A marvelous article from Justin Bourne of Puck Daddy. Click the link below for the rest of this gem.

From the mid 1990s to the pre-lockout 2000s, hockey players trying to create offense basically had one goal when they didn’t have a clean look at the net: cycle the puck.

It was an era of hooks, holds and grabs which made getting to the net like slogging through a gauntlet set in quicksand, so your best bet was to maintain possession in the corner for as long as possible and hope for a breakdown, preferably in the form of simultaneous ankle injuries to both opposing defensemen. THEN you might have some room to create something.

After defenders had the ability to mindlessly pin a guy to the boards with a knee between his legs stripped from them — how in god’s name was that ever allowed? — we didn’t immediately see a change in that offensive strategy. Players continued to cycle the puck, only it looked more like some hot NASCAR action rather than something a hockey team should be doing in an attempt to score hockey goals.

I distinctly remember a college game in which our line cycled the puck for a good nine bump-backs and feeling a touch absurd, like we were still using some archaic premise that felt outdated in modern times, like using “thus” in writing.

Thus, something had to give.

Justin Bourne’s Spreading the Offense & Breaking the Cycle

Categories: L.A. Kings News

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4 replies

  1. Everything Bourne writes is marvelous.

    • That is a wonderful article. Love the detail.

      The Kings try to execute this often but one of two things, sometimes both, happen. Either there is too much fumbling to take advantage of any space, or the dmen get caught up in a play of catch, either because their own fumbling allows the opposing forwards to cut off the high to low pass or that low forward doesn’t space himself correctly or open up his body to best receive the pass.

      A lot of This is also caused by imprecise passing. Every time a player has to reach, that gives the defender one more step to encroach.

  2. I’ve been complaining for months that the Kings have only been playing from low to high plays. How about from low to crossice? Even attempting this once in a while would make the low to high plays harder to cover. So far not a single back door play, and we’re 1/2 way through the season (I challenge anyone to find more than 2 examples of this on the PP for the Kings this season). At least a onetimer from the high man in the slot, instead of automatically passing to the point.


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