Team toughness - Fighting

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Tiger
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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by Tiger »

As for hitting as a stat, anyone can throw a hit, so... I mean Daniel Sedin will go over and bump a guy on the half boards here and there, that doesn't really count much for toughness or intensity or intimidation or whatever. It's not a bad thing, it shows you're engaged in your position and battling for the puck, but it's not like hits mean crushing a guy with your superior size and then taking the puck, while at the same time making him a quivering mess at the very sight of your team insignia.
hmm interesting .. but not true.. The Sedins are not hitters , period .. Hits = either on the boards while going for the puck or open ice do make a difference. Thats why Burrows is on that line - TOUGHNESS ( plus smarts ).. Solid hitting is a big part of " getting the puck " or stopping an offensive player from making a pass. Our top 6 is a little weak in that department.. 2 no hitters.. 2 unlikely to hit though they occasionly hit ( Samuelsson and Raymond ) and 2 Warriors - Kesler and Burrows.. The forward I am keeping an eye on is Tambellini.. a small player that does hit effectively and can put it in the odd goal too. For my money the bottom 6 is ok.. A bit more skill with Maholtra but has not added tougness really. The D ? juries still out .. but look good.. maybe not Mitchell tough.. but tough enough.

Dunno if you actually watch games. but if you do you will notice its the Warriors that make the difference in close hard checking games.. BJ's .. Chicago.. Anaheim etc..
" If you cant beat them in the alley - you can't beat them on the ice

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the toucan kid
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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by the toucan kid »

Dunno if you actually watch games. but if you do you will notice its the Warriors that make the difference in close hard checking games.. BJ's .. Chicago.. Anaheim etc..
Not accurate. A difference? Yes. A big difference? Maybe occasionally, less and less though. THE difference? False.
hmm interesting .. but not true.. The Sedins are not hitters , period .. Hits = either on the boards while going for the puck or open ice do make a difference.
It is true. Do you know what constitutes a statistical hit? Not much. That's why the stat is pretty ambiguous as it always has been.

Again. You guys have a token impression of this sport that you were brought up with, so was I, but some of your views seem pretty cliched rather than based on observations of today's sport. Sounds like mediaspeak to me. The stuff a lot of people here decry for being lame. Now I get thrown back at me cliches like "it's the bangers that make the difference" or hockey is a "man's game" etc.

I actually think you guys are finally running against the pervasive attitudes in the game, finally.

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woodhog
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Re: Team toughness

Post by woodhog »

the Cunning Linguist wrote: Maybe, the Blackhawks were just that much more skilled all around...
Of course they were better all around. That's why they beat us and went on to win the Cup.

The debate here is about the toughness factor and whether or not it made a big difference in the series. Sure, the Hawks out scored and out skated and out goalied us, but part of the reason they did was because they also out toughed us.

Anyone that has played the game knows that physical play creates more room for your skilled players. It forces the other team to look over their shoulder a little more. It makes them get rid of the puck a little quicker. It can tire/wear out your opponent (physically and mentally over a 7 game series). It forces mistakes by the team under physical pressure and results in turnovers.
The other effect of physical play in front of (and on top of) the goalie often results in getting him off his game. It gets him thinking about the guys crashing the net and not concentrating enough on (or physically able to) stopping the puck.

The Canucks would have had a better chance were they healthy (Burrows, Kesler, Mitchell etc.) but I don't think it would have been enough. With MG replacing the soft players in the bottom six this year, obviously he agrees.

I can't think of any team ever winning the Stanley Cup without a certain amount of toughness in the lineup. People often point to Detroit as a team that wins with skill. Yes they've had skill but they've also had grit and toughness.
In '98 the Wings had Draper, Holmstrom, McCarty, Kocur, Maltby, Shanahan, Macoun and Lapointe. Alright, admittedly that was before the lockout and the "new rules NHL".
OK, how about In '08? They had Chelios, Drake, Draper, Stuart, Maltby, McCarty, Kronwall and Holmstrom. Plenty of grit.
No team can win the Cup without enough toughness and grit. It's obviously not the only attribute necessary, but it is a very important element that is still needed, especially in the playoffs.

Here are some quotes from "the experts" on grit.
Hockey Experts say 'Gritty' Play Crucial

•Pierre McGuire, former NHL coach and current NBC analyst: "Grit is winning the races. Grit is competing for your rights in front of the opposition net. Grit is clearing out in front of your own net. Grit is blocking a shot fearlessly. But the ultimate definition is sacrificing to do whatever it takes to win."

•Tampa Bay Lightning center Vinny Lecavalier: "I think of players who get their nose dirty and play mean and want to win and play very physical. And I think to win you need that. I'm not saying everybody should run with their heads cut off. But they should play by finishing their checks."

•Vancouver Canucks center Trevor Linden: "Grit is all about toughness when the clock is running, not when it stops. You don't see as much of that post-whistle because you can't afford to."

•Former NHL coach Jacques Demers: "It's performing at a very high intensity level, playing with passion, playing hurt. But as you're gritty, you never put your team in a position to get bad penalties. You finish your checks, you dig, but you always are disciplined."

•Former NHL goalie Darren Pang: "Grit is playing with desperation every shift. Having grit is going down to block a shot or making sure you get a stick on the puck and making a play to get the puck out of the zone, even though you know you will get hit. Grit is the intangible that wins championships."
Here's a good read about the playoffs and toughness/grit (post lockout from '07)

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/hockey/c ... grit_N.htm

I would say that the expert opinions override the opinion of fans who say things like
I'm watching a game where contact has largely been taken out of the flow of the game and that it only rears its head in a penalty or an injury. We're getting to the point where it is almost irrelevant.
I don't deny that there is MORE hitting in the playoffs, I deny that it any longer is as valuable to the game as it had been in the past. You can effect the game less with it, unless you mean taking penalties. Physicality has been much marginalized.
The playoffs are more intense, but whoa, I honestly can't buy the exaggerating about how apparently rough and tumble it is (or really, isn't).

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the toucan kid
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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by the toucan kid »

I don't want to dismiss you post, but they aren't saying anything about toughness. They're talking about grit, which is working hard and effort. That has nothing to do with roughness. The problem is you can't distinguish the two. I can apparently, and yes, trying hard, being a pro and playing with pain, and having the oft used word "passion" are all BIG elements in winning, but have nothing to do with big hits (which aren't practical) and fighting.
I would say that the expert opinions override the opinion of fans who say things like
You haven't even addressed my point...

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by woodhog »

the toucan kid wrote:I don't want to dismiss you post, but they aren't saying anything about toughness. They're talking about grit, which is working hard and effort. That has nothing to do with roughness. The problem is you can't distinguish the two. I can apparently, and yes, trying hard, being a pro and playing with pain, and having the oft used word "passion" are all BIG elements in winning, but have nothing to do with big hits (which aren't practical) and fighting.
I would say that the expert opinions override the opinion of fans who say things like
You haven't even addressed my point...

I believe that I have addressed your point.
In order to carry on an intelligent conversation or debate, it's vital that the parties actually read all the information provided.
If you in fact took the time to read my post before dismissing it, you'd see that the comments that I quoted from the experts include "get their nose dirty", "Play mean", "play very physical", "finishing their checks", "grit is all about toughness" and "finish your checks". All of those quotes are examples of toughness.

If you would have clicked on the link you might have read, "Even in the new NHL, toughness hasn't gone out of style for the postseason."
And you might have noticed, "In playoff time, everybody hits and guys who don't hit in the regular season are finishing their checks."
Also, "Sometimes grit comes in the form of just winning puck battles. Sometimes it comes from punishing checks."
and "Grit covers a lot of things from toughness to persevering for 60 minutes or longer,"

All of these quotes came from "hockey people". People who've been there and done that. As you can see, they believe that grit includes many things, INCLUDING TOUGHNESS. They also believe, even in the "new NHL", that toughness is a requirement in the playoffs. I've never heard anyone who's actually played the game say otherwise. You DO say otherwise.
trying hard, being a pro and playing with pain, and having the oft used word "passion" are all BIG elements in winning, but have nothing to do with big hits (which aren't practical) and fighting.
I never said anything about fighting being important in the playoffs.


You can choose to ignore the pertinant parts of my posts if you wish, but in doing so, you're doing yourself no favours in the debate.
As Blob said earlier, I think you just like to argue. You clearly won't concede any parts of your arguments even when confronted with irrefutable evidence.

How about digging up some arguments or quotes from some reputable sources, as I have done, to support your contentions like:
I'm watching a game where contact has largely been taken out of the flow of the game and that it only rears its head in a penalty or an injury. We're getting to the point where it is almost irrelevant.

I don't deny that there is MORE hitting in the playoffs, I deny that it any longer is as valuable to the game as it had been in the past. You can effect the game less with it, unless you mean taking penalties. Physicality has been much marginalized.

The playoffs are more intense, but whoa, I honestly can't buy the exaggerating about how apparently rough and tumble it is (or really, isn't).
You're really the only one saying these things (with Arbour in support but not to the same extent). I'd like to hear a player, ex player, coach or manager agree with your statements before I'd even think about giving them any credence.
I've yet to hear anyone who's played or coached competitive hockey spout off with anything close to the drivel you're coming up with.

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the toucan kid
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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by the toucan kid »

What are you talking about? Your post has a quote from McGuire, a former coach, that mentions nothing about hitting. A quote from Demers espousing discipline and hard work. Yes he and Vinny talking use the cliche 'finishing their checks', but as I said, that has nothing to do with physical dominance. Daniel Sedin finishes his check. You've got a quote from Linden about working hard (nothing about hitting) and a quote from Pang about working hard with the same cliche 'finishing a play even if you might get hit'. Christian Erhoff has no problem finishing his plays, and he isn't much of a tough guy, nor does he get hit much. That's because he's mobile, which is what the game is about. If you want mediaspeak about that, turn on any hockey program and all they talk about: speed, speed, speed.

Those aren't substantive because they're token remarks and like I said, mediaspeak. There's nothing expert about them because there's no insight being delivered. I think Trevor Linden and Jaques Demeres know a hell of a lot about winning hockey games, but when they're basically saying the way to win is try hard and not take dumb penalties I don't think we're exactly getting very deep wisdom. And all this comes from a four year old article.

You took three excerpts from my posts about physicality, which yes, I believe has been greatly lessened in the game, and guess what, you don't have anyone contradicting it because no one would agree. I'm not saying anything about grit (because you're the one who conflated grit with toughness thus changing the argument....
Here's a good read about the playoffs and toughness/grit (post lockout from '07)
but what grit involves is what your sources are talking about. Blocking shots, winning battles. A couple of them mention finishing their checks, if they are serious in that assertion then they mean playing your man, that has nothing to do with running them through the glass with your 'toughness.' Any player can finish his check. What your sources are talking about is a winning attitude and giving it your all. That will never change, however the amount of physicality in the game has waned and it is not the most important part of winning. That IS my argument and your not even addressing it even though you quoted it in your post.

I do like to argue, as in have a debate, that's what this place is for. I don't think too many people mind doing it because we do it time and time again, and we don't take it seriously. Some don't like it, and I don't purpose to drag them into anything. If you don't want a debate, then don't ask for one. I have my position on this, it hasn't changed, and no you haven't even brought it up.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by woodhog »

woodhog wrote:
How about digging up some arguments or quotes from some reputable sources, as I have done, to support your contentions like:
I'm watching a game where contact has largely been taken out of the flow of the game and that it only rears its head in a penalty or an injury. We're getting to the point where it is almost irrelevant.

I don't deny that there is MORE hitting in the playoffs, I deny that it any longer is as valuable to the game as it had been in the past. You can effect the game less with it, unless you mean taking penalties. Physicality has been much marginalized.

The playoffs are more intense, but whoa, I honestly can't buy the exaggerating about how apparently rough and tumble it is (or really, isn't).
You're really the only one saying these things (with Arbour in support but not to the same extent). I'd like to hear a player, ex player, coach or manager agree with your statements before I'd even think about giving them any credence.
I've yet to hear anyone who's played or coached competitive hockey spout off with anything close to the drivel you're coming up with.

Nothing, eh? Didn't think so. :)

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the toucan kid
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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by the toucan kid »

Nothing, eh? Didn't think so.
Laughable. You drudge up an old article with no valuable content and then cower behind it instead of presenting an actual case. I don't have to get you a link to find "expert" remarks, you can just turn on the radio if you want that. Speed, speed, speed. Power plays. Contact resulting in penalties that some people find excessive. That has been the discussion since the lockout, can you really disagree?

Apparently you disagree with me, but I don't understand your tactics... you don't address my point and then ask me to rely on sources to make an observable claim. Do I need a Scotty Bowman quote when I tell you the score of a game? I'm not preaching anything that ain't observable by the eye.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by jchockey »

My 2 cents...

Just because you lead the league in fighting majors doesn't mean you're necessarily a tough team, or a team built for the playoffs, because in the playoffs there's virtually no fighting. There are more important matters at hand, like scoring goals.

Chicago won because of their superior depth and talent. But also because their role players weren't backing down from anybody. Ladd (6'3", 205), Eager (6'2", 227), Byfuglien (6'4", 257). That's some serious size and skill right there. All three ran Luongo whenever they wanted. The Hawks likewise won't win again this year because they're missing those guys and instead chose to replace them with smaller players like Pisani, Skille.

The Ducks' best players are also their most physical. No defenseman wants to go one-on-one with Getzlaf and Perry runs over goalies probably better than anyone else in the league.

Detroit's the exception to the rule. I think that's pretty obvious. But to say that they're not 'tough'. Well, I don't know about you but they're the most mentally tough team in the league. That counts for something. And I guess everyone seemed to forget that Datsyuk can not only make Turco look stupid he gave Perry a taste of his own medicine.

Toughness is about being able to take punishment and pushing back. Grit is playing with that physical edge that's needed to win games when you're facing a team with similar skill level. In the playoffs everyone ratchets up their game so more often than not it's the team with toughness and grit in all 4 lines that wins.

Look at the most recent Cup finalists:
Chicago: Eager, Ladd, Byfuglien, Bolland, Brouwer
Philadelphia: Hartnell, Richards, Pronger, Asham, Carcillo
Pittsburgh: Talbot, Cooke, Orpik, Kunitz, Guerin

Not a fun group to play against.

Vancouver's big but they're no grittier this year than last year.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by woodhog »

the toucan kid wrote:
Nothing, eh? Didn't think so.
Laughable. You drudge up an old article with no valuable content and then cower behind it instead of presenting an actual case. I don't have to get you a link to find "expert" remarks, you can just turn on the radio if you want that. Speed, speed, speed. Power plays. Contact resulting in penalties that some people find excessive. That has been the discussion since the lockout, can you really disagree?

Apparently you disagree with me, but I don't understand your tactics... you don't address my point and then ask me to rely on sources to make an observable claim. Do I need a Scotty Bowman quote when I tell you the score of a game? I'm not preaching anything that ain't observable by the eye.

I'm not cowering behind anything, Toucan. I think I've made my point several times in previous posts. Once again, you have to actually read the entire post and not just see only what you want to see in them. I brought up the quotes and the article to back up the points that you refuse to acknowledge.

You keep saying that I don't address your point. Wrong.

You point out that "contact is almost irrelevant and that physicality has been much marginalized."
I addressed that in the expert quotes (which you choose to ignore) and here:
Anyone that has played the game knows that physical play creates more room for your skilled players. It forces the other team to look over their shoulder a little more. It makes them get rid of the puck a little quicker. It can tire/wear out your opponent (physically and mentally over a 7 game series). It forces mistakes by the team under physical pressure and results in turnovers.
The other effect of physical play in front of (and on top of) the goalie often results in getting him off his game. It gets him thinking about the guys crashing the net and not concentrating enough on (or physically able to) stopping the puck.
These points were true 20 years ago and still are today.

You are exagerating the state of the game today when you say
contact has largely been taken out of the flow of the game and that it only rears its head in a penalty or an injury
There is still plenty of hitting that doesn't result in a penalty or injury. The Canucks have been credited with well over 600 hits so far this year, resulting in 4 boarding calls, 1 charging call and perhaps a few of the 6 roughing calls the team has earned. I can't find any stats on injuries resulting from body checking but it's easily observable that very few of the 600+ hits have caused any discernable injuries.

I think that I've addressed your points ... you just refuse to acknowledge it.

If your points are so "observable", why is no one else observing the game the same way you are (except maybe Arbour)?
More than once in this thread you've been asked what games you are watching, because it doesn't appear to be the same games everyone else is watching.

Well, if you still don't think that I'm addressing the point .... so be it. I've about said everything possible on the issue.
Either you see it or you don't.

I guess maybe you said it best
Okay, and that's fair enough. You see it, I don't.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by the toucan kid »

I'm not cowering behind anything, Toucan. I think I've made my point several times in previous posts. Once again, you have to actually read the entire post and not just see only what you want to see in them. I brought up the quotes and the article to back up the points that you refuse to acknowledge.
I read the post, I addressed each quote specifically so that it was obvious why you're, at the very least, missing my point.
These points were true 20 years ago and still are today.
Not nearly to the same degree. That is the point, you're missing it. Physicality has been marginalized by rule changes there's no doubting that. The room is already there for skilled players because they can't be mugged anymore. If you think the game hasn't changed... yeesh, man.

The Canucks have been credited with well over 600 hits so far this year, resulting in 4 boarding calls, 1 charging call and perhaps a few of the 6 roughing calls the team has earned. I can't find any stats on injuries resulting from body checking but it's easily observable that very few of the 600+ hits have caused any discernable injuries.
I addressed what constitutes a statistical hit. There's no toughness involved. That's just positional play. People were arguing we were being physically dominated. That just isn't the case because it can't really be done. There's very little actual physicality left in today's game.
I guess maybe you said it best
And lets call it at that. :lol:

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by woodhog »

And lets call it at that.
I really was ready to leave it at that, and then you bring up another irrelevant point. Which I will address.
Physicality has been marginalized by rule changes there's no doubting that. The room is already there for skilled players because they can't be mugged anymore. If you think the game hasn't changed... yeesh, man.
The rule changes that have limited the clutching, grabbing, hooking etc. have done nothing to limit legitimate body checking. I never once said that the game hasn't changed. I simply stated that "toughness" ie. hitting and checking, still plays a major role in todays game. You're the one that claims that hitting means very little anymore, which is preposterous.
The only rule changes limiting body checks that have occured are aimed at stopping the blindside hits and hitting from behind into the boards.
If you watch most games today, especially in the playoffs, you'll still see plenty of big, legal body checks.

Like I said, either you see it or you don't. Either you're watching the same games everyone else is, or you're not.

And clearly, you're not.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by the toucan kid »

If you watch most games today, especially in the playoffs, you'll still see plenty of big, legal body checks.
You're right, I'm not.

Anyway, this has definitely run its course. So we can call it here.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by Island Nucklehead »

Anyone been watching the HBO Penguins-Capitals 24/7? It may open some eyes.

Dave England fought Colton Orr in the Pens-Leaves game that was showcased in the episode. Took a few stitches. During the intermission Bylsma gives him the "way to fucking go" and the team seems to genuinely appreciate him stepping up. Even more, when Bylsma is doing his daily analysis with Ray Shero he gives England another .5 on his game (from a 3 to 3.5) BECAUSE he fought. This is the system he uses to decide who plays and who sits.

A few games later it's Ovechkins turn to fight Dubinsky. HBO camera's were kicked out of their room while one of the Caps assistants told the team to "grab their sacks" because the "best player on the team, the best player in the world, is out there fighting, grab your fucking sacks".

Emotion still plays a big role in a real hockey game. Something to spark the team, like a hit or a fight, is still important to the guys playing the game.

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Re: Team toughness - Fighting

Post by woodhog »

the toucan kid wrote:
You're right, I'm not.
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:lol:

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