Should a defenseman leave their feet when defending a 2-on-1?
A clip from the New Jersey Devils last week sent me down a wormhole.
I was sent down a wormhole last week watching the New Jersey Devils 4-3 win against the Detroit Red Wings.
In the second period the Red Wings had a 2-on-1 break featuring Daniel Sprong and Andrew Copp.
Devils defenseman Jonas Siegenthaler was defending on the play, left his feet in an attempt to take away the pass, and was bailed out in the end by Devils goalie Vitek Vanecek.
Here’s the video.
Lindy Ruff is the head coach in New Jersey. I covered Ruff for two seasons in Dallas, and Stars defensemen during that time, and the goalies, told me about how they were instructed to leave their feet and take away the pass on 2-on-1s.
I personally hated this tactic. As someone who still attempts to play goalie in beer league, one of the few things I tactically tell my defenders in those games is to stay on their feet and take the pass on a 2-on-1, leave the shot to the goalie.
When a player slides, like Siegenthaler in that clip above, a patient offensive player can easily setup slam-dunk one-timer for their teammate at the backdoor.
That’s my opinion, but I figured I’d go deeper down the wormhole with actual experts who get paid lots of money to play this game.
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