One of the things that we’ve started to do over at Pension Plan Puppets is to break down particular goals and look at what led to them being scored. This is probably going to hurt but today we’re going to take a look at the Flyers’ fifth goal. You can watch the video above (fast forward past the rest of the goals to minimize the pain) to get a sense of what happened.
Tomas Kaberle has just collected a stray clearance and can see Scott Hartnell coming at him. He has two choices: He can chip it to his left to Colby Armstrong (not pictured) who could then outlet it aacross the ice to Dion Phaneuf (not pictured) or he can slide it back into the Flyers’ zone and regroup back in position. He chooses secret option # 3: slide it into no man’s land.
The Leafs actually don’t look in too bad of shape. Dion Phaneuf is at the end of his shift but he looks to be in good position to at least get to the puck at the same time as Danny Briere. Colby Armstrong has the time and room to get behind Phaneuf as back-up in case Briere gets by him.
This is almost the same as the last one but I wanted to highlight Colby Armstrong’s posture. He’s almost completely upright. He has not made a strong move to get back where he should be.
This is the killer on the play. Phaneuf was caught flat footed but he has to make a stronger move here. This is actually one place where going for the big hit at the expense of playing the puck would have been welcome. Hell, he could have even tripped him up. Anything but a wave of his stick.
The Maple Leafs could have gotten away with the sum total of their mistakes – Kaberle’s giveaway, Phaneuf’s soft play, Armstrong’s laziness – if only Danny Briere had not made such a spectacular shot. Some criticized Jean-Sebastien Giguere but that betrays a lack of understanding of the butterfly. Giguere’s taking away the majority of the net. This angle isn’t the greatest to show what Briere had to shoot at but it goes in over his shoulder and almost off the post. Aside from being beat by a great shot Giguere plays it by the book. He’s the only Leaf player to get out of that play able to hold his head up high.