Tags Posts tagged with "Coaching"


The Montreal Canadiens gave it a valiant effort, but the puck pressure by the Pittsburgh Penguins was too much for them to handle, as they dropped a 4-3 shootout decision at the CONSOL Energy Centre.

Join Nick Murdocco, along with Coach K, Kristina Ashqar and Sean Lloyd as they break it all down, and look forward to the next matchup for the Habs, against the lowly Colorado Avalanche.


Shawn Anderson has been involved in hockey since he was a child. He loves everything about the game. His only regret is not getting a post-secondary education and now he makes it a point to help others not make the same mistake.

Growing up in Lasalle, Quebec, Anderson began his hockey career playing midget hockey with the Lac St-Louis Lions. “I didn’t know it at the time, but I was going to be a hockey player,” said Anderson. “At 17, I received a full scholarship at the University of Maine.”

One of Anderson’s teammates in Maine, Jack Capiano, now head coach with the New York Islanders, gave Anderson some important news. “He used to call me Shawno,” smiled Anderson. “He said, ‘Shawno, your name is in the book for NHL ranking’. I realized then, this was coming quick.”

That Christmas, Anderson was signed up with the Canadian Men’s National Team and played with them for the rest of that year. He was then drafted with the Buffalo Sabres. “I don’t have a glorious NHL story to tell,” said Anderson. “Although I did get to play seven years in the league and then continued in Europe and international before I decided to pack it in.”

Anderson played professional hockey for eight seasons as a defensemen in the National Hockey League for the Buffalo Sabres, Quebec Nordiques, Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers. Anderson retired from professional hockey in 2004, deciding to coach and see where the road ahead would lead. “I had surgery here and there and have played with broken bones,” explained Anderson. “I thought it was time for me to get out of the game. I came home and started to coach the Lac St-Louis Lions. It came full circle.”

“I had no idea what the future would bring, or where I would end up 10 years from then,” said Anderson. “I developed a business and worked with local kids. I coached and worked for a couple of schools.” Anderson established a business called Hockey Specific Training. The company informs clients on all aspects of hockey both on and off the ice and offers a multitude of training including individual and team training, hockey camps and clinics, hockey schools, spring leagues, strength and conditioning, training and review, and much more as well as encouraging players on the importance of a good education.

In 2010, he received a call to coach the Hawkesbury Hawks. “I looked at the level of play and what the Hawks were doing for their young men,” said Anderson. “I believe there needs to be a development and involvement with the players, and the Hawks were doing that.”

After two years of coaching the Hawks, Anderson had the opportunity to purchase 50 per cent of the team with Sylvain Landers. “I continue to coach and am part owner,” explained Anderson. “I take pride in taking care of the organization and the players. I got involved in the business model and we decided to incorporate the team. It now runs as a business instead of a non-profit as it had for many years.”

Anderson was awarded most games coached for the Hawkesbury Hawks. “I decided to step down as head coach and give the opportunity to Rick Dorval,” Anderson said. “I wanted to take on a role with a little less involvement and focus on newly founded prep school in Hawkesbury at Le Sommet. Since last November, I started this journey of going out and trying to recruit players for Le Sommet. From November through June, we got a complete team in place with 25 players. The Falcons are up and ready to go.”

The Falcons belong to a hockey prep school federation, which is a group of nine organizations traveling to either host cities within the league or neutral cities to showcase the players that may be scouted for NCAA schools. “It is a really complete hockey and academic program,” explained Anderson. “The players go from September through June.”

“Hawkesbury now has three hockey teams trying to make a future in hockey. It’s great for our city and great for our kids. There are very exciting times ahead.”

Anderson said he has been involved in hockey at some level since he was four years old and doesn’t see that changing any time soon. “I’ve never left the game. It’s always been a part of me. I don’t see myself in any other place,” said Anderson. “As my business expands I am not on the ice as much. My goal is to get good people involved. As far as what the future holds, I take it one day at a time. I am only thinking of what is already in front of me. I am excited about the hockey in Hawkesbury.”

Anderson will soon be writing a column for the Tribune-Express called Hockey Talk. The column will begin in September offering readers information on everything hockey. To make comments or suggestions on topics, Anderson can be reached at HockeyTalk@eap.on.ca.

On this week’s episode of Road To Glory, host Nick Murdocco, along with Steven Hindle and Coach K discuss whether or not the Habs will be better or worse next season, they take a look at the NHL expansion proposals submitted by Quebec City and Las Vegas, and with the discussion about players already done, they question whether or not Michel Therrien and his coaching staff will see the end of next season from behind the Canadiens’ bench.




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At the NHL General Managers’ meetings in Las Vegas yesterday, it was voted that, coming next season, 3-on-3 overtime be adopted. 4-on-4 would be a thing of the past, as the National Hockey League Players’ Association scored a major victory, refusing to adopt the hybrid model overtime used in the AHL, where 4-on-4 was played until the first whistle after the 3 minute mark of OT, then 3-on-3 for another 4 minutes.

The NHLPA contended that the players would be more susceptible to injury with the 3-4 model, so the NHL GMs, desperate to have more games decided in overtime, agreed.

Coming out of the first NHL lockout in 2004-2005, the league decided to implement a shootout after 5 minutes of 4-on 4 overtime to have a winner decided for every game. At the time, everyone was abuzz, as the penalty shot/shootout is “the most exciting play in hockey”. It was a novel idea, that fans enjoyed for the first little while, but after the first couple of seasons, fans grew tired of it.

Now, the league and players’ union are going to 3-on-3 to avoid the shootout more often. the USHL adopted the same model last season, and saw a modest 10% change in games decided in OT. The AHL, which used the hybrid 3-4 model, saw its numbers drop from 66% of games going to a shootout to under 25%, a change of over 40%. The change in the AHL, however, was more evident early in the season, and as the teams adapted, the numbers flatlined.

The league and the union can tinker all they want with overtime formats and rules, but until they can figure out a way to eliminate defensive-oriented hockey from the game, scoring will continue to remain low.

No matter the rule changes, coaches have been notorious for adapting the “trap” in game situations. With the removal of the 2-line offside after 2004-2005, some teams began using their own blue line as their defensive front, with a single forechecker in the neutral zone and stacking the remaining 4 players to quell zone entries. Others, who carry more offensively gifted, quick and skilled players among the forwards would play a 2-3 stack, but the logic was still the same. If you force your opponent to relinquish the puck on zone entry, you’ve already won half the battle.

I have no doubt that after an initial upturn in overtime scoring, the same adaptation will take place. Coaches work tirelessly analyzing video and creating strategies to reduce scoring chances. 3-on-3 overtime will be no different.

So what can be done to change the coaching fraternity’s thought process to encourage more scoring? Rules can be created until people are blue in the face, but those are only temporary measures. The best way to get coaches and teams away from sitting back in a defensive shell is to reward them properly for playing an offensive game. That can only happen through an adjustment of the points system.

The system would be fairly simple:

3 points to the team that wins in regulation time.
2 points to the winner in overtime, and a single point to the losing team.
1 point to the winner in a shootout, and NOTHING awarded to the losing team.

Simple logic dictates that teams that know they can end up with nothing in the coffers after over 65 minutes of play will play a more aggressive, offensively minded style to ensure they maximize the possibility of getting points in regular season games. It would also guarantee the effort and integrity of the 3-on-3 overtime, ensuring teams remain aggressive to avoid the chance of ending games empty-handed.

More points being rewarded would also ensure that teams place a higher importance on their specialty teams. Along with an expected increase in offensive aggressiveness at even-strength, the man-advantage would once again become a major factor in team success, especially for teams that don’t have the offensive firepower to dominate 5-on-5.

If teams didn’t play a point-rewarding style, it would mean missing the playoffs more often and, ultimately, coaching changes to hire staffs with more offensively minded people.

Coaches always say it’s the end result that matters. Well, if success is measured by playoff appearances, then rewarding them that produce more offence is the ideal scenario.

And the silver lining:

With more offensive hockey throughout the regular season, can you imagine a scenario where teams revert back to a defensive shell after a full regular season of pushing the pace?

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When Michel Therrien was hired about 18 months ago to coach the Montreal Canadiens, the decision didn’t have unanimous support from the fans and the media. The truth was that  Therrien had already failed behind the Habs bench in the early 2000s. Yet, the move paid off last season when the Canadiens managed to lead the team to a Northeast Division championship with a record of 29-14-5 for 63 points in 48 games.

However, after a strong start in 2012-13, Therrien’s team faltered down the stretch going 6-8 in the last 14 games of the season. At the same point last campaign, the Canadiens had an excellent record of 12-4-3, starting at the top of the Eastern Conference. Now, as opposed to last year, they currently are 9-8-2, having posted a disappointing record of 4-4-2 in their last ten games. The Bleu Blanc Rouge is currently clinging to the 8th spot in the Eastern Conference, only two points ahead of the inconsistent Ottawa Senators, who have one game in hand.

After 21 games, it’s time to see why Michel Therrien needs to be fired if GM Marc Bergevin and owner Geoff Molson have any hopes to see their team make the playoffs this season.

Below you will find 10 reasons why the Canadiens must get rid of Michel Therrien:

1. Therrien has openly criticized his all-star defenseman P.K. Subban for his turnovers and his lazy penalties, calling him out publicly for his mistakes, which is something you just don’t do if you want your star players on your side.

2. His consistent use of Francis Bouillon on the second power play instead of using Subban for the whole two minutes just like the Penguins and the Senators do with Kris Letang and Erik Karlsson respectively. Since the 2011-12 season, Bouillon has played 129:01 with the power play and has collected a single assist during that period. A SINGLE ASSIST.

3. His constant line juggling and questionable decisions regarding his offensive lines. For example, rookie Michael Bournival was clicking nicely with veterans Tomas Plekanec and Brian Gionta but as soon as veterans Brandon Prust and Travis Moen came back from injuries, Bournival has seen his time dwindle from 15 minutes/game to a new low for November at 7:33 minutes on Saturday, despite the Habs being blanked by a journeyman goalie from Alabama.

4. His return to a dump-and-chase style of play with a passive forecheck is not working. Because of the small size of the club’s forwards, the Habs would be better suited to adopt a west-east approach instead of a north-south strategy that is simply not working. The team needs to penetrate the offensive zone with the puck instead of dumping it and failing to retrieve it. The Habs need to forecheck with two forwards and use their speed to create turnovers in the offensive zone instead of letting the opposing teams come out of its zone too easily and enter the neutral zone without any pressure.

5. Therrien’s hidden hatred of veteran Daniel Briere. When Briere signed a two-year pact worth $8M in the off-season, he didn’t imagine he would end up playing 8:48 on Saturday night, despite being one of the best forwards this week. Therrien didn’t like that Briere came to his office to have more playing time and play at center back in October. Since then, the relationship between the two men is tense.

6. His over-utilization of unproductive center David Desharnais on the man advantage and at even strength. Heck, DD played well over 18 minutes on Saturday, while having only one assist and 21 shots on goal in 19 games. He replaced Briere after only one game, centering power forwards Max Pacioretty and Rene Bourque, turning them right away into useless players.

7. Poor defensive positioning had led to numerous scoring chances from the opposing teams and if it were not for Carey Price’s and Peter Budaj’s stellar play, the Canadiens would have a far worse record. The defensemen have a hard time making a good first pass, often icing the puck because of an inaccurate pass or clearing the puck by the boards with the wingers having no real opportunity to catch the pass and make a clear exit of the defensive zone.

8. His poor decision-making late in games, like using Alexei Emelin, Francis Bouillon, Rene Bourque and David Desharnais in the last minute of Saturday’s 1-0 loss against the Rangers. Also, his unwillingness to pull Carey Price earlier in the game, finally pulling him with only 33 seconds left in the game.

9. The inability for the Habs to mount a comeback when trailing after two periods of play (0-7-1) and the inexplicable use of unproductive players in such circumstances. Slumping veterans such as Francis Bouillon, Brian Gionta and David Desharnais all average more playing time in losses this season than in wins.

10. His inability to adapt during games and to match-up his lines, especially at home where he is supposed to have the advantage with the last change. We have often seen the Canadiens get caught with their fourth line on the ice while the opponent’s first line jumps on the ice; situations that often led to a goal.

Below you will find the Habs’ new lines following Monday morning’s practice:

Alex Galchenyuk – Lars Eller – Brandon Prust
Max Pacioretty – David Desharnais – Brendan Gallagher
Rene Bourque – Tomas Plekanec – Brian Gionta
Michaël Bournival – Daniel Brière – Travis Moen

Once again I am puzzled at the hockey decisions made by Michel Therrien and his coaching staff.

While it is still very early in the season, it is not normal that your #1 goalie who is currently posting career numbers which a stellar 2.05 GAA and an incredible .936 save % has a disappointing record of 7-8-2… The team is scoring at a 2.43 goals/game so far this season, more than half a goal short of what Therrien said is required to win hockey games.

It sounds like Therrien is slowly losing his dressing room as a result of poor decisions this season… how much time until he loses his job as well?

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WebSports Media Network is proud to present its newest show, The 3 Zones, which will delve into the coaching aspect of the game of hockey.

Join Bobby Dollas, Dino Masanotti and our host Mitch Gallo, as they talk about how coaches motivated their players before, during and after games, as well as the importance of proper angling and the ongoing debate about madatory visors and fighting in the NHL.

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WebSports Media Network is proud to present its newest show, The 3 Zones, which will delve into the coaching aspect of the game of hockey.

Join Bobby Dollas, Dino Masanotti and our host Mitch Gallo, who discuss coaching on an injury riddled team, preparing a seasonal plan and defending  3 vs 5 shorthanded.

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WebSports Media Network is proud to present its newest show, The 3 Zones, which will delve into the coaching aspect of the game of hockey.

Join Bobby Dollas, Dino Masanotti and our host Mitch Gallo, as the boys discuss off-ice conditioning and its possible effect over a hockey season. They also go in-depth about concussions, and what can be done to prevent them.