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In my view, Alfie had made up his mind about leaving the Sens when the rebuilt began. He simply played out his contract and probably hoped that somehow maybe the team overachieves and makes it deep into the playoffs. Well, they DID OVERACHIEVE. But he knows, as do the GM and coach, that this team is still work in progress. Drastic changes are not needed (i.e. packaging players, trading stars) because of 1 poor year.
In reality, Gryba, Cowen and Wiercioch could have used another half a season, or season in Bingo. But now they are getting this experience in the NHL level.
The problems in my view are more general. The constant line shuffling, lack of clear system, lack of individual player responsibilities...Condra used to be a key role player - the new Kelly. That's just one example. There are no clearly defined lines other than the Turris line, which was also disbanded.
I am also sick of hearing Spezza bashing by the fans and some media. He is what he is. He will never be a Selke winner, so let's stop trying to make him into what he won't be. His strengths are vision, puck possession, passing and shooting. In other words, his offense is his best defense. Unleash him loose on offense, give him a scoring winger, and one responsible one who will cover his ass on defense. CONACHER is NOT one of those players.
Define the lines and system and stick to it.
Need an energy 4th line, a smash mouth 3rd line and 2 scoring top lines.Milo-Spezza-RyanMac-Turrie-ZibanejadGreening-Smith-NeilCondra-Pageau-Conacher
just speculating but the problem might be that the players they have may just not be able to play Stache's system, maybe they just dont have the talent for a puck possession style of play. They may have to change their system to one that better suits the talent they have.
Jason,....ah yes, Jason. People who say he's useless, are wrong. People who blindly look past his faults are wrong. He is somewhere in the middle and always will be. brilliant offensive talent who is prone to untimely turnovers and floating. he's 30 now. its never going to change. we just have to accept him for what he is and enjoy the faaaaaaannnnndangles when they come.
just speculating but the problem might be that the players they have may just not be able to play Stache's system
I was thinking the same thing a while back Russell, but the thought that came next was 'Wait a sec.....they could play it last year!' Sure, they struggled with it at times, but they did play it and they had success with it. With this being the case, we'd have to look at who wasn't in the lineup last year and see which of them aren't working with the system:
Anderson - had a phenomenal sv% last year but struggling this year. 5on5 he's fine, but PK is killing him. Cowen - improving slowly as the year goes on, but struggled mightily with all parts of the game when the season startedKarlsson - was struggling at the beginning of the year, but rounding into form as the season progressesSpezza - not sure what to think hereMichalek - struggling hard at the beginning of the season with both hands and feet; now moving well in a straight line but having trouble turning, stopping and still not shooting well
There's lots of blame to go around, but I'm still flummoxed as to where to point it. Everybody takes some, sure, but there has to be more to the difference between last season and this season than Anderson's SV% and Sergei Gonchar?
I don't think the coaching has taken enough flack for the team's performance...
Look at the difference a guy like Jacques Martin has made for the Pens this year as an assistant coach. They are one of the best defensive teams, with 5 starting D out due to injury! The guys on the radio were singing his praises today.
The Sens sure could use a guy like Martin who will make you do drills on how to get the puck out of your D zone quickly.