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Pirateasaur
12-11-2015, 12:43 PM
Hello Spartys. Somebody has to win tonight, am I rite?

The Badgers will be without 2 top six forwards tonight and one D due to injuries. Top line C, Cameron Hughes is out, and Freshman Seamus Malone will attempt to fill his skates. Second line C/W Adam Rockwood is out and will be replaced by essentially moving the old third line up and remaking the third. And Freshman Jake Bunz will see his first action as a Badger filling in for the injured Peter Tischke on D.

I think it would be sporting of Sparty to just sit a couple of top F's and a D as well. You know? Give everybody a chance to participate. I mean winning isn't everything...

Well, we actually only have 6 defenseman and I think one of them has been out so we are painfully thin back there. No idea on his status.

But yeah, tough last 3 weeks, especially considering the painful way a sweep of tech managed to turn Into a loss and a tie. We played fine against a better NoDak team and were swept; not all that surprising. But last week's embarrassment at PSU was a huge bummer. I now believe that this team's defense is too thin and messy to salvage a tournament birth. We are letting in goals by the fist full every game at this point. Unfortunately, I think Anastos' job is 100% in jeopardy. Hopefully we turn things around this weekend.

owslachief
12-11-2015, 01:23 PM
Well, we actually only have 6 defenseman and I think one of them has been out so we are painfully thin back there. No idea on his status.

But yeah, tough last 3 weeks, especially considering the painful way a sweep of tech managed to turn Into a loss and a tie. We played fine against a better NoDak team and were swept; not all that surprising. But last week's embarrassment at PSU was a huge bummer. I now believe that this team's defense is too thin and messy to salvage a tournament birth. We are letting in goals by the fist full every game at this point. Unfortunately, I think Anastos' job is 100% in jeopardy. Hopefully we turn things around this weekend.

As far as I understand it, Knudsen has been left out of the lineup for reasons other than health. He finally played last Saturday, but the result was about the same. I would love to see us use DeBlouw as a D-man again! He is a skill upgrade overall, and as far as the specific D-man skills he is serviceable.

Spartanforlife4
12-11-2015, 09:44 PM
Good win tonight. Maybe we can eek another one out tomorrow and sit at 6 pts going into Christmas. So far it's looking like Michigan's conference to lose.

UMICH
12-12-2015, 02:15 AM
Good win tonight. Maybe we can eek another one out tomorrow and sit at 6 pts going into Christmas. So far it's looking like Michigan's conference to lose.

We have our problems with Penn State so ya never know. Plus our defense is quite worrisome and our goaltending isn't any better. But hey, we can score though.

Spartanforlife4
12-12-2015, 04:05 PM
I think this is the third time we've been shut out on teddy bear toss night. Maybe we should just start taking them at the door.

aallenpollreisz
12-12-2015, 05:58 PM
The good: Hey, we got a split.

The bad: My god, what an embarrassing defensive performance. Garbage effort against an aggressive Wisconsin team, especially during that second period. I know we're hurt back there, but it really didn't seem like a talent or depth issue tonight. It was lazy play and boneheaded decisions.

Second shutout on teddy bear toss night for me. Was just as embarrassing tonight as it was last time.

Just an extremely upsetting game.

aallenpollreisz
12-12-2015, 06:17 PM
Nope, not drunk enough yet.

owslachief
12-12-2015, 10:09 PM
The bad: My god, what an embarrassing defensive performance. Garbage effort against an aggressive Wisconsin team, especially during that second period. I know we're hurt back there, but it really didn't seem like a talent or depth issue tonight. It was lazy play and boneheaded decisions.


This.

How has this program improved at all in 4-plus years? Periods 1 and 2 are about as bad a performance as I can remember. How's 1 shot on goal through 4 power plays? Is it possible the weekend against UNH was fool's gold?

Pirateasaur
12-14-2015, 10:10 AM
Well, after that initial scuffle for the first face off and a first 5 minutes that felt as if it had quite a bit of Intensity, I thought we were in for a treat on Saturday but instead bared witness to one of the more listless performances I've seen out of the team in quite a while.

Wisconsin is an improved team from last season but they are nothing more than mediocre. If a few previous losses had gone differently I would chalk it up to a rough night but this is becoming far too normal. I must say that my morale is lower than it has ever been during Anastos' tenure.

With that said, Friday's win was fun and the Hoomaian breakaway game winner felt like a very great moment.

gomsuman
12-14-2015, 10:45 AM
I will admit Saturday was one of the first times I have seen Anastos visibly upset with the team as a whole on the bench. There were moments in the second where he was giving it to some players pretty good. Don't get me wrong, I have NO idea on how Anastos is behind the scenes with the team but usually he is pretty even-keeled on the bench during games, so I guess take that however you want to...

My question for you all: Have you ever seen a team that just refuses to pass the puck back to the D-Men in the offensive zone!? I mean some of it can be attributed to just the horrendous turnovers the D core has had this year but probably isn't the whole answer. Offense in hockey is usually very dependent on the fact you can at least rely on your defensemen to move the puck around in the offensive zone to create some chances. Opposing teams can pretty much figure it out that MSU cannot do that and just out number our forwards when they try to cycle the puck in the corner with the forwards, making it very tough to get anything going on offense when we aren't on a break of some sort. I know this has frustrated me almost every year since Krug left but it really, really stood out this weekend. Coaching or Players? Thoughts?

owslachief
12-14-2015, 11:53 AM
I will admit Saturday was one of the first times I have seen Anastos visibly upset with the team as a whole on the bench. There were moments in the second where he was giving it to some players pretty good. Don't get me wrong, I have NO idea on how Anastos is behind the scenes with the team but usually he is pretty even-keeled on the bench during games, so I guess take that however you want to...
Did that begin after our rookie D-man dilly-dallied with the puck about 15 feet in front of Hildy in the second period, got eaten alive by their forward as a result with only a stunned goalie left to strike the pose? My first impulse was to chalk it up to rookie error. I'm now thinking this is something a little more widespread.


My question for you all: Have you ever seen a team that just refuses to pass the puck back to the D-Men in the offensive zone!? I mean some of it can be attributed to just the horrendous turnovers the D core has had this year but probably isn't the whole answer. Offense in hockey is usually very dependent on the fact you can at least rely on your defensemen to move the puck around in the offensive zone to create some chances. Opposing teams can pretty much figure it out that MSU cannot do that and just out number our forwards when they try to cycle the puck in the corner with the forwards, making it very tough to get anything going on offense when we aren't on a break of some sort. I know this has frustrated me almost every year since Krug left but it really, really stood out this weekend. Coaching or Players? Thoughts?

You make a good point. When we have guys like Walsh, who can command the point, and Holland (that latter whose worth is more obvious in the offensive zone), this shouldn't be an issue - but it is. Even Osburn - something seems to click when he crosses that blue line - these guys should all be way more involved than they are.

spartyon58
12-14-2015, 01:55 PM
I don't know why our d-men are not involved in the offense. It's possible they may be afraid to make a mistake and get caught. Gatt and Knudsen are not fast enough to take risks in the offensive zone, but Walsh, Osborn, Holland and Draeger should be contributing more to the offense. Lack of confidence might also be an issue. Could we be expecting too much? Do we actually have below average talent. I thought we matched up pretty well with Tech, but not with North Dakota. It will be interesting to see how we compete with Tech and possibly UM at the GLI.

Split-N
12-15-2015, 06:04 AM
I'm thinking this thread should be combined with the Northeastern thread. Same posts about different teams with the same issues. But anyway, hope everyone from Spartyland making the trip to Boston this weekend has a ton of fun.....up to a point.

Spartanforlife4
12-15-2015, 10:34 AM
I'm thinking this thread should be combined with the Northeastern thread. Same posts about different teams with the same issues. But anyway, hope everyone from Spartyland making the trip to Boston this weekend has a ton of fun.....up to a point.

Ouch. Hadn't realized you guys were doing so bad.

I think the best part of this weekend will end up being the men's basketball game.

gomsuman
12-15-2015, 11:44 AM
I don't know why our d-men are not involved in the offense. It's possible they may be afraid to make a mistake and get caught. Gatt and Knudsen are not fast enough to take risks in the offensive zone, but Walsh, Osborn, Holland and Draeger should be contributing more to the offense. Lack of confidence might also be an issue. Could we be expecting too much? Do we actually have below average talent. I thought we matched up pretty well with Tech, but not with North Dakota. It will be interesting to see how we compete with Tech and possibly UM at the GLI.

So far the only team to me that has totally out-classed MSU on the talent department is North Dakota. But they probably have the most NHL-level talent then anyone in college hockey this year, so that was to be expected.

I hate to say it, but at this point I wouldn't be surprised if Michigan puts up big numbers against us this year... Their offense is really, really good and I don't think we can keep up with them scoring goals. But the same as the past few years as long as our defensemen give Hildebrand a chance to make saves we will have a shot at winning.

Split-N
12-15-2015, 02:31 PM
...I think the best part of this weekend will end up being the men's basketball game.

We have a basketball team?

Scarlet
12-15-2015, 08:32 PM
I'll be there on Saturday - looking forward to it. I'm a tried and true Terrier, but Michigan State is my favorite non-BU school. Maybe it's because I applied, got in,but didn't go. Maybe it's because my dad told me his mother came from Sparta so I kind of am a Spartan, at least partially, by birth. :) Regardless, I do follow and root for you guys. I think something happened to them after the Tech series. They were coming off a huge sweep of UNH, and probably feeling like things were moving in the right direction. They had that lead over Tech that first game, then blew it. Same thing the next night. They really haven't been the same since that weekend.

owslachief
12-15-2015, 10:38 PM
MSU could fill a big defensive need for 2016-17 with the commitment of a kinda small D-man, left-handed shooting Damian Chrcek from Salmon Arm of the BCHL. At 5'9, Chrcek has 4 goals and 7 assists in 27 games for the Silverbacks. His teammate and fellow 2016 MSU commitment F Taro Hirose is for the second year in a row leading the team with 40 points in 32 games.

gomsuman
12-16-2015, 11:33 AM
MSU could fill a big defensive need for 2016-17 with the commitment of a kinda small D-man, left-handed shooting Damian Chrcek from Salmon Arm of the BCHL. At 5'9, Chrcek has 4 goals and 7 assists in 27 games for the Silverbacks. His teammate and fellow 2016 MSU commitment F Taro Hirose is for the second year in a row leading the team with 40 points in 32 games.

We can always use a another Krug type... Granted I thought at the start of this season that Osburn was going to be that this year.

owslachief
12-16-2015, 04:18 PM
We can always use a another Krug type... Granted I thought at the start of this season that Osburn was going to be that this year.
Osburn at times is a shadow of himself. I think he can still be that guy ... but there's some maturing to do, and this team needs to have the depth at D for him to have the freedom to be that guy. His mistakes are costly, because I don't think either of these goalies are playing with any confidence right now..

He's not the only one, however. There's one senior that's just never lived up to his potential at MSU. When defending a rush, for example, I don't think his positioning is great, he's never gotten involved offensively, and his decision-making in his own zone leaves me at times scratching my head. Perhaps he gets a hall pass because of the history with off-season injuries, but it's time for him to step up if MSU has a chance at all to salvage this season.