This season, diehard VGK fan and legendary combat sports columnist Kevin Iole will be delivering columns a few times a month on Sundays.
There are six games remaining in the regular season for the Golden Knights and they still have a chance to qualify for the Stanley Cup playoffs. Considering the voluminous amount of injuries they’ve suffered this season, that is fairly remarkable.
Of those six, we can probably count on winning home games against New Jersey and San Jose and a road game at Chicago. If they lose any of the games against the Devils, Sharks, or Blackhawks then they don’t deserve to qualify for the playoffs in the first place.
So, while the Knights will need help, their fate will probably come down to Wednesday’s home game against Washington and road games against Dallas and St. Louis. They’ll probably need to win two of those three to get in.
Saturday’s 4-0 loss in Edmonton simply highlighted the issue this team has had going back to their two months in the bubble in 2020: They can’t score when it matters most.
The problem is they don’t have one of those players who is dominant in front of the net, ideally a big guy, who can tip pucks and put in rebounds.
The goaltending on this team remains a huge question mark. Even if they get into the playoffs, they’ll rely on two goaltenders who are unproven in the postseason. At his absolute best, Lehner is a good enough goalkeeper to win the Cup with, but he hasn’t been near his best after a solid first month and his health is questionable.
When — if — he returns this season, he’ll have zero margin of error.
Thompson is a rookie and while rookies have come in late in the season and led their teams to a Cup (think Ken Dryden long ago and Jordan Binnington recently), the odds that Thompson could duplicate those runs are massively against him.
And so, the Knights will need to score, which has been a significant problem for them in recent postseasons.
They cry out for what has traditionally been regarded in the NHL as a power forward. Guys like John LeClair and Brendan Shanahan years ago would clean up in front of the net. They’d make life difficult for both defensemen and goaltenders and they had an uncanny ability to either tip a shot while screening the goalie or grabbing a rebound quickly and jamming it into the net.
The heat map from the Edmonton game shows just how badly the Knights lack that quality. Everything was from the perimeter. Now, guys who are 6-3, 230 pounds, and have soft hands aren’t hanging around on the waiver wire, but it doesn’t need to be a behemoth.
Pittsburgh, which had one of the best power forwards in recent NHL history in Kevin Stevens, now features a relatively small player, Jake Guentzel, who does just that.
Guentzel is a slight 5-11, 180-pound winger, but he is great in front of the net and scores a ton of goals within six feet of the blue paint. Dino Ciccarelli was the same size as Guentzel but scored more than 600 goals and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame.
Islanders captain Anders Lee is 6-3, 235, and more of the prototypical power forward who is dangerous and gets most of his goals with his butt touching the netminder.
Either way, the Golden Knights don’t have that. And those are the kinds of players you need to win in the playoffs.
The Knights scored 12 goals in the last eight games in the bubble in 2020, the final three games against Vancouver and the five-game series defeat to Dallas. Vegas outshot and out-chanced their opponents in most of those games, but couldn’t put the rebounds into the net.
A LeClair-type player would have made a massive difference.
Then, in the shocking six-game series lost to Montreal in the semifinals last year, the Knights only scored 13 goals. That’s even worse than it looks, because they got four in the series opener and then just nine in the remaining five games.
Again, a lack of a weapon down low was their downfall.
Their best goal scorers, Pacioretty and Jonathan Marchessault, are shooters. Jack Eichel is the kind of player who scores down low and gets most of his goals between the circles, but he’s a lot easier to defend whenever everyone else is kept to the perimeter.
Coach Peter DeBoer has kept Eichel away from Pacioretty and captain Mark Stone for the most part since Stone’s return from injury last week. Stone still looks labored skating at times and probably isn’t nearly fully healthy.
But the Knights need their three best players playing together and on the ice the most with the playoffs on the line. The combination of them together would give them a massive size advantage over other clubs.
Eichel and Pacioretty are each 6-2, 215 pounds. Stone is 6-3, 202 pounds. Starting with New Jersey, DeBoer should put them together, especially if Stone’s legs are strong enough to play the minutes that they’ll need him to play.
We have to assume at this point that Reilly Smith won’t be back during the regular season because if he were anywhere near healthy enough to play, he’d be playing considering the magnitude of the games.
Pair Nic Roy with William Karlsson and Marchessault and have a third line of Chandler Stevenson, Evgenii Dadonov, and Mattias Janmark.
That, to me, would give them their best opportunity at qualifying.
If at some point, they’re fully healthy, they’ll have a chance to win, though I think the goaltending questions and the lack of cohesion make it unlikely they’ll be able to string together 16 wins in the postseason.
Their defense is good enough to win the Cup, particularly if Nic Hague returns and they have a top seven of Alex Pietrangelo, Shea Theodore, Alec Martinez, Brayden McNab, Zach Whitecloud, Ben Hutton, and Hague.
Their forwards are good, and an Eichel-Stone-Pacioretty line could be one of the best in the league.
But the Knights going to have to show they can score in the dirty areas when it matters the most, and they haven’t shown that in the biggest games over the last couple of seasons.
They need help to qualify, but if they get in, that old goal-scoring bugaboo is something they need to fix right away.
**You can find all of Kevin’s tremendous boxing and MMA work at Yahoo Sports here.**
But, but but wait! Keegan Kolesar is our “developing power F”! Right? ROTFLMAO. How many more years are we going to have to wait before this flower even begins to bud?
Here’s an outlook on the remaining games and playoff possibilities:
The Kings have 90 points with 5 games remaining. If they win out they have 100 points and Vegas is eliminated.
Kings 5-0, Vegas Eliminated
Kings 4-1, 98 points, Vegas must go 6-0, or 5-0-1 (slim chance)
Kings 3-2, 96 points, Vegas must go at least 4-1-1 (slim chance)
Kings 2-3, 94 points, Vegas must go at least 3-2-1 (possible)
Kings 1-4. 92 pointes, Vegas must go at least 2-3-1 (better yet)
19 Apr at ANA
21 Apr CHI
23 Apr ANA
27 Apr at SEA
28 Apr at VAN
The Kings are going to be the favorite in every single one of these remaining games. We have to hope that ANA takes 1 of those, Seattle 1, and VAN wins on the 28th. That’s 2-3 with the Kings finishing with 94 points. VGK will have to go 3-2-1 in order to tie the Kings in points in order to take 3rd place in the Pacific and eliminate them.
Before you assume that LA is our only shot, take a look at Nashville. They are getting worked by the Blues right now, and that loss puts them 4 pts up with an equal number of games.
Their remaining 6 games include only one layup (AZ), and 5 very tough games:
Very possible they could go 2-4 or worse.
Kevin is restating what most of the posters here have been saying for at least six months, so no new ground. Yesterday should have been a balls to the wall game, but was an epic failure. We can also mention hundreds of players from the past we would love to have in front of the opposing goalie. The problem is we are in mid-April 2022, and due to mismanagement and injuries, we are where we are. BB in Henderson is lighting up the DLC. Maybe he will pan out someday. Eichel is stranded on helicopter lines with no wings.
the hockey God
BB won’t get those looks in NHL, you know it, I know it, everyone knows it. The NHL opposition take away every single one of those open slots BB had
Don’t have time right now, but when I do ill post why PDB’s system is a flawed gimmick one that’ll never win Cup no matter what kind of talent he has (see 2012 NJD).
Nobody was beating LA in 2012
Maybe, maybe not… NJD were a stacked team with an NHL top tier goalie…. they very possibly could have won the Cup that year
Disagree, and really not such a smart comment. Anyone can win in a 7 game series.
Sure..sabres could beat the AVS in a seven game series…NOT
Looking forward to it. For the most part I was fairly supportive of Peter DeBoer towards the beginning of the season mainly because of his outstanding win loss record, however I have come around to see what most others have which must be a coaching issue. I can’t understand how they can’t score and especially on the power play. However, it is not 100% clear to me so if you could shed some light on that that would be great. Management adds Pietrangelo, Eichel and Dadonov and the power-play still sucks. I don’t understand.
Foley does not seem like the most patient person and I don’t see DeBoer keeping his job even if they make the playoffs and win one round.
THE hockey God
any other coach in league would have had VGK going the route of the HABS due to all injuries and covid.
i say they keep PDB. If they let him go it will show , once again, Foley doesn’t know anything about NHL hockey or how to run a hockey team. Where has he ever been successful in prior sporting venture ? name one enterprise, I dare you. I double dare you.
Regina is looking good in near future.
THG…BB won’t get those looks, and neither do the guys on the VGK roster. LOL.
THE hockey God
a wise man once said
‘neither do the guys on VGK roster”
I’ll add this….. they need to improve their PP. It goes along with scoring but it’s just as big of an issue as not scoring when 5-on-5
Was looking at power-play points in a three-year span between 2018-19 to 2020-21 seasons. I’m not including this year’s stats.
Pietrangelo ranked 14th and Shea Theodore ranked 20th among defenceman power-play points.
Jack Eichel ranked 17th among forwards in spite of missing so many games. Probably may have been top 7 or 8 if not injured.
Mark Stone ranked 35th just behind Auston Matthews who was 34th. Pacioretty ranked 65th.
Evgeni Dadonov had 20 power-play goals over that span tied with Evgeni Malkin and Patrick Kane. Stone and Pacioretty had 19 each. It wasn’t just lip service when they said they acquired Dadonov to help the power play, they definitely had good intentions in mind.
It seems to me that personnel is not the issue. They have good enough players to play the power-play. Other than coaching what else can it be?
No, the big issue here is Deboer’s very flawed system. I will explain it only this once, because it’s exhaustive to break it all down. Pete believes the way to win is to constantly activate dmen in the o-zone while cycling forwards to the side. This is reason in last 2 play offs why NEXT TO NO FORWARD presence IN FRONT of the net.
They have to cycle away from net when dmen are pinched and be ready to back check – this wears out forwards = reason VGK runs into scoring issues under PDB – forwards get gassed fast, especially when they are double shifting.
PDB has made several un factual statements about playoff hockey. His biggest error is when he says ” the rush is taken away in playoff hockey.” This is factually wrong. PDB says this as an excuse for his flawed system.
Peter never makes stylistic adjustments, ever. He is incapable of new thoughts and unflexible. Proof? His power play. No matter who he puts on it, it’s the same poor easily defended system. Bumpers don’t move, there’s no cycle but for the same old dmen wasted possession point shots.
It’s simple and I hope Ken is reading this. When you demand your dmen keep pinching in and/or keep taking point shots without cycling forwards to the net rather than to the wall to back check, you will burn out your forwards.
Hockey is simple, PDB makes it complex and players just get burnt out on it. This is why after 3 years or so, his teams quit on him. Players will constantly be injured as Peter demands TOO MUCH DURING REGULAR SEASON.
The idea is to be more offensive orientated in regular season and take more risks, less emphasis on CONSTANT forward back checking, hitting, and 2 way play, more on break outs. Now, VGK front office is to blame here as well giving Peter the wrong personel. PDB system absolutely demands 4 line depth.
Btw, how is Tuch doing on Buffalo?
Why has WK’s goal scooring dried up? Is it a coincedence this happened as soon as PDB became coach? It’s not.
PDB is a gimmick coach. KM is a bad GM without understanding that 4 line depth wins cups, not top heavy teams and ESPECIALLY a top heavy team under a coach like PDB, who demands 2 way effort at all times.
blue line point shots with forwards cycling on side wall INSTEAD OF CRASHING THE NET on/in cycle is a system that will produce low danger chances. It will produce lots of SOG’s, but lower quality. It wears out forwards, especially on a team that lacks 4 line depth. It needs a ton of 2 way forwards to have a shot at success (why did KM grab Dadonov, a poor 2 way player when he could have signed Denault, a fantastic D Forward?).
Dmen: Dmen also get worn out in PDB’s system. Ever notice how much better Petro is in the playoffs?
To end, PDB’s system is not condusive to winning a Cup. “Keep it simple stupid” is, Also;
PDB clearly said BEFORE the Oilers game ( the result of it) would not make or break team’s chances at postseason. Is this the kind of talk a team should hear? It’s loser talk.
Want to ever win a Cup? Will never happen with PDB as head coach, and I’d bet you 100k on that.
Wow. This sums up how I feel about DeBoer and his system, and the front office PERFECTLY. Great read and analysis is spot on.
Thanks, Howard, for pointing out the obvious to those who don’t recognize what has been happening. No question you are one of the realists who post. The sad thing here is management’s failure to recognize the situation from the get-go when hiring PDB as his history duplicates itself everywhere he has been. It was a knee jerk reaction not unlike many others the FO has been guilty of. I am certain I don’t have to list names concerning the above statement. Not sure making the playoffs is a good thing or not despite hoping they will but seriously question that will be the case. For PeteP benefit that is not a negative just not terribly optimistic. LOL
Howard, not to say that is not worth a read with points to be considered, but nothwithstanding experience you may have coaching hockey, you are an armchair coach which involves deductive guesswork on your part and wishful thinking. This sort of analysis serves to embolden the anti-DeBoer sentiment among the “realists” here. In a way I hate to see them buy it hook line and sinker just because it’s what they want to hear. I am a realist myself and of late have been entertaining the notion we could use a coaching change. The difference between me and certain others is that I make no pretenses on my qualifications to critique NHL coaching. I don’t have them.
If you are serious about analysis and want to do more than pass it along to those who are eager to embrace it’s anti-DeBoer slant, I suggest to put together something a lot more comprehensive and detailed backed by data and email it to McCrimmon. I’m not sure you will take on that challenge, however I recently emailed him and got a response so you might consider it. In the interim I will try to keep my mind open as regards your critique. I thought about rebutting it point for point as I do see a number of holes and contradictions.
So, because he isn’t an NHL coach, asks mostly because you disagree worth his analysis, you call him an armchair coach and his post anti-PDB and basically dismiss his while analysts of PDB and his system. I guarantee you that if his analysis supported PDB and his system, your take and tne would be 100% reversed!!!
Here Daryl, I’ll say good things about PDB;
1. He can take a bad team (at first hired) and make them a respectable team because he insists on 2 way play (eventually burns out teams)
2. He is calm, doesn’t lose his ‘stuff’ like Gallant sometimes did.
3. (in relation to 1) He gets the most out of a team for about 3 years before said team flames out, partly because of PDB, partly because of the front offices he worked for.
I sat there watching last 2 conference semis seeing every issue and seeing PDB not making a single adjustment to fix them.
I just very strongly believe that no matter which players you give Peter, if he continues to force-feed his system (likely) without being flexible, he will NEVER WIN A CUP.
Now u guys want to win a Cup or what man? If so, then PDB has to go, PERIOD.
I don’t necessarily disagree with all his points I just know enough about this to know better as a fan than to take another fan’s critique of the coach as gospel. We’re all armchairs guys over here, give me a break. As far as a more favorable view of DeBoer I would probably not reject it. If you read through all my stuff today though you’ll see I’m warming up to the notion DeBoer could lose his job over the PP and that it would be warranted. My mind is not made yet however. We lost to MTL going 0-15 on the PP so I feel pretty strongly about the situation and know it should be corrected no later than early next season. It’s way more reasonable for an armchair guy to make that simple call than it is to get highly technical on all the on ice stuff. I attend the practices. Most of don’t know enough about what we are talking about.
As an experienced and qualified armchair GM & Coach, I agree with all of Howard’s points. Is he right? Well, the proof will be in the final result(s). KM & PDB will get a get out of jail free card this year due to the number of injuries. While I am done with Lehner, Vegas isn’t. He’s got a long term contract and will no doubt be the starter for at least 1 more year. He’s not a fit for the DeBoer system. In the meantime, I feel good about Logan backing him up until he eventually takes over the starting job.
Being an armchair GM & Coach is so much more fun than just being a fan! The hours are excellent but the pay isn’t! LOL.
I also do not think PDB will be fired after the season. Injuries will give him a viable excuse and he will be kept around. I do however, believe Spott should be fired. If he is not and the PP continues to struggle net year like it has been, then that falls on PDB and he should be fired mid-season next year.
Why would I mail anything to Kelly, who is a huge part of the problem and is just as inflexible as PDB? VGK needs to clean house of them all and get better hockey men in there to replace a front office who basically got very lucky in year one and since then, believes they’re ‘smarter’ than everyone else. This is up to the owner here. If he keeps these people on board, then he can watch fans dissapear/bad ticket sales, and Foley isn’t exactly super loaded anymore with a ton of sunken cost into this team.
Vegas won’t support losers. I’ve been living in this area since the 70’s – they never have and they will support a loser.
“I’m not sure you will take on that challenge, however I recently emailed him and got a response so you might consider it.”
How much does Foley want to pay me? KM responded to you? LOL – further proof he’s not fit to be an NHL executive – he shouldn’t respond to any email from any fan.
KM is even a bigger issue than PDB, so why would I want to mail him? I’d just tell him to fire himself! I made a post on KM’s many idiotic decisions, signings, etc, etc.
Let me once again make this VERY CLEAR. PDB is not not the main issue, Vegas front office is. Instead of being humble and realizing that they made some good decisions that were SUPER FORTUNATE for them in year one, IT WENT TO THEIR COLLECTIVE HEADS and they became arrogant and believed their OWN BS hype.
Listening to PDB, he’s cool enough..
Listening to KM talk, revolts me – I do not like that man in the slightest.
But, I also strongly believe (based on his flawed system) that PDB will never win a Cup with any team. I think he’s an over all ok coach, but his main issue is his total lack of flexibility to make even the most simple of changes. Everything with Pete always has to be overly complex, insistent, gimmicky.
Your armchair analysis I commented on was for DeBoer not McCrimmon. The reason for laying it out with all the data to back it up in an email would be an exercise in presenting it like it was actually a legitimate data-based proposal to replace DeBoer. I’m not sure you can do that, in fact there is no doubt you lack the qualifications for it. I get your point that emailing him would likely not get you anywhere as far as getting DeBoer fired but at least you could prove to yourself and us if you were to share it that you completely know what you are doing. Look, I’m not dismissing the points you laid out, in fact I am saving them for future reference.
I admit I’m not firmly of the belief just yet that DeBoer should be fired although I am actually considering he could and should be over the PP, it’s just that your analysis is low hanging fruit as far as it being susceptible to criticism. I do respect your observations. For a fan you know a thing or two about on-ice strategies, perhaps more than I.
Ahhhh Now I understand why you agreed with me that WK has ptsd and forgot how to be a forward because he’s been playing as a dman at the damn blue line for the last few seasons ! .makes me sick .Total misuse of talent.
And yes McCrimmon has no NHL pedigree .I believe in my heart he pressured McPhee and Foley and because both had only business credentials. They were convinced to let him run the ship .Still think this is an ego know it all frustrated ex coach / napoleon complex GM .annnd going further I would bet it was him and Gallant that were clashing on coaching .I remember how red in the face and frustrated Gallant looked prior to being fired .This is just my take .I could be totally wrong but I’d bet I’m right .His hires surround his time with the Wheat Kings which truth be told is limited .
I still do not understand why Ryan Craig hasn’t been on the hot seat .(ex brandon wheat king is why)
Interesting that you mention the dirty areas, as the Silver Knights are also allergic to blue paint. It needs to be taught throughout the organization. Last time I checked, greezy goals count the same as highlight ones.
Henderson, I find myself yelling at the TV, ” take it to the goal, damn it! Shots from the neutral zone, esp when NO ONE is near the net to follow up, is just a waste. They take a LOT of shots that way, but most are fruitless. One and DONE. They even practiced this @ practice! The PP wastes time passing the puck around from a distance, then predictably a winger takes the shot– again, with NO ONE at net to follow up. Few second shots. MADDENING!!
Howard, thanks for the post and the work you put into it explaining it. I’m not interested in disputing your thoughts. How could I? Like I said I think they have the personnel but the power-play is garbage so probably must be on the couch.
But……. San Jose power play under Pete DeBoer from 2015-16 to 2018-19 under his guidance was 20.9% and 6th best in the league. This is cumulative stats from those three full seasons.
See attached link.
Galdom, DeBoer’s success with the PP at SJ seems to conflict with the criticism of the DeBoer “system” in Vegas. How do we reconcile that?
Having a system work at one organization for a couple of years compared to an overall career does not conflict with his overall statement. And yes I’m bringing this up again, but the Pacific is the weakest conference and that is the only plac his system looked likt it might have worked. I’d also love to k ow how his system worked from his 1st Unit compared to his 2d Unit. Were both Units successful?
His comments were detailed his overall career and you seem to focus on one small team
I actually think you make Howard’s case even stronger. In San Jose, DeBoer had a roster that likely fit his “system”.
And therein lies the problem. PDB has no ability to tailor or modify his system to fit the roster he has here in Vegas. In San Jose, the goaltending was pretty damn good as well in 2015-2016.
Link just brings you to the nhl.com page. But if you click on stats then click on Teams then click on by season and plug-in those three seasons it will show you the cumulative power-play stats from those three seasons that DeBoer was coaching San Jose and he had the sixth best power-play in the league.
Galdom, I remained supportive of DeBoer as well coming into this season owing to his superior regular season record here and stellar sereies win vs. COL which Ken considers brilliant coaching. I probably came into the season wanting to believe the loss to MTL had a lot to do with the lack of elite 1C causing me to push for the Eichel trade and less to do with De Boer—however being the analytical realist I am, I keep my mind open. In fact, of late I have had my own doubts about DeBoer’s system, however to be realistic I am not qualified to do a definitive critique of it unlike the armchair coaches here who claim to have it all figured out. The NHL coach landscape is littered with the bodies of DeBoer and many others who have strong postseason records and credible postseason ones but so far have come up short in the third or fourth round, a fate Barry Trotz narrowly escaped. I am definitely keeping my mind open to all notions relating to DeBoer’s prospective shortcomings however. Again, being the realist I am when it comes to my own qualifications and the team in general, I am not prepared to jump on the anti-DeBoer coaching method bandwagon at this time. I may get there though.
The NHL coach landscape is littered with the bodies of DeBoer and many others who have strong REGULAR SEASON records and credible postseason ones
You could use an edit feature here.
PP derides ArmChair Coaches! The derision is dripping with sarcasm. But, he admits that his rock solid faith in the DeBoering System is not as strong as it once was!
As a seasoned ArmChair coach I take great umbrage when pundits disparage my qualifications. But, I respect everyone’s opinion even those who believe that DeBoer’s system, despite his record and trends of ruining good teams.
You may not yet be jumping on the anti-DeBoer bandwagon, but I see you are beginning to stretch those legs and you’re asking the right questions.
R-R, I don’t see how one can not deride armchair coaching. You know I’m right we don’t know jack compared to the coach himself. C’mon. The PP is a separate issue. We can say if it has a chronic problem it’s on the coach. One could say the same about really deficient offense and defense but given this year’s challenges with the injuries that is not realistic. As I posted below, even with the injuries VGK is still in the top half of the league in G and GA—the bottom of then top half but still the top half.
You’re right though my mind stays open, even to the tune of DeBoer ruining good teams. With this season’s injuries though it’s too early to know. That is the main narrative of the anti-Deboer folks however, he ruins every team he coaches. You don’t think it’s possible he gets better over time? Most people do the longer they do something ie. learn from mistakes.
Come on PP – you’re too serious man. My post was a bit tongue in cheek….lighten up.
On another note, my niece Danielle is running in the Boston Marathon today. She’s on a 8.35 minute mile pace and looks to finish around 3:40 today!
On another note. The bandages were removed today from my knee surgery!
“That is the main narrative of the anti-Deboer folks however, he ruins every team he coaches.”
You can say what you want we simply look at his record for each team he coaches. Have those team’s records gotten better or worse???
This is where you are absolutely WRONG;
“You know I’m right we don’t know jack compared to the coach himself.”
You might not know jack, but many of us more knowledgable fans do know as much, if not more than PDB.
You absolutely missed my whole original point so I will make this even easier;
HOCKEY IS A SIMPLE GAME, PDB (and KM, The GM) MAKES IT COMPLEX WHEN IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE.
AN ARROGANT COACH and arrogant front office whom the latter have singlehandily weakened this team year by year since year one.
KM’s front office approach has been proven UNSUCCESSFUL time and time again in The NHL. Top heavy teams NEVER WIN CUPS.
When you go out and OVERPAY for those ‘shiny new toys,’ you hamstring your team. We saw that last year when team often could not suit up the players per game because of cap issues.
Again, NHL is simple – 4 lines of depth wins Cups, solid (doesn’t need to be great, just solid) tending wins Cups, simple systems win Cups, not over thought arrogant ones. Passion wins Cups, not over analysis (which you think I’m doing when all I’m advocating for is simplistic adjustments).
Lacking the 4 line depth I don’t put on PDB. What I put on his is his utter lack of flexibility, his inability to make SIMPLE adjustments, his stubborn insistance to stick to an overly complex system at ANY COST, including countless injuries from blocking shots, from gassing out forwards demanding ALL OF THEM AT ALL TIMES 2 WAY PLAY + more.
Give PDB the best talent in NHL, and he will do anything to handicap that team with complexity where a truly great coach would keep it simple, hence “KEEP IT SIMPLE, STUPID.”
The combo of Vegas front office with PDB equates to not getting the job done. PDB is an ok coach to help a team at first, but his track record clearly proves that he wears out his welcome in about 3 to 4 years and his teams either quit on him or become massively injured.
The bigger problem here is Mckrimmon or “KM” for short and GMP.
As far as PDB – give him a team deeper than the Pacific Ocean, he may, MAY win a Cup but that would be only way in my strongest opinion. Modern NHL salary cap dictates that’s VERY UNLIKELY TO HAPPEN.
Trying to dig up specifics on Scotty Bowman’s on-ice strategies. So far I’ve come up short. One thing I refuse to do is play armchair coach and make a fool of myself lol. This Ken Dryden book on Bowman is probably a good read.
Why make a fool of yourself? Are you too ‘intellectually challenged’ to understand a basic game? Ken learned it fast some 5 years ago.
You know I meant make a fool of myself in trying to outthink the coach. I am not qualified to do that, nor are you, nor is Ken. Ken knows that and I know it. You on the other hand are convinced you know more than DeBoer or at least put forth that you in making your points. It takes a fool to buy into that. I already conceded to you above that I respect your observations and have even have even saved your analysis. Hopefully you can be garcious and acknowledge it.
How do you know none of these people have ever coached? Sorry ,Howard is pretty spot on .what’s kind of amazing to me is ITS RIGHT ON DISPLAY AND HAS BEEN ..lol
Like it’s blatantly not that hard to figure out .cmon none of you guys except Howard noticed that William Karlsson was never playing his position and they had him cycle to the freakin blue line? And that’s only 1 itsy bitsy thing .There’s a ton .He’s right .It’s not that freakin difficult to see or figure out .I would or would’ve been not calling for peeps being fired if they DID SOMETHING DIFFERENT but they don’t! And btw .whomever said pply is just bad this yr is nuts .prior to Spott .Craig ran a shit pply as well .I’m hoping to God when P.Kane retires someone can lure him into an offensive coaching position here .because that little leprechaun is an offensive genius .IQ off the charts with hardly anyone around him annnd he knows how to make guys better .That’s what kind of offensive coach they need .someone with high hockey IQ . Again not a defensive coach .an offensive one .I’ve NEVER seen a pply this empty
Watching the scoreboard s as Nd blaming injury-What a bunch of whiners.
The first adversity this junior organization has endured and this is the analysis.
Just wait till the salary cap problem comes into focus next year, you look at your aging team and who you have coming up through the system.
That will really give you something to whine about.
Salary cap is easy. Smith, Dadonov and Brossoit. May be some cost to moving Dadonov and Brossoit but they have all the off season to figure it out. The prospects yeah yeah yeah could be deeper but how many teams have superstars in the wings? To get those you need to finish way down in the standings. Furthermore, assuming Stone’s back gets better they have several more decent years out of Petro, Stone and especially Eichel. Next year will be Pacioretty’s last say goodbye to $7m.
Brisson is the real deal. Tune in on AHLTV or head over to the DLC. We have a lot of good talent on the Silver Knights. I am not worried about the future at all.
I would like to see us keep the core of our guys together and somehow get back into the 1st round of the draft. We are going to need some cap in the next few years if we are going to promote any of our AHL’ers. Logan is signed for another year, and we should be smart about any deal we give him. His first VGK contract should be no more than 3 years and no more than $4million.
Developing a power forward like Kolesar shouldn’t take this long. He has almost all of the tools except he can’t shoot the puck. And, since he can’t fight, he isn’t worth much on the 4th line.
Omg Smith is the most versatile and one of the smartest guys on the team .I wish they had 2 smith’s right now for 1 either
Who is whining? Sounds like they’re pissed at management not players
PP, I thought Howard’s analysis was very smart even though it sort of contradicts with what the power-play success was in San Jose. This remains a mystery to me. If it’s not the coach then it’s the players but you can’t get rid of all the players. What usually happens in these situations is the coach gets canned because it is much easier to do. Then management hopes the players respond to a new coach and if that doesn’t happen then players start getting moved.
I wish I was smart enough to figure it out.
Galdom. you might check out my response to Howard above. Imo his analysis is worth a read but falls way short of being comprehensive. It’s definitely what the anti-DeBoer “realists” want to hear though. I don’t really put you in that group actually. Amazing isn’t how fans can think they understand coaching better than the coach himself especially one with an overall winning record and three trips to the Conference Final and higher? Pretty naive imo. Fans are fans is about the best spin I can put on it.
I guarantee you neither Ken, Mike or Jason over there at Goalie Interference are pushing for DeBoer’s ouster. They know better is why. Ken might be moving a little in that direction over the PP as I am but it’s just a thought not decided.
Actually make that four Conference Finals and higher not three (two Conference Finals and two Cup Finals).
How masjid of those Cup Finals and conference finals were after his first year at the helm? How many were 2 years or beyond after he took over a team?
Dearest Pete ,my dad and brothers are players of many sports and coaches .Howard is thisclose I’m fairly certain given MAYBE a few things .and that’s a maybe
Ken has already told you what the proble with the PP is – did you listen to his analysis?
Another poster on here which I believe was Daryl, asked you to take a look at SJS 1st and 2nd unit to see how each performed to make a more exact determination on the SJS success on PP.
Right about the coach since you cannot move all the players.
Changing the coach won’t address the front office issues this team has. In other words, it’s not entirely on PDB, he’s just one cog on a very loose wheel 🙂
I truly believe that no matter whom you give PDB to coach, that He will NEVER WIN a CUP. just like in NBA, no matter who Mike D’ Antoni had, he never won a Chip.
My honest opinion overall is that I place more responsibility here on Vegas front office, namely KM over PDB. KM and George someone managed to screw up someting that could have been a winner for years, to a certain upcoming multi-year disaster — See what happened in SJS to see our future. Idiot front office there DID THE EXACT SAME thing we are trying.
Honestly I remain in a quandary to do with DeBoer’s system and it’s overall effectiveness. Although I started skating at age six and was good enough to play high school varsity (same school as NHL’ers Shayne Gostisbehere and Shane Pinto) I was not exactly a student of the game at the time. What I remember the most was our coach (my trig and calculus teacher and a damn good skater himself) was always trying to get us to dump it in the zone and forecheck. Since the Knights came to town and I became a huge devoted fan I have become more a student of the game.
During the Gallant era I had no clue. When DeBoer came in is when I became more aware of five man defense ie. that forwards are key defensively not just the D. So I became more aware of the two way game and began hearing the term “200 ft. players” both forwards and Dmen. DeBoer I believed created a better defending team than the one under Gallant with more emphasis on forwards defending. I still don’t fully understand the nuances of postioning in all different situations, D-zone, N-zone and O-zone offensively and defensively but I’m gradually getting there.
The bottom line as I posted earlier is that I am not qualified to critique the entirety of what DeBoer does, his system, because I don’t fully understand it and few fans really do imo. I am however beginning to wonder though if he does not have to answer for the PP. The PP is a big deal. Forget about too many low danger shots, too much shot blocking etc. picking up an extra PP goal most games is key. Eichel indicated making the PP work is up to the players and although there must be some truth to that there almost has to be a coaching side. It may have been easier for Eichel to say that as he would be coming in new and the unit would need time to find chemistry with him. DeBoer must now answer for the PP and has had to for some time. In spite of it he’s put together an impressive win/loss performance here (maybe that why McCrimmon cuts him slack on the PP) but this season and the last playoffs the PP has been a real problem.
The VGK zone entry is putrid. They are getting their asses handed to them in the NZ or at the blue line. This team doesn’t handle the pressure well. All of that fancy ass passing in the NZ is getting picked off and resulting in odd man advantages against our weak goaltending.
The players bringing the puck up the ice need to be a lot more patient and stop implementing the press. There’s nothing wrong with relieving that pressure by back passing and skating around to tire out the other team. You rarely, extremely rarely see the VGK use this strategy. If they drop pass, it’s just one time and then they try to force it up the boards through 2, 3, and sometimes even 4 defenders before losing the puck.
Drop passing, skating, and taking of the pressure is a strategy that is ABSENT, completely ABSENT from the DeBoer System.
LoL Pistol, you JUST SAID (without realizing the problem) what the issue with PDB is >
” When DeBoer came in is when I became more aware of five man defense ie. that forwards are key defensively not just the D. So I became more aware of the two way game and began hearing the term “200 ft. players” both forwards and Dmen..”
Hence you have identified the flaw in PDB’s flawed system. Now, please go back and read my original post in this thread.
PDB’s very system dictates DMEN must take more scoring responsibility, while forwards take more 2 way defensive responsibility – THAT ISN’T CUP WINNING HOCKEY and I explained why in exaction.
Gallant’s system is exactly as you played as you described – SIMPLE.
The absolute worst thing you can instill on NHL players IS MAKE THEM THINK TOO MUCH, force wings to constantly back check, force them cycling to the side wall all the time to get into position to back check from the over pinch. PETER DEBOER SYSTEM CAUSES EXCESSIVE PLAYER INJURIES – from insisting that everyone block shots all the time (82 game season, this is an absurd ask on players)..
Wingers by nature like to BREAK OUT and rush = Gallant’s system in which Karlsson and Smith excelled in, not have to worry about being a permanent Philip Denault. Now, playoff hockey we will see forwards commit more to 2 way play, BUT ASKING THEM FOR AN ENTIRE SEASON TO DO SO will see them injured and gassed out for a Cup run. THIS IS WHY VGK runs into terrible scoring droughts – THEY ARE GASSED from overworking in the regular season.
How you think an under average Habs team made final last year? THEY WERE FRESH from adding new guys late, barely got in.
KM loves PDB because KM is also very arrogant. All one has to do is listen to that man speak to know this, lol?
Keeping things simple is the answer. NHL players aren’t super IQ “Bobby Fischers,”
Think I’m wrong? Ok, ask yourself how many times over the last 2 conference semis you were upset that no one was crashing net, no net presence? Why PP kept failing?
NOTHING HAS CHANGED, so even if we make playoffs, next to no shot at Cup.
Again, I have to agree with Howard. Hockey at the NHL level is instinctive and players need to play within themselves and to their own strengths. PDB’s “system” forces players to play outside of their strengths for long periods of time. This results in player time on ice using their strengths being less. This was the beauty of Gallant’s simplicity to the game, and that strategy is now being successful in New York (Rangers).
I am with Howard, The VGK cannot win a cup with PDB, and this front office hasn’t shown me that it is building a team with any sense of consistency. They’ve been throwing cash at it for sure, but it’s been a reckless endeavor that has the team actually regressing, not progressing.
I think what we are witnessing is the beginning of the end, not the other way around.
As I indicated below I am learning from this discussion and intend to address this post and possibly your original one point by point a few hours from now. I look forward to you checking it out later. Tia.
“I posted earlier is that I am not qualified to critique the entirety of what DeBoer does, his system, because I don’t fully understand it and few fans really do imo.”
Really? Not to be rude, but are you that dumb? Few fans understand it? lol, yes that would be right, we don’t understand why he insists on a system that 1, injures players continually, demands everyone 2 way play for 82 games, and don’t understand why he remains a stubborn bore in the face of his system causing many issues.
Saying most fans don’t understand his system? Well, Vegas fans tend to know very little about hockey, so I will accept that as true, but this ain’t nuclear science man, IT’S HOCKEY for the love of Pete’s sake! It’s players aren’t exactly the poster men for intellectual forrtitude and they ain’t pretty, with most of them missing multiple teeth and some scarred from excessive fighting.
Let me try again, HOCKEY IS A SIMPLE GAME.
PDB’s system is easy to understand, but HARD TO PLAY IN. Not thought wise, PHYSICALLY WISE.
Howard where our disconnect is, you feel qualified to submit a comprehensive data-driven analysis supporting the firing of DeBoer, whereas I am admitting I am not qualified to. I don’t really think you are either but in spite of that you have made a number of points worthy of my consideration, in fact thanks to your analysis this has been one of the more illuminating days I have spent here. Hope you appreciate that.
Gallant had wayyyyyyyy less high end personnel available to him
Pete – no reason to “remain in a quandary to do with DeBoer’s system and it’s overall effectiveness” – pretty simple and you obviously have an intense interest in the game “it is not working”. What else has to be said – doing the same things over and over that’s not working and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. Even the most,( optimistic and realistic person) your description of yourself, knows that.
I wanted to let you know I responded to you at the bottom of the thread for the EDM game.
There was an additional response (the response to your post) above the one that appears in the link. The second link attempts to capture it but you still need to scroll up.
If Deboer’s system has been so ineffective we need to explain these results:
1. The first 49 games of 2019-20 are Gallant. I did not try to break it down but of course owing to the DeBoer’s much higher win rate for the last 33 games of the season his G/game and GA/game are more favorable than the season averages.
2. Obviously 2021-22 is severely injury impacted. Even with that both G and GA rank in the top half.
2019-20: G/game: 3.22 (8th)—GA/game: 2.74 (5th)
2020-21: G/game: 3.39 (3rd)—GA/game: 2.18 (1st)
2021-22: G/game: 3.16 (14th)—GA/game: 2.96 (tied 15th)
DeBoer’s system is not performing. Yeah right.
The breakdowns vs. DAL and MTL remain something of an enigma imo. We can armchair coach criticize from here to kingdom come but the fact is it’s easy in hindsight and does not really address what should be done other than fix the PP and bring an elite 1C. Not saying there are not other issues but not being an NHL coach I will not attempt to armchair it any further.
R-R, does this include last season and the last 33 games of 2019-20? If so, the results are good without it. I doubt this is really absent from the DeBoer system. Is it not NHL 101? I don’t really know.
“Drop passing, skating, and taking of the pressure is a strategy that is ABSENT, completely ABSENT from the DeBoer System.”
And as for the weak division argument last season I don’t see the top four (COL, VGK, MIN and STL) as being markedly “weaker” than the other divisions. Each had a similar top four.
You judge the strength of a conference from top to bottom, you don’t just look at the best teams. And Minn and STL were not that strong of teams that year
>>Liked Daryl’s comment.
That’s true, only COL was a threat to the VGK in the west. MIN was good but not as good as COL, and STL wasn’t as good either.
You’re right the West bottom four were the weakest. The might Avs benefited from that too winning the President’s Trophy. VGK was good enough to handle them in round two though. We need to credit DeBoer and the team for that. Are you listening Howard?
If you credit PDB for winning that series then it’s only fair to blame PDB for losing the next series, no??? As I said, PDB is not a horrible coach and his team can win games/series, he just isn’t good enough to do it on a consistent series
And what are the stats outside the Pacific?
PP -Don’t feel badly though as most people aren’t cut for metric analysis. This includes KM btw.
Regular season means very little. There was no reason to fire Gallant other than front office being pissed off about game 7 to SJS the postseason prior, where Gallant and his team unfortunately became unglued by an all time BAD CALL (Gallant messed up by losing his cool when a timeout could have calmed team down, u dont ever give up 4 goals on any one pp ever).
If FO wanted to change coaches fine, but to change mid season when team was still a winning one coming off a 4 game losing streak (happens to the best of teams) was a very bad idea. Fortunately, the ‘lock down’ from Covid made it more like an after season hire.
Only fire coaches after a season and/or if they have become so bad that you got no choice.
VGK front office over a very short time has helped make NHL fans hate VGK. There is a pattern to Vegas FO that in my strong opinion, is a very alarming one.
Again, 100% agree with Howard. The firing of Gallant mid-season made zero sense to me as well as to most of the fan base. This was a gut punch to team as well as the fan base. There was no reason for it.
R-R forget about the fan base imo unless you think their support for the coach is so important. Players and results are what matters. I guess in firing Gallant the assumption is first that we have all the info on why and second that Murray Craven and McPhee are complete incompetents. In any case DeBoer came in and turned the season around from just under .500. The issue with firing Gallant remains that us armchair experts know that he is a better coach and more fit for this team than DeBoer. I can’t make that claim and know for sure I’m right.
Gallant could have had a gambling problem, drinking problem other personal issues. Not sure we ever considered that. I just thought season three was dragging and would not get better possibly miss the playoffs.
@PP…. Think of VGK without Thompson and RL in net…. That was basically VGK during that time period after MAF had his family emergency. The tram started to look a lot better and things had improved and was on the right track when Gallant was fired
Howard by metric analysis if you are referring to my ranking the DeBoer tenure according to G and GA per game, that is very simple. Are not those two simple metrics not accurate gauges of performance?
You’re right about the playoffs mattering more than the regular season but to call it meaningless? I suppose, if your team is so good making the postseason is assured. Regular season is important to build chemistry. True need to limit injuries.
“If Deboer’s system has been so ineffective we need to explain these results.”
Why did PDB get fired 2 times before taking Vegas job? Why did his prior 2 teams become over injury riddled like Vegas?
Explain those results please (see how this works?).
You could have a point on the injuries. You are sure on SJ and NJ? Here it took the third year for injuries to show up in scale. I’m not convinced it’s more than a coincidence. If you’re sure about SJ and NJ it does build your case.
Howard, thank you for your posts. anything that gets me thinking makes me happy. When I was looking at the success of DeBoers power-play in San Jose it wasn’t to debunk your theory but rather to reinforce it. I love all the information I can get and when it’s at our disposal I’m certainly going to look at it. When I realized that his power plays in San Jose were successful I actually got a little frustrated because I Believe in your theory and was hoping that some information would reinforce that to me. I’m not sure that I find hockey quite as simple as you do as I have been watching for 35 years and I still feel like I learn new things now and then but your thoughts on DeBoer certainly give me a different perspective and something I will look out for in the next few games and next year if he is still here. Again, I think he is gone because you can’t get rid of the entire team. You have to start with the coach first just to make sure that that is the problem.
In regards to his coaching résumé I have to say that I think it would be a bit harsh to consider him as a failure. Do you really have to win a Stanley Cup to be considered a success story? Only one team can win each season. I don’t think the Jon Cooper is the only coach that has done a good job the past two seasons. The VGK is still a franchise that has played the second most playoff games since they entered the league, second only to Tampa. So I would say for the most part that Gerard Gallant and Pete Deboer have at least been somewhat competent. There is the Pacific division thing and we got to play two shitty teams in Vancouver and Chicago one year but last year Vegas knocked off two very strong teams in Minnesota and Colorado.
I don’t think PDB is a failure as a coach and I don’t think he is a bad coach. Like I said about RL, he is above average. PDB does a decent job overall. And I agree with you that a coach doesn’t have to win a Cup to be considered a great or even a good coach. Sam Marino was my favorite QB but some claim he isn’t one of the best simply because he never won a SB. Sorry, but that is an idiotic way to look at it. As for PDB, he has had some success, mostly early on with each team he coaches, but they’re is always a decline after that first year. Why is that?
I guess we’re starting to find out why.
the hockey God
his name is Dan Marino. not Sam.
Obviously…. and if you look at they keyboard, “S” and “D” are right next to each other, so….
Agreed Galdom. I respect Howard’s observations and am saving them for future reference, in fact I just posted at the bottom that I plan on coming back later and responding to some of his responses to me. I am far from convinced he has better answers than DeBoer. Howard seems to oversimplify the situation in claiming coaching is so simple etc. when he himself has zero expertise in it. It’s easy to apply one’s layperson knowledge to this and build a case for why a coach can’t win a Cup. I have not bought into it…not yet anyways.
Galdom imo Howard has stuck his neck out in asserting DeBoer will never win a Cup as though he really knows how to do it lol. Howard knows a thing or two about on ice strategies I am not denying that but to some extent he’s making educated guesses. That’s all I can do. I’m not discounting the possibility he’s better at it. I need to review his points.
Every coach is hired and has a shelf life and will eventually get fired. So that doesn’t really mean anything to me. The injuries thing is interesting. Was his prior team injury riddled? At some point it just can’t keep being bad luck.
I’m on the fire the Pete DeBoer train. Not 100% sure how much fault this is of his and it might be unfair but that’s the first move you have to make. They might still have a shitty power player for the next two years after that and you realize that he had nothing to do with it.
I don’t wanna speak for Pistol Pete, but I think one thing that he and I are on the same page about is that McCrimmon and DeBoer are not idiots as some people think they are. How can you be managing and coaching at the highest level in the world and be around the sport for decades and be completely clueless. Logically it just doesn’t add up. I’m not mentioning any posters that have posted today but ones in the past that give them unflattering nicknames like McIdiot and McCriminal. I’m not suggesting that you are not entitled to your opinions and should be silenced or anything but in my opinion it just doesn’t add up. it’s not like Foley bought the team and then made his son-in-law the general manager and his nephew the coach.
I agree they are not idiots. Like you said, your can’t be around for this long and be a complete idiot. Now, due to the paver wanting to right away, I think they’ve made sine idiotic moves. Maybe if not pressured wouldn’t have made those moves, who knows.
As for who is at fault when it comes to coaching, it doesn’t matter if it’s Spott or not, PDB is the head coach so it falls on him. PDB can take responsibility and fire Spott. See if that resolves at least part of the issue
Kelly McCrimmon has zero legacy at the NHL level. His claim to fame is in Junior Hockey. Like Howard, the guy just gives me the creeps when he speaks. He does not come across to me as authentic in any way. PDB is authentic and he is a decent coach, but I believe he is stuck in his ways and runs a system that does not need to be so complex. He reminds me of Rex Ryan of the New York Jets, a ground & pound head coach who refused to change his game plan to fit the new rules of the NFL. He built his team as a run first, pass last offense that relied strictly on defense. He never adjusted his game to take advantage of the rules that gave QBs and WRs a huge advantage over defenses. Those rules were changed because the NFL wanted more scoring.
The same can be said of the NHL. They wanted more scoring and that is the reason why they did away with the 2 line pass rule. PDBs system is still built to defend by rotating all 5 skaters in the offensive zone. This strategy takes the high scoring shooters off their game and wears them out. Karlsson is a great example of a skater that has been negative impacted by DeBoers system. Smith is another example. Their production is way down under DeBoer, and in that place is a higher scoring defense (Petro, Theodore, Whitecloud and Martinez). Pinching the defense up requires these forwards to drop back to the blue to defend and not only wears them down, but takes them away from what they do best and what they are designed to do (score).
There is a saying called KISS, Keep it Simple Stupid and DeBoer’s system is not simple, nor does it play to the strengths of the forwards on this team.
R-R your comments on the DeBoer system are well stated and mirror some of Howard’s points. Not yet convinced but listening.
R-R why is it of the top six that only Karlsson and Smith are impacted? The other four’s production if anything improved under DeBoer.
Sometimes the play develops in a way that favors the D rushing. I’m not convinced it’s a bad thing and not worth having the forwards drop back to the BL. If anything it conserves energy sometimes. Shifts in hockey are short anyways. It’s not like they get worn out any more than just normal fore and back checking. Two way play is an integral part of the game for the forwards. If it was not shifts would be longer. Back checking burns a lot of gas. Most important aspect of rolling four lines is shortening TOI per forward.
You know, now that you bring it up, could it be that the two-way DeBoer System wears down the top 6 to the point that it impacts the power play as well? Think about it. There wasn’t a single Golden Knight in the top 10 list of “2 way forwards”. I don’t think we have any “2 way forwards”, but PDB still demands it of them.
Howard not sure you will come back and check but after seeing all your responses, think I’ll come back later and address them. I hope I have convinced you that I am taking your points seriously. I would like to continue the discussion.
Is Howard claiming DeBoer overemphasizes the two way game?
Isn’t that from like 8 years ago???
For 9.5 million Stone shouldve been that guy .hes plenty big enough .Actually its ridiculous to me he hasnt focused on that because hes not a finesse guy or shooter and not particularly fast either
the hockey God
anyone following NHL PP teams knows that the most successful ones
take YEARS to jive. VGK turn over and injuries and covid have NOT ALLOWED
a PP chemistry to develop. It’s pretty obvious watching them struggle getting
set up. Teams with pP longevity include the Bruins, the Caps, Tampa bay among others. When PP isn’t clicking, it’s easier to focus on PK and get better on PK. If you can win the PK your chance of winning is greatly increased.
Look at season pply stats annnnd playoff stats .It’s not been decent since yr 1
Look at season pply stats annnnd playoff stats .It’s not been decent since yr 1
Did VGK lose to MTL due to the DeBoer system per se and if not what was the cause?
The loss was not caused by the DeBoer system contrary to what Howard would likely claim.
I’m game… Why did they lose?
Amazing. The SUPER STARS – STONE, PACIORETTY & STEPHENSON
are about to go 12 straight periods without a single point.
Robin Lehner OMG 1-3 vs. Devils unbelievable or not so unbelievable
Another game of evidence supporting my analysis, except the Devils are not a top tier team.
My analysis, that the VGK has to score at least 4 goals against the top tier teams in the league with Lehner in net is the strawman. That analysis is sound. The 2nd goal was a long shot from the blue line that Lehner failed to glove giving up a rebound goal. The 3rd goal he had absolutely NO CLUE whatsoever. If Lehner was conscious it wasn’t apparent on that breakaway. Sure, Petro got beat by his man, but Lehner did absolutely nothing at all. In fact he didn’t even see the shot or recognize that it went in until after it already settled in the back of the net.
Stone, Pacioretty and Stephenson have been shut out (o points for almost 12 straight periods). Our super star, Eichel, had 1 shot on goal.
So, who is to blame?
Lehner is benched. End of story. If all the moves that acquisition is the only one that really went south. OMG.
Not a good game but Lehner truly lost that one for the team. DeBoer must have thought no way Thompson plays out the season. Can’t say I blame him for not benching his starter.
That was pretty much the kill shot tonight. This season is all but over.