In this post we’re dissecting Pavel Datsyuk’s end-to-end goal against Nashville. As great as the individual effort was, there are quite a few team details that really made this play possible.
It starts with Datsyuk providing proper support for his defenseman in the defensive zone. He picks up the puck and initiates the breakout to the right winger. After making the breakout pass, he follows up the play, providing mid-lane support on the breakout. As the breakout is happening, the weak-side winger blows out of the zone, pushing the opposing defenseman back, which opens up space for Datsyuk to wheel. The play finishes with the opposing defenseman reaching for the puck, and Datsyuk eats him alive.
Great individual effort, made possible by well-structured positional play.
How do you transition from forecheck to offense when you create a turnover in the 2-3 press? It seems tough to run a cycle because you will draw players out of good defensive position.
I decided to answer it in a post, rather than to try to explain it via email or blog comment. Here’s a quick summary of how it works:
How to Convert the 2-3 Press into Offense after the Transition
1. F1 Drives deep and hits the puck-carrying defenseman
2. F2 Reads the play, and supports F1
3. F3 sets up on the blue line, between the two defensemen
4. If F1 or F2 cause the turnover, and pick up the puck down low, slide immediately into the cycle, with F3 dropping into the high slot
5. If the turnover happens up top, or in the middle, whoever picks it up steps into the slot and shoots.
A few years ago, I did a quick video dissection of Joe Pavelski’s over time goal against the LA Kings. This video shows perfect execution of one of the Attack Triangle options we outline in the Coaches’ Training Course and in the Playbook. Here’s a quick summary of how it works on this play:
How the Sharks used the Attack Triangle on this Play
1. F1 drives the puck wide, while reading the gap of the strong-side defenseman
2. F2 realizes he has an inside lane to the net, and drives straight through the middle, pulling the weak-side defenseman with him, and opening up space in the high slot
3. F3 (Joe Pavelski) reads that the weak-side defenseman has been driven low, and that there will be space in the high slot, so he fills that space
4. F1 reads loose gap from the strong-side defenseman, and sees that the weak-side defenseman has been driven deep, then feathers an “area pass” to the open ice in the high slot
5. F3 walks in, picks up the pass, and snipes the game winner!
Winnipeg Jets Power Play Dissection from the Illegal Curve show on TSN Radio 1290 in Winnipeg
This past Saturday I had the opportunity to be a guest again on the Illegal Curve show on TSN Radio 1290 in Winnipeg. If you haven’t listened to the show before, and you’re a Jets fan, check it out here: http://illegalcurve.com/
The topic I covered on Saturday will be useful to any coach, whether you’re a Jets fan or not. I also made a video dissection of the Jets power play after the fact, illustrating a few of the things I mentioned on the show. So, Check out my segment in the audio below, then watch the vid!
Update Required To play the media you will need to either update your browser to a recent version or update your Flash plugin.
Here are the key points as discussed on the show:
Not getting a lot of power plays in the first place (especially last week)
Only two against Boston
Only one against Buffalo
Against the Rangers and Devils they started using their speed, and Drew more penalties those game
Puck movement is pretty good once they actually get the set-up
Problems with breakout and moving through the neutral zone
Forcing passes to covered players in NZ (in my opinion, it’s ok for the defenseman to carry it all the way on a PP if the other team lets him walk)
Against Rangers and Devils, they improved on this a lot – and were able to get the puck deep and set up
Not driving deep enough
Problems with the initial attack
taking the shot before getting the set up (I usually say don’t shoot on the initial attack on a PP unless you have a 2 on 1 or better, because if you miss, you’re not in position to rebound and the other team can ice it and waste time)
Forcing passes – the whole idea of the PP is to isolate a man, then beat him with a pass. If you pass too soon, or force a pass, you’re not going to open up opportunities
They never really got the set-up in last week’s games… this week was better on that front.
Against the Rangers & Devils they started fixing these problems
Used speed more to draw penalties
Didn’t force passes in the neutral zone (defenseman started walking it more)
Drove the puck deep then looked for the set up, or sometimes dumped it in to the open man
Great puck movement within the zone
Still not pulling the trigger enough, and getting sticks on rebounds
MY SUGGESTIONS: Assuming they continue to improve on the breakout and puck movement through the NZ, and assuming their puck movement on the set-up stays solid like it was this past week, my main observation would be that the men in front might be a little too low. There are two approaches to screening a goalie, both have pros and cons:
Right on top of him – better screen, more annoying, but tips don’t have as much room to change the trajectory of the shot, and rebounds usually bounce past you (which happens a lot to the Jets)
Further out (7 or 8 feet in front of the goalie) – not as good for screens, not as annoying/distracting for the goalie, but much more effective for tips, and way better for jumping on rebounds
Some Frequently Asked Questions on the Swing Regroup
In our Coaches’ Training Course we outline the fundamentals of the Swing Regroup, which is one of my favorite regroup set-ups. Over the past few weeks, I’ve received a number of emails with questions on the Swing Regroup. So I figured it was time to put together an FAQ video.
The problem many coaches were having, was differentiating between the “textbook version” and the “read and react version.” In other words… in a perfect world, we draw up the play, and the players perform it exactly as diagrammed, AKA textbook execution. However, in the actual game, sometimes it happens as planned, but many times it doesn’t. In these cases there’s a degree of improvisation that needs to be accounted for… this is where the read and react comes into play.
So, let’s start with our ideal, textbook diagram, then we’ll go from there:
1. Defensemen drag skate puck back and toward the middle, passing D to D as needed
2. Forwards swing through the receiving zones, presenting themselves as options
3. Defensemen read pressure, and pass up-ice to one of the forwards
4. Forwards attack the offensive zone under control
Obviously, players must understand the textbook version in order to make proper decisions in the game. This idea holds true with any system you’re looking to implement. I recommend teaching and practicing the textbook version of your set-up, then also going through some of the possible variations in chalk-talk. Make sure your players understand that they’re allowed to adapt to the game situation! Your objective should be to provide them with the system framework, then to encourage creativity within it.
Sign up below to receive our FREE Drills of the Week!
Sign up below to receive our FREE Drills of the Week!
Welcome to Weiss Tech Hockey!
We are committed to providing hockey coaches with solid, useful information. We do this by offering free instructional videos, hockey drills, and other great stuff that should be important to hockey coaches!
Join our mailing list and receive our free drills of the week! Simply enter your email address below: