Kukla's Korner

Talk'n Hawks

That’s NOT Hockey

I realize that the name of this blog is Talk’n Hawks, and normally that is all that I do. However, while just watching the Tampa Bay Lightening against the Philadelphia Flyers, (on Versus) I saw something that made me sick.

Tampa Bay went into a VERY passive 1-3-1 defense. By passive, I mean that the closest player was almost at center ice. To combat this, the Flyers defensemen, would keep playing catch, from board to board, in their own zone, This would go on for a minute or more every time.

Fans come out to see a a game, not to see a BORING chess match. Back in the early 1980’s, I would attend DePaul basketball games and this is back when they were nationally ranked in the top 10 in the NCAA. To counter act their superior teams, lesser teams would cross half court and hold the ball for the majority of the half. The thought process was, we can’t beat them, but maybe we can if the final score is 8-6. This then led to the shot clock in college basketball. I hope and pray that we are not going to need a rule change to enforce good, hard playing hockey.

Filed in: | Talk'n Hawks | Permalink
  Tags: nhl+talk, philadelphia+flyers, tampa+bay+lightning

Comments

Down River Dan's avatar

Well it’s taken a while, but the European influence has finally done won. Hockey is now officially soccer (football) on ice.

No hitting, no fighting, No goals and No action, just guys skating in circles passing the puck.

Why not just sell tickets to team practices and save on the travel.

Hey gary, if you aren’t on the phone tonight with all 30 teams telling them to knock this crap off, you need to resign.

Posted by Down River Dan on 11/09/11 at 11:49 PM ET

Vince Maranto's avatar

Well said, Down River Dan!

Posted by Vince Maranto on 11/09/11 at 11:53 PM ET

Marc Siciliano's avatar

Why should the Flyers attempt to rush into it? It’s on Tampa - the home team that’s making bank on the tickets - to move in past the blue line and get their defenseman closer than 200 ft to the puck.

Luckily it only lasted a period..

Posted by Marc Siciliano on 11/10/11 at 12:29 AM ET

Avatar

Posted by Marc Siciliano on 11/09/11 at 09:29 PM ET

Was this the first time the Flyers have ever played against the trap?  As far as home fans and tickets go, they usually like winning more than anything else.

Posted by pens fan in baltimore on 11/10/11 at 01:02 AM ET

wingsfanindenver's avatar

Was this the first time the Flyers have ever played against the trap?  As far as home fans and tickets go, they usually like winning more than anything else.

It sure seems like it. Really though, it’s not that hard, with the current interference rules, to loft the puck into a corner and send in an aggressive forecheck to dig it out since the forecheckers can’t be held up. If the player lofting the puck in, and the forecheckers get their timing down right that poor deep defenseman will get worn down pretty badly. It takes patience, but it will yield dividends.

Posted by wingsfanindenver on 11/10/11 at 04:23 AM ET

Avatar

yeah, people are really cheering hard for Winnipeg’s fire-wagon hockey in a losing game.

Posted by tuxedoTshirt on 11/10/11 at 07:23 AM ET

Hank1974's avatar

Don’t blame the Lightning, blame the NHL!
It has no idea how to fix it’s game. The current rules allow defensive systems like this thrive and succeed.

While the R&D camp tinkers with ridiculous ideas that will have little to no bearing on opening the game up the NHL ignores obvious changes such as bigger nets, bigger ice, removing bluelines, having no lines, etc.

And why not use the absolutely useless pre-season to test this out on?

I’m glad I’m not wasting hundreds on the centre ice package anymore.
And I can’t see how NBC would be that thrilled to know they just plunked down $2B for a game that features ultra-exciting staring matches.

Well done NHL! You’ve managed to create an era even more boring than the dead-puck era.

Posted by Hank1974 on 11/10/11 at 11:19 AM ET

Hank1974's avatar

yeah, people are really cheering hard for Winnipeg’s fire-wagon hockey in a losing game.

Actually, they are.
My bro lives in the ‘Peg and he said a lot of the fans there are actually being entertained - even in losing causes.

Imagine that? Going to a sporting event, plunking down $200 and coming away entertained. It’s almost like that’s the entire purpose of professional sports.

Posted by Hank1974 on 11/10/11 at 11:21 AM ET

bezukov's avatar

Why should the Flyers attempt to rush into it? It’s on Tampa - the home team that’s making bank on the tickets - to move in past the blue line and get their defenseman closer than 200 ft to the puck.

Luckily it only lasted a period..

Posted by Marc Siciliano on 11/09/11 at 09:29 PM ET

I couldn’t disagree with that more Marc.  The way obstruction penalties are called in this league anymore there isn’t a single excuse for the offensive not to skate hard and move the puck.  Furthermore, the NHL already eliminated the two line pass rule to make the trap beatable.  If you can’t use those things to your advantage, you aren’t trying.  Philly wasn’t employing a strategy to beat the 1-3-1, they were refusing to play the game.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 11/10/11 at 12:50 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

I couldn’t disagree with that more Marc.  The way obstruction penalties are called in this league anymore there isn’t a single excuse for the offensive not to skate hard and move the puck.  Furthermore, the NHL already eliminated the two line pass rule to make the trap beatable.  If you can’t use those things to your advantage, you aren’t trying.  Philly wasn’t employing a strategy to beat the 1-3-1, they were refusing to play the game.

I don’t know.
Players are so fast and so good, that it’s never been harder to weave through the neutral zone.

The two-line pass is essentially eliminated with any sort of trap configuration.

The only option is to dump and chase, which in itself is pretty boring - and getting to be dangerous.

I don’t want to open the can of worms, but this is what having 30 teams in the league does.
If there were only 20, maybe each team would have more talented players so that they could weave through a 1-3-1.
But when most teams only have 2 or 3 legit top 6 forwards, it’s not an option for most teams.

But I’m starting to look at this fiasco in a different light. I’m starting to love the fact it happened, and on national television.
VS/NBC no doubt wanted to broadcast this matchup thinking of the fireworks both teams displayed from their 8-7 barnbuner last year.
Boy were they wrong!
So one would hope the NHL would be forced to acess it’s product and see what can be done.

I still think larger ice and bigger nets takes care of this.
Or perhaps going to roller hockey rules. Once you cross the blueline, the offensive zone expands to the redline.
Or hey, maybe get ride of the bluelines all together?
It’s time to think outside the box.
What we witnessed last night is only the beginning. More teams will follow and the game will become even less exciting and offensive-minded.

Posted by Hank1974 on 11/10/11 at 12:55 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by Hank1974 on 11/10/11 at 09:55 AM ET

I agree that the talent has gotten better, but that doesn’t amount to an excuse not to play if you ask me.  In my humble opinion, if there is one truth about the post lockout NHL rules, its that hard skating draws penalties.  Philly should be embarrassed.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 11/10/11 at 01:06 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Skating hard also creates turnovers.

In fact, if you made a general NHL rule where players should be skating hard, this ticky-tack bullshit from last night would have never happened.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/10/11 at 01:38 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Skating hard also creates turnovers.

Perhaps we aren’t talking about the same thing JJ, but if we are I think I have to disagree.  If you get the puck deep and cycle it along the boards consistently, shift after shift, its a matter of time before the defense gets tired and does something lazy.  The powerplay is where you can make a trap team pay.  I know dump and chase is a low sum game, but isn’t a zero sum game.  If you can catch a trap team flat footed and make them turn and chase, you can make them pay.  You’re right, there are going to be turnovers, but if a team can’t accept that reality I wonder why they even play. 

None of this is really to the point though.  What I think is most important here is sportsmanship.  The trap is not illegal.  Its childish to stop the game and say “If you aren’t going to play the way I want you to, I’m not playing.”  If Tampa Bay has enough discipline not to chase Philly into their end during transition, that’s Philly’s problem. 

The legality or appropriateness of trap can be addressed behind closed doors, it should be on the ice if you ask me.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 11/10/11 at 03:36 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

*shouldn’t*

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 11/10/11 at 03:36 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

The truth of the matter is that passing it back and forth infinitely in your own zone isn’t illegal either.

I agree that it’s childish, but if we’re going to have a league where you can play with the puck for 65 minutes without making a single attempt to put it in the net and still somehow earn 2 points, then sometimes silly things are going to happen.

Refusing to forecheck while your opponent childishly refuses to come out of his own zone is also childish.

Both teams acted in a manner which showed poor sportsmanship and the fans were the ones who lost because of it.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/10/11 at 04:03 PM ET

bezukov's avatar

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 11/10/11 at 01:03 PM ET

I mostly agree with you JJ.  I just think onus is on the team with the puck to keep play moving.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 11/10/11 at 04:47 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

but if we’re going to have a league where you
can play with the puck for 65 minutes without making a single attempt to put
it in the net and still somehow earn 2 points, then sometimes silly things
are going to happen.

THIS. Perfectly said and basically sums up everything I dislike about the current NHL.

Posted by Hank1974 on 11/10/11 at 05:03 PM ET

Add a Comment

Please limit embedded image or media size to 575 pixels wide.

Add your own avatar by joining Kukla's Korner, or logging in and uploading one in your member control panel.

Captchas bug you? Join KK or log in and you won't have to bother.

Smileys

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Feed

Most Recent Blog Posts

About Talk'n Hawks