So in what his 3rd season the UMASS coach has his team ranked #3 in the country? Oh ok. I remember when we made coaching hires that made huge splashes like that. I also remember when we had the best top to bottom athletics program in the northeast.
There are three things that are a given on UConn Hockey game day...the sun will rise, the sun will set and you will post the same stuff about the program........That's you trying to get Coach Cavanaugh and his program out of your head.....
Harsh assessment - I think there is much hope given the talent. They need to learn how to play 60 minutes. That is the principle job of the coaches. We can thrive at this level, but IMO coaching is currently deficient. I hear they're young. Young - smoung... We have the talent to compete now. I want to hear Cavanaugh's plan to counter 3rd period meltdowns now. It can be done - look how far our opponent has come. A perenial HE also-ran is now #3 in the country. They accomplished this in 3 years and they came back from farther than we are. It can be done. First consideration has to be whether we have the right coach. After 6 years, it is question we should all ask.
I’m new to UConn/college hockey. But not new to hockey. My perspective as a new comer is I think this team got some real solid talent. Iskhakov is worth the price of admission alone! El-Mir, Payusov, Kondelik are really solid players out there. I think Huska is a solid goalie and Vamacka is ever better! The addition of guys like Blümel and Firstov will make the offense down right sexy to watch. Cavanaugh ability to go get these highly skilled Europeans is brilliant. And I think bringing them over with the now coming $50m plus practice facility and campus arena will play a big role in getting more recruits.
HOWEVER.... something has to be done about the defense... IT STINKS!! They’re slow, chasing the puck, can’t make break out passes, can’t shoot from the point, etc, etc. It’s rough and I think it’s the primary reason for UConn blowing leads and struggle on the power play. Cav has got to address that! We can have world class forwards and great goaltending. But a solid D group is the backbone of the team success. They especially need to chip on the offensive side. I did some quick research on numbers. And found they only have 3 goals from defenseman this year. Only Newpower is in the top 12 point leaders and now compare that to last nights opponent who has 5 defensemen in the top 12 (including their point leader) and inner state rival Quinnipiac who has 4 d-man in the top 12. I feel that really needs to be worked on currently and recruited on longterm. On the positive note, I thought they looked really good on the PK last night. But the 5 on 5 was... On the 5th UMass goal 4 guys chased the puck...
The dumb garbage Edsall pedals about guys getting better just because they're gonna be older actually plays when you see the hockey team play. There's clear improvement in these kids when you watch them Howarth for example, last night finally gets a goal and then gets another one in the third.
The best players on the team are all the kids. This will take time. Better to be frustrated by them blowing third periods than being blown off the ice from the start every night.
Didn't realize we were that young. I was feeling generally a little disappointed that the team has taken a step backwards from the last couple of years. I've also been disappointed that we got to the cusp of playoff consideration but have not broken through.
Maybe in two years this young squad will do that. I'm not giving up on Cav, but I'd like to see us have a breakthrough soon. If UMass can do it, and PC, and a school like Quinnipiac can become a national power, there shouldn't be anything preventing UConn from similar success.