So, lesson learned from the game? I’d say if they broke down the film, the very first question to ask themselves is why did they score twice with literally no time left?
In the first case Tanguay tossed a "desperation" shot at the goal that ended up leading to a wide open net for Iginla to score.
Tanguay chooses to shoot here because of time on the clock and only because of time on the clock. In this situation the Avalanche typically prefer to pass it behind the net or Tangs would reverse it up the wall looking for his point man. But, the clock… the clock forces his hand.
The clock also forces Duchene to do something he doesn’t typically do, drive through the front of the net. With more time, Duchene will usually use the net as a screen and go around the back of the net to wait for a pass. But, that damned clock… makes him do something desperate and correct. By driving through the lane he gets Chara to chase instead of hitting the breaks at the crease if he had gone back door around the net.
Duchene doesn’t screen the goalie here, he tips the puck and it bounces off Rask in to the weakside. Lesson here is that speed can drive the net. You don’t need to be a grinder to drive the net. Chara with all his toughness and reach can’t play this much better than he does but it’s Duchene’s drive through the crease that makes Chara chase, turning his back to the weak side. Second man in (what a lot of centers do with how breakouts work) driving the net is fundamental 101 hockey.
D in the corner on the puck, D chases cutter through the slot and that leaves gravy weak side. The centerman is now responsible for covering the weakside and if this play is on the rush it’s going to take a really good center to pivot backwards, watch his blindside and defend any rebound. In this case, the weakside cover is oblivious but even if he wasn’t it’s a 50/50 puck that’s a quality scoring chance.
All of this, ALL OF IT is because the time on the clock forced the Avs to play fundamental hockey. Not fancy hockey, fundamental hockey. The speed and skill naturally display themselves. You don’t have to play as a skilled team, you play as a fundamentally strong team and the rest takes care of itself.
On to goal number two… more Clockwork Burgundy.
So, yes the Avs have pulled the goalie for the extra attacker. But let’s be clear, that’s got nothing to do with this play. Here it’s 3v3 down low. Mitchell has no shot. None. He’s got traffic in front of him and no net to shoot at. But he does have two players in the crease.
If this situation had time on the clock the Avs would not have two guys right on top of the crease. In fact, they would have zero players on top of the crease where Mitchell has the puck. Instead they would float a guy behind the net for a pass or in the high slot. Not always bad hockey for a cycle game. But if you always do it, then it’s easy to defend. It’s also going to take a perfect pass and perfect conditions to get good scoring chances. Anyway, Mitchell throws it at the net from the goalline, not a high quality chance. But he’s got guys at the crease.
Hey, there’s O’Rieilly sneaking in blindside to the wingers watching the play. Let’s pretend that 5v5 he’s the weakside defenseman. Note that Redmond and Holden aren’t in the picture, and they never get in the picture. This is almost 4v5 hockey in the Bruins favor. They may be staying home a bit because two guys are Waaaaay back at the blueline. You could say the centerman is a little high here for the Bruins as well and should be on Everberg.
Shot, rebound, score….. and look at all this room for activities in the slot! By the way, Redmond and Holden still not in the picture and they never become part of the 6v5.
TL : DR
Avs had their hand forced by the clock to do things on the ice that they typically don’t do in the course of play. This change in play lead to goals. It’s in the Avalanche’s best interest to alter their play to drive the net and put pucks at the net. It’s cliché, but it works and it does take skill to make it work.