Pens Cancel Practice today...

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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby DocEmrick on Fri Oct 31, 2008 4:34 pm

True it could mean nothing, but more than likely it means something after the last two losses. Phoenix is a team that we should beat without too much of a problem. The lack of emotion is worrisome, but lucky for the Pens it's early in the season and this can still be fixed. That's why I like to see all the people ready to jump. Yes, they're doing bad, but look at the potential. Once they find that rhythm, we'll be all right. Hopefully, this meeting will fix some things.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby redmosqui on Fri Oct 31, 2008 5:06 pm

I've never understand why people think that if someone talks against this team or players they are "ready to jump". To me it just shows how much passion we or they have for this team. We watch all the games, check the boards, view stats, and have opinions on how things are going. I don't think I've read a post (i could be wrong) that someone said that this team "would finish last, not do anything all year, or is not able to improve from here on out". What I have heard are comments on players not doing things well, and specifics at that, coaching blunders, questions on certain players and their worth (now or in the past), and general concerns.

Personally, I see a team who just simply doesn't have it together. From their captain on down. Sure, MAF has been great so far, but he and Sabu are not going to carry this team. We are not going to win a bunch of 1-0 games as it seems they would like to do, our defense and system, while overall a decent defensive minded bunch since the late 07-08 season, isn't going to stone every team....we need goals, and right now, no one, and I mean NO ONE, is doing it. Sure, Satan is leading in goals and Malkin in points....but in comparison to what other teams have done offensivly, we are not up to par, and that's just a fact. I don't think this team can rely on Sid and Geno to supply all the offense, but, honestly, asside from a couple of times, they arn't doing that at all, and the problem is, nobody else is either. No one has stepped up while our stars are struggling (constant giveaways and lack of shots)...no one has provided that spark (not Staal, Talbot, Cooke, Sykora, or even Kennedy) regardless of the few times they have scored or played a good shift or two.

That doesn't mean I'm jumping ship, or anyone else who has stated such things is either...it just simply means that after a Cup Final run, we expect more, whether we should or not. We all realize a few people left in the off season, but in all honestly, the only big departure from our regular season last year was Malone (as Hossa was only in the Playoffs more or less), and everyone assumed (an *** out of U and Me) that Staal or Fedo, or Satan (or a combo of them) could and would pick up the spot of Malone...it hasn't happened...top that off with Whitney and Gonchar being out and relying on two very young D-men to transition the play, and you get what we have seen so far...

We're all frustrated, the team is frustrated, and it's not easy right now....but we'll all keep watching, keep cheering, and continue to be FANS, fans of this great young team we love, who just happen to be having a hard time getting into a groove right now.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby dagny on Fri Oct 31, 2008 5:25 pm

laholm64 wrote: Ask Sid which players he feels msot comfortable with on his wing (other than Geno) and let him work with those guys for a few weeks.


I have been thinking this the past two seasons and this is the first time I've seen anyone actually bring it up.

All the arguing over who's best suited to play with Sid... Well, has anyone asked him???

Agree, the players should not get ultimate say-so on linemates, but you'd think Sid's input on this would matter.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby littlemoonboot on Fri Oct 31, 2008 5:30 pm

The Pollyanna in me just says that the team is just going through a rough patch and adjustment period and things will work itself out and everyone will gel as a team. But the injuries are the really agitating thing though.

I kind of wonder if in part the loss at MSG just really stung and threw things off for the rest of this trip. A team like our playoff team would have just shook it off -- but our team now is still a bit scattered so maybe it's harder to do.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby wallflower on Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:33 pm

I doubt there's any deep reason for practice being cancelled. Players are hurt and the Trib said a couple of them have that head/sinus cold Crosby had for awhile.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby Jesse on Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:43 pm

laholm64 wrote:I'm pretty sure the players like knowing who they're playing with and what their tendencies are. No-one wants to make a pass to a guy who they think is cutting one way and they go the other way. It's a lot like a QB knowing what his receivers are going to do on a broken play. That's why teams practice. That's why a player wants to know what his teammates are going to do in a given situation.


Crosby said himself last year, things don't work that way. Chemistry is overrated. It's a matter of everyone sticking to the game plan. If you buy into the system, you automatically know where your teammate will be based off of the system, not some cognitive gel that everyone wants to talk about. The game is about vision, if you're throwing blind passes around based on "chemistry" and "thinking this player is going this way", you're going to unsuccessful no matter what the case.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby bhaw on Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:46 pm

laholm64 wrote:MT breaks up lines before they even have a chance to jell. That's the problem. You can't expect instant connections. A player needs to know where his linemates are going to be in different situations. Until they get that down there's going to be problems.

And I don't expect MT to do the job of the players such as passing and digging pucks out of the corners, but I DO expect him to do HIS job and that would include showing a little emotion from time to time. That would include knocking some heads together between periods or calling a player out if he's messing up all the time or simply benching someone for a few shifts or giving them a day in the press box.

Mt has an excellent system and the proof is in our past two seasons. But there aren't too many coaches who are slower to respond to game situations. My own, less than expert, opinion is that he is a great teacher, but he is very poor in game time situations and adjusting to what the other team is doing on the ice.


We saw it last year and the year before. MT always starts the year by moving everyone everywhere and by the end of the season, there is little movement other than for injuries. It helps them in the long run of the season because all the players have played with each other and one injury doesn't shatter the whole team. It gives him flexibility to create matchups with his lines as well, which MT did in the playoffs. I have no problem with the line shifting because of this fact.

As for coming down on the players, he has never hesitated to do it, but he also doesn't react as fast as many posters would like. Proof: Recchi eventually was scratched after being given every opportunity to succeed. Orpik and Whitney moved to wing after horrible stretches. Armstrong was scratched after a slow start last year. So unless your criticism is that he hasn't done it yet this year fast enough for you, it doesn't make much sense to say he doesn't do it.

The last thing that I find interesting that you brought up was asking Crosby who he wants to play with. Maybe he hasn't, but how do you actually know? Maybe Crosby is asking for Dupuis to be on his line. We don't know what goes on other than what is told to us. But to imply Sid has had no say? That's flat out a guess.

My only fear with the coaching is that the players may be becoming numb to MT's ways. I hope it's not true, but it happens. If that's a case, he needs to find something new or it will be a long season for the Pens and possibly a short one for him. I have confidence in him though as what we are seeing from this team isn't exactly a new thing.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby bhaw on Fri Oct 31, 2008 8:47 pm

Jesse wrote:
laholm64 wrote:I'm pretty sure the players like knowing who they're playing with and what their tendencies are. No-one wants to make a pass to a guy who they think is cutting one way and they go the other way. It's a lot like a QB knowing what his receivers are going to do on a broken play. That's why teams practice. That's why a player wants to know what his teammates are going to do in a given situation.


Crosby said himself last year, things don't work that way. Chemistry is overrated. It's a matter of everyone sticking to the game plan. If you buy into the system, you automatically know where your teammate will be based off of the system, not some cognitive gel that everyone wants to talk about. The game is about vision, if you're throwing blind passes around based on "chemistry" and "thinking this player is going this way", you're going to unsuccessful no matter what the case.



This also. This is why systems are implemented. So ESP is not required to find your teammates through the defense.
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Re: Pens Cancel Practice today...

Postby brwi on Fri Oct 31, 2008 9:15 pm

laholm64 wrote:
Eismann wrote:MT juggled lines last year like a circus clown.

Pens win Eastern Conference; get within 2 games of Stanley Cup

All jibber-jabber about line juggling = find another reason the Pens r tehSux.


Could it be the Pens got that far in spite of his juggling? Or are you saying the juggling is the reason they were so good? Maybe they got within 2 wins of the Cup because they were that talented and not because MT masterfully juggled lines.


Scotty Bowman juggled lines more than MT ever has and Detroit does it quite a lot too. I don't buy the theory whatsoever that line juggling is always good/bad, but I don't think it's anything close to the problem right now. If Pens were making passes behind guys or nowhere close, that MIGHT be an indicator of unexpected behavior from shuffled linemates, but the Pens' basic problems right now are losing most one-on-one battles anywhere on the ice and the inability to make a crisp, clean first pass out of their own end.

When you are not controlling play and puck possession, it makes everything much more difficult. Right now, even medicore teams like the Yotes are controlling the flow of the game vs. the Pens.

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