ATD2019 Conference Final - Montreal Canadiens vs. New Jersey Swamp Devils

Discussion in 'All Time Draft' started by BenchBrawl, Apr 30, 2019.

  1. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    MONTREAL CANADIENS

    :habs


    GM: BenchBrawl

    Captain: Eddie Gerard
    Assistant: Doug Harvey
    Assistant: Jarome Iginla
    Assistant: Derian Hatcher


    HEAD COACH

    Hap Day

    ROSTER

    Alex Yakushev - Frank Boucher - Jarome Iginla (A)
    Baldy Northcott - Mike Modano - Marian Hossa
    Jamie Benn - Frank Fredrickson - Dave Taylor
    Don Marcotte - Ken Mosdell - Bobby Rousseau
    Joe Pavelski, Blake Wheeler

    Doug Harvey (A) - Eddie Gerard (C)
    Derian Hatcher (A) - Drew Doughty
    Bobby Rowe - Bullet Joe Simpson
    Glen Harmon, Ted Harris

    Jacques Plante
    Miikka Kiprusoff

    PP1:
    Yakushev-Boucher-Iginla
    Harvey-Rousseau

    PP2:
    Fredrickson-Modano-Hossa
    Gerard-Simpson

    PK1:
    Modano-Marcotte
    Hatcher-Harvey
    Plante

    PK2:
    Boucher-Mosdell
    Gerard-Doughty
    Plante

    PK extras: Hossa, Northcott, Rousseau, Taylor


    vs.


    New Jersey Swamp Devils

    Coach: Joel Quenneville

    Alex Delvecchio - Newsy Lalonde (C)- Helmuts Balderis
    Reg Noble - Bill Cowley - Maurice Richard (A)
    Bun Cook - Mickey MacKay - Ace Bailey
    Tony Leswick- Guy Carbonneau - Vic Stasiuk

    Duncan Keith - Earl Seibert
    Babe Siebert (A) - Harry Cameron
    Frank Patrick - Alex Pietrangelo

    Dominik Hasek
    Hap Holmes

    Spares: Russell Bowie (C), Bobby Bauer (RW), Todd Bertuzzi (LW/RW), Kevin Hatcher (D)​

    PP1: Bill Cowley - Newsy Lalonde - Maurice Richard - Harry Cameron - Alex Delvecchio
    PP2: Bun Cook - Mickey MacKay - Helmuts Balderis - Duncan Keith - Earl Seibert

    PK1: Guy Carbonneau - Tony Leswick - Duncan Keith - Earl Seibert
    PK2: Mickey MacKay - Ace Bailey - Babe Siebert - Alex Pietrangelo​

    Style: Attacking team with a defensive conscience. All 6 defensemen are capable of moving the puck up ice, secure in the knowledge that if they get caught, they have the best goalie ever at stopping odd-man rushes. This is helped by the fact that the Swamp Devils have a LH and RH shot playing together at all times - ES, SH, PP.
     
  2. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    Montreal TOI

    Forwards Estimated TOI
    PlayerESPPPKTOT
    Boucher134320
    Modano133420
    Iginla134017
    Yakushev134017
    Hossa133016
    Fredrickson133016
    Benn130013
    Northcott130013
    Taylor130013
    Rousseau74*011
    Marcotte70411
    Mosdell70310
    TOT13825*14177*

    Defensemen Estimated TOI
    PlayerESPPPKTOT
    Harvey185528
    Gerard182222
    Doughty180220
    Hatcher160521
    Simpson123015
    Rowe100010
    TOT9210*14116*
    *Rousseau plays on the PP point
     
  3. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    A few comments:

    1) Both teams have an elite goalie.I don't see this being a factor in this series.

    2) NJ splitted Richard and Lalonde, but I think Montreal has the blueline to handle this.MTL's pairings are excellent defensively.The ideal scenario is probably to have Harvey and the Modano line (Northcott) on Richard, and Hatcher-Doughty on Lalonde, but the other combinations are also reasonable from a MTL standpoint.

    3) Coaching more or less equal.I think Hap Day fits MTL better than Quenneville does NJ though.
     
  4. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    I'll be around this week to debate you, @BenchBrawl. Hope you have some time too.
     
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  5. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    Two teams with vastly different styles. Montreal is a defense-first team, and one of the better ones I've seen in any ATD. It isn't easy building a good defense-first team in the ATD, because every team needs those two-way players at some point, even if they (like NJ) also drafts offensive stars.

    NJ has emphasized building around scoring stars up front, but providing them with the two-way support from other players to succeed.

    A few things in NJ's favor that might not be readily apparently:

    1. Special Teams. Montreal's emphasis on two-way forwards really hurts their powerplay.

    The fact that NJ's powerplay is far superior to Montreal's is so obvious to me, I don't really feel the need to go into details, but I will if pressed.

    Meanwhile, Montreal has a better PK due to a better top defensive pairing. But NJ filled out our role players with players who could play on the PK, and I don't think the difference is nearly as much as NJ's advantages on the PP. For example, statistically, Pietrangelo is a candidate for the most prolific PKer of his generation, with only longevity preventing him from deserving a spot on a top ATD PK. I actually prefer NJ's PK forwards slightly over Montreal's, due to Carbonneau.

    2. The shift after a penalty kill. Montreal uses 3 of their centers in 4 of their top PK spots - pretty much guaranteeing that the Fredrickson line needs to play the shift after a successful PK. By making heavy use of our bottom 6 forwards on the PK, NJ can come right back with the Lalonde line or the Cowley-Richard line to press the attack after killing a successful penalty. Either way, Quenneville has options for the first shift after a successful PK than Day really doesn't.

    3. Quenneville likely has had NJ's defensemen pushing the puck aggressively all season long, secure in the knowledge that Hasek is the best ever at stopping odd-man rushes. I don't have a Harvey-quality top defenseman obviously, but all 6 NJ defensemen are capable of moving the puck, and all 6 of them are playing on their proper side (LHD on the left side, RHD on the right side), which makes moving the puck up ice just a tad quicker. This will be very handy in breaking Montreal's defensive system - NJ is a team built to quickly moving the puck in transition.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2019
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  6. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    A few comments before I leave for (a late) dinner.

    Agreed my PK is a weakness, but it's not that weak.Harvey is still one of the best PPQB of all-time, and Boucher one of the best playmakers.They form the basis of the PP structure and the others guys are complementary pieces.I know Rousseau makes it look ugly though.I shot myself in the foot with that one.

    In any case, you compared PP vs. PP then PK vs. PK. If you argue that your superior PP is one of your main advantage, the bottom line is it's going to face one of the best, if not the best PK in the league.The strength of your own PK is more or less irrelevant, as Montreal doesn't rely on their PP to win games.MTL have Jacques Plante, Doug Harvey and Derian Hatcher on its 1st unit.Even the Plante-Harvey ''chemistry'' going on.Hatcher being there will make it difficult for Lalonde to have his way in front of Plante.If NJ relies too much on their PP to win games, MTL has the PK strength to suffocate this game plan.

    Another point, MTL is quite a disciplined team overall.

    Not sure why having the Fredrickson line after the PK would be a problem for Day.A reminder that Jamie Benn is now easily a 2nd liner and Frank Fredrickson is not much different from so many 2nd line centers in the league.Not much separating him and Modano, for example.I built the team with the strong 3rd line in mind, which is why I picked both Benn and Fredrickson quicker than usual 3rd liners (their value is a matter of opinion sure, just showing I have skin in the game).MTL's 3rd line is one of its main strengths.It's fast, has size, good defensively and offensively.Fredrickson can certainly keep up with Lalonde and won't be overpowered.He's also better defensively than both Lalonde and Cowley.

    If by any chance this became a problem, say against Richard, Day has the option to throw Baldy Northcott or Marian Hossa in there(*).Having those wingers not playing any PK gives Day great options for the post-PK shift.One great advantage of Montreal's forward group is that almost every winger is interchangeable throughout the lineup (ignoring side).The only combination MTL cares about is the Boucher-Iginla duo, which is a replica of Boucher-Cook.The rest doesn't matter.Say Richard kills Benn against the Fredrickson line: You put Northcott with Fredrickson on the next shift.Then Benn can play with Modano-Hossa without any problem subsequently and eventually you go back to the real lines.It's very easy to execute.Filling the gap doesn't create another one in this case.

    Will comment more later.

    (*)If Day really wants a better post-PK line (particularly defensively), without using Modano, just throw Northcott-Fredrickson-Hossa, then you go back with Benn-Modano-Taylor or Yakushev-Boucher-Iginla or the 4th line.All of those are legit lines with good structure and on-paper chemistry IMO.Northcott and Fredrickson on the same line is actually scary for overpowering the opponents.
     
    Last edited: May 8, 2019
  7. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    I'll have to run the numbers if I can find the time, but I have the impression that MTL have a lot of players who excelled at ES.I know this was the case with Iginla, others not sure on top of my head.

    Another point, Montreal is a deceptively big team (size).Especially the forwards, but even the Top 4 defensemen are solid physical players.The forwards are not overly physical (as in aggressive), but they are really big.

    Yakushev, Iginla, Modano, Northcott, Benn, Fredrickson, Taylor, those are all players with size inside the Top 9.
     
  8. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    The reason I focused on special teams is because I think NJ's advantage in special teams is more clear than any advantage at even strength.

    I see it this way at even strength: 1st, 3rd, and 4th lines quite close. 2nd and 3rd defensive pairings quite close. Montreal's big advantage is Harvey; NJ's big advantage is the Cowley-Richard duo on the 2nd line.

    Plus even strength is a bit of an awkward comparison anyway, since the team's second lines are built for such different purposes.
     
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  9. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    Iginla's plus/minuses in the regular season, relative to his team were fantastic. Seems that a lot of voters during the recent HOH project tried to forget that. FWIW, his numbers in the playoffs weren't so outstanding, but they weren't bad.

    I don't think Montreal's size up front will give NJ trouble; not with the Seibert/Siebert boys and Frank Patrick back there.
     
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  10. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    IIRC Benn also had a good ES/PP ratio.I can't run the numbers right now.

    I think MTL's 3rd line is clearly better than NJ's, mostly because Benn.

    I think the teams are close enough that it's more a matter of global confrontation than line vs. line comparison.Montreal is throughoutly responsible defensively, have a Top 4 on defense all made of elite defensive defensemen, backed by Plante and coached by Day.The coach-team chemistry is as good as it gets IMO.Not saying Quenneville is a poor fit, but I don't buy that he's as good a fit for NJ as Day is for MTL.

    As for the strategy to let your defensemen rush it up because Hasek is good against odd man rushes, fair enough, but it's still a dangerous game.This is especially true since MTL have a similar advantage, in the sense that Harvey being back there for half the game enables the forwards to cheat a little bit, just like it did for the late 1950s Montreal dynasty forwards.And behind Harvey is Plante.Beside him is Gerard.This is a wall.

    Harvey is indeed the biggest advantage for MTL, in that his impact on the game flow will be bigger than any player in this series.If NJ wants to build their game plan around transition it will be hard to do when facing Harvey who is an expert at controlling transition.

    As for Cowley-Richard, yes, a big weapon offensively.But it is a black hole defensively.The fact that each of MTL's line can defend is a big plus to counter a ''splitting of superstar'' strategy.
     
  11. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    In a sense, it's harder to throw some bullet point arguments for a defensive team.There is only so many different ways to say that Montreal is a rock; robust and resistant.Yet during a game, the impact of this quality is ubiquitous.

    Montreal is a ''grinding'' team, but not strictly the physical sort of grinding.More a series of mistake-free back and forths, grinding the odds in the long run.
     
  12. tinyzombies

    tinyzombies Registered User

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    Never thought about Richard vs Harvey. What a matchup.

    Similarly, Richard vs Hasek. Neither guy knows what he's going to do next. Richard equally strong going forehand or backhand.

    This team is kind of like the late 60s Habs seems like. Big, gritty defensive dynasty.
     
  13. ted2019

    ted2019 Registered User

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    Interesting to see Richard on the 2nd line.
     
  14. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    Basically, my top 6 has to be set up the way it is for chemistry reasons. I see my top 2 lines as of more or less similar quality - neither one amazing for a 1st line, but a strong top 6 as a whole.

    As for which line is listed as the "2nd line," Richard is the best forward in my top 6, but Noble is the worst one in my top 6.
     
  15. TheDevilMadeMe

    TheDevilMadeMe Registered User

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    Anyway, not surprised this one was extremely close, BB - your team really was built to be a strong contender in the playoffs.

    Thanks for running this thing when it looked like nobody else would.
     
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  16. tinyzombies

    tinyzombies Registered User

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    Richard vs Plante that is... I read Plante's autobio and he stonewalled the habs sometimes in practice.
     
  17. BenchBrawl

    BenchBrawl joueur de hockey

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    Thanks TDMM.The teams were close, yours is a very strong team and worthy contender for the title.I wish we had more time to debate like back in the days, but at least we managed to throw in a couple of arguments.Wishing you good luck in the finals.
     

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