He's your scholarship goalie...time to pull him aside and tell him that he's in goal for the next month. Red needs to give this kid a bolt of confidence and back him, and get the team to back him. Racine has had ample opportunity and he isn't the answer, Jancyck has had mixed results but looks really stiff in goal...he isn't the answer. Rutledge has the talent...he just needs game confidence.
I think we just need to play him and let his confidence grow...this is all about peaking for the CCHA tournament...trying to get to #4 in the conference. To do that, we need to get a hot goalie. I think we need to give Rutledge the keys to the car...and ride him for a month...no matter what.
1/12 2:01 AM | IP: Logged
although I am more focused on trying to give him enough PT to see if he has potential for next year. Rutledge has actually appeared in only 7 games and in minutes has played the equivalent of less than 5 games. Either he should be the goalie for the rest of the year, or, alternatively, the coaches should say "for the rest of the season, Racine plays every Friday night, Rutledge plays every Saturday night," no matter what (or vice versa).
If I thought we still had a chance for the NCAAs, I might be advocating Janecyk as the goalie, since I think at this point of the 3, he best fits the "just don't allow soft goals" objective. But these last 2 losses - which were 2 of the 5 most winnable games on our remaining schedule - have really done us in. I don't think winning the CCHA tourney is a must, but we would need to go like 12-3 the rest of the regular season, sweep 2 playoff series and maybe win 1 game at the JLA (winding up 24-16-2), and this group just doesn't have a run like that in them, even if one of these goalies all of a sudden started standing on his head.
1/12 12:19 PM | IP: Logged
because there is no way they can go 12-3 or so the rest of the season.
1/12 1:55 PM | IP: Logged
Exactly what I think, too. For our D to allow 5 goals to teams that don't score- the level of improvement required to even approach the CCHA mid level teams is pretty massive.
I can see us split against Lake State, and maybe sweep State, but other than that, I can't really see wins without significant change. 3-9 to finish the season seems more likely than 9-3. With typical rate of imrpovement, 6-6 is possible. With current rate of "improvement"- 2-10 is more likely.
Last night was a good example- we scored at a decent rate vs shots. But we didn't have enough shots to score 5. And two of the worse scoring teams put up 5 in consecutive games. What happens when we play better teams?
1/12 2:36 PM | IP: Logged
That's actually not a bad idea. The goal needs to be get to playing your best hockey by early March. Quite honestly, the next two months really don't matter. They're not making the tourney if they don't win the CCHA.
Also, you have to make a decision about Rutledge and if he can play in the NCAA at a Michigan level so you know if you need a 2014 goalie or not. Maybe he's a guy that plays better when he's "the guy". We've seen goalies that are better when they have to battle and we've seen guys that react better with no pressure. If you tell Rut that he's starting and that's the way it is for the next few weekends, maybe he responds, maybe he doesn't. But you'd get an answer one way or the other.
The next few weeks should be experimentation. Try all sorts of line combos, defense pairings, pp units, etc. to see what works and what doesn't. All that would matter is getting home ice in round 1 of the CCHAs. And even that might not matter all that much.
If they COULD manage the record I described for the rest of the season, the final W-L record would likely be good enough to get into the NCAA via Pairwise even if they did not win the NCAA tourney. I agree that this team is not capable of going 17-4 or 16-5 over the rest of the season (including CCHA playoffs).
1/12 4:59 PM | IP: Logged
tournament. Just to far out of it, no matter what they do now, they just aren't going to make up the ground they have lost. If they can't win these home games, how are they ever going to get wins out there on the road and after tonight there is only one home game between now and the first week of March.
It's sport so you never say never until the last whistle of the last game has blown, but I have seen nothing from this bunch to give me even a glimmer of hope at this point.
1/12 5:38 PM | IP: Logged
home ice in the CCHA 1st round? That's what everyone is advocating with the just play Rutledge thing and experimenting with all kinds of line pairings, D pairings, etc... . I guess I understand that point of view, but it just doesn't seem to me that you can get anything done that's constructive by doing something like that.
If he's playing better than the other's that would be one thing, but he's arguably been the worst of the three so far (I know small game sample size) and if he's not getting it done in games (not that the other two are), but also not doing enough in practice to earn more starts, what does that say to the team? If a team that is already lacking confidence as this team seems to be, how do they respond when they see a player that is getting out performed by others put into games because they want to see if they need to replace him? The only take away from that is that they have given up on this season and how do you ever get a team back once that message gets sent? Let's also not forget that we are talking about 2014 goalies, that leaves an entire 2013 season to play and if you lose your team now next year could be an even bigger disaster than this year is shaping up to be.
I don't think they have any choice except to play the players they think give them the best chance to win. They can't use the remainder of this season to evaluate a goalie or any other player to see if they need to be replaced. I also don't think that at this point they have any choice but to look for another goalie. Finding one for 2013 would be great, but I don't think that's possible unless some coaching change were to shake a 2013 goalie loose from another team. Find a 2014 goalie, hopefully one that will stick with a commitment and join the team. I just don't think they have a choice at this point unless one of the current goalies suddenly sees the light and starts playing with some purpose.