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Bad line change .... Yes or No


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I see this happening quite a few times during a game. A forward in possession of the puck skates up the ice through the neutral zone to the blue line and dumps the puck in and heads back for a line change, while both teams change.

Would it not be a better play to maintain possession in the neutral zone or your own zone. Wait of the change then follow the play up the ice to change? It just seems like a bad play to give up possession on a line change and rely on your fore check

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I know exactly what you mean. I hate the dump and change, The thing is as soon as teams see that you are the only forward entering the attacking zone they will press you and likely cause a turnover. If the player gets stuck on the ice, the lines get all messed up quickly, and often. At least with the dump in you get your wholesale change.

Personally, I am a fan of puck possession over dump and change, but I get why it's done.

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I know exactly what you mean. I hate the dump and change, The thing is as soon as teams see that you are the only forward entering the attacking zone they will press you and likely cause a turnover. If the player gets stuck on the ice, the lines get all messed up quickly, and often. At least with the dump in you get your wholesale change.

Personally, I am a fan of puck possession over dump and change, but I get why it's done.

I know what you mean by pressing but isn't this a screw up by the forward with possession in the first place unless he is unaware of the line change. I just think it boils down to not reading the play

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This play has always bothered me as well. I have never played hockey though so I dont claim to know anything. Maybe the dump and change is unavoidable. It just always bugs me when a team is playing a puck possession style and they willing give the puck away. I admit though that the alternative is really playing the puck back into your own zone. Its probably a lesser of two evils scenario.

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Dump and change, and dump and chase seem to me to be colossal wastes of energy. Isn't it better just to take an easy shot on the goalie and have him freeze it, then complete your line change?

I agree with Scotty Bowman, teams are spending too much time behind the net, not charging for the net and getting shots.

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This has bothered me also...maybe it`s just the close proximity to the bench but why give up possession and, possibly, a scoring chance? When you're on the attack, it seems silly to back off from that. I'm no hockey expert (by any means), and thought there was likely some logical reason that I wasn't aware of. Seems to make more sense to see the play/rush out, then change. Unless the players are exhausted and have been on a long shift.

I remember Rome being a very slow line changer...skate off nonchalantly like he was at a public skate & heading off to the snack bar for a hotdog.

A great point/topic...glad you brought it up.

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I see this happening quite a few times during a game. A forward in possession of the puck skates up the ice through the neutral zone to the blue line and dumps the puck in and heads back for a line change, while both teams change.

Would it not be a better play to maintain possession in the neutral zone or your own zone. Wait of the change then follow the play up the ice to change? It just seems like a bad play to give up possession on a line change and rely on your fore check

You seem to have a bee in your bonnet about this play. (I saw you bring it up in another thread as well)

I have to ask and I don't mean to be arrogant or anything, but have you ever played? The dump and change has been a tried and true play for the past century or so and is employed by 30 NHL teams and virtually every other team with decent coaching past the level of peewee.

I can understand how it might seem like "surrendering" to the uninitiated, but the fact is, a game played at the pace of NHL hockey, (or at any decently high level) requires players to be fresh. A player that is caught out on the ice while gassed is a huge liability, no matter how much skill he might possess.

A well placed and timed dump in will allow the entire 5 man unit to make the change and allows a fresh unit the chance to get out against opposing defenders who are not fresh (because they had to chase the dump in)

There are occasions where the team can maintain possession while changing, but that is going to occur in the defensive zone, where one of the defensemen will hold the puck behind his own net, while the other four players change. He'll then pass the puck to one of the players just coming on and change himself.

Unfortunately, this play doesn't really work in the offensive zone.

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Get it deep and change as opposed to trying to stick handle and keep possession with multiple people pressuring you? Yeah.

Sorry unless you actually play hockey in a decent tiered league (trying not to be elitist but house leagues are a joke) you don't really get the point. Like someone else pointed out it's easy to get from the point where you'll need a shift in about 20 seconds to getting hemmed in your zone for a long duration and just being purely exhausted, and from there it's just dangerous for your team.

Especially if your the opposing team, you don't want to just shoot the puck on their goalie and have it frozen due to home team having change advantage, plus slowing down the game could kill the momentum for your team etc.

It's just a safe play to get an easy change with decent pressure on the 1 person making sure that the other team isn't making plays unchecked.

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Sorry I don't buy your argument that if you have not played in a decent tiered league you don't know what you are talking about . I have heard this argument on many other topics and all it serves is to avoid discussion. My point was if you have possession in your own end and there is going to be a line change why skate up past your bench in front of your team mates dump the puck in turn it over and then skate back to the bench. If like you say you are trying to conserve energy you may as well have stayed home because from all of what I was taught the new style of hockey is about puck possession and protecting puck possession.

As far as having a Bee in my bonnet about this, every time I see the play it bothers me as a waste of a possession. Dump and chase at least has some offensive tactic to it Dump and change does not.

Yes I did bring this up in another thread and realized it was probably better suited to hockey general discussion not the post game thread, It was simply due to the fact that during the pens game I saw this play but I noticed most would rather talk about line arrangements among other things in that thread.

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Sorry I don't buy your argument that if you have not played in a decent tiered league you don't know what you are talking about . I have heard this argument on many other topics and all it serves is to avoid discussion. My point was if you have possession in your own end and there is going to be a line change why skate up past your bench in front of your team mates dump the puck in turn it over and then skate back to the bench. If like you say you are trying to conserve energy you may as well have stayed home because from all of what I was taught the new style of hockey is about puck possession and protecting puck possession.

As far as having a Bee in my bonnet about this, every time I see the play it bothers me as a waste of a possession. Dump and chase at least has some offensive tactic to it Dump and change does not.

Yes I did bring this up in another thread and realized it was probably better suited to hockey general discussion not the post game thread, It was simply due to the fact that during the pens game I saw this play but I noticed most would rather talk about line arrangements among other things in that thread.

How are you going to change if there's a potential 2v5 going on in your zone? That's just horrendously irresponsible. Does it happen? Sometimes, where the opposing team realizes you're changing and they are playing match-up to counter your scorers yes it does work. But whenever I've circled my net I've always had at least 2 forecheckers coming in hard and a decent set-up on the opposing side where puck possession isn't really viable if 2 or more people change.

And my point wasn't that if you haven't played high tier league (hell I only play div3/4) that you are ignorant. But the skill level and competitiveness, at least in my experiences, drops vastly after div4 where you can diddle with the puck and not get punished for it. So I presume the original question was asked in regards to the NHL level caliber of hockey, and not just a general landscape question, which I guess none of us will understand but some of us to a better degree (again, not trying to insult anyone but I've played league hockey for about 14 years now, hockey in general for about 20 years)

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Sorry I don't buy your argument that if you have not played in a decent tiered league you don't know what you are talking about . I have heard this argument on many other topics and all it serves is to avoid discussion. My point was if you have possession in your own end and there is going to be a line change why skate up past your bench in front of your team mates dump the puck in turn it over and then skate back to the bench. If like you say you are trying to conserve energy you may as well have stayed home because from all of what I was taught the new style of hockey is about puck possession and protecting puck possession.

As far as having a Bee in my bonnet about this, every time I see the play it bothers me as a waste of a possession. Dump and chase at least has some offensive tactic to it Dump and change does not.

Yes I did bring this up in another thread and realized it was probably better suited to hockey general discussion not the post game thread, It was simply due to the fact that during the pens game I saw this play but I noticed most would rather talk about line arrangements among other things in that thread.

I didn't say that you don't know what you're talking about. However, having played a lot and at a high level will certainly give someone a better understanding of these things work, over someone who's only experience is watching.

I explained the reasoning behind the dump and change as well as I could. If you still cannot grasp the idea, I'm sorry, but I can't teach you in a few dozen words, what I've learned over 4+ decades of playing...

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dump and change frees you up to get the required change. it happens most frequently when you've been in your own end and finally get it out (meaning the other team has players in your zone already). if one player tries to hold the puck in his defensive zone while his mates change, odds are good he'll be tag teamed, turn the puck over, and a scoring chance will result. same as if he tries to carry it into the opposing zone; odds a good he's already tired, so going 1 on 3-5 will result in a sure fire turnover and potential breakaway situation. sure, one guy can to a dump and chase while the rest of the line changes, but odds are good he won't be able to retrieve it anyway, and then he'll be stuck on the ice during the counterattack, or he'll end up making a really bad change, giving the other team an odd man rush in the process.

as for trying to hold onto the puck in the neutral zone, while 3-4 of the opposing team's players skate by on their change/backcheck, and in the chaos of your own change, basically destroying your forward momentum in the process... yeah, that's just insane to think that that might work.

no, the dump and change is not a bad line change. it serves a purpose, and 9 times out of ten, it's better than the alternative.

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I didn't say that you don't know what you're talking about. However, having played a lot and at a high level will certainly give someone a better understanding of these things work, over someone who's only experience is watching.

I explained the reasoning behind the dump and change as well as I could. If you still cannot grasp the idea, I'm sorry, but I can't teach you in a few dozen words, what I've learned over 4+ decades of playing...

Well actually I do grasp what you are saying but that is not to say I agree with it. I can certainly see the merit in getting fresh bodies on the ice and not creating a turn over in the neutral zone, but this is not what I was getting at . The dump in forward dumps in basically to their defense skates back past oppositions bench to his own bench. By this time more often then not they are half way out of their own zone ready to gain the neutral zone. Our team has set up a 1-2-2, so effectively put a single fore checker against two D men. The dump and chase like I said with two fore checkers has some merit to it but this dump and defend drives me crazy. I can see it being useful in times of desperation but as a tactic for offense? To suggest this is the only alternative to turning over the puck in the neutral zone I don't buy it. You rarely see the Red Wings play this way, I could almost forgive this play if they came back with a two player fore check to create pressure down low. But that is like a sprint to the finish line if that fore check is unsuccessful you now have two tired forwards stuck deep in the offensive end usually behind the play. The way I see it is if you dump and set up a 1-2-2 you may as well call it dump and defend

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