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Thoughts on Rollie the Goalie Coach...


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#1 disisdayear

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:15 PM

Other than having spent 1997 to 2009 as the Canadiens as their goalie during which time Jose Theodore, Mathieu Garon, Jeff Hackett, Jocelyn Thibault, David Aebischer, Jaroslav Halak, Cristobal Huet and Carey Price, played for them, and having watched over Dwayne Roloson while he was in the AHL, there isn't much background on him as a coach.

I'm not really sold on Rollie as goalie coach...seems he's a pretty head strong guy and his methods basic (i.e., story in the Province recently citing he bungee corded Theo's catching hand because he thought Theo kept it too low).

With Luongo there was talk that he worked on him to play deeper in the crease and his lateral movements (which is valid because Luoong was getting beaten on the back door pass with ease) taking away Lu's tendency to challenge shooters aggressively (counter to what Luongo did in his first four years).

Based on Rollie's background, it seems he likes to take younger goalies and shape their techniques and tendencies (a young Theo, Halak, Huet and Price). Perhaps Schneider benefitted from Rollie whereas Luongo did not.

Does anyone have any insights on the role he had on the development of Theo, Thibault, Halak, Huet, Price and Roloson? What are the general thoughts on Rollie as the guy for guiding the on-going development of Schneider?

#2 elvis15

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:28 PM

"Other than 12 years as an NHL goalie coach, there isn't much background on him."

I paraphrased for emphasis, but seriously stop and listen to what that sounds like. It's like going into an interview and your prospective boss saying, "If you didn't have all those years of experience, you wouldn't have any at all."

Not to mention over a decade of NHL playing experience.

How much does anyone know about Ian Clark's training? Francois Allaire's? All you need to know is he's held a job long enough that he's not bad at it.

Edited by elvis15, 08 July 2012 - 11:33 PM.

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#3 Danthecanucksfan

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:29 PM

I do not know.

#4 needtogetswole

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:38 PM

I was actually thinking the same thing - then eventually LU started challenging again and was on a good roll last season...

#5 Vapourstreak

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:40 PM

Well he has to be doing something right, sticking around for that long. Your point about Luongo not benefiting as much as Schneider is something to consider, though. Old people don't like change. ;)

#6 The Lock

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:45 PM

Honestly, I bet that all we really know about Mel is what the media has told us.

If you believe what the media has told you about him, you already have your opinion and the bias that comes with it. A teacher teaches. He's had success with some goalies, he's had issues with Theodore. Ask any teacher at a university, or a high school. They've had student who learned well from them and they've had students who have not.
This thread was really just a figment of your imagination...

#7 Jägermeister

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Posted 08 July 2012 - 11:47 PM

The majority of the players he coached while in Montreal had the best periods of their career there or had their big breakout, so I would say he must be doing a pretty good job.

Edited by Jagermeister, 08 July 2012 - 11:47 PM.

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#8 YaK

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 12:13 AM

All I know is that from the reports I've read and heard this is pretty much how I picture him....

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#9 oldnews

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 12:47 AM

I'm not really sold on Rollie as goalie coach...seems he's a pretty head strong guy and his methods basic (i.e., story in the Province recently citing he bungee corded Theo's catching hand because he thought Theo kept it too low).

With Luongo there was talk that he worked on him to play deeper in the crease and his lateral movements (which is valid because Luoong was getting beaten on the back door pass with ease) taking away Lu's tendency to challenge shooters aggressively (counter to what Luongo did in his first four years).


That Province article was shallow and dramatic.

Luongo's tendency to challenge shooters aggressively was not something that was taken out of his game - he continued to challenge, use good positioning and his size, to cut down angles for shooters - particularly on the rush, when it is perfectly appropriate.
On the other hand, when not on the rush, and with the opposition in possession inside Vancouver's zone, that is when Luongo was encouraged to play deeper in his net - imo that was a weak spot in his game, reacting too aggressively, getting out of position, when there are players parked around the net, and unable to recover. I think it was a situational tweek that actually improved his game.
Aside from this small point, one dramatized incident in the Province, and some speculation, very few of us have any idea how good of a goaltending coach he is. I think the evidence would suggest that he did not hurt Luongo's game, and after adjusting, it seemed like Luongo actually developed a better 'formula' for when to challenge aggressively vs. when to stay deep and maintain positioning.

#10 Canucksh

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 01:10 AM

If Luongo didn't feel like he was benefiting much from his goalie coach, I'm sure he would speak up. I would think Luongo is more important to the organization than the goalie coach, especially when he hasn't been here as long.

Edited by Canucksh, 09 July 2012 - 01:11 AM.


#11 rkyway

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 08:59 AM

Speaking of coaches; I've noticed that the longer a coaching staff is together the less likely a team is to win the cup. Most of the recent cup winners haven't had their new head coach for long. It seems like the longer a head coach hangs around (say after a year or two) the less likely he is to win the cup.
- Having said that I don't have the numbers to back it up.

#12 Hotdawg

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 09:43 AM

Speaking of coaches; I've noticed that the longer a coaching staff is together the less likely a team is to win the cup. Most of the recent cup winners haven't had their new head coach for long. It seems like the longer a head coach hangs around (say after a year or two) the less likely he is to win the cup.
- Having said that I don't have the numbers to back it up.


Not true, yes Sutter won, but they also brought in Carter and Richards, and Quick was Conn Smythe

Scotty Bowman 9 Cups
Toe Blake 8 Cups
Glen Sather 4 Cups
Al Arbour 4 Cups

#13 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:06 AM

Other than having spent 1997 to 2009 as the Canadiens as their goalie during which time Jose Theodore, Mathieu Garon, Jeff Hackett, Jocelyn Thibault, David Aebischer, Jaroslav Halak, Cristobal Huet and Carey Price, played for them, and having watched over Dwayne Roloson while he was in the AHL, there isn't much background on him as a coach.

I'm not really sold on Rollie as goalie coach...seems he's a pretty head strong guy and his methods basic (i.e., story in the Province recently citing he bungee corded Theo's catching hand because he thought Theo kept it too low).

With Luongo there was talk that he worked on him to play deeper in the crease and his lateral movements (which is valid because Luoong was getting beaten on the back door pass with ease) taking away Lu's tendency to challenge shooters aggressively (counter to what Luongo did in his first four years).

Based on Rollie's background, it seems he likes to take younger goalies and shape their techniques and tendencies (a young Theo, Halak, Huet and Price). Perhaps Schneider benefitted from Rollie whereas Luongo did not.

Does anyone have any insights on the role he had on the development of Theo, Thibault, Halak, Huet, Price and Roloson? What are the general thoughts on Rollie as the guy for guiding the on-going development of Schneider?

I've been a goalie, coach and tutor for over 40 years and believe in Rollie Melanson and his methods. He had Lou playing amazing 2 yrs ago, got Lou to carry his trapper higher and his success was mirrored in Lous stats. This past season Lou chose to change and revert back to his old style(less effective) and follow the teachings of Francois Allaire who paints all goalies with the same brush. Allaire screwed up Reimer and the monster big time by trying to change them as opposed to tweaking them. Toronto suffered terribly as a result. Schneider has blossomed under Melanson, more so than learning bad habits from Lou .
I don;t believe Melanson gets near enough credit for the success of Lou and Schneids. Great goalies do not always make great coaches and some average goalies do. As for the bungee cord...it was just an aid to helkping Theodore. Lou did carry his glove higher and thats a credit to his desire to improve. Playing Lou deeper was a result of his poorer than stellar lateral movement.and assisted him by utilizing the posts to push off with. Lous size minimized the risk of playing deeper and giving up more net. Yes, Melanson is great !!

#14 darkpoet

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:08 AM

I remember a couple of years ago when camp was in Penticton.

Of particular interest to me was how different Luongo and Schneider looked when doing basic drills.

In particular, that move where the inside knee goes down and the other stays tall up against the post to cover up short side shots from the corner.
It's funny. When I read your OP this is the first image that popped into my head.
Schneider looked totally solid. Almost robotic, when doing that drill. (Rollie would take shots from the corner or come around the net, skate out, then shoot from an angle)

I know some people are going to see this as me hating on Luongo, but I'm just reporting what I saw. Luongo doing the same drill looked loose and jangly... almost like he was struggling because his pads weren't strapped tight enough. It was like he was moving too much unnecessarily.

Take that for what it is....

My thoughts on Rollie? Well these are all professional players. They don't really need to be "taught" anything. Sometimes there is a bad habit that has developed due to some tendency, or a little tweak here and there that may be delivered as advice or a "hey try this" kind of thing.
IMO goalie "coaches" are less "coaches" and more "advisers"

#15 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:12 AM

If Luongo didn't feel like he was benefiting much from his goalie coach, I'm sure he would speak up. I would think Luongo is more important to the organization than the goalie coach, especially when he hasn't been here as long.

It took a goalie coach to understand lous faults and to assist him in correcting them.Regular players and coaches have little understanding of goaltending, thus, all teams now have goaltending coaches.
I was once asked to evaluate an Alberta teams goaltenders as owner thought they were not good enough. I asked him what his goalie coach had to say, and he told me they didn;t have one. I told him he did not have a goaltending problem but a goaltending coach problem. He found a good coach and his goaltending duo improved !

#16 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:16 AM

I remember a couple of years ago when camp was in Penticton.

Of particular interest to me was how different Luongo and Schneider looked when doing basic drills.

In particular, that move where the inside knee goes down and the other stays tall up against the post to cover up short side shots from the corner.
It's funny. When I read your OP this is the first image that popped into my head.
Schneider looked totally solid. Almost robotic, when doing that drill. (Rollie would take shots from the corner or come around the net, skate out, then shoot from an angle)

I know some people are going to see this as me hating on Luongo, but I'm just reporting what I saw. Luongo doing the same drill looked loose and jangly... almost like he was struggling because his pads weren't strapped tight enough. It was like he was moving too much unnecessarily.

Take that for what it is....

My thoughts on Rollie? Well these are all professional players. They don't really need to be "taught" anything. Sometimes there is a bad habit that has developed due to some tendency, or a little tweak here and there that may be delivered as advice or a "hey try this" kind of thing.
IMO goalie "coaches" are less "coaches" and more "advisers"

I often wondered if Lou was using equipment that best suited his build and style...maybee Rebok was not the best option but was what the team seemed committed to(endorsements)?? I disagree on Pro goalies not needing help. Lou was a reflex goalie and had, and still has some very basic fundamental flaws in his game, which have been documented by other teams and used to exploit Lou.

#17 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:18 AM

I was actually thinking the same thing - then eventually LU started challenging again and was on a good roll last season...

actually...he was not on a good roll !!!

#18 pianoman13

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:29 AM

actually...he was not on a good roll !!!


Actually.... yeah he was!!!!

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#19 disisdayear

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 10:50 AM

smurf47 - knowing as little as I do about coaching goalies, I appreciate your first hand insight. From your first post and Darkpoets observations from the Penticton camp, I am developing a new-found appreciation for what Melanson has contributed (especially to the technical soundness of Schneider's play).

#20 Pyrene

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:41 AM

I remember a couple of years ago when camp was in Penticton.

Of particular interest to me was how different Luongo and Schneider looked when doing basic drills.

In particular, that move where the inside knee goes down and the other stays tall up against the post to cover up short side shots from the corner.
It's funny. When I read your OP this is the first image that popped into my head.
Schneider looked totally solid. Almost robotic, when doing that drill. (Rollie would take shots from the corner or come around the net, skate out, then shoot from an angle)

I know some people are going to see this as me hating on Luongo, but I'm just reporting what I saw. Luongo doing the same drill looked loose and jangly... almost like he was struggling because his pads weren't strapped tight enough. It was like he was moving too much unnecessarily.

Take that for what it is....

My thoughts on Rollie? Well these are all professional players. They don't really need to be "taught" anything. Sometimes there is a bad habit that has developed due to some tendency, or a little tweak here and there that may be delivered as advice or a "hey try this" kind of thing.
IMO goalie "coaches" are less "coaches" and more "advisers"


I forgot but I remember from somewhere that it's the fact that Luongo has monster sized clown feets that are hard to skate with whereas Schneider sports like a size9-10 skate which gives him better stability and movement on ice. That's also why Luongo plays a more hybrid style as his balance doesn't adept him to be a positional goalie as effectively.

#21 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:45 AM

Actually.... yeah he was!!!!

he was on a roll....he rolled from sharing the Jenning's award to middle of the pack stats !! so, yes, I agree with you he was on a roll...downhill. !!

#22 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 11:47 AM

I remember a couple of years ago when camp was in Penticton.

Of particular interest to me was how different Luongo and Schneider looked when doing basic drills.

In particular, that move where the inside knee goes down and the other stays tall up against the post to cover up short side shots from the corner.
It's funny. When I read your OP this is the first image that popped into my head.
Schneider looked totally solid. Almost robotic, when doing that drill. (Rollie would take shots from the corner or come around the net, skate out, then shoot from an angle)

I know some people are going to see this as me hating on Luongo, but I'm just reporting what I saw. Luongo doing the same drill looked loose and jangly... almost like he was struggling because his pads weren't strapped tight enough. It was like he was moving too much unnecessarily.

Take that for what it is....

My thoughts on Rollie? Well these are all professional players. They don't really need to be "taught" anything. Sometimes there is a bad habit that has developed due to some tendency, or a little tweak here and there that may be delivered as advice or a "hey try this" kind of thing.
IMO goalie "coaches" are less "coaches" and more "advisers"

size 15 skates and being bow legged also contribute to poorer agility...

#23 thehamburglar

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 04:19 PM

He's probably good. He needs to let Luongo challenge if hes here.
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#24 b-mo

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 04:52 PM

who cares? luongo and schneider for the most part both put up excellent numbers last year so it's hard to justify even talking about this
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#25 MANGO

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 07:52 PM

Lu was fantastic until Rolly got here. Every goalie has weakness in their style. But that is the style that they are comfortable playing with. I never understood this need to change they way he plays, after Rolly, Lu always seamed awkward in net.
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#26 smurf47

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 08:38 PM

Lu was fantastic until Rolly got here. Every goalie has weakness in their style. But that is the style that they are comfortable playing with. I never understood this need to change they way he plays, after Rolly, Lu always seamed awkward in net.

Actually, Lou had the best stats in his career and GAA of 2.11 the year Rollie appeared , not a coincidence !!

#27 Blackberries

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Posted 09 July 2012 - 08:46 PM

i dont think luongo has been the same since he blew out his groin vs pittsburgh in that afternoon game.
MAybe the 08-09 season?

His lateral movement and quickness post to post used to be impeccable and now he spends more time compensating for that, then anything. Also what really sticks out for me is his inability to track and cover rebounds around the crease. Its almost like hes nearsighted.

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