Neutral Zone Analysis: 2014-2015 Season: Game 8 v Dallas

G8

Last night’s game vs the Stars involved the Isles being outplayed in the neutral zone, as you can see here. The Stars did a much better job than the Isles carrying the puck in, but the Isles had greater success in the offensive and defensive zones.

This has been a rolling theme actually – the Isles have actually been a slightly negative Neutral zone team in close situations this year and have dominated mainly due to amazing play in the offensive zone. While this can be a method for long term success – the Sharks have done it for the last 2 years, although they were also great in the D Zone, it generally isn’t the most repeatable of statistical profiles.

In short, the Isles probably need to get better in the neutral zone to keep up their great possession numbers. Here’s hoping they can figure this out – having Grabovski should help, as should Hamonic, although Hamonic has been extremely dump-heavy this year – when he was a big carry-in guy last year. Hopefully that doesn’t continue.

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3 thoughts on “Neutral Zone Analysis: 2014-2015 Season: Game 8 v Dallas

  1. I think Capuano has really stressed the whole 200 foot game mantra, and players are less willing to take risks by carrying the puck in. That worries me a little bit, but I’m hoping that changes a bit in time with building team confidence and comfort between linemates.

    I won’t stress too much about it while we’re winning games.

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  2. Do you think Hamonic being dump heavy has been a result of his on-ice teammates or in-game situation rather than a newfound tendency?

    Also, I am new to the stat game. Looks like Strome has been incredible this year in terms of possession. Is this true?

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    • It’s hard to tell – Hamonic’s partner this year has been Hickey, who used to play with another great carrying D-Man in Lubo, so that shouldn’t really be it. And neither should the game situation. It’s a bit weird.

      Strome has been good both years so far in possession. To be fair, being put with Nelson helps, as Nelson has been great at possession so far. But so far so good.

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