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Breakdown of Ballards play


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#1 Gonz

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 12:21 PM

This may be the reason why Ballard has been scratched:

http://vansunsportsb...-keith-ballard/

Basically, it says Ballards game has been too simplified relying on his partner to bring the pucks out of the defensive zone and his coverage is too narrow minded. Maybe this is what AV meant when he thought the team would have a better chance of winning with the lineup he selected.

Your thoughts after reading this article? Bs or not bs? The writer seems to be unbiased and its a really detailed description on Ballards play that game.

Edited by Gonz, 05 March 2013 - 12:22 PM.

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#2 TOMapleLaughs

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 12:25 PM

Doesn't matter, as it's been well-covered in the other thread and he's dressed tonight.

Late to the party, i'm afraid.
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#3 Opmac

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 01:32 PM

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Keith Ballard can move the puck and we've seen it in the past. Tape to tape from the defensive zone to the neutral zone up the middle. Or carrying the puck from behind his net, up the ice, through the neutral zone and into the offensive zone.

Except the coaches discourage him doing this out of fear he will cough up the puck throwing it up the middle.

Now we're criticizing him for doing what his coaches are telling him to do (make the safe play by banking it off the glass or giving it to your partner).
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#4 MoneypuckOverlord

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 01:47 PM

It's kinda unfair. It was Edlers sluggush play that lead to Phoenix making it 3-1. He first gave the puck away followed by totally missing out the check on the player who blew by him, (it wouldn't have happened if Edler went for the hit), instead he embarrased Edler by skating pass him, made the pass, Schneider lets in a softy

on the 4-2 goal, Dan Hamhius decides to ring it along to the boards with no supporting Canucks player there, but awaiting was a Phoenix player who was reading the play like a Hawk, the puck came to him, and scored the empty net goal.

How bout 2 weeks ago against Dallas?

Edler was out there for the game tying goal, on top of that, the game winning goal. Both times, terrible coverage.

For a fan myself, what I find unfair is that Beiska was a giveaway machine during the 2009 and 2010 seasons. Yet A.V kept on playing him. While for some reason Ballard one screw up, hes done for the night, he will get benched, and if he is lucky enough he wont get scratched. Unfair. I think its best we trade him if he's only going to play bottom minutes.

Keith Ballard can move the puck and we've seen it in the past. Tape to tape from the defensive zone to the neutral zone up the middle. Or carrying the puck from behind his net, up the ice, through the neutral zone and into the offensive zone.

Except the coaches discourage him doing this out of fear he will cough up the puck throwing it up the middle.

Now we're criticizing him for doing what his coaches are telling him to do (make the safe play by banking it off the glass or giving it to your partner).


I think he's too discouraged to do such action anymore, because such play can result in turn overs, (which happens) and Ballard probably doesn't even have the confidence to do that anymore because A.V will bench him if he turns it over, while if Edler turns it over its no problem. Ballard offensive confidence is all gone because of A.V.

Edited by MoneypuckOverlord, 05 March 2013 - 01:48 PM.

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#5 Erik Karlsson

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 01:58 PM

Keith Ballard can move the puck and we've seen it in the past. Tape to tape from the defensive zone to the neutral zone up the middle. Or carrying the puck from behind his net, up the ice, through the neutral zone and into the offensive zone.

Except the coaches discourage him doing this out of fear he will cough up the puck throwing it up the middle.

Now we're criticizing him for doing what his coaches are telling him to do (make the safe play by banking it off the glass or giving it to your partner).


Yeah... I'm confused..
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#6 terrible.dee

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 02:01 PM

I am a HUGE Ballard fan, but I do agree with the assessment of his play.

He was acquired for his puck moving skills, but time and time again I see him decline to either make the break out pass or skate the puck out of the zone.

It's really quite odd actually.

His coverage down low has always sucked, so no surprise there.

Ballard needs to play to his strengths, and start playing a more offensively aggressive high risk game.

Basically, he needs to start playing like Erhoff.

Edited by terrible.dee, 05 March 2013 - 02:03 PM.

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#7 Barry_Wilkins

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 02:15 PM

Thanks for the link.

Of course, the "Ballard can do no wrong" camp, even those who may grudgingly concede a bit to the analysis from PITB, will say it's because AV has shattered Ballard's confidence. He's such a fragile soul, don't you know.
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#8 JamesB

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 02:25 PM

For me this is key point (from AV's press conference today).

Keith is always matched up against third and fourth liners and the last couple of games, his performance had slipped,” explained the coach. “It shouldn't have been a surprise to him that he got sat out. He had been told three out of the last four games weren't what we wanted and we decided to make a change for the benefit of the team. Now he's getting another opportunity tonight.”

Sorry for being repetitive, as I have made this point several times. For a guy playing mainly against bottom six players on the other team, having 1 pt in 19 games and a plus/minus of 0 is not good enough, especially for a D who is smaller than average and contributes very little to the physical game.

For a cap hit of over 4 million this is big problem. Ballard is not terrible, but obviously his acquisition was a mistake and at this stage it is reasonable to Barker and/or Alberts a shot, at least occasionally.
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#9 Barry_Wilkins

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 02:33 PM

For me this is key point (from AV's press conference today).

Keith is always matched up against third and fourth liners and the last couple of games, his performance had slipped,” explained the coach. “It shouldn't have been a surprise to him that he got sat out. He had been told three out of the last four games weren't what we wanted and we decided to make a change for the benefit of the team. Now he's getting another opportunity tonight.”

Sorry for being repetitive, as I have made this point several times. For a guy playing mainly against bottom six players on the other team, having 1 pt in 19 games and a plus/minus of 0 is not good enough, especially for a D who is smaller than average and contributes very little to the physical game.

For a cap hit of over 4 million this is big problem. Ballard is not terrible, but obviously his acquisition was a mistake and at this stage it is reasonable to Barker and/or Alberts a shot, at least occasionally.


I agree with your assessment. Further, it's interesting that AV told Ballard what the coaching staff wanted out of him, and that in 3 of the last 4 games, he hadn't provided it. This destroys the (always) ridiculous argument from AV whiners that the coach never talks to the players or makes it clear what their responsibilities are.
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#10 WL Canuck Fan

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 03:37 PM

I agree with your assessment. Further, it's interesting that AV told Ballard what the coaching staff wanted out of him, and that in 3 of the last 4 games, he hadn't provided it. This destroys the (always) ridiculous argument from AV whiners that the coach never talks to the players or makes it clear what their responsibilities are.


The problem has never been that Vigneault has not articulated to the players what he wants, the problem is CDC expects Vigneault to articulate it to THEM. There is often here an expectation of transparency that is borderline ridiculous.

No coach is going to go on national TV and start throwing players under the bus, ie "Henrik had a crap night in the faceoff circle tonight, he needs to pick it up or he can expect to play on the second line", or "Kesler has been a puck hog of late and needs to use his wingers more effectively, if not he's gonna have Lappy in the middle and Weise on the other side of him." or "Hamhuis was put with Edler to babysit him, and he's not doing a very good job of that so I think I'll pair him with Tanev next game to wake him up".

But somehow we expect all that info to be shared with us.

Sorry fellas, ain't gonna happen

Edited by WL Canuck Fan, 05 March 2013 - 03:38 PM.

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#11 nuck nit

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 03:52 PM

No,what CDC wants to see is consistency and not what is viewed as hypocrisy.
We want that out of the referees and we want that out of the GM,coach and the players.
As noted in the often inconsistent,high risk play of Bieksa and Eddie ,there are no demotions or scoldings and certainly no benchings.
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#12 Gonz

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 03:53 PM

Actually AV does it on the rare occasion. Remember the comment Kesler needs to utilize his linemates more? Maybe bc Kesler seems like a grumpy person so AV is scared of the one to one lol
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#13 Clinch16

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 03:53 PM

The problem has never been that Vigneault has not articulated to the players what he wants, the problem is CDC expects Vigneault to articulate it to THEM. There is often here an expectation of transparency that is borderline ridiculous.

No coach is going to go on national TV and start throwing players under the bus, ie "Henrik had a crap night in the faceoff circle tonight, he needs to pick it up or he can expect to play on the second line", or "Kesler has been a puck hog of late and needs to use his wingers more effectively, if not he's gonna have Lappy in the middle and Weise on the other side of him." or "Hamhuis was put with Edler to babysit him, and he's not doing a very good job of that so I think I'll pair him with Tanev next game to wake him up".

But somehow we expect all that info to be shared with us.

Sorry fellas, ain't gonna happen


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#14 nuck nit

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 03:57 PM

The coach and GM should never,ever call out their players in public,yet Mikey and Alain seem to enjoy the art of deflection:

Keith is always matched up against third and fourth liners and the last couple of games, his performance had slipped,” explained the coach. “It shouldn't have been a surprise to him that he got sat out. He had been told three out of the last four games weren't what we wanted and we decided to make a change for the benefit of the team. Now he's getting another opportunity tonight.”
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#15 canuck73_3

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 03:59 PM

No,what CDC wants to see is consistency and not what is viewed as hypocrisy.
We want that out of the referees and we want that out of the GM,coach and the players.
As noted in the often inconsistent,high risk play of Bieksa and Eddie ,there are no demotions or scoldings and certainly no benchings.


How do you know what is consistent and what isn't when you don't know what he's asked of each player?
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#16 Aladeen

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:02 PM

The coach and GM should never,ever call out their players in public,yet Mikey and Alain seem to enjoy the art of deflection:

Keith is always matched up against third and fourth liners and the last couple of games, his performance had slipped,” explained the coach. “It shouldn't have been a surprise to him that he got sat out. He had been told three out of the last four games weren't what we wanted and we decided to make a change for the benefit of the team. Now he's getting another opportunity tonight.”

Did AV say this? do you have a link for the quote or video?
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#17 nuck nit

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:11 PM

I know that Bieksa and Eddie have struggled this year and they are not called out in public and neither do they lose ice time.
How's that?
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#18 VicNuckleHead09

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:12 PM

No,what CDC wants to see is consistency and not what is viewed as hypocrisy.
We want that out of the referees and we want that out of the GM,coach and the players.
As noted in the often inconsistent,high risk play of Bieksa and Eddie ,there are no demotions or scoldings and certainly no benchings.


Big difference making mistakes against the 1st and 2nd line, or when you are trying to generate offense. Why would you bench the leading scorer for defense??
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#19 nuck nit

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:22 PM

Big difference making mistakes against the 1st and 2nd line, or when you are trying to generate offense. Why would you bench the leading scorer for defense??

I would say Ballard is as skilled as Bieksa is.Why not put Kevin on the third line duty playing with guys that see ice time once every 20 games and see how he does?
Why do public scoldings have to ever occur to any player? Should that not be an internal matter that is handled within the club?
The point is this club's leaders(read management) should not be deflecting criticism of their performances onto their players backs in the public realm.
AV and Gillis make a lot of questionable moves.When is the last time you heard a player call either of them out in public?
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#20 canuck73_3

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:23 PM

I would say Ballard is as skilled as Bieksa is.Why not put Kevin on the third line duty playing with guys that see ice time once every 20 games and see how he does?
Why do public scoldings have to ever occur to any player? Should that not be an internal matter that is handled within the club?
The point is this club's leaders(read management) should not be deflecting criticism of their performances onto their players backs in the public realm.
AV and Gillis make a lot of questionable moves.When is the last time you heard a player call either of them out in public?


If pointing out the obvious (ie: Ballards play needs to be improved) is considered scolding by you, I'd hate to see how you'd react if we had a coach like Torterella here...

Edited by canuck73_3, 05 March 2013 - 04:23 PM.

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#21 wallstreetamigo

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:28 PM

Did AV say this? do you have a link for the quote or video?


Why, what difference does it make? It actually is not true if you watch the games and directly contradicts what was said earlier about the coaching staff being willing to play all 3 pairs against any line on the opposition.

So, which is it AV?

All this is is another unnecessary shot at a player from AV. He never had to add this part to his comments but chose to in order to demean the player. There is really no other reason to phrase it the way he did.

Edited by wallstreetamigo, 05 March 2013 - 04:30 PM.

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#22 Barry_Wilkins

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:29 PM

If pointing out the obvious (ie: Ballards play needs to be improved) is considered scolding by you, I'd hate to see how you'd react if we had a coach like Torterella here...


Yep. AV Haters are all over the map. In that case, Tortorella would just be "lighting a fire under his team" or "showing some urgency and emotion". But when our coach answers (not offers up on his own) questions from the media in a calm, rational way, making valid points, it's somehow "throwing the player under the bus".

It's like our adult, experienced players are all six-year-olds that need to be constantly shielded from any accurate assessment of their play.
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#23 canuck73_3

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:32 PM

Why, what difference does it make? It actually is not true if you watch the games and directly contradicts what was said earlier about the coaching staff being willing to play all 3 pairs against any line on the opposition.

So, which is it AV?


It does make a difference if he actually says it. Ballard was a minus 4 the last two games, the next worst dman was Alberts at minus 2. If the reasoning behind the scratch was getting Barker ice time then Ballard is the obvious odd man out. He's back in tonight we'll see how he plays I'm hoping for a good game from him.

Edited by canuck73_3, 05 March 2013 - 04:33 PM.

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#24 WL Canuck Fan

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 04:39 PM

No,what CDC wants to see is consistency and not what is viewed as hypocrisy.
We want that out of the referees and we want that out of the GM,coach and the players.
As noted in the often inconsistent,high risk play of Bieksa and Eddie ,there are no demotions or scoldings and certainly no benchings.


So here is what is not properly addressed in your post. You talk about what you perceive to be inconsistent high risk play out of Bieksa and Edler.

But statistically you are talking about are these two guys;

KB3 and ED23 were ranked 3rd and 28th in the +/- among defencemen in the 2010/11 season while their respective partners were ranked 7th and 14th. They achieved this while playing reduced seasons due to injuries. They also tripled and quadrupled KB4's points and surpassed his +/-

In 2011/12 their +/- dipped, but their points went up, KB3 recording 44 while ED23 recorded 49 points. This placed them 7th and 13th among defencemen. KB4? Same point total as the year before, 7, his +/- also down.

The stats show the consistency, not the perception on the ice. What we perceive is often not the case, and is certainly not what these players are doing consistently, but rather what they are doing at a single particular moment on the ice.

To isolate a moment and use it as though it were the totality of a players play is poor management, or, rather, arm-chair management, not on the ice coaching.
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#25 Mad_Duck

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:07 PM

Actually AV does it on the rare occasion. Remember the comment Kesler needs to utilize his linemates more? Maybe bc Kesler seems like a grumpy person so AV is scared of the one to one lol

Even giving up a 20 year age difference, If it came down to a fistfight between Kes and 'Bam-Bam', I know where the smart money is betting. :lol:
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#26 Aladeen

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:11 PM

Why, what difference does it make? It actually is not true if you watch the games and directly contradicts what was said earlier about the coaching staff being willing to play all 3 pairs against any line on the opposition.

So, which is it AV?

All this is is another unnecessary shot at a player from AV. He never had to add this part to his comments but chose to in order to demean the player. There is really no other reason to phrase it the way he did.

I was asking if that was a quote directly taken from av why are you such an ass all the time.
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#27 canucksnihilist

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:13 PM

Ya, apparently he has not been playing well.

I think we all keep expecting him to start winning a spot higher up the ladder on the team. But it's not happening. AV might not like him, who knows, but it wouldn't matter if he was playing like a star.
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#28 37yrsncounting

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:58 PM

The coach and GM should never,ever call out their players in public,yet Mikey and Alain seem to enjoy the art of deflection:

Keith is always matched up against third and fourth liners and the last couple of games, his performance had slipped,” explained the coach. “It shouldn't have been a surprise to him that he got sat out. He had been told three out of the last four games weren't what we wanted and we decided to make a change for the benefit of the team. Now he's getting another opportunity tonight.”


This is what happens when Ballard's agent decides to go public with their issues
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#29 Ohnoeszz

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 05:58 PM

So here is what is not properly addressed in your post. You talk about what you perceive to be inconsistent high risk play out of Bieksa and Edler.

But statistically you are talking about are these two guys;

KB3 and ED23 were ranked 3rd and 28th in the +/- among defencemen in the 2010/11 season while their respective partners were ranked 7th and 14th. They achieved this while playing reduced seasons due to injuries. They also tripled and quadrupled KB4's points and surpassed his +/-

In 2011/12 their +/- dipped, but their points went up, KB3 recording 44 while ED23 recorded 49 points. This placed them 7th and 13th among defencemen. KB4? Same point total as the year before, 7, his +/- also down.

The stats show the consistency, not the perception on the ice. What we perceive is often not the case, and is certainly not what these players are doing consistently, but rather what they are doing at a single particular moment on the ice.

To isolate a moment and use it as though it were the totality of a players play is poor management, or, rather, arm-chair management, not on the ice coaching.


Thank you. I wanted to post a similar explanation but it kept dissolving into jarbled swearing.

To add:
Edler/Bieksa play in roles that ask them to succeed in a lot of high risk passing plays against 1st and 2nd liners. They haven't struggled; they've made mistakes - frustrating instances that bely their potential, not repetitive patterns that mitigate their abilities. And those mistakes have come in the midst of them producing in the roles they are expected to produce in.

Ballard plays against 3rd/4th lines and offers increasingly little offensive upside. His defense is still half stuck in man coverage concepts. He doesn't know what lanes he is allowed to skate/pass the puck through on the breakout. He is refraining from attempting aggressive breakout passes and making altogether more conservative plays. He shows all the marks of a guy struggling to fit his game to the system.

Comparing the two situations does not work.
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#30 37yrsncounting

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Posted 05 March 2013 - 06:01 PM

Why, what difference does it make? It actually is not true if you watch the games and directly contradicts what was said earlier about the coaching staff being willing to play all 3 pairs against any line on the opposition.

So, which is it AV?

All this is is another unnecessary shot at a player from AV. He never had to add this part to his comments but chose to in order to demean the player. There is really no other reason to phrase it the way he did.


Ballards agent questioned his playing time in public so AV answered with a logical response in public

whats wrong with that?
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