October 15, 2009 12:44 pm

Goalie criticism

It seemed to me that during last night’s post-game interview scrum with Terry Murray, the elephant in the room was being ignored. Murray (rightfully) talked about his team’s strong play in a number of areas, but goaltending was never mentioned until the end, when I asked for his thoughts on Erik Ersberg’s play.

Today, a good question came up. Murray was asked if, during a team meeting, he would talk to the team about a goalie’s poor game or, since it’s just one person, and has little relevance to the rest of the players’ responsibilities, he would leave it for individual discussion. Murray said it’s mostly the latter. Coaches (not just Murray) don’t seem too inclined to analyze goalie play. Goalies either play well or they don’t, and adjustments are left for the coaches to work on in practice. Here’s what Murray said today…

MURRAY: “I didn’t address (goalie play) in front of the team. There are always situations that pop up for a goaltender though, that we will review on video with the team. I didn’t do that today. But that’s something that, a lot of the time, if there’s a technical thing, I’ll leave that to a 1-on-1 issue with me and the goalie, or with the goaltender coach.

“We don’t do reviews to put players on islands, or anything like that. If there’s something that’s critical in the structure of the system, I won’t hesitate to point out individuals, but if it’s just a clear-cut thing where somebody got beat, you’re almost embarrassing them in front of their peers, and I wouldn’t do that.’’

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