyone to try taking some more chances.

Activate defensemen. Send the weak side defensemen creeping down the wall/into the slot for a chance. The strong D-man can help with the cycle. Get guys into the middle. Make passes that don't spend 50% of their duration riding the boards. Don't play a 1-1-3 forechecking system. I like that we stopped the stretch passing, and I like that neutral-zone passes came out of nowhere after the first seven games, but there aren't enough of them. Whatever the ###### NJ was doing to get into our zone, figure out how to do it. Injuries are not a valid excuse for not doing so. These guys are professional hockey players. Have some trust in their abilities. I just watched guys that none of us have ever heard of pick us apart for more grade-A chances than we've seen our team generate in November doing exactly this. Figure out how to do it. But oh no, there might be some odd man rushes against! We might give up goals and lose! As if it's any different than what we're doing now, which entails tank-level offense and equal entertainment value.

 

Systems and schemes are so much more important than I ever thought they were coming into Bylsma's coaching tenure. 

 

Angry Flagg is fun Flagg. Don't worry, we'll have a big group hug at the Leafs game in spring.



#48 Wyldnwoody44

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Posted 12 November 2016 - 11:19 PM

Is his system to keep his job....

Because it may not be working

#49 Neo

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 06:28 AM

I wasn't sure where to post this. It's a response to posts in many threads.

Flagg - you are an informed poster who possesses the ability to communicate what you see on the ice. You are generous with your time and effort. I'm grateful for your insight and gifts. :). There, I used those words again!

Now, there are others. There are many others! I come here for you all.

To the learned!

#50 Jacque Richard

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Posted 13 November 2016 - 08:16 AM

Losing faith in the Buffalo sports teams. I thought Dan B would have the Sabres flying and scoring. Far from a playoff team

#51 Doohickie

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Posted 14 November 2016 - 05:55 PM

Losing faith in the Buffalo sports teams. I thought Dan B would have the Sabres flying and scoring. Far from a playoff team

 

It comes with the territory.  Don't worry, another 3-game winning streak is coming along that will renew your faith (before it is inevitably crushed again).



#52 Radar

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Posted 14 November 2016 - 05:58 PM

Losing faith in the Buffalo sports teams. I thought Dan B would have the Sabres flying and scoring. Far from a playoff team


Withholding judgement on Dan Bylsma. Rex exactly what I expected, all talk.

#53 Eleven

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Posted 15 November 2016 - 10:46 PM

Time to euthanize him.



#54 North Buffalo

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Posted 16 November 2016 - 12:00 AM

Time to euthanize him.

Sodium Barbituate anyone?



#55 LGR4GM

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Posted 16 November 2016 - 09:14 AM

Last night I almost never saw anyone in the center of the ice when Buffalo was on offense. Several plays died in the neutral zone because a player came up the boards after receiving a long outlet pass was met by 2 forwards so tossed the puck to center ice but instead of there being support, 1 forward was at the blueline far side and the other forward also at the blue line waiting for the dump in.  

 

Defender gets the puck in our zone, every single player immediately exits the zone accept his defensive partner. Good forechecking makes it almost impossible to exit the zone in control. 

 

Very little net front traffic although last night was better than most. Lots of cycling down low and then tossing it back to the point for a hard point shot that gets blocked. All board passes in the o-zone. And again, no one in the high slot or middle slot ever. Everything was outside the circles accept on the PP. 



#56 LGR4GM

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Posted 16 November 2016 - 09:32 AM

I am getting rations... all the rations (beer, lots of beer) and going to hold up in my Bylsma Bunker.



#57 Randall Flagg

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Posted 17 November 2016 - 12:45 PM

Thanks for the kind words, Neo.

LGR, come join the group hug in the bunker True and I built.



#58 qwksndmonster

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Posted 17 November 2016 - 02:11 PM

Thanks for the kind words, Neo.

LGR, come join the group hug in the bunker True and I built.

I hated Hot Daniel before it was even cool!

#59 Randall Flagg

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Posted 17 November 2016 - 02:36 PM

I hated Hot Daniel before it was even cool!

You can be a founding father too, then. I can't remember these things!



#60 qwksndmonster

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Posted 17 November 2016 - 04:08 PM

You can be a founding father too, then. I can't remember these things!

No, I don't wanna be in your stupid club!

#61 pi2000

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Posted 17 November 2016 - 04:24 PM

Last night I almost never saw anyone in the center of the ice when Buffalo was on offense. Several plays died in the neutral zone because a player came up the boards after receiving a long outlet pass was met by 2 forwards so tossed the puck to center ice but instead of there being support, 1 forward was at the blueline far side and the other forward also at the blue line waiting for the dump in.  

 

Defender gets the puck in our zone, every single player immediately exits the zone accept his defensive partner. Good forechecking makes it almost impossible to exit the zone in control. 

 

Very little net front traffic although last night was better than most. Lots of cycling down low and then tossing it back to the point for a hard point shot that gets blocked. All board passes in the o-zone. And again, no one in the high slot or middle slot ever. Everything was outside the circles accept on the PP. 

 

This is an improvement from Nolan being that we have some structure with Bylsma.     

 

However, that said, I've never come out of a Bylsma coached game with the feeling we won because of some clever strategic mid-game adjustment.    I understand it's not football, but there are things you can do throughout the course of the game to change it up if you're either not generating shots or bottled up in your own end... etc.    It seems we have one style of play and we're going to play it come hell or high water.



#62 Drunkard

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Posted 18 November 2016 - 11:37 AM

http://nhl.nbcsports...e-going-to-win/

Saw this article with a quote from Kane. Wonder if there's dissention in the ranks.

#63 Eleven

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Posted 18 November 2016 - 11:46 AM

http://nhl.nbcsports...e-going-to-win/

Saw this article with a quote from Kane. Wonder if there's dissention in the ranks.

 

As noted by Mike Harrington in multiple tweets today, Kane also took some personal responsibility for the lack of scoring, but no one is reporting that.



#64 Drunkard

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Posted 18 November 2016 - 12:24 PM

As noted by Mike Harrington in multiple tweets today, Kane also took some personal responsibility for the lack of scoring, but no one is reporting that.


I saw that too but I'm already sick of DB and his system so I've chosen tofocus on the negative. Because Buffalo or something.

One Buffalo....one heaping pile of Bison ######.

#65 LGR4GM

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:36 AM

The more I watch other teams the more depressed I am about Bylsma's system. It's vintage 2009, when no one blocked shots like today

#66 Sabres Fan In NS

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 09:55 AM

News flash ... there is no system.



#67 Randall Flagg

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 11:07 AM

News flash ... there is no system.

There is. These guys aren't running like chickens with their heads cut off a la Nolan teams.

#68 LGR4GM

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 11:20 AM

There's clearly a system. It stifles creativity

#69 yse325

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 01:15 PM

Is it a system problem that our guys can't put home great scoring oppotunities? I've watched us dominate in the OT lately and we still can't score. This tells me more then anything that it's the players. They can't score 3 on 3 or 5 on 5 with point blank chances. That's not DD fault.

You can rightly complain that the system is to defensive oriented. However considering that we have forwards that can't finish and defenders who can't clear the zone consistently, what choice does DD have but to make sure the forwards at least back check to help keep pucks out of the net?

#70 Randall Flagg

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 03:46 PM

I mentioned in the other thread that the heat maps are fun. I'm not sure how much value they have or what they tell us, but I thought I'd grab some from the teams that we generally do well against, like NYR/Ottawa, and teams we can't beat, like Carolina/Boston, and compare them to ours. See if the areas we give up lots of shots are where teams are very good/very bad at shooting from relative to league average. It might be a bunch of nonsense but I have some time to kill. 

 

Here are Buffalo's even strength shot for/against heat maps:
teamShotLoc-1617-BUF-off.png

 

What do I get from this first chart, above? It definitely matches the eye tests of many posters here. Just looking at it, we can picture Risto and Franson flinging pucks from that right point, and Kane taking shots from his favorite spot on the left, both where the Sabres shoot from more often than average. I can also picture Matty Mo shoveling pucks into pads from the slight red in that spot in front of the net, maybe Gionta too. Sometimes Samson. Eichel may also share the Kane spot on occasion. And it has been pointed out how we seem to be unable to access the middle of the ice and the upper slot, and it shows here. We don't pass through it, much less take shots from within.

 

teamShotLoc-1617-BUF-def.png aga

This chart of shots against shows that we are pretty good at clearing the crease and not allowing guys in there with control, which honestly surprises me a little bit, because I often picture Risto and McCabe and Bogosian being soft on guys there. Maybe they're actually better than average at it. There's a slight hole in the mid/high slot, but it isn't terrible, and the rest of the slot is largely clogged up. Teams take many point shots on us, perhaps because it's all they can do to generate consistent chances, perhaps because they know Lehner kicks out rebounds. 

So that's the Buffalo Sabres. I think these charts lend some evidence to the conservative nature of our style. Not a lot of high danger chances for or against, low event hockey. 

I can only do like 5 pictures per post, so I'll post this one and start working on some other teams to see how their charts compare to ours. Hopefully it gives some insight. Even if not, it's fun to look at.


Edited by Randall Flagg, 10 February 2017 - 03:51 PM.


#71 pi2000

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 03:55 PM

very interesting data there.

I think that also shows how poor BUF is at blocking point shots... right? And our left D can't get pucks through.

#72 Randall Flagg

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 03:57 PM

very interesting data there.

I think that also shows how poor BUF is at blocking point shots... right? And our left D can't get pucks through.

It could mean they are bad at blocking, and it could mean that teams funnel their offense so much more through the point against us than other times because of other factors, or a combination. Certainly needs some dedicated watchers and other stats to get a full picture, but I'm having fun.



#73 TrueBlueGED

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:03 PM

Huh, it's almost as if we know what we're talking about! Go figure.

As an aside, the systematically limited dangerous shots against is why Lehner's GSAA is gloriously average, despite his cumulative SV% being quite good. In other words, although he's being peppered by shots and stopping a respectable number of them, it's not overly hard to stop what he's being asked to stop.

Edited by TrueBlueGED, 10 February 2017 - 04:04 PM.


#74 Randall Flagg

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:09 PM

Let's see what the New York Rangers like to do. The Sabres seem to play them very well, winning 3 of the last 4 games, scoring 4 or 5 goals on Hank in those wins. The loss was an OTL. I always believed that the open style of the Rangers forced us to play similarly, and that we had the skill to exploit their weak defense. 

 

teamShotLoc-1617-NYR-off.png 

 

Wow. The Rangers do everything they can to shoot from where you're most likely to score goals. Helps to explain why their season goal totals are so high. And it's right in the area that we shut down the best. They almost never shoot from the point, where teams generally have success getting their shots to hit Lehner/Nilsson. And now that I think about it, I remember a handful of their goals coming from the point, McDonagh and a Staal tip from Eich's second game. Perhaps this favorable matchup helps explain our recent success?

Here are their shots allowed:
teamShotLoc-1617-NYR-def.png 

They allow a lot from a spot that we have a slight red, and are pretty good at shutting down the points. I bet Jack really likes that area above the left circle (right in the picture). Recent games, that's where Jack scored the go-ahead goal from, when NYR came to town. Gionta too, to tie the game at 2.

 

Funny how different teams can be. 



#75 That Aud Smell

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:14 PM

very interesting data there.

I think that also shows how poor BUF is at blocking point shots... right? And our left D can't get pucks through.

  :huh:



#76 Randall Flagg

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:28 PM

Ottawa's turn, their shots for:
teamShotLoc-1617-OTT-off.png

They hate the middle of the ice too! They love the Karlsson slapper, as well as the Hoffman left shot one-timer from the right boards. And Turris loves sniping from that left heat area. Also decent at jamming them in close to Lehner/Nilsson/whoever. So, they're pretty adept at taking shots from areas we're more inclined to give them up. And are quite capable of scoring three or four goals on us, unless Lehner is really in the zone. His best games as a Sabre have been against Ottawa, he goes full revenge-mode. I recall him having to face a lot of shots even in the games we win, he goes crazy, which could help explain why we still beat them a lot even when they shoot from where we give up a lot of shots. It helps us that those areas are less dangerous than the slot area.

 

Their shots against:

teamShotLoc-1617-OTT-def.png

Same thing as what I just described but switch the teams. We love the point shots, and they give up the Eichel one-timer area (though his goal there was a peeper). They're very good at sealing off an area that we don't bother using, and pretty bad with the areas we like to use. 


  :huh:

There's a cold blue area on the left point, while the right point is red hot. It makes sense, Kulikov and Gorges regularly find shin pads and McCabe has a ton of Zhitnik in him.


Now, can these charts show us why we have trouble against certain teams? Maybe. Let's look at the Carolina Hurricanes.

Shots for:

teamShotLoc-1617-CAR-off.png

They get a lot of them in close, and either Slavin/Hanifin/3LHD loooove shooting or Faulk goes on his off-side for the one-timer often. Probably both. This team doesn't score a lot,  but is average-to-above-average at getting shots away from the slot to the left boards, in the faceoff circle to below the goal line. There's a lot of white (average) and some blue in that area for us defensively. I'm not getting much from this one.

Defensively:

teamShotLoc-1617-CAR-def.png

They just don't allow very many shots, even if they are a bit soft in close to Ward. A good, fast, slightly soft defense is exactly what I expect. So why do we have such a hard time with them? Nothing here jumps out. My take is that, like the graph below shows, they were the ones taking shots and possessing the puck, and were able to snuff us out with their mobile defensemen. We've all heard enough of the details about that.

gameShots-2016-12-22-2016020495-CARatBUF



#77 That Aud Smell

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:29 PM

There's a cold blue area on the left point, while the right point is red hot. It makes sense, Kulikov and Gorges regularly find shin pads and McCabe has a ton of Zhitnik in him.

 

My bad - I simply missed our Shots For chart.



#78 SwampD

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:32 PM

Really cool stuff.



#79 Randall Flagg

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:35 PM

The last team I'll post in here is Boston, who murdered us. 

Shots for:
teamShotLoc-1617-BOS-off.png

This team rarely uses the immediate crease that we are good at keeping teams from. They literally shoot from everywhere else, though. Makes sense that they're the leading corsi and possession team. 19th in scoring, from these locations, may hint at the talent and depth problem they have at forward. They consistently scored 4 on us (in every game?) and lots of ES goals. Tough to stop from everywhere.

 

Boston shots against:
teamShotLoc-1617-BOS-def.png

The only place they give too many shots up from is a place we do not utilize, so it makes sense that we've had tremendous offensive frustrations against Boston this season. Pretty well coached team they have (had) there.

 

Here's a link to Tronna's page: http://hockeyviz.com/team/TOR/1617

 

Haha, look at what Matthews does for their offense, that whole red area is in large part due to him. And their defensive zone is even funnier. Red everywhere! 

 

I'm done now. Pretty enjoyable, some value in it I think.



#80 Scottysabres

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Posted 10 February 2017 - 04:49 PM

3-0 in the third? I dont even want Alamo. I want those British soldiers in the Zulu movie,


Love that movie.
The Bylsma Riddle. That is what I call the current system.
Does he not trust the players to carry it in?
Is there real adjustments being made? And not just in game but structured by opponent ad well as by our own players strengths?

I don't see it. Maybe I'm just not paying enough attention. But that old saying comes to mind: "the definition of insanity, doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result"............





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