by Patrick Hoffman on 06/06/11 at 10:54 PM ET
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When a team is given a five-minute power play, one figures that the team with the power play would be able to put the puck in the net a few times or at least come close to doing so.
This does not appear to be the case with the Boston Bruins. When the Bruins were rewarded with a five-minute power play in the first period when Vancouver Canucks’ defenseman Aaron Rome laid out Bruins’ forward Nathan Horton, they showed exactly why they were struggling with the man advantage.
For starters, there are not enough bodies in front of Canucks’ netminder Roberto Luongo. On this particular power play, the Bruins were able to get some pucks to the net but when they did, Luongo was able to see every one of them and make the save.
Secondly, there is not enough movement. There are too many players just standing around in position waiting to receive the puck.
Lastly, the Bruins give up the puck too much. There were several times when a Canucks’ forward or defenseman was able to take the puck away and clear it down the ice to help kill of the penalty.
Obviously, there are three solutions to these problems. The first one is to create traffic in front of Luongo. Force him to fight to see the puck, get just outside his crease and create some havoc.
The second solution is for the power play unit to move around more. Cycle the puck, have the defensemen switch sides every once in awhile and have the forwards go in different motions.
The last solution is obviously to hold onto the puck. Move it around more in open lanes and establish some sort of control.
There is still a lot of hockey left to be played but if the Bruins cannot get this power play going soon, this series could be shorter than most pundits and fans predicted.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
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