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Eichel Talks About Helping VGK Power Play And PP Overcoaching

(Photo Credit: Ken Boehlke, SinBin.vegas)

In his first practice in a full-contact jersey as a Golden Knights, Jack Eichel skated with a line of extras during 5-on-5 drills. But, when the team broke off into special teams units, Eichel traded his “fifth line” green jersey for a top power play unit white jersey and assumed his role on the half-wall to the right of the goalie.

If there’s one thing we know about Jack Eichel, it’s that he can score. He’s posted 139 goals in 375 NHL appearances and is nearly a point per game player over his six-year career (355 points). He’s scored 41 of those 139 goals on the power play and has added another 86 PP assists bringing his man-advantage total to a whopping 127 points.

There’s a ton of talent and I think you need to have a plan, get everyone on the same page, and build a little chemistry. But I do think that’s an aspect of the game that I can definitely help the team with. Power play is probably one of my strong suits and I hope to help the group. –Eichel on Missin Curfew Podcast

He worked on a unit with Mark Stone, Max Pacioretty, Evgenii Dadonov, and Shea Theodore in practice on Monday.

That’s a unit that with Chandler Stephenson in Eichel’s new spot has had runs of success when healthy this season. Pacioretty’s shot is always a threat from the circle, Theodore is very good at getting pucks through from the high slot, and Stone and Dadonov have started to perfect the below the goal line to low-slot pass. With Eichel’s creativity, shot, and power, he could be a real difference-maker on a power play that could still use improvement.

VGK’s power play currently ranks 17th in the league, hitting at just under a 20% clip. However, they still fight through stretches where they struggle to enter and/or turn stagnant in the offensive zone.

Eichel was featured on an All Star Game edition of the podcast Missin Curfew with former NHLers Shane O’Brien and Scottie Upshall. During that podcast, O’Brien had an interesting take on power play coaching.

I always said this about the guys that would coach the power play in the NHL, unless my power play guys would come to me, I wouldn’t even really coach guys. Power play guys, they know what they are doing, if they need some advice, they’ll ask you. Don’t tell them to go here or there, they are the best players on your team. –O’Brien on Missin Curfew Podcast

Eichel agreed.

The guys have to kinda run that, the power play. Obviously, the coaches have their input. We were good in Buffalo a few years and the few years we were really good on the (power play) the coach would sorta let us do our thing and obviously it worked out well. –Eichel on Missin Curfew Podcast

Vegas’ power play has been much maligned since the 0 for 15 run in the series against Montreal. Hopefully, Eichel is the solution, and the coaches stay out of his and his teammates’ way.

**Here’s the full interview with Jack Eichel on the Missin Curfew Podcast.**

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9 Comments

  1. Tim

    Are all the national hockey media brain dead? They throw names around and have no idea what there talking about. Who’s the flavor of the day is it Dadonov, Smith, Martinez, Brossiot, Karlsson and so on. First you need a good goalie Lehner they may have played Brossiot last night as an addition for a trade. Next to win a cup you need a good defense and trading Martinez would be ludicrous. With Eichel we’ve increased our firepower so like I said in my last post the only logical subtraction of 10 million dollars would be Janmark, Dadonov, and Brossiot done deal. In my opinion if they do anything else they should be fired to break up what we have going. Lastly in my last post Reilly Smith is a Vegas Golden Knight and extend his contract for two years and quit dickin him around. Show some class. It’s so simple and all this fake news nonsense in my opinion aren’t creditable journalist.

  2. I agree on all you posted, but I feel Brossoit is a valuable backup to Lehner, and the team NEEDS to be able to rely on him to give Lehner a rest. He seems to be doing that, would hate to see him go.

    • Tim

      Here’s my out of the box thought. First Lehner is #1 Logan Thompson #2 if it doesn’t work you have until March 21st trade deadline to upgrade if necessary. Here’s my real out of the box thought. We traded Payton Krebs to Buffalo they need a goalie we give them Brossoit a young pretty good goalie and our 3rd round in this years draft and they give us Payton Krebs back. Krebs is doing at best decent but not lightning the lamp like Tuch. Buffalo getting a goalie and another draft pick seems like a win win.

      • You’re outta your mind. A 29 year old backup goalie and a third round pick for Krebs??! Not in a million years! Krebs is a young, intelligent forward that has a very high ceiling. He already has chemistry with Tuch and has many, many years to grow with our young core going forward. He’s wayyy to valuable to what we’re building right now. Kudos to Vegas for building a solid team, they’re fun to watch and I pull for them in the playoffs. That being said, give our Sabres a year or two to develop & gel and we’ll soon have something special to watch in the playoffs too.

  3. Blitz

    Scottie Upshall was another player that was an absolute beast in the WHL (kamloops), but had a total blah NHL career. It’s amazing how ultra talent at one level doesn’t transfer to the next. He was a little bitch though and most opposing players and fans couldn’t stand him. Maybe that was the secret sauce for his pro career let down.

    As for the power play and the insertion of Eichel, I’ll believe it when I see it. Petra still can’t one-time a pass, he is a gatherer. Players just stop moving. You can barely see the color of Dadinov’s jersey in the middle with opposing players around him and, maybe because of that, he never gets the puck. Most movement and setup attempts forward get stalled and end up being thrown back to the points for low percentage shots with no traffic in front of the goalie. The Patches setup over and over is obvious. I could go on and on, but if Eichel can change this, sweet, I am all for it.

    • The Vegas PP is, unfortunately, predictable AND unsuccessful. Eichel feels he can bring the experience and changes we need…hope coach gives him the opportunity to make their PP relevant to their game.

    • Daryl

      I’m with you Blitz… They brought Petra in and he was going to help fix the PP as the captain of the Unit and it hasn’t worked yet. Eichel might be the answer but I’ll ait on my enthusiasm until I see it

  4. Craig

    Lehner and Kolisar have to go. Keep the lineup intact. Lehner is 2 mil max. Terrible decision. Kolisar is a turnover magnet.

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